Analysis of Act 3 Scene 5 of Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare In Act 3 Scene 5, Shakespeare presents the audience with a compact
tragedy. By referring to his characters, in particular Juliet, show
how successful he is.
Act 3, scene 5, is particularly worth studying because within it
Shakespeare cleverly shows a dramatic decline in Juliet’s character,
and has the audience gripped because of the tension he creates. At the
beginning of the scene, Juliet awakes as a happily married bride.
However, as the scene progresses, her situation swiftly declines. By
the end of the scene, she has been disowned by both her parents and
the nurse, with whom she previously shared a close relationship.
However, Juliet despite (or maybe because of) her situation shows her
maturity by defying her parents for the first time in her life. She
also shows her intelligence by cleverly using ambiguous language in
order to trick her parents and remain true to Romeo.
Shakespeare opens the scene opens with a very tranquil mood. Juliet
awakens to her husband, but refuses to acknowledge the danger of
Romeo’s presence, she tries instead to convince him that it is still
night, “It is not yet near day…fearful hollow of thine ear”. She
refuses to acknowledge the lark (the bird of the morning) declaring
instead that it is the Nightingale. Her actions and words here clearly
show that she is so happy, she is prepared to deny reality in order to
make the moment last. However, Juliet soon snaps out of her
‘love-dream’ when Romeo declares he will stay and die if “Juliet wills
it so”. It is now that she urges her husband to go so that he is safe.
Perhaps, what is important when analysing any Shakespeare play is a
study of the language. Shakespeare uses poetic language to emphasise
that Romeo and Juliet are destined to be together by having Romeo’s
line rhyming with Juliet’s last line, “O now be gone…dark and dark our
woes”. By having Romeo finish Juliet’s rhyming couplet, Shakespeare is
showing that they are now definitely a couple and definitely fit
together. Shakespeare also plays to the whims of his audience. During
renaissance England, fate and fortune were very much an issue. People
definitely believed in fate. Therefore Shakespeare hints at the
tragedy which audience already know will occur, by having Juliet have
a vision of Romeo lying in a tomb, “o God! I have an ill-divining
soul: / methinks I see thee…As one dead in the bottom of a tomb”. This
would work for the contemporary audience of Shakespeare’s era, as they
firmly believed in fate and destiny. It is also tragically ironic, not
only as the audience, from listening to the chorus, know that Romeo
will die, but also because next time she sees him, he is dead in a