Use of Time in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

Use of Time in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

Length: 537 words (1.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
Shakespeare uses time to show that all things are meant to happen at their own time and place. People tend to consider time as stationary. In Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, the characters are constantly trying to rush time in their urgency. This movement of time results in tragic ends, in which we learn that time and fate go hand in hand: neither one is meant to be tampered with.


In act I, Romeo and Juliet meet at a feast where they immediately fall in love without hesitation. This feast is held by Lord Capulet's feast. Capulet, Juliet's father, announces, "This night I hold an old accustom'd feast (1/2/20)." This hastily made decision is the beginning of Romeo and Juliet's tragic end.


In act II, things begin to take flight for Romeo and Juliet. Romeo visits Juliet at her balcony, where the two immediately confess their love for one another. At first Juliet is not blinded by her love. She can see that things are progressing way too fast. She proclaims, "O, swear not by the moon, the inconstant moon, / that monthly changes in her


Circled orb, / lest that thy prove likewise variable (2/2/113-115)." The moon is often used to symbolize illusion. Shakespeare may have used this term to show that although Romeo is fond of Juliet, he needs to give himself more time to understand the significance of love. Romeo does not realize this and takes fate into his own hands. Thus, making arrangements for the new couple to be married by Friar Laurence the next day.


In act III, fate takes its first victim. Mercutio, Romeo's best friend and companion, avenges Romeo by fighting Tybalt, Romeo's enemy who is also Juliet's cousin. Mercutio is slain and foreshadows Romeo's future; "Ask for me to-morrow, and you shall / find me a grave man (3/1/89-90)." Romeo is extremely grave afterwards. He kills Tybalt and is banished from Verona forever. He realizes that to love an enemy can lead to devastating events, if one does not take enough time to deal with the situation at hand.


Friar Laurence is one of the only characters that truly understands Shakespeare's message. When Lord Capulet plans Juliet's marriage to young and eligible Paris, the friar does not approve: "On Thursday, sir?

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Use of Time in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet." 21 Feb 2020

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Use of Humor in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Essay

- Use of Humor in Romeo and Juliet Romeo and Juliet is one of Shakespeare's most famous plays. One, could give many reasons as to why this play became such a huge success, but one of the most important reasons could be the use of humour in the play. The main reason for doing this could be to relieve the tensions in the play, and to entertain and keep the Elizabethan audience interested. Humour plays a very significant part in the play as it allows Shakespeare to create a lot of contrasts and moods, as and when he wants to....   [tags: William Shakespeare]

Free Essays
1101 words (3.1 pages)

William Shakespeares Use Of Farce in Romeo And Juliet Essay

- Sensuality was a favorite theme of William Shakespeare. Unfortunately, Romeo And Juliet is absolutely witless in terms of Shakespeare's usual conservative politics. In this paper, I will show that Romeo And Juliet is the most brilliant example of reactionary writing ever created. This claim is buttressed by three points: (1) the Surrealist theme of loss of innocence in Romeo And Juliet, (2) Shakespeare's adversarial relationship to the Symbolist school while writing the book, and (3) the author's brave employment of sensuality depite the influence of the Modernist school....   [tags: Papers]

Research Papers
979 words (2.8 pages)

William Shakespeare's Use of Death to Create Tension in Romeo and Juliet

- William Shakespeare's Use of Death to Create Tension in Romeo and Juliet This essay is about how the deaths of Mercutio and Tybalt add tension in Act 3 scene 1 in 'Romeo and Juliet' and also how the deaths affect the audience watching. In the scenes before Act 3 scene 1 the audience will of seen that there are two rival families, the Capulet family and the Montague family but then Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet fall madly in love at a ball held at the Capulet's house and they get secretly married knowing that their families would be furious if they ever found out about their love and this carried on into the beginning of Act 3 scene 1 as Romeo is a part of the...   [tags: Papers]

Free Essays
1071 words (3.1 pages)

William Shakespeare's Use of Conflict in Act 1 Scence 5 of Romeo and Juliet

- William Shakespeare's Use of Conflict in Act 1 Scence 5 of Romeo and Juliet I believe conflict has a number of different meanings, like a fight or perhaps a feud or maybe even just an everyday argument. But also it could be referred to as a clash, not as a physical clash but a clash of two different things completely opposite coming together. An example of this is black and white clashing together completely opposite colours. In Romeo and Juliet act 1 scene 5 the first part of conflict is between Romeo and Juliet themselves when she is dancing with another man....   [tags: Free Essay Writer]

