• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Shakespeare's Use of Language in Act 3, Scene 1

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Discuss the way Shakespeare uses language to portray the characters Mercutio, Tybalt and Romeo in Act III, Scene 1. The compelling and tragic drama of "Romeo and Juliet" tells the story of two young "star-crossed lovers" whose blossoming romance is forbidden and jeopardised by the age-old rivalry of their families, which together, with chance and accident leads to fast-paced action on Verona's streets. Ultimately this leads to the premature deaths of Mercutio and Tybalt in Act III, Scene 1. The scene is a pivotal point in the play as the unfolding events trigger a chain reaction. However, it will eventually create a silver lining, which despite the surrounding heartbreak; will result in the resolution of the "ancient grudge." Throughout the play, as is evident in Act III, Scene 1, the main characters were given language by Shakespeare which would intensify the drama, set the scene and portray their emotions. Mercutio's greatest strength lies in his facility with words. This aspect of his character is illustrated when Benvolio says: "By my head here comes the Capulets." and Mercutio replies: "By my heal I care not." (3.1.30-31) Mercutio takes Benvolio's word "head" and replaces it with "heal" showing that he holds the completely opposite view as head and heal are opposite ends of the body. ...read more.

Middle

The statement is very hypocritical of the current situation with Tybalt referring to "the love I bear thee": Tybalt at that point is being disrespectful as he is unaware of the new family connection, which should actually create a love between the two of them. Much of what Tybalt says to Romeo is very insulting, although it is straightforward insulting due to Tybalt's lack of way with words. For example, he refers to Romeo with the term "thou", this was a familiar expression which was used between people who were close to one another and as Tybalt and Romeo are not it is therefore very discourteous to use, especially to someone of Romeo's status. Tybalt further invectives Romeo when he uses the word "afford": we commonly use "afford" when we talk about an object, practically buying an object so Tybalt takes away Romeo's sense of being a person with feeling and a living life. A great weakness of Tybalt's is that he is not very good with words especially when compared to his excellent swordsmanship. This aspect of his character is illustrated when he says: "I am for you." (3.1.75) In order to not display his weakness to everyone he subsequently speaks very little and when he does speak it is in short, simple sentences as above. ...read more.

Conclusion

Tybalt was the better swords man and there were times when this course of action could have changed; to put this simply and effectively "fortune's fool" works excellent for that is what he is. Throughout the scene Shakespeare has carefully selected words and phrases which engage the audience and enable the unconscious portrayal of qualities in the main characters. These words show that Romeo is a true romantic and not yet matured into the way of the world. Whilst Tybalt is typical of the time, good with a sword and holds family honour high. Meanwhile Mercutio is a great extrovert and much fun which coupled with his ability with words enable him to fit in. Altogether, the three characters are very unique and show how the typical man of the time (Tybalt) can actually be less appealing and not who you truly fall in love with. The language allows the audience to understand the true colours of the characters and without this they would not be able to get true satisfaction from the play. Shakespeare was a veritable master at his work and consequently his language has made "Romeo and Juliet" a play that throughout all of history and every generation is perfectly fitting. ?? ?? ?? ?? English Coursework Shakespeare Essay Quotations from "Romeo and Juliet" Cambridge School Shakespeare Cambridge University Press - ISBN978-0-521-61870-0 Caitlin Bones ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Writing to Inform, Explain and Describe section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Writing to Inform, Explain and Describe essays

  1. Analysis of Act 3 Scene 1 in Romeo & Juliet

    If these to events didn't happen then Romeo wouldn't have been banished and at the end Romeo would have known that Juliet had a potion that didn't make her die. All of the events link in together. Franco Zeffirelli made an interpretation of Romeo and Juliet, the scene in this film used swords whereas the Baz Luhrmann version used guns.

  2. What impression have you formed of Tybalt? What can his character contribute to the ...

    With just this line, the whole plays mood is suddenly serious, therefore showing the audience that Tyablt is a dangerous character who shouldn't be messed around with. Finally, Tybalt's sheer hatred for the Montague family is shown to the audience in the following lines of the scene: 'Peace?

  1. How does Shakespeare create a sense of drama in Act 3, Scene 1 of ...

    nothing more than an animal 'a Montague;a villain; I'll not endure him' The way he talks about Romeo is as if he wishes nothing more than for him to be gone, and a duel is the only way he can accomplish it.

  2. The Fury

    Fletcher, usually listened to his heart, after all, it had served him well so far, but not now, now he sensed something he had never sensed before and wouldn't sense again for a long time. He walked slowly, keeping a spade by him, he glanced into the cold, broken hutches

  1. How does Shakespeare make the prologue and act 1 exciting, dramatic and memorable for ...

    The fight is quickly broken up by some armed citizens which is when Capulet and lady Capulet arrive quickly succeeded by Montague and lady Montague. Capulet is eager to fight and clearly shows this, "what noise is this? Give me my long sword, ho!".

  2. Romeo and Juliet

    He still had the choice of who she married, or whether she married or not. But lord Capulet doesn't take advantage of this; he gives her a choice in marrying Paris. Not much fathers would have done this. And not much as much fathers would do this today.

  1. How does Act 3 Scene 1 create dramatic tension in Romeo and Juliet?

    a greeting: villain am I none therefore farewell; I see thou know'st me not." Tybalt thinks Romeo is in a way mocking him, and doesn't take too kindly to this offence, and demands to duel. "this shall not excuse the injuries that thou hast done me, therefore turn and draw"

  2. How does Shakespeare create tension and keep the audiences attention in Romeo and Juliet ...

    occasion' which was in response to Mercutio's 'make it a word and a blow'. What Tybalt is saying is give me an occasion or opportunity and we will beat you up. Tybalt then says 'Mercutio, thou consortest with Romeo' this means Mercutio and Romeo are a bit too friendly although

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work