Romeo and Juliet - The Greatest Literature of All TimeRomeo and Juliet , play by William Shakespeare , written about —96 and first published in an unauthorized quarto in An authorized quarto appeared in , substantially longer and more reliable. A third quarto, based on the second, was used by the editors of the First Folio of The characters of Romeo and Juliet have been depicted in literature , music, dance, and theatre. The appeal of the young hero and heroine—whose families, the Montagues and the Capulets, respectively, are implacable enemies—is such that they have become, in the popular imagination, the representative type of star-crossed lovers. Shakespeare sets the scene in Verona , Italy. Because their well-to-do families are enemies, the two are married secretly by Friar Laurence.
Video SparkNotes: Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet summary
Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy written by William Shakespeare early in his career about two young star-crossed lovers whose deaths ultimately reconcile their feuding families. It was among Shakespeare's most popular plays during his lifetime and along with Hamlet , is one of his most frequently performed plays.
BOOK REVIEW : Romeo and Juliet By William Shakespeare
Romeo and Juliet is officially classified as a tragedy, but in some respects the play deviates from the tragic genre. Unlike other Shakespearean tragedies such as Macbeth , King Lear , and Julius Caesar , Romeo and Juliet is not concerned with a noble character whose actions have widespread consequence. Instead, the story describes the love between two ordinary teenagers. Another important way Romeo and Juliet deviates from other Shakespearean tragedies is that the main characters cannot be said to make a fatal error that leads to their demise. Romeo kills Tybalt not because of a flaw within himself, but because of the violent feuding spreading across Verona.
It has been referred to as the greatest love story of all time, or perhaps the most tragic. Romeo and Juliet serves to satisfy both anyway, which for a play has obviously stuck around for a very long time, which points to how good a book can turn out to be centuries after its author graced our good planet. In Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare employs several dramatic techniques that have garnered praise from critics; most notably the abrupt shifts from comedy to tragedy. Romeo, a Montague is infatuated with Rosaline, a niece of Capulet. Romeo is banished by the prince from Verona for violating his edict but consummates his secret marriage.
And yes, that's the full title on the version of the play. But for the first two acts, it doesn't seem like a tragedy at all. In fact, it unfolds like a classic "comedy," complete with dirty jokes, slapstick humor, and lovers struggling to be together. So, where does the play become a "tragedy," exactly? It seems like Mercutio's death in Act 3, Scene 1 is the turning point of the play. It's a tough transition for the audience—we've gotten used to laughing at the bawdy Nurse and the antics of Romeo's friends, and then suddenly the play stops being funny. Does this mean the play is flawed?