Explore the different types of love in William Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet'.

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Explore the different types of love in William Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’.

        In ‘Romeo and Juliet’ there are many different types of love expressed between characters. The audience witnesses sexual, parental, friendship and formal love among Shakespeare’s characters. The main love story line is of a ‘true’ love from Romeo and Juliet. The play also contains other smaller story lines between other individuals who share a love for one another.

        The prologue tells us that this play will take us through many forms of love. It starts the play telling the audience of the “fearful passage of their death-marked love”. This tells us right from the beginning that it is going to be a tragic play where “star-crossed lovers take their life”. This is referring to Romeo and Juliet’s love, and how their desire for one another is the cause of their death. This makes the audience intrigued to know why their love is so strong.

        After the prologue Romeo is talking with Benvolio, his friend, in a dreamy, irrational way. Romeo is speaking in rhyme throughout this scene. He says, “Love is a smoke made with the fume of sighs, Being purged, a fire sparkling in lovers’ eyes”. From this the reader may assume that Romeo takes love very seriously, it is also represents a stereotypical form of love poetry. This may indicate that there is nothing special about his love with Rosaline. In this scene Romeo also uses oxymorons to describe his love for Rosaline. He describes love as “sick health”. This illustrates the idea that he is confused and not making any sense because he is talking in an irrational way. Benvolio tells Romeo to “Examine other beauties”. This quotation portrays the idea that maybe Benvolio has seen this before from Romeo and he knows the time will come when Romeo will fall in love with another lady. The audience will feel that Romeo is acting like a lovesick teenager.

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        The next scene has Capulet discussing his daughter, Juliet, with her proposed husband to be, Paris. In this scene Capulet expresses his fatherly love for Juliet; he call her the “hopeful lady of [his] earth”. This exemplifies his love for her in a parental manner. Capulet also says his daughter is “a stranger in the world”. This exposes his concern for the well being of Juliet. Later on in the play his attitude and love towards Juliet changes when she refuses to marry Paris. He calls Juliet a “disobedient wretch” and informs her that “you be mine, I’ll give you ...

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