Hey! ¡hola! Bonjour! السَّلَامُ عَلَيْكُمْ! Hallo! Hajj! Before we dive into the wonderful world of Romeo and Juliet, here are some words that Shakespeare invented! Super Cool!: Shakespeare’s Words

Now lets begin…

Act 1


  1. What is the place and setting of the play?

The Prologue reveals the setting of the play. (Fun fact the town is located between Milan and Venice Italy.)

  1. What is the relationship between the two households?

In lines 26-27 of Act 1 Scene 1, Sampras’s statement reveals the relationships between the two households.

  1. What does Shakespeare mean by “Star-crossed lovers”?

People who believe in Astrology believe that the stars control human destiny. Another word for Star crossed is frustrated with the stars.

  1. What happens to the lovers?

Line 8 of the Prologue reveals what happens.

  1. What is the subject matter of this play?

Subject matter means what happens in the play. Base your response on what you learn in the prologue.

  1. What does the chorus ask of the audience in the last two lines?

Toward the end of the prologue, the prologue asks the audience to do two things. (hint the prologue doesn’t directly mention the audience).

  1. What is the name of the poetic form Shakespeare uses for the Prologue? How many lines are there?

The type of poetic form is one that uses a pattern of ABABABCDCD…

  1. List examples of poetic language.

In the Prologue, there four are used. When looking at the different poetic languages look for words that mean something different, rhymes, and patterns.

  1. Explain what you learn from the Prologue about the fate of Romeo and Juliet and the feud between the two families.

Divide the prologue into two parts. Learning about Romeo and Juliet’s fate: Lines 6-10. The two families feud: lines 1-5.

  1. What is the primary purpose of the Prologue to the play?

If you like civics, ask yourself what is the purpose of the preamble of the constitution. Then apply it to this. If you are not a civics person, think of the prologue as a playbill. If you have ever been to a play, what does the playbill show you?

Scene 1

  1. The first scene of every Shakespeare tragedy was planned to get the attention of the groundlings, people of the lower classes who stood in the pit to watch the plays. Why might Scene 1 have appealed to the groundlings? groundlings

This is a picture of groundlings (people standing below the stage). The groundlings had a front-row view. Ask yourself, what would you like to see close up, especially from the first scene? This can be opinionated but put yourself back in Shakespeare’s day, and assume what the average person would like to see.

  1. Which words in the stage directions in line 44 clarify that Sampson is not speaking to Abram?

Stage directions are often at the beginning or end of the poems.

  1. With which family are the quarreling servants affiliated?

You can use clues from how the characters act or what they say, or you can look at the cast.

  1. Tybalt’s name comes from the word that means “bold.” Benvolio is from Latin words that mean, “I wish” and “well.” From what you know about them so far, how appropriate are their names?

The best example is when the two characters enter into a fight with the servants. Tybalt acts differently than Benvolio. Search in the play where the two characters enter the scene, and analyze how each reacts to the fight.

  1. Summarize the warning that the Prince issues to the Monatgues and Capulets in this speech. Why is he so upset?

Lines 97 -119 reveals the Princes intentions. Observe the Princes tone, and experience with the two families. Still need help? Look for key words such as death and peace.

  1. Who stops the brawl between the Monatgues and the Capulets?

Look for stage cues, revealing the answer.

  1. What does this conversation reveal about Romeo’s state of mind?

Romeo uses a lot of euphemisms (Oxford Languages: a mild or indirect word or expression substituted for one considered to be too harsh or blunt when referring to something unpleasant or embarrassing). These euphemisms can reveal some of his state of mind. Still need help? Look for keywords such as I, or she to show his state of mind.

What is an Oxymoron?

Check Notes.

  1. What reason for his sadness does Benvolio give to Romeo about the woman he loves?

Romeo mentions this many times. Hint: In Elizabethan England being pure was very important.

  1. What advice does Benvolio give to Romeo about the woman he loves?

You can connect Benvolio’s advice to what his name means (“I wish” and “well”) He is very relaxed, with simple solutions that aren’t thought of quickly. Romeo has a negative reaction to Benvolio’s statement.

Scene 2

  1. Why does Capulet’s servant talk to Romeo and Benvolio?

Put yourself in the Elizabethean era. Many servants were less fortunate people. We can re-write this question to: Why would a servant ask for help? Hint: In shaekspears age only the wealthy were educated.

