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Shakespeare Component -

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NEAB / AQA GCSE English / English Literature Coursework Shakespeare Component - "Romeo and Juliet" I see Act III Scene V as a particularly significant scene in the play because it leads to, and indeed causes, important events later on. Before it, Tybalt slaughters Romeo's friend, Mercutio, a relation of the Prince, Escalus. Romeo wreaks vengeance on Tybalt by killing him, at which point the Prince banishes him from Verona. Before he leaves, he spends one night with Juliet. After the scene, Juliet is desperate and appeals to Friar Lawrence for help. He aids her in falsifying her own death to avoid marriage to Paris. A letter is sent to Romeo, but is unable to reach him in time. He goes back to Verona, sees Juliet "dead" and kills himself with grief. If only he had waited a few minutes more, for Juliet wakes up, seeing him dead, and takes her own life. If I were directing the play, I would have it set in 19th or 20th Century Africa, for the simple reason that Romeo and Juliet has far too frequently been portrayed in 16th Century Italy, and I think that the audience would appreciate the novelty. ...read more.


Romeo says that as more light appears, their sadness grows greater. There are a lot of references to death and foreboding in this scene. Many of them are directed towards Juliet ("I wish the fool were married to the grave"), but some are about Romeo ("let me be ta'en, let me be put to death"). Shakespeare put in these references in order to give a clue (to those observant enough to notice) to the ending of the play or, more accurately, the fate of the two lovers. Fate plays a big part in Romeo and Juliet. From the start, they are described as "star-crossed" which means ill-fated. The overall structure of the play and the way it unfolds brings across a sense of inevitability about the ending. Romeo and Juliet cannot escape from the inevitable conclusion, as, just when things appear to be improving, a new and worse disaster strikes. Lord Capulet, in line 155, threatens to drag her on a hurdle, which is a device for dragging criminals to their execution. The Elizabethans believed the curses of parents to be particularly ominous, so this is another hint by Shakespeare. ...read more.


When Capulet abuses the Nurse, he begins to calm down, yet still retains the annoyance ever-present in his personality in recent times. Capulet then goes on to state that Juliet can beg and starve in the streets before he will allow her to disobey him. This is the same man who was so lenient about his daughter's marital status earlier on in the play. Much like his entrance, I would make Capulet's exit equally dramatic. I would advise the actor playing the part to stride out, slamming the door behind him. It is interesting to note that each character reacts differently to Juliet's refusal. Capulet is vividly angry, and he slams the door upon leaving. Juliet's mother is quietly morose and would exit in a manner that befits such a mood, like a slower and gentler closing of the door. The Nurse, meanwhile, is in a better mood. The advice she gives to Juliet ("I think it best you married with the County") is well-intentioned and Juliet tells her that she will marry, so the Nurse's mood is likely to be lighter than that of Juliet's parents. Therefore, I would suggest that she should exit rapidly, eager to tell the news to Lady Capulet. ...read more.

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