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    Theme Of Violence In Romeo And Juliet Essay

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    ‘Romeo and Juliet’, is a tragic love story, by William Shakespeare written in the year 1954. The play is set in the town of Verona in Italy and is concentrated on two characters in which the title is named from ‘Romeo and Juliet’. The story commences with the conflict between the Capulet’s and the Montague’s Prologue – “Two households, both alike in dignity, in Fair Verona, from ancient grudge break to new mutiny, where civil blood makes civil hands unclean” The immense grudge between both households is apparent straight from the beginning.

    Although violence is very apparent throughout Romeo and Juliet, violence is shown in also a subtle and unspoken way. In the opening scene it starts off with Sampson and Gregory who are from the Capulet household using violent words in a sexual way, speaking amongst each other, Sampson replies to Gregory ‘Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads’ meaning taking the Montague’s maids virginity. Still in act1 scene1 Tybalt says a very important line which is ‘What, drawn, and talk of peace! I hate the word, as I hate hell, all Montague’s, and thee: Have at thee, coward!

    I think it gives the audience the right prospective of Tybalt as he is a violent, non-negotiable character and as hell is portrayed as a sinful, abominable, place, so therefore Tybalt is basically saying he would never be civil with a member of the Montague’s for they are the enemy. In act1 scene5, lines 53-91, the ballroom scene. Capulet is angry at Tybalt for wanting to fight with Romeo. This part of the scene is not immensely violent but brings out more of Tybalts angry character. For example Tybalt says ‘Tis he, that villain Romeo. To which Capulet replies ‘Content thee, gentle coz, let him alone.

    Which shows that Capulet is trying to keep the peace at the party by letting Romeo stay, as it was an open invite party to which certain Capulet’s could come. Tybalt is so angry but must do as Capulet says so their family doesn’t fall out, even if that means going against his strong hate towards Romeo and other Montague’s. In act3 scene1, the street fight in Verona, there is no intention of having a fight with the Capulet’s as Benvolio quotes ‘I pray thee, good Mercutio, let’s retire. The day is hot, the Capulets abroad, and, if we meet, we shall not scape a brawl; for now, these hot days, is the mad blood stirring.

    Benvolio is obviously worried that there is going to be a fight and he tries to persuade Mercutio to get away from the streets, saying in these hot days people will become angry and hot-blooded and not back down. Mercutio accuses Benvolio of being scared to fight. ‘Thou art like one of these fellows that, when he enters the confines of a tavern, claps me his sword upon the table, and says ‘god send me no need of thee’; and by the operation of the second cup draws him on the drawer, when indeed there is no need.

    By saying this Mercutio means that Benvolio is like the type of men that slam their swords down on the table and pray to never use it in a violent manner. Soon Benvolio is feeling highly irate and soon spots the capulets ‘By my head, here comes the Capulets. ‘ Tybalt comes looking for Romeo and soon Mercutio starts taunting Tybalt, at first Tybalt tries to ignore Mercutio as it is Romeo he is looking for. Benvolio tries telling them to get out of sight of people as they’ll all be punished if anything was to commence.

    Soon Romeo is spotted and yet refuses to fight Tybalt because they are officially family because of his marriage to Juliet. Romeo shows us in this scene that his love for Juliet is so strong he is even willing to love his enemy Tybalt. Because of this Mercutio says to Romeo and then Tybalt ‘O calm dishonourable, vile submission! ‘Alla stoccata’ carries it away. Tybalt, you rat catcher, will you walk with me? ‘ This shows us that Mercutio seems to want to fight with Tybalt. They draw. And as Romeo tries to break them up, Tybalt reaches under Romeo’s arm and stabs Mercutio. Mercutio is dead.

    In this part of the scene, you see Romeo’s violent, vicious side of him as he starts fighting with Tybalt even though he is family and knowing that his actions will hurt Juliet, rage and anger takes over him and at full force Romeo beats down and kills Tybalt. In Friar Lawrence’s cell. Romeo finds out that he is to be banished for killing Tybalt. He is distraught at this thought and tells the friar that being banished is the same as death to him. Without Juliet he is nothing. ‘There is no world without the Verona walls. ‘ By saying this he is telling us he would use violence on himself if he had to go without his beloved Juliet.