  1. Chance plays an important part in the events of the play. How do you think this chance meeting (between Capulet’s Servant and Romeo) will advance the plot?

What we know from the text is that Romeo and Benvolio have been invited to a dinner. We also know from Scene 1 that Romeo is heart broken. Now, apply this to the question. Hint: what families are the characters in the scene from

  1. What important information in the stage directions clarifies Romeo’s speech here? (lines 63-67)

Look in Romeo’s speech when reading the note. Hint: Stage directions are usually in the beginning or end of the speech and in parenthesis.

Scene 3

  1. How old is Juliet?

Look to the beginning of the scene where the Nurse and Lady Capulet are talking about Juliet. Hint: It seems that they are using the Lammastide event (an event celbrateing the harvest) as a way to keep track of her age. Want to learn more about Lammastide? check out this website: Juliet’s birthday: Shakespeare and Lammas-tide

  1. What do the Nurse’s words reveal about her devotion to Juliet?

Look in lines (387 -409). The Nurse’s speech reveals that she has a long history with Juliet. The Nurse probably took care of her since birth.

  1. What does the conversation reveal about the Nurse’s personality.

The nurse makes many inappropriate jokes and references, and seems to find them amusing. She also seems to mention what specific aspect of Paris? Physical, personality, or status?

  1. What does the dialogue reveal about Juliet’s attitude toward marriage and Paris?

Juliet tries to keep respectful when reveling her attitude. Hint: look for keywords such as “marry” and “Dream.”

  1. Why has Lady Capulet come to talk to Juliet?

This is the main topic of their dialogue.

  1. What does lady Capulet compare Paris to?

Lady Capulet uses words like “pen,” “volume,” and “written,” what are these words usually associated with?

Scene 4

  1. What does Benvolio’s plan suggest about his personality?

Towards the end Benvolio says, “But let them measure us by what they will. We’ll measure them a measure and be gone” (Shakespeare 1.4. 491-492). What can we assume from this excerpt? Hint: Re-write the question as: let them talk what they want about us, and we will do the same to them. Also if you want to learn more about citing Shakespeare with intext citations, here’s a cool website that I (Micahel) used to cite the quote above How to cite Shakespeare in MLA

  1. What contrast between Mercutio and Romeo does the dialogue reveal

Romeo often talks about love and being sad. Does Mercutio agree with this or not? Hint: use question 23 to help you, or use this question to help you with number 23!

  1. How does Romeo feel about going to the Capulets’ feast?

Romeo talks about having a dream. Why might he mention this? Use question 20 to help you with your answer. Hint: move to question 22 and find the answer, then apply that knowledge to this question.

  1. Summarize Mercutio’s speech about Queen Mab

Look at line 558-561. These lines are comparing a person to what they would want. I.e. A lover dreams of love. So what do the person dreams depend on?

  1. What do Mercutio’s comments about dreams reveal about his character

Mercutio talks about dreams in a positive or negative tone? Look towards the beginning of the scene where Romeo and Mercutio go back and forth. Hint: look at lines 585-592.

  1. Mercutio’s name comes from that of the Roman god Mercury, who was known for eloquence (persuasive and expressive speech), cleverness, and thievery. To what extent does he resemble the god after whom he was named?

Look at how Mercutio has reacted throughout the whole story. Does who react negatively, or positively, does he try to trick people, or talks persuasively? Want to learn more about the Roman God Mercury? Check out this website: Murcery and Mythology

  1. What does Romeo fear might happen in the near future

Look at the end of the scene when Romeo talks. How does he feel, what is the mood?

Scene 5

  1. What do lines 15 through 32 reveal about Capulet?

Look at the lines provided. Put yourself at the party. If someone was making Jokes, being kind to everyone, and making everyone feel welcome. What would you think of this person?

  1. What do the stage direction in line 40 and the dialogue that follows reveal about Romeo?

The text does not correctly name the Line, the stage direction is on line 48. When Romeo enters the party, what does he immediately do? Re-word the question to say what was Romeo’s feelings when he entered the building.

  1. What does the dialogue between Capulet and Tybalt show about their relationship? How is Capulet a dramatic foil for Tybalt.

Look at Capulet and Tybalt’s fight. Who is in charge. What are their two personalities? Use question 26 to help you with Capulet, and observe Tybalt’s reaction to different thing.

