Romeo and Juliet Dramatic Effects
Analyse the dramatic importance of Act 3 Scene 5. Act 3 scene 5 is of huge dramatic importance as it is pivotal to the plot of the play. Act 3 scene 5 takes place the morning after Romeo and Juliet have spent their first night together following their marriage.
In the first part of the scene, they are very happy and also very romantic as Romeo says “How are you, my love? ” This shows that Romeo cares for Juliet and it also shows how much love, Romeo has just been banished from Verona for killing Tybalt and is preparing to leave.
This makes Juliet very upset as they haven’t even spent a day together. The nurse comes to warn them that Juliet’s mother is coming to see her to discuss her marriage to Paris. After Romeo has left, Juliet bursts into tears. When Lady Capulet arrives, Juliet cries even more but Lady Capulet thinks she is crying because of her cousin’s death. Lord Capulet explodes with anger when he hears that Juliet disagrees with the marriage. The nurse unexpectedly advises her to marry Paris. The key themes highlighted in this scene are: happiness, love, parental conflict, anger and sadness.
In this scene we learn a great deal about the characters of: Romeo, Juliet, Capulet, Lady Capulet and the nurse. In the previous scene Romeo and Juliet get married and the Montagues and the Capulets have a fight which leads to the deaths of Mercutio and Tybalt. Romeo is banished from Verona for murdering Tybalt because Tybalt has murdered Mercutio. Lady Capulet seems to support and comfort her daughter, but when Juliet argues and shouts she simply hands it over to Lord Capulet who will control Juliet. In the time of Shakespeare the men were in charge of the house and the children so the audience would have agreed to the play.
Lady Capulet thinks that she can control Juliet, so she informs her of the marriage that has already been arranged. She seems very concerned about Juliet but she cannot control her herself and threatens Juliet “here comes your father. Tell him so yourself, and see how he will take it at your hands”. She means I will not say anything so see what your father has to say. In the previous scenes she was very quiet and innocent but in this scene she changes from being quiet into a very loud character which reveals her true nature.
The Nurse is a very caring character and understands Juliet’s problems but in this scene she disagrees with Juliet as she advises her to marry Paris when she is aware that she has already been married to Romeo. This disheartens Juliet so much as she is the only person who she trusted. The Nurse says “I think the best thing to do is to marry the count” as if she is speaking to someone she doesn’t know. Juliet relies on her so much that she is shocked when she hears such a thing come out of the Nurse’s mouth. Juliet declares “from now on I will never tell what I feel in my heart”.
She also doesn’t say this straight to her face as the Nurse would start avoiding her which would please her parents and lead to Juliet getting into more trouble. The Nurse tries to persuade Juliet of Paris’ superiority and believes “Romeo’s a dishclout to him”. The image of the dishcloth indicates that Romeo is not worthy of Juliet. This makes Juliet furious because it was originally the Nurse who reported positively about Romeo. In this scene the Nurse is ambivalent because she supports Juliet when Lord Capulet explodes with anger as Juliet refuses to marry Paris.
In previous scenes the Nurse is very supportive and thinks of Juliet as her own daughter when she says “What, lamb! What, ladybird! ”, but in this scene she changes from supporting Juliet to letting her down when she asks for her advice. Lord Capulet is a very strong character throughout the play but he does care about Juliet as he claims that he will not do anything against his daughter’s will but in this scene he orders her to “go to church on Thursday or never look me in the face again.
Don’t say anything. Don’t reply. Don’t talk back to me”. This quote would be very aggressive when said in the play as he is saying it with aggression and anger. Which shows that the old Capulet has gone. In this scene, generally, everyone shows their bad side as it is now getting serious about Juliet’s wedding. In this scene Capulet uses metaphors such as “when the sun sets, the air drizzles dew. But at the death of my brother’s son, it rains a down pour. What are you, girl? Some kind of fountain? he is comparing the downpour and the amount of tears that Juliet is producing and he is also trying to express that Juliet is not crying for her cousins death but crying for her husband Romeo. He also slams her on the floor while she begs on her knees and as he is not aware that Juliet is already married he repeatedly tells her to marry but the audience knows that if she marries she will go to hell as there is a sin if she marries again. This scene would have been very dramatic and sad as the audience would have felt sorry for her.
By Capulet doing this creates a feeling of tension and pressure for Juliet as she is begging him. From the audience’s point of view, Juliet is very innocent but Capulet refers to her as a “disobedient wretch”. This shows the amount he cares he takes for his daughter. If this were to happen in today’s society maybe he would be prosecuted for child abuse. Later in the play Juliet pretends to agree to the marriage but nobody is aware of that. Friar Lawrence gives her a potion that she will have before the night of the wedding so that she will fall into a deep sleep and wake up after 12 hours.
Act 3 scene 5 is one of the most dramatic scenes in the play. This scene leads to many misconceptions as the Friar Lawrence was supposed to inform Romeo of the plans but Romeo didn’t get the message. But he got the news that Juliet had died. Act 3 scene 5 reveals most of the characters’ true natures. This scene is important as this is the scene that leads to the death of Romeo and Juliet and also it reveals the Nurses’ real character as she didn’t really understand the true love of Romeo and Juliet. All of the characters undergo a dramatic change in how they behave in this scene.