Romeo and Juliet – Act 4, Scene 5 – Scene Summary

Romeo and Juliet

Act 4, Scene 5

Scene Summary

Characters: Nurse, Lady Capulet, Capulet, Paris, Peter, Musicians, Friar Lawrence

Location: Capulet’s house

Time: Wednesday Morning, the morning of Juliet’s wedding

Scene Events: The Nurse comes to Juliet’s bedroom to wake her up for her wedding.The Nurse talks to her mistress before attempting to wake her up. At first, the Nurse realizes that Juliet is sleeping, then that she is fully dressed and finally after she draws back the curtains in Juliet’s bedroom she realizes that she appears to be dead. Lady Capulet comes to the scene after hearing the Nurse’s chatter, then Capulet, and then Paris who is followed by Friar Lawrence. Each of the characters says a short recitation of grief and sadness for Juliet. This scene is an example of dramatic irony because the audience knows that Juliet is in fact not dead and that the sleeping potion that Friar Lawrence has given her has worked and that she will sleep for forty-two hours. Friar Lawrence knows the truth and preaches a short funeral sermon and tells Juliet’s devastated parents to get her ready to be laid in the Capulet tomb among her deceased ancestors. Friar Lawrence realises that they will have to act quickly before the sleeping potion wears off. The musicians are having a hard time trying to comprehend what is going on and what has happened to Juliet. Peter and the Musicians have a chat about silver while they wait for the Capulet family to accompany them to the churchyard for the burial of Juliet.

Quote: Capulet  ” Ready to go, but never to return. O son! The night before thy wedding day Hath death lain with thy wife. There she lies, Flower as she was, deflowered by him “.

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