28 a. Dramatic Foil

Just define Dramatic Foil.

  1. How does Capulet respond when Tybalt says he will not tolerate Romeo’s presence at the party?

Look at their fight. What is Capulet worried about? Who is he worried about angering?

  1. What do the dialogue and stage directions in this passage reveal about Romeo’s and Juliet’s feelings?

Think of Romeo’s reaction when he first entered the party. Also, how do you think Juliet is feeling because she kissed a man the first night she met him?

  1. What is Romeo’s reaction when he first glimpses Juliet at the party?

What did he do when he first entered the party? What did he ask the serving man?

  1. How does Romeo get Juliet to kiss him?

What does Romeo say when he kisses Juliet? What does he compare their lips to?

Act 2


  1. What more do we learn about the story from the Prologue in Act 2?

Look at lines 767, 768, and 774. These give the main picture but examine the results better. If you’re still stuck ask for help from a teacher, or fix your answer after you have read through the story.

Scene 1

  1. What does Romeo mean by “He jests at scars that never felt a wound”?

Sheesh Romeo that’s harsh. Romeo is overhearing this conversation about him. It is also an example of dramatic irony! Analyze the text, jest means to make fun of. Also, what wounds are he referring too? What problem is/was Romeo talking about?

  1. Why is it ironic that Mercutio teases Romeo about Rosaline?

What do we know about irony? Irony is often when something happens that we do not expect to happen, i.e. if I am a professional car driver it would be ironic for me to crash. So, when Mercutio is making fun of Romeo for being love sick with Rosaline (BTW: Rosaline is pronounced: Roz-uh-line), what can we infer when we know what Romeo believes. Want to find out more about Rosaline? There is a movie about Rosaline (Watch on hulu with parent permission, or check out this website: Rosaline’s appearance in Romeo & Juliet

Scene 2

  1. Explain the metaphor that Romeo uses to describe Juliet when he first sees her. How does this figure of speech reveal his feeling about her.

Romeo compares Juliet to this stellar star. What does that star do to the world. People often compare the night to sadness, so what would the star do?

  1. According to Romeo, who is Jealous of Juliet’s beauty?

This is another stellar sphere.

  1. What does Juliet want Romeo to do before she realizes he is there?

This is a tricky question. The next question will make this question more clear. Think, what is the main problem in this story? What would fix all of these problems? Still need help? Ask a teacher! Teachers are your best resource!

  1. Explain Juliet’s speech about the importance of names. What does “wherefore art thou” actually mean?

The importance of names is a tricky subject. What do you think Juliet means? What is the main theme of this story? “Deny thy father and refuse thy name.."(Shakespeare 2.2. 860). This is my favorite line (-Michael). You may think that wherefore art thou may be asking, wherefore be that Romeo. But no, Shakespeare makes it weird. Think of the first part of this question, and apply it to this question.

  1. How does Romeo claim he was able to get over the orchard walls? Why is Romeo unafraid of Juliet’s Kinsmen?

Romeo claims this Roman Romeo helped Romeo get over the walls (say that five times fast!). Romeo is unafraid because of what? What do you think is on Romeo’s mind, instead of fear?

  1. Who, according to what Romeo tells Juliet, who gave him directions to her balcony?

Romeo is big on this topic.

  1. How does Juliet indicate that she may doubt Romeo’s love for her? Find two quotes that she is testing him.

Juliet goes straight to the point by asking what? Also, she compares their love to this natural occurrence.

  1. Why does Juliet tell Romeo not to “swear by the moon?”

What does the moon do every night? To learn more about our moon, check out this website: The Earth’s Moon.

  1. Who mentions the idea of marriage first? What is your reaction to this proposal?

Who is most confident about this relationship? This is a cool question! What do you think? What would you do?

  1. Explain the line “Parting is such sweet sorrow.” What is this an example of?

This may seem complicated but you got this! Apply this to real life. What if you and your friend were having dinner, and you really like eating with them. But, you guys are going to a waterpark tomorrow! How would you feel if you had to leave dinner? Look in your notes for the second half! Hint: Sweet + // sorrow -.

  1. Explain the role that darkness plays in helping Romeo and Juliet learn of their love for each other

The role of darkness is a key factor. If you are playing hide and seek what factor would darkness play? Also, Romeo wants to stay as long as he can, how does the darkness help?

