Romeo and Juliet - Themes


Read the extract from Romeo and Juliet and answer questions 1-4 below.

What, drawn and talk of peace?
I hate the word
As I hate hell, all Montagues and thee.
Have at thee, coward.
Clubs, bills and partisans! Strike, beat them down,
Down with the Capulets, down with the Montagues!
What noise is this? Give me my long sword, ho!
Capulet's wife
A crutch, a crutch! Why call you for a sword?
My sword, I say. Old Montague is come,
And flourishes his blade in spite of me.
Thou villain Capulet! - Hold me not, let me go.
Act 1 Scene 1

Which theme does Shakespeare present to the audience through this scene?


Why does Shakespeare begin his play with conflict?


Why does Shakespeare repeatedly use the exclamation mark in this section?


What do the families say to insult one another?


Read the extract from Romeo and Juliet and answer questions 5-7 below.

Then plainly know, my heart's dear love is set
On the fair daughter of rich Capulet.
As mine on hers, so hers is set on mine,
And all combined, save what thou must combine
By holy marriage. When, and where, and how
We met, we wooed and made exchange of vow,
I'll tell thee as we pass; but this I pray,
That thou consent to marry us today.
Act 2 Scene 3

What theme does this extract present?


Why does Shakespeare use the word "plainly"? What does it represent?


Pick out a phrase which shows Romeo urgently wants to marry Juliet.


Read the extract from Romeo and Juliet and answer questions 8-10 below.

Monday! Ha, ha. Well, Wednesday is too soon.
A' Thursday let it be, a' Thursday, tell her,
She shall be married to this noble earl.
Will you be ready? Will you make haste?
We'll keep no great ado, a friend or two,
For, hark you, Tybalt being slain so late,
It may be thought we held him carelessly,
Being our kinsman, if we revel much.
Therefore we'll have some half a dozen friends
And there an end. But what say you to Thursday?
Act 3 Scene 4

In this section, what is Capulet organising?


Pick out a phrase which shows Capulet is the head of the family.


What does this passage show the audience about Capulet and Juliet's relationship?