‘Two households, both alike in dignity’: so begins the Prologue to William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. What is less well-known is the very specific poetic form Shakespeare chooses for the Prologue: a form he goes on to use later in Romeo and Juliet. (We have analysed the play as a […]
Tag: Romeo and Juliet
In this week’s Dispatches from The Secret Library, Dr Oliver Tearle analyses the meaning of a strange Shakespearean quotation Let’s start with two correctives to common misconceptions about Romeo and Juliet.
‘But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks?’ is a speech made by Romeo at the beginning of Act II Scene 2 in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. The whole of the speech beginning ‘But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks?’ represents the consolidation and confirmation of Romeo’s love for […]
‘O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright’ is a famous speech spoken by Romeo in Act I Scene 5 of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. But what does he mean by this speech? Although the meaning may appear to be straightforward, when viewed in the context of the play […]
Although it was first performed in the 1590s, the first documented performance of Romeo and Juliet is from 1662. The diarist Samuel Pepys was in the audience, and recorded that he ‘saw “Romeo and Juliet,” the first time it was ever acted; but it is a play of itself the worst that […]