Essay About Love In Romeo And Juliet

Essay About Love in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

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Throughout the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare, various types of love are portrayed. According to some of the students of Shakespeare, Shakespeare himself had accumulated wisdom beyond his years in matters pertaining to love (Bloom 89). Undoubtedly, he draws upon this wealth of experience in allowing the audience to see various types of love personified.  Shakespeare argues that there are several different types of love, the interchangeable love, the painful love and the love based on appearances, but only true love is worth having.

The first type of love the audience is introduced to is the interchangeable love of Benvolio. According to Benvolio, a man should love a woman for only the duration of their relationship. If their relationship should end, the man should feel no grief. If the woman rejects the man initially, he should still feel no grief. In either situation, the man should simply start a relationship with another woman. “But in that crystal scales let there be weighed/ Your lady’s love against some other maid/ That I will show you shining at this feast, /And she shall scant show well that now seems best” (I.ii.103-106).  Benvolio's definition of love shows the audience two things about Benvolio: he is a womanizer and he has never before experienced true love.

The next definition of love comes from Romeo, before he met Juliet. According to his definition, love is painful “Love is a smoke made with the fume of sighs” (I.i.197). “Is love a tender thing? It is too rough, / Too rude, too boist’rous, and it pricks like thorn” (I.iv.25-26).  He keeps to himself, not venturing out much in daylight, or even allowing it into his room: “Shuts up his windows, locks fair daylight out” (I.i.142).  I believe Romeo is both right and wrong: unrequited love is painful, but Romeo does not truly love - as he is merely infatuated by a woman.

Another type of love we are exposed to during the same scene is the love of Lady Capulet. Lady Capulet, as well as The Nurse, believes love comes from appearance, both physical and political, and has nothing to do with emotion. She shows this when she speaks favorably of Paris's looks and his nobility. She also shows that it is a superficial love by the way she treats Capulet when she publicly denounces him. “ CAP: What noise is this?

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"Essay About Love in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet." 10 Mar 2018

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Definition Of Love         Various Types         Romeo         Two Works         Juliet         Tragedy Of Romeo         Bloom         Duration         Thorn         Scales        

Give me my long sword, ho!  LADY CAP: A crutch, A crutch! Why call you for a sword” (I.i.76-78)?

Paris has a similar view of love. His love for Juliet appears to be pure, but his reason does not. He loves Juliet for her appearance and nothing else. He has never even dated her or discussed with her issues that are important to him or to her.  He regards her more as property than as an individual. At Juliet’s death chamber, Paris shows how selfish his love is.   When he believes Juliet is dead (in Act IV) he seems sorrier for his own loss than for Juliet’s parents’ loss. He loves Juliet as much as he can love anyone, but his love cannot be considered true love because of his selfishness.

     Throughout the play, the audience sees what is defined as true love in our society. This

love is the deep, all consuming love that carries with it feelings of trust and commitment,

the love that is exemplified by Romeo and Juliet. The definition of true love, which

Shakespeare provides, shows that all the other characters' definitions of love leave a lot to

be desired. It also shows that when two people are truly in love, there is sometimes pain, the

pain of separation or the pain of feeling another’s suffering. It shows that lovers are not

interchangeable, and that love transcends appearance. It proves that all the other love in the

play is valueless.  When two people are feeling true love, they are not selfish toward one

another, do not care about appearances, and find it very difficult to live without one


In the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, many types of love are shown. Different people experience different types of love, according to their emotional makeup. Not everyone is capable of experiencing love to the degree which Romeo and Juliet experienced it.   However, it is apparent that Shakespeare views true love as the ultimate goal of loving, though not always pain-free, and that those who are capable of embracing it are to be admired and possibly even envied.

 Works Cited

Bloom, Harold.  Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human.  New York: Penguin Putnam, 1998.

Shakespeare, William.  Romeo and Juliet.  New York: Washington Square Press, 1992.

True Love in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Essay

1105 Words5 Pages

I prefer to think of Romeo and Juliet as a love story with a tragic ending rather than a classic tragedy, because the love Romeo and Juliet find and share is beautiful and inspiring: there is nothing tragic about it.

Juliet My bounty is as boundless as the sea,

My love as deep. The more I give to thee,

The more I have, for both are infinite.

[Act 2, Scene 2, 133-35]

Their heart-rending deaths are of course tragic, resulting as they do from an unforeseeable flaw in Friar Laurence's well-intentioned but unlikely plan. Their lives, however, serve to prove that young love is viable, that young people know what they want and will go to extreme lengths to find it. The fair (ie beautiful) city of…show more content…

If the respective heads of the feuding houses come across initially as concerned fathers, this impression fades. Romeo is closer to Friar Laurence, in whom he is able to confide than his own father.

Romeo Hence will I to my ghostly father's cell,

His help to crave and my dear hap to tell.

[Act 2, Scene 2, 188-9]

Juliet answers to her father, treats her mother with respect but looks to her nurse for motherly advice and attention. It is fair to say that the Friar and the Nurse fulfil roles as surrogate parents, more out of situational proximity than choice. The Nurse carries out the necessary role of go-between in the early stages of the relationship and the Friar marries them. In the crisis caused by Tybalt's death and Romeo's banishment, the Nurse fails Juliet completely by taking the easy way out.

Nurse I think it best you married with the County.

O, he's a lovely gentleman!

Romeo's a dishclout to him.

[Act 3, Scene 5, 218-220]

The Friar is better intentioned than the Nurse but his plans still go astray because of ill chance or fate.

Fr Laurence Romeo! O, pale! Who else? What, Paris too?

And steeped in blood? Ah, what an unkind hour

Is guilty of this lamentable chance!

[Act 5, Scene 3, 144-46]

It is significant that the two young people rely on people outside of

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