Free Essays
868 words (2.5 pages)

Analysis of Baz Luhrmann's Use of Cinematic Devices in the Opening Scenes of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

- Analysis of Baz Luhrmann's Use of Cinematic Devices in the Opening Scenes of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Baz Luhrmann's 1997 film version of Romeo and Juliet is updated to the modern age while still retaining the original dialogue. The opening shots are unusual but highly affective. Luhrmann starts off with a static long shot focusing on a TV in the middle of the screen....   [tags: Papers]

Research Papers
2180 words (6.2 pages)

Essay about William Shakespeare 's Romeo And Juliet

- Shakespeare can be shown to be a strong influence on many modern aspects of everyday life today, ranging from comedies, tragedies, history, modern television, and many other examples. Shakespeare is well known across the world and will continue to be an influence in the future. His true birthdate is unknown to this day, but his Baptized date was April 26th, 1564 in England. Using Film and Modern television as an example, Shakespeare’s influence can be seen quite easily. He had a lot of work that shows examples of forbidden love or main characters seeking revenge....   [tags: William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet]

Research Papers
1007 words (2.9 pages)

The Universality of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Essay

- Universality of Romeo and Juliet There seems to be an on-going debate as to whether we should attempt to "modernize" Shakespeare (or any of the other classics for that matter).  I think that you can look at it two ways.  Both appeal to the universality of the work.  Either: 1. It is universal and modernizing it only emphasizes that fact, or 2. It is universal and  modernizing it is not necessary.  I think you can play it both ways, and I think Romeo and Juliet  is a good example of this.  The story still touches the lives of the audience whether they see it set in the Elizabethan time period it...   [tags: Romeo Juliet Essays]

Free Essays
767 words (2.2 pages)

William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Essay

- William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet In Romeo and Juliet, love is depicted in several ways. Both Luhrman and Shakespeare represent love in different ways in different contexts to both the Elizabethan era and the contemporary audience. Both the original and later manifestations of the text are valued because they both communicate to the audience on the values of love and society by employing a variety of devices. The central subject dealt within Romeo and Juliet is the subject of love. William Shakespeare and Baz Luhrman thus represent love to their audience beyond the distinct ideas of love as simple sentiments....   [tags: William Shakespeare Romeo Juliet Essays]

Research Papers
1853 words (5.3 pages)

Essay on Fate in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

- Fate, for better or worse, interrupts everyone’s daily life, whether he/she chooses to acknowledge it or not. Thinking about fate conjures up different feelings for different people; some people believe strongly in it, some people think of fate as ridiculous, and some do not care one way or the other. However, in many instances, such as in William Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, far too many coincidences occur to be strictly coincidental. Fate creates a powerful effect throughout the entire play, starting in the prologue, continuing as Romeo and Juliet meet and fall in love, and tragically ending in the lovers’ deaths....   [tags: William Shakespeare Romeo and Juliet]

Research Papers
1108 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on Directing William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

- Directing Romeo and Juliet Being a director in a production such as Romeo and Juliet is no easy task, and I enter into this paper with that in mind. My goals are to be creative, and do things differently from the many versions of the play we have viewed in class. Each of those directors took the original text, written by William Shakespeare, and turned it into a unique version of their own; unique in the sense that they changed the tragedy by taking out lines, conversation or even entire scenes to better suit that particular director’s needs....   [tags: William Shakespeare Romeo and Juliet]

Free Essays
1458 words (4.2 pages)

Related Searches

The time is very short (4/1/1)" The friar takes the time to step back and view the situation at hand. He chooses not to tamper with fate, though. He knows that things, good or bad cannot always be prevented.


Juliet does not want to take the time and openly deal with her problems. Instead, she plans to fake her death and to run away with Romeo. This does not happen as planned, and Romeo does not find out in time. He kills himself and offers Juliet this condolence, "Well Juliet, I will lie with thee to-night (5/1/36)." He will never know the happiness he may have acquired, had he not acted so hastily.


Time is meant to be kept stationary. Romeo and Juliet knew this, yet they were selfish. They rushed to their end. Never to awaken and never to give fate one last chance.

Return to