Why Is Act 3 Scene 1 a Turning Point in Romeo and Juliet?

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Romeo and Juliet was written by William Shakespeare, the play is based on forbidden love and deathly consequences. The beginning of the play starts with a prologue, the main point of this is to get the audience’s attention and set the scene but to also explain the whole outline of the play. By doing this Shakespeare is also acknowledging one of the main themes of the play, which is fate. In the prologue Shakespeare chooses to use a lot of violent language- “Their death...Civil blood makes civil hands unclean...Parents rage...”-. Blood is associated with fighting and battles; ‘Rage’ is a strong word, hinting towards anger. This establishes the violent, angry mood of the play. However, the prologue also informs the audience other themes involved in the play. Fate plays a big part in the play, we learn that the two lovers meeting will lead to unfortunate events happening, -“A pair of star crossed lovers take their life...”-, this quote is saying that their death is inevitable and this also links in with the violent theme. Also by telling the audience how the play is going to end, this then becomes fate in action as the audience know what’s going to happen next. This is a good use of dramatic irony because we learn the outcomes of the play and all through it we know what will happen if a character chooses a certain path. The prologue also hints that we aren’t meant to on anyone’s side-“Two houses both alike...”- the two rival families are both the same and so this gives us the chance to make our minds up. In the first scene, we see a street brawl between the servants of the two families; this first scene shows us how the hatred has run through not just the family but the servants also,-“When I have fought with men, I will be cruel with the maids- I will cut off their maiden heads...”-, this shows how violent the feud has become because even the servants are talking about raping the oppositions maids. ‘Maiden heads’ was a slang word for virginity. In the first scene we meet Benvolio, a Montague, and we quickly learn that he is the peace maker, “Put your swords up, you know not what you do...” this shows that he is not a fighter, he just wants to keep the peace. Also the quote reminds us of when Jesus who said, “Forgive them father of their sins, for they know not what they do...”-. This suggests that innocent people may die for others. We are also introduced to Tyblat, who is a Capulet filled with rage for the Montague’s and the word peace, “I hate the word, as I hate hell...” he is one of the characters who will instigate a fight. The next important scene is The Capulet Ball, where Romeo and Juliet first meet. It is also when Tyblat swears that although he is not dealing with the Montague’s intrusion now he will later,” I will withdraw, but this intrusion shall, now seeming sweet, convert to the bitterest gall...” ‘Gall’ means poison, which makes us think of pain and suffering, thus building up the tension. Once again Shakespeare shows that Tyblat is nothing more than a big ball of rage, however this is very important as it starts the chain of events that would lead to the death of the two lovers. As Romeo first spots Juliet he uses very descriptive words to describe the way she looks, he is fascinated by her beauty, ”Beauty to rich to use...”, he also sees her as a rare thing, as if he’s never seen someone so beautiful, “Snowy doves trooping with the crows...”. We also learn that Romeo can change his mind incredibly quickly because at the beginning of the play he seems to be ‘in love’ with a Rosaline, whilst talking about her he uses a lot of oxymoron’s,” Sick health...”, this shows us his confusion from an early point in the play, although when he sees Juliet he claims to be ‘in love’, from this we learn that he is very indecisive and can’t make up his own mind, “Did my heart not love till now?”, this question hints at his indecisiveness and confusion. When Romeo and Juliet finally meet the moment is very child like,...
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