The Importance of Act 3 scene 1 of Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
There are a number of points and specific aspects to Act 3 scene 1 of
Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, that make it an extremely
important part in the play. It is a scene of extreme dramatic tension
and excitement. A scene of events that would be worthy of recollection
by Elizabethan audiences. This is a scene made of intense
confrontation resulting in the death of influential characters,
Mercutio and Tybalt. Act 3 scene 1 changes the feeling of the play as
it turns a tail of romance and love to one of tragedy and despair.
The scene allows us to realize to an extent the depth of the hatred
between the two families the Montagues and Capulets. We also are shown
how that hatred leads to bloodshed of both a member of one of the
families, and of a person from neither family, let alone the banishing
It is important to analyse the scene carefully and extract out of it,
the material that gives the piece its drama and excitement and
moreover what is in it that makes it so important to the play Romeo
and Juliet in general?
Firstly we should consider what has brought the play up to this point
and what actions have already been taken that would lead to a
conclusion of the likes in this scene. Prior to this scene, Romeo and
Juliet members of rival families the Montagues, of which Romeo is part
of and the Capulets to which Juliet belongs, have fallen in love. This
happened when Romeo and a group of his fellow Montagues 'gate crashed'
a Capulet party. The young Romeo fell immediately in love with Juliet,
soon set to marry Paris a Capulet. Tybalt, cousin of Juliet was became
furious at the site of a Montague at their party and wished to
intervene but was stopped by his uncle 'Capulet'. Romeo and Juliet
quickly married in secret, thereby giving Romeo a substantial link and
relation ship to the Capulet family, the same applying for Juliet.
Tybalt still angry at the prospect of a Montague eluding the eyes of
the guards at the party, wished to find Romeo and punish him. From
here on is where we pick the play up at act 3 scene 1. Before we start
our analysis of the scene, we should look into the characters involved
and what we know already of their personalities and mentality.
To start with I will give a small incite on Benvolio, Romeo's cousin.
Benvolio appears to be quite a wise young man, who will provide Romeo
with advice when ever needed and generally hopes and works towards the
best. In events that lead to confrontations with the Capulets,
Benvolio is seen to take on a diplomatic role and tries to stop the
worst from happening despite being a Montague himself. Mercutio is a
more vibrant character than Benvolio, he tends to mix humour and quite
often ironic statements into even the most serious...