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Good Morning S5!

Good Morning S5!. “Three civil brawls.../ Have thrice disturbed the quiet of our streets.”. Today’s lesson. Act 1 Scene 1 Montagues v Capulets Benvolio v Tybalt Introducing Romeo. Act 1 Scene 1. Plot summary

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Good Morning S5!

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  1. Good Morning S5! “Three civil brawls.../ Have thrice disturbed the quiet of our streets.”

  2. Today’s lesson... • Act 1 Scene 1 • Montagues v Capulets • Benvolio v Tybalt • Introducing Romeo

  3. Act 1 Scene 1 • Plot summary • A fight breaks out between the servants of the Montague and Capulet families. Benvolio (Montague) tries to stop the trouble but Tybalt (Capulet) makes matters worse. Prince Escales arrives, furious and warns that the fighting must stop – otherwise they will face execution. The Montagues send Benvolio to find out why Romeo is so depressed. Romeo confesses his love for Rosaline is unrequited.

  4. Zeffirelli’s Romeo and Juliet • Watch Act 1 Scene 1 in the Zeffirelli version of the play. • Why do you think the fight starts? • What is your first impression of Romeo?

  5. The Servants • Lines 1-28; • The Capulet servants – Sampson and Gregory, are looking for trouble. Their conversation is crude and full of sexual references. • This is mainly to engage the audience. Shakespeare’s audience would delight in the smutty comments and innuendo. • The servants only see the relationship between men and women in the crudest terms. Contrast this with the love that develops between R&J.

  6. The Brawl • Lines 31-54 • “Do you bite your thumb at us sir?” • Highly offensive. • The first scene is charged with excitement, physical and sexual bravado and introduces the theme of masculine honour. • The fight develops quickly – in R&J passions are violent and move with startling speed.

  7. Benvolio v Tybalt • Read lines 54-63. Note down the differences between Benvolio and Tybalt. • Benvolio is the peacemaker (hinted at with his name, meaning ‘good will’ in Italian.) • “Part fools! Put up thy swords, you know not what you do.” • He is characterised as thoughtful and respectful of the law. • In contrast, Tybalt is fiery and quick tempered. He enjoys the fight. • “What, drawn and talk of peace? I hate the word/As I hate hell, all Montagues and thee.”

  8. The Brawl • Lines 66-71; • Both Montague and Capulet are prevented from entering the brawl by their wives. “Thou shalt not stir one foot to seek a foe.” • The Prince tells the feuding families that if their fighting ever disturbs the streets of Verona again, the punishment will be death. “Rebellious subjects, enemies of peace” – we are reminded of the social status of the characters. It was the servants who began the fighting, yet Montague and Capulet who let their private passions disturb the public streets.

  9. Introducing Romeo • What was your first impression of Romeo? • As soon as Romeo is mentioned, there is a change of mood. (Line 107) Up until this point the language in the play has been violent, crude and aggressive. • When Benvolio replies to Lady Montague’s question about Romeo, his language is characterised by symbols of beauty. “Madam, an hour before the worshipped sun/Peered forth the golden window of the east...” • A move from violence to peace and serenity.

  10. Romeo • Line 112 “the grove of sycamore” • Romeo has been depressed and avoiding everyone. • Benvolio discovers the reason is unrequited love. Romeo is lovesick and some of his language sounds artificial. Is he really in-love? “Why then, O brawling love! O loving hate!/O anything of nothing first create.” Read line 203. • Shakespeare’s audience would have understood Romeo’s gloom – love was supposed to be a painful matter..

  11. Romeo • He tells Benvolio that love confuses things and turns order into chaos. “Love is a smoke made with the fumes of sighs....a madness most discreet/A choking gall, and a preserving sweet.” • Benvolio’s advice is to look at other women “Examine other beauties” but Romeo remains unconvinced.

  12. Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet • This is a more modern version of the play. • Watch Act 1 Scene 1. • How has the director conveyed the differences between the Montagues and Capulets? • Which film do you prefer and why?

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