A Summary of Romeo and JulietTwo of the most important families in Verona, The Montagues, and the Capulets, have been feuding for a very long time. This novel starts with a brawl in the marketplace of Verona between the servants of the households. Benvolio, a peace loving Montague, attempts to stop the fighting, but is attacked by the fiery Capulet, Tybalt. This fray continues and spreads until the Officers of the Peace step in. Prince Escalus declares that if another brawl begins those responsible will be put to death. Benvolio explains to Montagues how the street battle started. Before long Romeo enters and confesses his love and despair of Rosaline, a young woman committed to celibacy. The two discuss her at length, and Benvolio encourages Romeo to "Examine other beauties."In the second scene of this book Paris, a Count and kinsman to the prince, asks for Juliet's, Capulet's only child, hand in marriage.
Capulet allows Paris to court her and try to win her favor. He invites Paris to a party he is having that night, along with the beauties of Verona, including Romeo's beloved Rosaline. He sends a messenger with a list of persons to invite, not realizing that the servant cannot read. The servant comes upon Romeo and Benvolio and asks Romeo if he can read the list for him. Romeo obliges and reads the list to the messenger. The servant in thanks invites the pair to the party so long as they are not Montagues. Benvolio encourages Romeo to go so he may compare Rosaline to others.
Juliet's handmaiden, "Nurse," is called by Lady Capulet to get Juliet. She brings Juliet to her mother and the three discuss marriage to Paris. Juliet says she will examine him with an unbiased eye.
Romeo and his friends Mercutio and...