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GCSE Romeo and Juliet compared to poems studied with similar types of love

Essay By: Phameno
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I'm hoping this one is the easiest exam because I've left revising for the day before, clever me. Here's a few draft paragraphs that I think I'll include in my exam.


Submitted:Apr 14, 2013    Reads: 5,314    Comments: 1    Likes: 0   


Both, 'Romeo and Juliet' and, 'To his coy mistress' display passionate love. An example of this is when Romeo says, "O she is rich in beauty, only poor." he is explaining that Rosaline is beautiful but will not take advantage of it. Additionally, in, 'To his coy mistress' the subject of the poem says, "200 to adore each breast." explaining that it would take him 200 years to appreciate even a small part of his love's body, and introducing the exaggerated lengths of time that come to be a key aspect of the poem, and that she should hurry up and lose her virginity or have it buried with her. Contrastingly, at the time I quoted the play, 'Romeo and Juliet' which was Act 2, scene 2, Romeo feels as if he can be depressed about his denial of love for as long as he needs, as Benvolio says he saw Romeo walking, "an hour before the worshipp'd sun." in the, "grove of sycamore." and is still there at 9 am, with no intent to leave. Although the play advances very quickly and soon time and the fact that Romeo and Juliet can not be together very often or for very long haunts every remaining scene of the play.

Intriguingly, both, 'Havisham' and, 'Romeo and Juliet' use oxymorons to show unrequited love. Miss Havisham calls her ex-fiancee a, "beloved, sweetheart bastard." showing that her previous love for him has dissipated and turned into rage because the love was not mutual. Romeo speaks of, "cold fire, sick health." but in his case, instead of showing rage because of unrequited love, it explains Romeo's confusion as he is unable to see the world as he had before because of his love for Rosaline, and the fact that she did not love him back. In my opinion, the difference in the severity of these reactions to unrequited love, miss Havisham's being much more aggressive, shows Romeo and miss Havisham's varying depths of love, as miss Havisham clearly felt much stronger love for her ex-fiancee than Romeo did for Rosaline, therefore her reaction, expressed in the quoted oxymoron, is much more aggressive.

In the poems, 'Romeo and Juliet' and, 'Sonnet 117' romantic love is expressed commonly. In, 'Romeo and Juliet' Romeo says Juliet is a, "winged messenger of heaven" or, an angel. Typically, comparing someone to a religious character is associated with romance and considered a great compliment; even more so in the times Romeo and Juliet was set as religion was very important. The fact that society back then, around the Elizabethan times, found religion so vitalis a key aspect in explaining the love between Romeo and Juliet, and one that Shakespeare took advantage of. Romeo repeatedly associates Juliet with religion, often comparing her to an angel or a holy figure, sometimes going as far as calling her his god. To the couple, this would be an effective way to show their love for one another, but to the rest of society it would, to the extent expressed by Romeo and Juliet, be considered unfaithful, or even blasphemous. With this, Shakespeare explains that the couple are being dishonourable in the eyes of others from their very first conversation, in which they refer to religion the most.

In, 'Sonnet 117' romantic love is expressed particularly strongly, being a typical Shakespearean love sonnet. For example, it says love, "bears it out unto the edge of doom." explaining love's longevity, and that it remains until the last moments of life. The word, "bear" is used to explain that through hard times, love will be tested and sometimes even questioned but will prevail intact.

Arranged love appears in, 'Romeo and Juliet' when lady Capulet accepts Paris's marriage proposal on Juliet's behalf, without her knowing. Juliet replies with, "I'll look to like." explaining that she will try and love Paris, showing her loyalty to her family and her mother's orders. This is before Juliet meets Romeo, and once she does, she begins testing her parents authority and dreaming of Romeo, as presented in her soliloquy, act2, scene2. This leads to the idea that love is causing Juliet to rebel and lose sight of her previous self.

Arranged love also appears in, 'My last duchess' when the Duke arranges his marriage to the daughter of another noble family. Once married, the duke wishes that his wife was more loyal and wouldn't flirt with other people; but says he does not have a way with words and so has not told her. The poem reads, "her looks went everywhere." explaining that she flirted with everyone she saw, although this may be a misguided and exaggerated belief of the jealous duke. He expects complete dedication from a woman who he essentially bought and when the Duke does not recieve his wish, he arranges her execution. In essence, Juliet is in a similar situation to the duchess as she has no control over her marriage and could not guarantee devoted love to her potential spouse. But unlike the duchess, Juliet shows striking emotional maturity in that she takes the situation into her ownhands, defying her mothers orders. Which leads to the idea that true love can make people do irrational things in the eyes of other, but rational in their own.





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