How does Shakespeare show Juliet's maturity.

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How does Shakespeare show

Juliet’s maturity

In Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’, Juliet matures very rapidly. In the start of the play Juliet is introduced as a young, innocent girl, but ends up as a woman in love with an opinion of her own, and is emotionally mature. Juliet goes through several stages of being a child, being in love, becoming a wife, being deceived and being a widow in a short space of time.

In the beginning Juliet is shown to be an innocent and naïve, almost a child, ‘she is not yet fourteen’ years of age. She is open-minded and joins in when she is being teased. She is also willing to listen and respect the advice of her parents and nurse; ‘I’ll look to like, if looking liking move’. This shows that Juliet at this point is obedient and is not emotionally aware and doesn’t know what real love is yet. Another quotation that shows her obedience is ‘Madam, I am here, what is your will?’

 Also we can see that Lord Capulet, although Juliet’s father and considered her owner, values her opinion and thinks highly of her. ‘ She is the hopeful lady of my earth.’

We can see that that there is an innocence about her character and that the thought of marriage does not impress her. We know this because when she is confronted with the idea of marriage she says ‘It is an honour that I do not dream of’. Even though she is not interested in marrying Paris, she agrees to keep her father happy.

Another point that shows Juliet is still a young girl is the way that she interacts with and is continually petted by the Nurse. Throughout the play the Nurse continually appears. In the beginning Juliet and the Nurse trust each other, protect each other and show love towards each other. Nurse speaks to Juliet in a little girl language ‘ What lamb! What ladybird!’ Juliet appears to have a better relationship with the nurse than with her mother. Juliet and her mother appear to have an awkward relationship. We can see this when she asks the Nurse to ‘give a while’ but soon after asks her to return.

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Juliet’s behaviour rapidly changes when she is faced with new situations and soon finds that she is in love, and her life has changed. When she meets Romeo she uses a witty and intelligent language. Romeo metaphorically uses religion, saying that Juliet is a ‘saint’, a blessing from God. Although Juliet is only young she is very articulate and this is where her intelligence shows through. She smartly twists Romeo’s words and takes control over him. Juliet says, ‘Ay, pilgrim, lips that they must use in prayer.’ ‘Prayer’ is the emphasised word, and although Juliet is denying what Romeo ...

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