Scene 3

  1. What is Friar Lawrence doing at the beginning of scene three?

Friar Lawrence talks about a basket and different plants. What do you think he is doing?

  1. Find and define examples of personification in the first six lines of Friar Lawrence’s speech.

Use your notes to define personification. Also, look in the first six lines and find words that relate to nature, and then something a human would do.

  1. Who does Friar Lawerence think Romeo has been with all night?

Friar Lawerence has been left out of the group chat with this one. Since he doesn’t know the details what do you think he believes Romeo loves?

  1. What does Romeo ask Friar Lawrence to do?

Look back at what Romeo asked Juliet for.

  1. Why does Friar Lawerence question Romeo’s request

Remember, he has been out of the loop. So he thinks that Romeo’s past lover and him are still together. Also, Romeo has been very upset about this her too.

  1. What is Friar Lawerence’s reason for agreeing to marry Romeo and Juliet?

Friar Lawrence is a man of peace. What would he disagree with between the two families? How might this union help the familys and their relationship?

Scene 4

  1. What news does Benvolio tell Mercutio at the beginning of scene 4?

Look only at Benvolio’s speech throughout the first half of the story. What did Benvolio say that Mercutio not know about?

  1. Why does Mercutio say Romeo is already dead?

Think of what Romeo has been suffering from.

  1. How is Mercutio a dramatic foil to Romeo

Compare the two characters. Ask, who started the fight, who makes suggestive comments, who is being defensive?

  1. The Montague Boys think Romeo was still with Rosaline last night. Why do you think Romeo doesn’t tell them the truth

Two lovers from different families, whose families fight all the time. Why wouldn’t you want them to know the truth?

  1. Who teases the Nurse and Why?

Now this is just plain mean. Look at who starts the teasing, and look into who is from which family.

  1. What does Romeo want the Nurse to have Juliet do?

Romeo comes up with this big plan. The first step of his plan is for Juliet to get to the church. What is her excuse for going to church? Also, after the fact, what weird thing does Romeo request? Hint: what does “A tackled stair” mean?

Scene 5

  1. How long has Juliet been waiting for the Nurse to come with word from Romeo?

Look at what Juliet says at the beginning of the scene. She is complaining about how long the nurse is taking to ask Romeo what time the wedding will be.

  1. The Nurse knows Juliet has been waiting for news, yet she continues to put Juliet off. Why do you think she does this? What does this scene reveal about their relationship?

The Nurse has a very distinct personality of making (sometimes inappropriate) jokes. This is usually with Juliet. Why is this? How does her history with Juliet influence her relationship with Juliet?

  1. What task does the Nurse mention she must do at the end of scene five

We already know from when Romeo talked to the Nurse. This has to do with how Romeo will sneak into her room.

  1. How is the Nurse a dramatic foil to Juliet?

This foil is very similar to Mercutio’s characteristics that foil with Romeo. Think about how many jokes the Nurse has been thought the story and how opposite that is to how Juliet talks. Also, notice how Mercutio and the Nurse, while both being a foil for Romeo and Juliet, really do not understand how much Romeo and Juliet care for each other.

Scene 6

  1. Of what are we reminded by Friar Lawrence’s line “These violent delights have violent ends”?

Look back at the prologue of act 1. Also, just from some general knowledge about Romeo and Juliet, think about what happens to Romeo and Juliet at the end of the story. How might their “violent delight” (Their love story) have a violent end?

  1. What event may or may not happen in front of the audience?

The event the question is referring to is the event act 2 leads up to.

Act 3

Scene 1

  1. In the discussion between Benvolio and Mercutio at the beginning of scene one, what do you suppose the talk of quick tempers and the hot day foreshadows? What specifically might the audience be anticipating next?

Think about what people do when they have quick tempers. Since it’s a hot day everyone is kinda mad and just wants to let their anger out. Also, notice what Mercutio is trying to do to Benvolio. He is making Benvolio mad and ready to fight with him.

  1. What is Romeo’s response to Tybalt’s challenge?

Romeo’s response, along with just trying to tell Tybalt no, goes deeper as to tell Tybalt that Romeo and Tybalt are like family. We know this is true since Romeo got married to Juliet but nobody else knows this.

