Shakespeare’s Writing: Romeo and Juliet

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In Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare uses foreshadowing, irony, allusion, and humor to create one of the best pieces of literature of all time. His usage of these literary elements and devices to make the story come alive is remarkable. His technique of these elements helps the play from becoming too boring. Shakespeare uses foreshadowing in the story to assist the audience into predicting the tragic outcome, so at the end of the play when Romeo and Juliet die, the audience will not be as upset with the unfortunate fate of the couple. He uses a few of his lines throughout the play to foreshadow the mournful ending. “If he be married, my grave is like to be my wedding bed,” (966). This line from the play presents itself soon after Romeo and Juliet meet for the first time, so this shows early application of literary elements in the tale. “Give me Romeo; and, when he shall die, take him and cut him out in little stars, and he will make the face of heaven so fine that all the world will be in love with night,” (999,1000). This line also foreshadows the unpleasant destiny and the family feud ending if the line is read closely. Nevertheless, Shakespeare does not just practice the usage of foreshadowing in his method. Shakespeare too uses irony to give the play that shock value. He exerts all the different types of irony: situational, dramatic, and verbal. He expends situational irony in Romeo and Juliet when Romeo is going to the Capulets’ party to see his “true love” Rosaline, which is what the audience expects, but he ends up meeting his newest “love” Juliet. However, by far the most obvious use of irony is dramatic when Juliet takes the potion that puts her in a temporary coma, but then later her family finds her and thinks she is dead. This presents the irony because the audience knows Juliet is just in a momentary coma, but all the other characters in the story, except Friar Lawrence, believe she is dead. Nevertheless, Shakespeare’s exercise of verbal irony is an

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