Romeo and Juliet Act 2

Synopsis (Scene 1) After meeting Juliet at the Capulet Ball, Romeo hopes to see her again, so he jumps over the Orchard Wall when he hears Mercutio and Benvolio approaching. His friends are not aware that Romeo has met and fallen in love with Juliet. They are still convinced that he is still in love with Rosaline. Mercutio mocks Romeo by teasing about Rosaline’s seductive beauty. Romeo continues to hide, hearing everything. Mercutio thinks that Romeo went home to bed, but then Benvolio mentions that he saw Romeo jump over the Orchard Wall, and that he is probably with Rosaline. Then Mercution starts teasing about Rosaline.
Synopsis (Scene 2) Romeo stands in the shadows beneath Juliet’s bedroom window. Juliet stands on the balcony thinking she’s alone; she reveals a soliloquy where she confesses her love for Romeo. She despairs over the feud between the two families. Romeo listens and talks, when Juliet tells him to “doff” his name, he steps from the darkness and says “call me but love.” After the two talk and exchange expressions of devotion, the Nurse calls Juliet from the balcony. Juliet leaves, but returns momentarily. They agree to marry. Juliet promises to send a messenger the next day so that Romeo can tell her what wedding arrangements he has made. The scene concludes as day breaks and Romeo leaves to seek the advice of Friar Laurence.Shakespeare uses light and dark imagery to describe Romeo and Juliet’s romance. He looks and compares Juliet to the sun, compares her to holy symbols like angels and such. He has come to a more genuine understanding of love. The scene at night shows that their love exists in a world quite distinct from the violence of the feud.
Synopsis (Scene 3) Romeo arrives at Friar Laurence’s cell as day breaks. The Friar is collecting herbs and flowers while he postulates on their powers to medicate and to poison. Romeo tells him of his love for Juliet and asks the Friar to marry them later that day. The Friar is amazed and concerned at the speed with which Romeo has transferred his love from Rosaline to Juliet, but agrees to help the couple in the hope that the marriage might ease the discord between the two families.Friar Laurence gives a soliloquy when gardening his plants and talks about the coexistence of good and evil. The tension between good and evil is a constant force for the play. Love and hate constantly happens. He is a holy man and sees the opposite forces within the plants and how that could relate to the people in Verona.
Synopsis (Scene 4) The morning after the Capulet feast, Mercutio and Benvolio search for Romeo. Mercutio blames Romeo’s absence on his love for Rosaline. Benvolio has discovered that Tybalt has sent Romeo a challenge to duel, and Mercutio is amused at the thought of an encounter between Romeo, the romantic, and Tybalt, the fashionable “Prince of Cats.” Romeo then comes and engages in a long series of puns and quibbles with Mercutio. The Nurse then arrives with her servant, Peter, looking for Romeo. Mercutio exasperates her with his quick, sharp mockery. Mercutio leaves with Benvolio, and Romeo tells the Nurse that Juliet should meet him at Friar Laurence’s cell at 2 p.m. that afternoon to be married. The Nurse is to collect a rope ladder from Romeo so that he can climb to Juliet’s window to celebrate their wedding night.Romeo has become much happier with Juliet, because of the reciprocated love between them and the growing romance.
Synopsis (Scene 5) Three hours after sending the Nurse for news from Romeo, Juliet waits impatiently for her return. The Nurse, knowing of Juliet’s eagerness, deliberately teases the young bride to be by withholding the word of the upcoming wedding. Instead, the Nurse complains about her aches and pains. The Nurse finally relents when Juliet is almost hysterical with frustration and tells her that she it to marry Romeo that afternoon at Friar Laurence’s cell. The Nurse then leaves to collect the rope ladder that Romeo will use to climb into Juliet’s bedroom that night. Juliet’s soliloquy and impatience, enthusiasm, and youthful energy to wed contrasts the Nurse who is old, decrepit, and slow. Unlike her demeanor in other scenes, Juliet acts like a young teenage girl who has little patience for deferred gratification. Since the Nurse has been much more of a mother figure than Juliet’s biological mother, it follows that Juliet would feel free to act her age in the Nurse’s presence. The Nurse delivers Juliet news of her wedding- a message for a woman or young lady, not a 13-year-old girl. Maturity beckons Juliet with ominous, fateful overtones. The Nurse’s comic role increases the tension in this scene as she deliberately refuses to be hurried by Juliet in imparting her news. Juliet is forced to wait and coax the news from the Nurse, stifling her impatience when the Nurse continually changes the subject. The Nurse focuses on Romeo’s physical attributes, describing his legs, feet, and hands in a speech that echoes Mercutio’s description of Rosaline in Act II, Scene 1. Both the Nurse and Mercutio share a bawdy sense of humor and view love as a purely physical relationship. The Nurse then comments knowingly on the pleasures that await Juliet on her wedding night with the pregnancy that will likely follow. This comment reflects the inverted life/death theme that runs throughout the play
Soliloquy An act of speaking one’s thoughts aloud when by oneself or regardless of any hearers, especially by a character in a play.
Comic Relief Comedy, Character Foils

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