Romeo and Juliet

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    William Shakespeare-Why do we study William Shakespeare?


    Nicknames-The Bard, The Bard of Avon and The Swan of Avon


    His works has been translated into every major language

    The most quoted writer in the English language and World history

    Wrote 38 plays-11 Tragedies, 17 Comedies and 10 Historical

    Wrote 154 Sonnets (special form of poetry)


    The House of the Montagues



    Lord and Lady Montague






    The House of the Capulets



    Lord and Lady Capulet

    The Nurse

    Tybalt (cousin)

    Sampson and Gregory (servants)


    The House of Verona


    Prince Escalus




    The Church


    Friar Lawrence

    Friar John


    Other Characters



    The Apothecary

    The Chorus


    Character Descriptions



    His name means “a lover”

    Young, intelligent and handsome

    Reckless, Passionate, Intense and lacks moderation

    Best friends are Benvolio and Mercutio

    Friar Lawrence is his advisor




    Beautiful, 13 years old


    Expected to marry soon

    The Nurse is her confidant

    Grows up quickly when she falls in love with Romeo

    More cautious and level-headed than Romeo


    Lord Montague

    Romeo’s father

    Bitter enemy of the Capulets



    Juliet’s father

    Enemy of the Montagues

    Loves his daughter (his only child)

    Demands respect

    Flies into a rage when angry




    Lady Montague

    Romeo’s mother

    Dies of grief when Romeo is exiled from Verona


    Lady Capulet

    Married Young, gave birth to Juliet when she was about 14

    Eager to see Juliet marry Paris

    Ineffectual mother, relies on Nurse to raise Juliet


    The Nurse

    Juliet’s nurse her entire life

    Actually breast Juliet as an infant

    Confidant, extremely LOYAL

    Wants Juliet to have a husband

    Comic Relief throughout the play



    Juliet’s cousin

    Deeply hates and loathes the Montagues

    Aggressive, Violent,

    Quick to draw his sword, excellent with this weapon

    Kills Mercutio and is then killed by Romeo




    Romeo’s cousin and thoughtful friend



    A kinsman to the Prince of Verona

    Romeo’s close friend


    Loves word play, especially about sex

    Gives Romeo advice about love and women

    Tries to convince Romeo “there are many fish in the sea”

    Killed in a swordfight with Tybalt

    Curses the Montagues and Capulets


    Prince Escalus

    The prince of Verona, the law, judge and jury of Verona

    Kinsmen of Mercutio and Paris

    Has threatened the Capulets and Montagues to end the feud with death/execution

    Banishes Romeo from Verona to Mantua (merciful)



    Romeo is infatuated with her at the start of the play


    Sworn to a life of chastity (most likely is becoming a nun)

    Never seen on stage



    Friar Lawrence

    A Franciscan Friar (part of the Roman Catholic Church)

    Expert in potions, medicines, poisons, plants and herbs

    Advisor to Romeo

    Friend to Romeo and Juliet

    Secretly marries Romeo and Juliet

    Hopes the Marriage will bring Peace to Verona

    Ambitious, wants to be popular and influential in Verona


    Friar John

    Works with Friar Lawrence

    Supposed to take a message of Juliet’s FAKE death to Romeo

    Gets stuck in a quarantined house and the message never reaches Romeo



    A kinsman of the Prince

    Asks to marry Juliet and liked by her parents


    The Apothecary

    A druggist

    Takes a bribe to sell poison to Romeo


    The Chorus

    The Narrator of the Play, presents the prologue to each act


    Sampson and Gregory

    Capulet servants--hate the Montagues

    First Scene of the play fight with Montagues

    Demonstrate the feud that leads to the threat by Prince Escalus


    Romeo’s servant, brings Romeo the news of Juliet’s death


    Montague servant, fights with Capulet servants in the first scene



    2 families from Verona, Italy are feuding (fighting)

    One child from each family has fallen in love

    The lovers are “star-crossed” and cannot be together, they commit suicide

    Their deaths end the family feud


    ACT 1:1—Fighting in the Streets

    Streets of Verona

    • Servants from the Montague and Capulet families fight
    • Benvolio tries to stop the fight
    • Prince Escalus of Verona comes and stops the fight
    • Prince promises to execute anyone who fights in the future
    • Romeo is introduced, he is sad and depressed because the woman he loves (Rosaline) does not love him


    ACT 1:2—Juliet gets a proposal

    Capulet House

    • Paris asks Lord Capulet to marry his daughter Juliet
    • Lord Capulet say she is too young to marry, he wants her to wait 2 more summers
    • Lord Capulet wants his only child, Juliet, to be happy
    • The Capulets plan a party


