The Most Excellent and Lamentable Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet
The tragedy deals with the story of two rival families, the Montagues and the Capulets , engaged in a cruel feud. Romeo is the son of Lord Montague, Juliet is Capulet's daughter. The work is divided into five acts preceded by a Prologue.
The Prologue ( spoken by a chorus )
Not only the emotions of the lovers are explored, but also their social context and also the ides of love, fate and death.
Settings: a Verona street ( at the beginning ), the masked ball ( at the end )
Time : a whole day .
The most important part of the act is the end: the meeting of Romeo and Juliet at the masked ball.
In this act we can find the scene of the balcony and the dialogue between the two lovers. This dialogue is far from the courtly tradition, especially in Juliet's language . The act ends with the secret wedding of Romeo and Juliet in the chapel by Friar Laurence.
This act is the longest one. It can be divided into two parts: the "public" and the "private" part. The "public" part includes the killing of Mercutio, Romeo's best friend, by Tibault, Juliet's cousin, and the revenge of Romeo . After killing Tibault , Romeo is banished from Verona to Mantua. In the private part there is the wedding night in Capulet's house.
To avoid the marriage with the Count Paris, Juliet's betrothed, the woman takes a drug given her by Friar Laurence. The priest send through Friar John a message to Romeo but Mantua is taken in isolation for the plague. So, when Romeo is told Juliet is dead , he decides to come back to Verona.
Romeo moves to Verona. He poisons himself seeing Juliet apparently dead but, after a very little time, Juliet wakes up. She gives the last kiss to him and stabs herself with his dagger.