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Romeo and Juliet

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  • August 2010
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“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Romeo and Juliet is a play by William Shakespeare that is regularly hard to understand by most. William decided to put something in his play to make it more interesting and understandable. There are three literary elements of literature that William used in his play. Dramatic Speech, Dramatic irony, and comic relief are the three elements in The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet that makes the play easier to understand.

First, Dramatic speech is the use of the literary elements such as; soliloquy, aside, and monologue. Soliloquy is a lengthy speech in which a character, usually alone on stage, expresses his or her feelings that are unheard by other characters. For example, Act IV scene iii lines 14-58, “Farewell! God knows when we shall meet again...” This enables the reader to better understand the play. An aside is when a character reveals his or her true feelings that are unheard by other characters. For example, Act V scene iii lines 10-11 Paris states, “I am almost afraid to stand alone here in the churchyard; yet I will adventure.” This helps the audience understand the play. A monologue is a lengthy speech by one person addressed to other characters. For example, Act III scene ii lines 97-127, by Juliet, “shall I speak ill of him that is my husband?...” This also helps the reader understand the play better.

Secondly, Dramatic irony is a contradiction between what a character thinks and says and what the audience or reader knows is true. For example, Act V scene iii lines 92-96 Romeo states, “Death, that hath sucked the honey of thy breath…” Romeo talks of Juliet’s death, but yet he does not know she is only sleeping. The audience has already known that Juliet took Friar Lawrence’s sleeping potion to skip the wedding of her and Paris so she can be with her love Romeo. The audience knows more than the character.

Finally, Comic relief is a technique used to interrupt a...

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