ROMEO AND JULIET Does the prologue and opening scene prepare the audience for what follows? Shakespeare opens the play with a prologue of 14 lines. This prepares the audience for the content of the play. These 14 lines are basically a summary of the play.
Within ?Romeo and Juliet? Shakespeare focuses on many different themes such as love, hate, violence, fate, life and death. The prologue is written about these different themes that take part in the play. It gives the prologue a contrast to the content of the play. He also writes predictions, which also eventually come true in the play. The prologue sums up the whole play in just 14 lines.
?Romeo and Juliet? is full of violence and the prologue shows this ? civil blood makes civil hands unclean? this is a preparation for what is to come, it prepares the audience for the fighting and violence that manages to drag the civil people of Verona into the fighting of these two families evidence of this is page 95 where Mercutio dies.
He is neither Capulet nor Montague yet is dragged into the family feud and tragically ends up dieing ?I am hurt. A plague a? both houses!? Not only does the prologue prepare you for the violence throughout the play but also act 1 scene 1 puts across the picture of violence- as even the lowest of the low (servants) fight and quarrel, also boast of superiority over one an others families ?I will take the wall of any man or maid of the Montague?s? This shows violence within the servants (low men). The servants continue to bicker and boast of their violent and sexual status ?thou hadst been poor john? this is joking of each others lack of sex, this causes slight tension and the two men take their rage out in violence against the Montague?s ?I will frown as I pass by?. This shows they are prepared to fight, as they are only servants it is surprising that they are willing to fight for their master?s names.
The violence in ?Romeo and Juliet? is needed as without it the sheer hatred between the two families, ?ancient blood to new mutiny? could not be clearly portrayed. Also the deaths of significant characters such as Romeo and also Juliet would not have happened without it.
Another main part in Romeo and Juliet?s prologue is fate from the prologue we can see this ? a pair of star crossed lovers take their lives!? This means not only was there no choice that they became lovers but also that there was no choice that they died.
Fate has a large part in ?Romeo and Juliet?, Romeo has a dream that is almost a prediction of what is to come ?? yet hanging in the stars shall bitterly begin this fear full date? He almost knows what is to come and that the love that he is about to encounter will end with his ?untimely death?. All the way through the play ?Romeo and Juliet? have fate encounters. It is also said that the letter mix up was fate and not just an accident because they were supposed to fall in love and then both die. The whole play was perhaps revolved around fate, the fact that the nurse was so deeply involved, the fact that Friar Laurence could ?put Juliet to death? could have all been destiny and fate orientated just so the lovers could meet, fall in love and die. The pattern, which the lovers go through, is all too much bigger coincidence and so is it fate?! In direct contrast to the violence and hate mentioned at the beginning of the play, a thick stream of love runs throughout. There are many different types of love at work within the play. Firstly seen is Romeo?s love for a girl whom is not a character in the play ?Rosaline? but unfortunately his love for her is not returned ?she?ll not be hit by cupids arrow? Rosaline does not love him back and he gets very depressed over this. His love for Rosaline is perhaps not sincere as at the party he does but glance at Juliet and his love for Rosaline is gone. This time his love is returned by Juliet but perhaps too young to know true love and just enjoy the thought of love and dramas to go with it. Another form of love at work is Capulet?s ?forced? love of Paris toward Juliet. Love he believes is for the money aspect of it.
Juliet refers to fate within love toward the end of the play when she predicts her death. Romeo and Juliet?s love seems to be sincere although perhaps just a wanton.
The prologue prepares the audience for what is to come within the play although the audience knows the ending of the play, it prepares you for it so you can concentrate on each section mentioned within the play with more depth and concentrate on looking deeper than what the actors are saying and more toward the feeling Shakespeare tried to include in his plays. The prologue is a good section of the play and helps knowledge and understanding.