    This may not be interoperated as violence as such, but maybe violent love, as we witness now that Romeo would do anything and everything for Juliet even die for his love for her. In act3 scene 5, lines 103 – end, Juliet’s bedroom. When Juliet’s mother enters the room and sees her tears she assumes they are for the deceased Tybalt. But little does Lady Capulet know that Romeo has just bidding farewell to his sweet wife. So she tells Juliet to stop grieving the most important feature of Juliet’s speech in this scene is ambiguity or double meanings.

    When Lady Capulet says that Romeo; by killing Tybalt, has caused Juliet’s grief, she agrees that Romeo has made her sad, and that she would like to get her hands on him. By placing one word – “dead” – between two sentences, Juliet makes her mother think she wants Romeo dead, while really saying that her heart is dead because of him. .Then lady Capulet says ‘we will have vengeance for it, fear thou not:’ so here Lady Capulet is showing the rivalry and hatred between the Montague’s and Capulets. Showing that just because one of the Capulets has been murdered there has to be revenge on the Montague’s.

    By this we can tell that the Capulet’s think they have to be even with the Montague’s so if violence is forced upon them they must fight back and not sort it out civilly. They must get even through violence. Capulet contrasts Paris’s merits as a husband with Juliet’s immature objections. He says that Paris is “Of fair demesnes, youthful and nobly lined” and “stuffed… with honourable parts”. He calls his daughter a “wretched puling fool” and a “whining mammet”, before sarcastically mimicking her objections to the match: “I cannot love… I am too young”.

    The audience knows of course that she can and does love, but it is Romeo she loves and cannot be forced to love another. Also, when Capulet becomes angry, he uses language inventively – so the adjective proud becomes both verb and noun: “proud me no prouds”. And finally, he reminds us of his power over Juliet by speaking of her as if she were a thoroughbred horse, which he can sell at will – “fettle your fine joints”, he says, meaning that she must prepare herself for marriage. claims that Juliet is proud: she insists that she is not, and Capulet repeats the word as evidence of her “chopt-logic” or splitting hairs.

    These insults may seem mild or funny today, but were far more forceful in the 16th Century: “green-sickness carrion”, “tallow-face”, “baggage… wretch” and “hilding”. The grave yard in Verona. At the start of this scene Paris is visiting Juliet’s grave. At this time Romeo enters the graveyard, Paris hears him coming and hides in the darkness. After Romeo has started to open the coffin of Juliet Paris pops out and blames Romeo for killing Juliet’ cousin and that he shouldn’t be here because he is banished. Paris shows violence towards Romeo by calling him a ‘vile Montague.

    This shows that Paris shows Romeo no mercy because he is a Montague. Romeo says to Paris ‘put not another sin on my head, by urging me to fury: O be gone! ‘ By this he means that he doesn’t want Paris to temp him to commit another crime. Or in other words, killing him. But Paris still encourages him, so he and Romeo fight a pointless fight. Showing the audience that they still have a lot hate for each other’s families even after Juliet, the girl who they both loved had just ‘died. ‘ When Romeo eventually kills Paris, Paris says that he wants die next to Juliet.

    This shows the audience that Paris actually did have a heart and may have even loved Juliet as much as Romeo did. So Romeo then laid Paris next to Juliet and then begins to make a long speech for Juliet. In this he apologises to the deceased Tybalt. Now he is starting to realise just what he has done because it’s resulted in his only love being ‘dead. ‘ So he drinks the poison and lies next to Juliet and dies. This self-inflicted violence shocks the audience and shows that Romeo acted very dramatically to Juliet’s death. He didn’t think about any consequences of his violent actions throughout the whole play including this one.

    This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

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    Theme Of Violence In Romeo And Juliet Essay. (2018, Feb 25). Retrieved from

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