Atmosphere of Tension and Horror in Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

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Atmosphere of Tension and Horror in Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

Shakespeare, before Act III Scene I, builds up an atmosphere of

happiness and love. He has done this with the marriage of Romeo and

Juliet, and how perfect life is going for Romeo.

"Till Holy Church incorporate two in one" [II.I.37].

Romeo is neither worried nor unhappy, he is just madly in love with

Juliet. As we find out later, not even a few words from Tybalt can

displease his loving mood. It is only when his friend and Tybalt start

fighting, his happy and loving mood soon turns into anger and despair.

This one scene in the play turns the whole story around. The day is

hot and both the Capulets and the Montagues are hot and bothered and

even bored. Even nowadays hot weather always seems to frustrate and

anger people and this is exactly what happens in this scene. Mercutio

who is a good friend to Romeo, but is always the one that creates and

ends up in trouble, finds himself in a dual with Tybalt, of the

Capulets. Romeo enters just before they start to fight. Ironically

Romeo tries to stop the fight but actually helps Tybalt kill Mercutio.

How does he help?

"Gentlemen, for shame forbear this outrage!" said Romeo [III.I.79].

Romeo chases after Tybalt, they both dual and Tybalt falls. What

happens after these terrible events changes the whole play. The Prince

exiles Romeo from Verona and into Mantua he has to live. This one

speech by the Prince has a huge impact on the play. Romeo is banished,

he will no longer be able to visit Juliet, which creates frustration

and tension between their relationship, as we find out later on in the


I think when the Prince banished Romeo, the audience, in those days,

would have been disappointed because they would have liked to see

blood and gore, just as when Mercutio and Tybalt died. The only reason

why people remember III.I, I think, is because Mercutio and Tybalt

both died.

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