The Opening Scenes Of Macbeth And Romeo — страница 3

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be boring. The prologue for the play “Romeo and Juliet” helps the audience to get an overview of the play, and an idea of the main themes involved in this Shakespeare tragedy. From the short section focused on Sampson and Gregory, at the beginning of the scene, the audience can tell that the servants of the Capulet household are in an aggressive mood. The audience would be able to notice this because the words these men are using are violent and intense. Even from this brief conversation between the Capulets, the audience would have almost immediately come to the conclusion that the two men were all-talk, big-headed and incredibly boastful. However, Shakespeare also portrayed these characters as cowardly, timid and only hostile on the surface. We can tell that Sampson is

timid because when he sees two Montague servants approaching instead of fighting them himself, he backs off and asks Gregory to be the one who starts the fight: “quarrel, I will back thee” Sampson is definitely trying to be the most aggressive out of the two males, because he explains that he would take on any Montague, whether male or female, even though the ongoing feud between the families is between the men only: “…I will be cruel with the maids…” This suggests that he is going to deal with the maids in an unpleasant way. A maid is another word for a virgin, so Sampson is explaining that he would force these girls to lose their virginity to him, in other words rape the maids of the Montague household. From hearing this the audience would almost likely be feeling

shocked that the feud within the two families is so serious that Sampson would do such a frightful and wicked thing. The viewers are left wondering as to whether this is just the boisterous and arrogant attitude, which Sampson tries to portray, when it is evident that he is just a timid and pathetic man. The most dramatic section in the opening scene, is probably when the argument between the servants develops into a vicious fight. This would help the audience to become involved and interested in the play because there would be a lot of action and movement on the stage. The fight would help to grasp the audience´s full attention, because before the fight it was just several servants standing still on the stage and boasting about how rough they are, and this gets a bit tedious

after a while. The conflicts between the Montagues and the Capulets seemed to divide and disturb all of Verona. Conflicts that divide whole communities in this way are not uncommon today. When Escalus, the Prince of Verona arrives at the fight he quells the riot with a long speech. Shakespeare obviously wants to make the Prince look important and respected by the citizens of Verona, so he uses blank verse, by writing lines of ten syllables, with a repeated even pattern of weak and strong ‘beats´: “If ever you disturb our streets again, Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace.” Blank verse has also been used from when Tybalt approaches Benvolio. These characters speak in blank verse because Shakespeare is trying to portray them as noblemen, as opposed to servants.

Shakespeare uses this effect sparingly, with strong and powerful words to help reflect the character of the Prince. For the remainder of the opening scene, the characters speak in a similar blank verse to that of the Prince, Benvolio and Tybalt. This gives the audience the impression that these characters are more civilised and courteous, than the disrespectful and awkward servants in the previous sections of the scene, who spoke in prose. Also, the fact that the fight between the two feuding households has come to an end, makes the rest of the scene appear extremely calm and peaceful. The second half of the opening scene is a great contrast in terms of the themes, characters and language used. During this section, after Prince Escalus has broken up the street brawl, the theme of

‘Light and Dark´ becomes a primary issue. Montague and Lady Montague stay behind to speak with Benvolio. Lady Montague explains that she is glad that Romeo didn´t have anything to do with the disorder in Verona and asks if Benvolio has seen him. Benvolio begins his answer by saying: “Madam, an hour before the worshipped sun Peered forth the golden window of the east, A troubled mind drive me to walk abroad…” Benvolio then goes on to describe how he spotted Romeo in a grove of sycamore, and how Romeo, when he caught sight of Benvolio, retreated further into the woods. Montague is worried about his son and says that Romeo has got into the habit of avoiding light. Benvolio and Montague both refer and speak of sunlight as holy and healthful, they consider Romeo´s