Romeo & Juliet Essay

1813 words - 7 pages

Explore the ways that Shakespeare makes act 1 scene 5 of Romeo and Juliet dramatically effective.Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet is a tragic love story about two star-crossed lovers which the audience know from the prologue which gets the attention of the audience and makes them want to know more. It has stark contrasts of love and hate, which are carried throughout the play. It is this stark contrast that makes the play dramatic as the mood swings from one to the other suddenly.Up to this point in the play the audience know that the Montague's and Capulet's are sworn enemies and that Romeo is the only son of Montague. They also know that Romeo is currently lovesick for a girl named Rosalyn but his love is not reciprocated. At this time the audience knows very little about Juliet other than she is betrothed to an eligible bachelor named Paris. This intrigues the audience and makes them want to knowmore.In act 1 scene 5 the audience are expecting Romeo to try to find Rosalyn at the ball and get out of his melancholy mood and for Juliet to meet Paris for the first time.At the start of the scene the servants are busy and getting ready for the ball. This hustle and bustle contrasts the violence in the previous scenes and creates drama. This opening builds up excitement and anticipation preparing the audience for the main scene. Capulet's speech also does the same thing as his mood is excited and in anticipation of the ball which makes the audience feel the same and his repetition of "Welcome gentleman" makes his welcome seem more genuine and expresses his mood. He is very light hearted in his speech as he makes jokes about the girls unwillingness to dance, he says "ladies that have their feet unplagued with corns will walk about with you." This gets people in the party mood and looking forward to the ball. The mood in this scene is in stark contrast to the fight in the earlier scene as this ball is full of love and laughter whereas the fight was full of anger and hate. Also in this scene old Capulet and his cousin reminisce about their dancing days when they wore visors etc which adds nostalgia to the scene and contributes to the overall effect by incorporating another contrast between youth and age. Also, old Capulet and the Capulet cousin talk about a wedding they last attended which foreshadows what takes place later on in the play between Romeo and Juliet.When Romeo first sees Juliet he professes his love for her in a sonnet which is the traditional way to express love. The language Romeo uses is all contrasts. For example he says "a snowy dove trooping with crows" where the dove represents Juliet's beauty among the other girls of Verona who to Romeo now seem like crows in comparison. Also, earlier in this play Benvolio uses a crow to say that when he sees the other beauties of Verona, it will make Rosalyn, to whom Romeo had a crush on earlier in the play, look ugly in comparison in this case like a crow. So when Romeo uses this metaphor again in...

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