Analysis Of Scene 4 In Romeo And Juliet

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Analysis of Scene 4.4 in Romeo and Juliet What makes scene 4.4 in Romeo and Juliet unique is the way in which the dynamic between the public and the characters is handled. The people in the audience are put in a situation where they know more than the characters on the stage. Apart from the spectators the only other person who knows that Juliet is not actually dead, but just appears to be, is Friar Laurence. Shakespeare is well aware of the possibilities that this situation presents him with and uses them to enhance the scene and give it a second layer of meaning. He contrasts the joy of his characters in the beginning of the scene with their sadness at the end with his use of caesuras and repeated words in different types of situations. One…show more content…
NURSE Get you to bed. Faith, you’ll be sick tomorrow For this night’s watching. CAPULET No, not a whit. What I have watched ere now All night for lesser cause, and ne’er been sick. (lines 7–10) The Nurse’s warnings turn out to be right, although not because of Capulet’s wakefulness. What is interesting is that the public knows that. By choosing not to reveal Juliet’s “death” in the beginning of the scene Shakespeare makes the audience nervously await for it to come. When they hear the characters indirectly addressing what would happen when they find out about Juliet “death”, that builds up the tension even further. This dialogue also makes it seem like Capulet is unwittingly having a wake for his daughter, which gives the scene a morbidly comic feel. When the moment finally arrives and Juliet’s death is revealed to her siblings this happens through the use of shared lines. CAPULET’S WIFE What noise is here? NURSE O lamentable day! CAPULET’S WIFE What is the…show more content…
Most woeful day That ever, ever, I did yet behold! O day, O day, O day, O hateful day, Never was seen so black a day as this! O woeful day, O woeful day! (lines 80-85) The repetition of ‘day’ and ‘woeful’ throughout this entire extract allows the actor to perform freely while she is speaking without the fear of forgetting her lines. This repetition also breaks the flow of the Shakespearian verse and shows the suffering that the Nurse goes through. She is so shattered that she can barely make a coherent sentence. Another interesting thing about this extract is the use of the word ‘day’ as cue for the next character. Throughout the Nurse’s lines it is used ten times, four times in conjunction with ‘woeful’. This means that the actor who must speak after her must be very careful. He must not miss his cue and the fact that it is repeated so many times makes his task immensely harder. That makes the actor anxious and fidgety and as a result he is better at portraying his character who has the same issues as him. Shakespeare is well aware of the contrasting moods in the beginning and in the end of the scene. He increases this contrast even more by pointing it out to the spectators and
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