Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliette is an epic love story whose plot is set in a small Italian city Verona. A great hatred between the powerful families Capuleti and Montecchi was carried out through generations.

Genre: romantic tragedy

Time: 14th/15th century

Place: Verona and Mantova

Book Summary

The plot begins on a warm night in July when the Capuletis servants stroll through town looking for troubles.

They find what they were looking for when they encounter the servants from the rival family Montecchi. Soon a fight breaks out and it leads to a sword battle between the servants. The confrontation was so big that at the end even the rival families took part in it.  The duke Scala settled the fight by threatening to punish the servants if a disorder like that ever occurred again.

Romeos parents, the Montecchis, were happy that the fight did not include their son. Despite that Romeos behavior has been strange lately. He has been noticed walking through the forest at night, he avoids his friends and during the day he stays locked up in his bedroom. The concerned parents try to get the truth out of his cousin Benvolio.

Benvolio was not just Romeos cousin but also his best friend. The truth, alongside the real reason for Romeos strange behavior, comes out when Benvolio finds out that Romeo is unhappily in love with Rosaline. To cheer him up again, Benvolio suggests that they sneak into the Capuletis ball while convincing him that the cure for his disease is there. Even though he found that suggestion weird, he accepts.

In the meantime, a lot happens in the Capuleti family and the excitement increases by the moment. It is not only the ball that keeps them occupied, but also the arrival of the count Paris who is coming to ask for the hand of their daughter Juliet. Juliets father considers her too young to get married but does not hide his satisfaction with the fact that the count Paris is interested in his daughter. Juliet is a thirteen years old girl with no experience in love but she gives her word to her father that she will try to seduce the count at the ball.

Juliet meets Romeo the same night and because of that Rosaline, alongside count Paris, gets forgotten. The special moment between the newly in love does not last long because Tybalt, the nephew of miss Capuleti, recognizes the disguised Romeo and wants to confront him. The old Capuleti manages to calm them down but the thirst for revenge was still very much alive. Soon after the ball and the misfortunate event, Romeo finds himself under Juliets window and in that glorious moment they promise each other eternal love and decide to get married.

Friar Laurence, despite his concern about this sudden love, decides to marry them. He hopes that the marriage between Romeo and Juliet will bring peace and forever end the family war. Unfortunately, thing didn’t go the way they were planned. The recently married Romeo encounters his friends Benvolio and Mercutio who got into an argument with Tybalt who came looking for revenge.

Tyblat challenges Romeo to a fight, but Romeo says no. He admits that he loves the Capuleti as much as he loves his family. The confession caused shock. Mercutio accepts the challenge and Tybalt stabs him. Rage and the feeling of guilty force Romeo to attack Tybalt and they fight to death. Romeo is the one who gets out alive but he has to leave town because he committed murder. Juliet was excited about her first weeding night when the maid came and told her what happened. Juliet was devastated and admits to her maid that Romeo is hiding at friar Laurence.

The old Capuleti can’t believe that Tybalt is dead and he is even more upset over the suffering of his daughter. Because of that he decides to rush her weeding with the count Paris. Juliet makes her father mad by refusing to marry the count. After she didn’t find any understanding or help from anyone, Juliet goes to friar Laurence and comes up with a deadly plan.

She was going to drink a potion that will stop her breathing for 42 hours convincing everyone that she is dead. In the meantime friar Laurence will send a messenger to get Romeo who was hiding in Mantova and the two of them will, hidden in the tomb, wait for Juliet to wake up. Afterwards Romeo will take her with him and when friar Laurence declares that they are married, he will be able to return to Verona. Juliet drinks the potion.

The next morning when the maid came to help the bride get ready for the weeding she was shocked to find Juliet dead. The whole Capuleti house grieves because of their dead Juliet. Friar Laurence sticks to the plan and sends the messenger but he does not manage to get to Mantova in time. Romeos servant Balthasar gets to him first and lets him know that Juliet is dead. Romeo, overwhelmed by the news, buys poison and heads towards Verona. He finds Paris mourning Juliet and another fight breaks out that costs Paris his life.

Parises last wish was to be buried next to Juliet and Romeo promised him to do that. When he saw Juliet lying Romeo thought that she was actually dead and drinks the poison. Friar Laurence runs towards the tomb but he came too late. Romeo and Paris were already dead. Juliet wakes up and when she sees that Romeo is dead, she takes a dagger and stabs herself. The tragic death united the two families and put an end to the hate between them.

Characters: Romeo, Juliet, Montecchis, Capuletis, Paris, Tybalt, friar Laurence…

William Shakespeare biography

William Shakespeare (1564. – 1616.) was a great English and also world playwright.

He was born in Stratford-on-Avon in 1564. He was the oldest of eight children and he lived in a wealthy family.

A little is known about his life. 1582. he married Ann Hathway that was eight years older than he was. Soon after that they got a daughter Susann and twins Judith and Hamlet.

Until 1592. he gets of the radar and after that he gets involved with writing and acting in London. Soon after that his poems ‘’Venus and Adonis’’ and ‘’The rape of Lucrece’’ were published.

He wrote a lot and his plays were happily performed by many. He became a co-owner of The Globe theatre. In the last years of his life he decides to go back to Stanford where he dies in 1616.

Shakespeare wrote 37 plays and they are divided to history plays, comedies, tragedies and romance.

His most famous works are “Henry IV”, “Richard III”, “Romeo and Juliet”, “Taming of the Shrew”, “The comedy of errors”, “Two gentlemen of Verona”, “Hamlet”, “Othello”, “King Lear”, “Measure for measure”, “Winter’s tale”…