    • Romeo and Benvolio find out about the party from a servant
    • Romeo finds out Rosaline will be at the party
    • Benvolio wants Romeo to go to the party to look for a new love


    ACT 1:3—Juliet gets the sex talk from Mom

    Capulet house, before the party

    • The Nurse, Lady Capulet and Juliet talk about Juliet marrying Paris
    • The Nurse and Lady Capulet think Juliet is old enough to marry

    ACT 1:4—There are more fish in the sea

    Streets of Verona

    • Romeo and his friends Benvolio and Mercutio are on their way to the Capulet Ball
    • Romeo sad and depressed
    • Romeo is worried about a dream he had last night
    • Mercutio teases Romeo about his dream (QUEEN MAB)
    • Romeo has a bad feeling about the party, afraid of death (FATE)
    • Romeo puts his fate/future in God’s hands


    ACT 1:5-Love at first sight and kissing

    The Capulet Ball

    Lord Capulet makes a speech

    Romeo walks in a sees the most beautiful girl in the world!


    Tybalt (A Capulet and Juliet’s cousin) finds out Romeo is at the party, he’s furious

    Tybalt tells his uncle, Lord Capulet, wants to fight Romeo at the Ball

    Lord Capulet forbids the fight


    Juliet and Romeo meet and fall in love at first sight, they KISS

    Romeo finds out the love of his life is a Capulet

    Juliet discovers that the love of her life is a Montague


    Act 2:1-Where in the world did Romeo go?

    Capulet Garden

    • Romeo is in the Capulet’s garden and orchard
    • Mercutio and Benvolio are looking for Romeo
    • They can’t find Romeo and they leave



    Romeo is in the garden hoping to see Juliet on the balcony

    • Juliet comes out on the balcony and is talking to herself
    • Romeo learns that Juliet loves him, but is afraid because he is a Montague
    • Romeo and Juliet talk and admit they love each other
    • They are willing to give up their families and their names
    • They plan to marry


    ACT 2:3—You’ve got to help us

    The next morning

    Romeo goes to see his priest, Friar Lawrence

    • Romeo says he has forgotten all about Rosaline
    • He is in love with Juliet now
    • He asks Friar Lawrence to marry them
    • Friar Lawrence agrees to marry them in secret and hopes it will end the feud

    ACT 2: 4—A secret wedding is planned

    In the afternoon

    • Mercutio and Benvolio are looking for Romeo
    • They are afraid Tybalt wants to fight Romeo
    • They find Romeo and The Nurse arrives with a message for Romeo
    • Romeo and The Nurse plan the secret wedding
    • Romeo and Juliet will meet with Friar Lawrence to marry in a secret ceremony


    ACT 2: 5—Juliet sneaks away

    Capulet House

    • The Nurse teases Juliet and makes her wait for news from Romeo
    • Juliet tells her parents she is going to Church to go to confession, instead she will marry Romeo


    ACT 2:6—Going to the Chapel of Love

    At the Church

    • Romeo and Juliet meet to get married
    • They are so in love they are not worried about the future
    • Friar Lawrence hopes to be the man that saves Verona form the feud
    • He marries Romeo and Juliet

    ACT 3:1—Sword fights, dead bodies and Romeo is banished

    Streets of Verona-the same day

    • Benvolio and Mercutio are walking around Verona
    • Mercutio is looking for a fight
    • They meet Tybalt (Juliet’s cousin) and argue
    • Mercutio and Tybalt have a sword fight
    • Romeo tries to stop the fight, he steps in between them and Mercutio is stabbed
    • As Mercutio is dying her curses both families, “A plague on both your houses”


    Tybalt fights with Romeo

    • Romeo kills Tybalt and runs away
    • The Capulets, The Montagues and the Prince come to the scene
    • The Capulets are angry—Tybalt is dead
    • The Prince is angry—Mercutio, his cousin, is dead
    • The Prince declares that Romeo must be punished
    • Romeo is exiled from Verona to Mantua forever


    ACT 3:2—The bad news

    Juliet’s bedroom

    • The Nurse tells Juliet about the news about Tybalt and Romeo
    • Juliet is upset her cousin is dead, but devastated that Romeo has been banished
    • Juliet upset that she will not have a wedding night and “will die a maidenwidow” (virgin)
    • The Nurse promises to arrange “a wedding night” meeting for the lovers


    ACT 3:3—The plan for the wedding night

    Friar Lawrence’s Cell

    • Romeo is worried about his punishment for Tybalt’s death
    • Friar tells Romeo he is lucky to be alive and only exiled from Verona
    • The Nurse arrives and they make plans for the wedding night
    • Romeo will leave Verona in the morning
    • The Nurse gives Romeo and ring from Juliet as a sign of her love


    ACT 3:4—Juliet will marry Paris

    The Capulet House

    • The Capulets meet with Paris
    • They decide that Juliet will marry Paris on Thursday, because Wednesday is too soon?!?