  1. Since Mercutio doesn’t know of Romeo’s marriage, what is his opinion of Romeo’s response?

Look at what Mercutio says. He thinks Romeo is being chicken for not fighting Tybalt. He sees no reason to run away from this fight. Hint: It has to do with Romeo’s new relationship with Tybalt now that he married Juliet.

  1. When Mercutio is struck by Tybalt’s sword, what curse does he pronounce four times?

Just look at what Mercutio says after he is struck.

  1. Romeo avenges Mercutio’s death by killing Tybalt, after Tybalt returns to the scene. Why all of a sudden does Romeo feel the need to fight with Tybalt?

This is simple. Think about Romeo’s relationship with Mercutio. Hint: Vengeance

  1. What is Romeo’s state of mind after having killed Tybalt? What does he say to make you think that way? What must he assume about the consequences of his actions on his new marriage?

This is another simple one. Romeo just killed someone, it’s kinda easy to guess what he is feeling. The consequences will defiantly be life changing. Remember the Prince’s punishment for fighting on the streets.

  1. Upon the Prince’s arrival at the scene of Mercutio and Tybalt’s deaths, Benvolio attempts to relate the story to the Prince. Is Benvolio’s story accurate?

Try to fact check his speech. There is one thing he leaves out that has to do with what he told Romeo after he killed Tybalt. If he did reveal this, it would make him look bad.

  1. Lady Capulet is distraught, and believes Benvolio is lying about Tybalt’s death. What does she think happened to Tybalt?

Look at what she says after Benvolio finishes telling what happened. Her idea of what happened is influenced by the amount of people crowding around Tybalt’s body.

  1. After taking the time to listen to both the Montagues and the Capulets about what transpired, what is the Prince’s ultimate sentence for Romeo? Why does the Prince not show any mercy for Romeo?

Look for the words banishment. The reason that the Prince is not showing mercy has to do with his original warning against fighting on the streets and how close he was with Tybalt.

Scene 2

  1. Juliet, in her soliloquy that opens scene two, foreshadows what will happen to ROmeo. What does she mean when she says, “Give me my ROmeo; and, when he shall die, /Take him and cut him out in little stars, / And he will make the face of heaven so fine / That all the world will be in love with night.”

Use your knowledge of the play and what you can get from the quote. Juliet loves Romeo so much that she would probably want to do what with Romeo. Also answer the text question and apply it to this. Think what do people usually want to do with the thing mentioned in the next question?

  1. After the lines noted in the previous question, what does Juliet say she has purchased? What is the metaphor comparing this to?

Look for key words like “is” or “compared.” Need more help? look for the word love.

  1. Write the line in which the Nurse’s delivery of the “news” gives the wrong news to Juliet. What causes the Nurse to blurt out this information?

What news has the nurse just learned? Who just died?

  1. Comment on why you think the Nurse waits so long to give Juliet the correct news?

This is pretty opiniated. First think about the mental capacity of the nurse, then use the 3rd question to answer this one.

  1. Read the passage that begins, “O serpent heart…” Just a few minutes before learning the news of Tybalt’s death, Juliet describes Romeo as her light in darkness; now what are her thoughts about Romeo?

You should analyze Juliets word choice in the quote. Remember Romeo is Juliet’s husband.

  1. Who does the nurse blame for this tragedy? Is she saying this because she cares about Juliet? Explain your response.

Look for who the nurse blames. This decesion should be obvious (No offense :) ). Also when you make the decesion, think of if the Nurse was saying this to support Juliet during this hard time? Heres a cool website about the Nurse! Also the first website that comes up when you search “Nurse From Romeo and Juliet”! The Nurse

  1. Juliet’s response to the Nurse is direct and sharp: “Shall I speak ill of him that is my husband?” What suddenly happens to Juliet in her monologue that follows? Describe her state of mind. What does she decide at the end of this speach?

Re-word this quote into an easier to read sentence: should I talk bad about my husband? Juliet is really loyal to Romeo, and she mentions this many times. Describe her emotions, how she feels. Put yourself in the Nurse’s shoes. Shakespeare is amazing because of the way he writes. You can picture yourself in anyone of the characters situations and disect any part of the play.

  1. Why does Juliet focus so much on the word “banished”?

This is pretty straight forward. How would you feel when the one you love the most is banished?

  1. In her grief, why does Juliet call for the Nurse to bring her the cords”?

This is where the story gets dark. Juliet is very upset about Romeo being banished. Interpret this statement in any way you desire.