The First Meeting of Romeo and Juliet


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The First Meeting of Romeo and Juliet
The meeting of Romeo and Juliet is possibly the most decisive point of
the play. Shakespeare undoubtedly used stagecraft and language devices
to create the desired atmosphere, the idea of love at first sight. The
meeting of Romeo and Juliet is cleverly written to represent a sonnet.
Sonnets are concerned with the idea of love, which makes it an
appropriate device to use. This passage can be contrasted to the love
that Romeo once felt for Rosaline, however Romeo in the first instance
was unwilling and unable to act upon his shallow feelings towards the
object of his affection, while at his very first meeting with Juliet
he has been able to make contact with her rather than view from afar.

The passage is written in verse to show the nobility of Romeo and
Juliet and to remind the audience that these 'children' are far from
ordinary and must fulfill what is required of them. However the rhyme
gives the section a flowing and constant texture similar to love. The
section has a religious and spiritual feel creating the image of
divine and pure loving, strengthening the audience's belief of 'love
at first sight'. One can imagine how Shakespeare used stagecraft
effectively and many similar methods still exist today, I believe that
the most effective is for all the remaining characters present to
freeze in a certain unified position allowing the audience to
concentrate on Romeo and Juliet. The audience feels that Romeo's love
for Juliet is much purer than his love for Rosaline, "This holy
shrine…" in contrast to "She is too fair…" In the first quote Romeo
compares Juliet to a divine being while in the second extract he
merely comments on the beauty of Rosaline, leading the audience to
believe that the first love is deeper than the second but still in a
strange manner contempary.

The intensity of their love is strengthened by the fact that it is

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forbidden, it is clear to the audience that Romeo and Juliet's mutual
love is forbidden due to their opposing families. Till the end of the
scene the audience is emplaced in a position of dramatic irony
empowering them and making the scene more complex and exciting while
at the same time driving the play into new depths. The scene is
somewhat humorous when the audience examines how Romeo persuades the
already willing Juliet in his own particular manner that reflects his
unique and bold personality. "Thus from my lips, by yours, my sin is
purged." Romeo attempts and is successful in persuading Juliet by
appearing to have an honest intention, to remove the sin that is
present in here lips. It was and is obvious today of Romeo's true
intentions, thus adding humor to the play. The second part of the
extract consists of several short sentences increasing the intensity
of the scene. At the beginning of the scene Juliet attempts to
preserve her nobility and maidenhood. "Ay, pilgrim lips that they must
use in prayer." Yet Romeo still manages to use his wit and charm to
manipulate her carefully constructed phrase. "Thus from my lips, by
yours, my sin is purged." This demonstrates the extent that Romeo is
willing to go to acquire Juliet as his own despite the present and
obvious dangers. The audience are clearly aware that Juliet returns
his love as at the end of the scene she desperately seeks to acquire
the name of the man that she has al ready kissed. "Come hither, Nurse.
What is yond gentleman?" This shows that the love is mutual.

True love is one of the aspects that is revealed throughout Romeo and
Juliet yet other aspects do emerge, but it is completely true to say
that true love emerges in this particular scene for the first time.


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