    ACT 3:5—Romeo and Juliet and some nooky-nooky

    Juliet’s bedroom, the next morning

    • Romeo and Juliet have consummated their marriage
    • Saying good-bye, do not want the night to end and morning to arrive
    • They notice they “look pale like death”
    • The Nurse enters and warns Juliet her mother is coming
    • Romeo leaves
    • Lady Capulet enters and tells Juliet she will marry Paris on Thursday
    • Juliet is upset and refuses to marry Paris
    • Lord Capulet is enraged, fights with Juliet and her parents leave


    • Juliet asks The Nurse for advice
    • Nurse tells Juliet to marry Paris and forget Romeo, because he is as good as dead
    • Juliet pretends to take the Nurses’ advice
    • Juliet plans to go see Friar Lawrence for advice
    • Juliet says if Friar Lawrence can’t help her she can always kill herself


    ACT 4:1—A short scene but a fateful plan is hatched!

    At the Church

    Paris goes to see the Friar to plan his wedding to Juliet

    • Paris explains the wedding will make Juliet happy
    • Juliet arrives and talks to Paris lovingly
    • To get Paris to leave, Juliet asks for confession
    • Juliet threatens to kill herself is she has to marry Paris
    • Friar Lawrence comes with a plan

                Juliet will agree to marry Paris

                Before the wedding she will drink a “sleeping potion”

                Her family will think she is dead

                She will be put in the family vault

                The Friar will send a message to Romeo, telling him about the plan

                Romeo will sneak back to Verona to get Juliet

    • Juliet agrees to the plan

    ACT 4:2—Juliet deceives her parents

    The Capulet House

    • Juliet tells her parents she will marry Paris
    • Parents are happy
    • Juliet goes to her room to prepare for the wedding


    ACT 4:3—Juliet makes a big decision

    Juliet’s bedroom

    • She convinces her mother and the Nurse to leave her alone
    • She worries about drinking the potion
    • Juliet drinks the sleeping potion 

    ACT 4:4—Is Juliet asleep or dead?

    Juliet’s bedroom

    • The nurse finds Juliet dead
    • Lord and Lady Capulet come in, the three are very upset
    • Friar Lawrence and Paris arrive
    • The Friar tells the family to prepare for the funeral

    ACT 5:1—I want a new drug

    While Juliet body is lying in the family vault

    • In Mantua
    • Romeo remembers a beautiful dream about Juliet
    • Romeo’s servant Balthasar arrives to tell Romeo that Juliet is dead
    • Romeo is distraught “I defy you stars”
    • Romeo looks for an apothecary (druggist) to buy poison to kill himself
    • He plans to go to the tomb “to lie with” his Juliet


    ACT 5:2—Friar Lawrence comes up with another plan!

    • The Friar realizes Romeo never received the message about Juliet’s fake death
    • The messenger (Friar John) never got to Mantua, he got stuck in a quarantined house
    • Friar Lawrence decides to go get Juliet out of the tomb and hide her at the church


    ACT 5:3—Hey, let’s all hang out at the tomb tonight, More people are going to die

    Capulet Family Tomb

    Paris goes to the tomb to leave flowers

    • Romeo goes to the tomb with a crowbar to break in
    • Paris thinks that Romeo, a Montague, is planning to damage the Capulets
    • They argue, sword fight, Paris is dead!
    • Romeo drags Paris’ body into the tomb
    • Romeo sees Juliet’s “dead” body, drinks the poison and commits suicide
    • Friar Lawrence finds Paris and Romeo dead
    • Juliet wakes up, Friar Lawrence tries to convince her to leave. She refuses and the Friar takes off
    • Juliet sees the vial of poison and realizes Romeo is dead
    • She tries to take the poison by kissing Romeo’s lips, then she takes a knife and kills herself
    • The Prince, The Capulets and the Montagues arrive at the tomb

    Friar Lawrence is forced to tell them all the truth

    • The Prince blames the Capulets and Montague Feud for all the deaths
    • The families end the feud and decide to build a memorial statue to the lovers
    • The play ends as the Prince declares, “Never was there a story of more woe, Than that of Juliet and her Romeo