Exploring the Effect of Juliet’s Poetic Language in Romeo and Juliet – British Library




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“That most famous Shakespearean scene, the balcony scene (Act 2, Scene 1), must have been an extraordinary surprise to the play’s first audience – not only because of its dramatic daring but because Juliet speaks again, and now with even richer eloquence. At first she seems to be talking only to herself – but we ‘overhear’ her (as Romeo does) actually arguing a complex philosophical case:

’Tis but thy name that is my enemy.
Thou art thyself, though not a Montague.
… What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other word would smell as sweet. (2.1.80–81, 85–86)

Juliet displays the greater emotional realism in this famous scene of young love. Not for her Romeo’s reaching for poetical clichés, swearing by ‘yonder blessed moon’; rather, she says,

do not swear. Although I joy in thee,
I have no joy in this contract tonight.
It is too rash, too unadvised, too sudden … (2.1.158–60)”

MLA Citation:

Gay, Penny. “Juliet’s eloquence.” British Library, n.d., https://www.bl.uk/shakespeare/articles/juliets-eloquence. Accessed (PUT DATE OF ACCESS HERE).

In-Text: (Gay)

***REMEMBER all lines of the citation after the first get indented once***

APA Citation:

Gay, P. (n.d.). Juliet’s eloquence. British Library. Retrieved from https://www.bl.uk/shakespeare/articles/juliets-eloquence

In-Text: (Gay)

***REMEMBER all lines of the citation after the first get indented once***

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The 8th edition of MLA has resulted in changes to the citation format. Correcting the citations on our website will take some time. Until then, please reference the guidelines below to correct the citation format. You will still be using the information provided here, but you may need to adjust the format for MLA 8.

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