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Romeo and Juliet

by William Shakespeare

Act 1, Scene 3 Easiest-to-Read Edition

 

 

 



Romeo and Juliet Act 1, Scene 3



A Room in Capulet's House

Romeo and Juliet Act 1, Scene 3

Enter LADY CAPULET and NURSE

Enter LADY CAPULET and NURSE

LADY CAPULET

Nurse, where’s my daughter? Call her forth to me.

LADY CAPULET

Nurse, where’s my daughter? Call her forth to me.

NURSE

Now, by my maidenhead at twelve year old

I bade her come. What, lamb! What, ladybird!

God forbid! Where’s this girl? What, Juliet!

maidenhead at twelve year old=virginity at twelve years old

NURSE

Now, by my maidenhead at twelve year old

I bade her come. What, lamb! What, ladybird!

God forbid! Where’s this girl? What, Juliet!

Enter JULIET

Enter JULIET

JULIET

How now, who calls?

JULIET

How now, who calls?

NURSE

Your mother.

NURSE

Your mother.

JULIET

Madam, I am here. What is your will?

JULIET

Madam, I am here. What is your will?

LADY CAPULET

This is the matter.—Nurse, give leave awhile,

We must talk in secret.—Nurse, come back again.

I have remembered me. Thou’s hear our counsel.

thou’s=thou shall

Thou know’st my daughter’s of a pretty age.

of a pretty age=young

LADY CAPULET

This is the matter.—Nurse, give leave awhile,

We must talk in secret.—Nurse, come back again.

I have remembered me. Thou’s hear our counsel.

Thou know’st my daughter’s of a pretty age.

NURSE

Faith, I can tell her age unto an hour.

NURSE

Faith, I can tell her age unto an hour.

LADY CAPULET

She’s not fourteen.

LADY CAPULET

She’s not fourteen.

NURSE

I’ll lay fourteen of my teeth—and yet, to my teen (regret) be it spoken, I have but four—she is not fourteen. How long is it now to Lammastide (August 1 – festival to bless corn)?

NURSE

I’ll lay fourteen of my teeth—and yet, to my teen be it spoken, I have but four—she is not fourteen. How long is it now to Lammastide?

LADY CAPULET

A fortnight and odd days.

LADY CAPULET

A fortnight and odd days.

NURSE

Even or odd, of all days in the year,

Come Lammas Eve at night shall she be fourteen.

Susan and she—God rest all Christian souls!—Were of an age. Well, Susan is with

God.

of an age=the same age

She was too good for me. But, as I said,

On Lammas Eve at night shall she be fourteen.

That shall she. Marry, I remember it well.

'Tis since the earthquake now eleven years,

And she was weaned—I never shall forget it—

Of all the days of the year, upon that day.

For I had then laid wormwood to my dug,

Sitting in the sun under the dovehouse wall.

My lord and you were then at Mantua.—

Nay, I do bear a brain.—But, as I said,

I do bear a brain=I have a good memory

When it did taste the wormwood on the nipple

it=the baby

Of my dug and felt it bitter, pretty fool,

To see it tetchy and fall out with the dug!

tetchy=fretful

“Shake!” quoth the dovehouse. 'Twas no need, I trow,

(the dovehouse shook from an earthquake)

I trow=I trust

To bid me trudge.

trudge=depart

And since that time it is eleven years,

For then she could stand alone. Nay, by the rood,

rood=Cross

She could have run and waddled all about,

For even the day before, she broke her brow.

And then my husband—God be with his soul!

He was a merry man—took up the child.

“Yea,” quoth he, “Dost thou fall upon thy face?

Thou wilt fall backward when thou hast more wit,

fall backward=sexual meaning

Wilt thou not, Jule?” and, by my holy dame,

holy dame=Mary

The pretty wretch left crying and said “ay.”

To see now, how a jest shall come about!

I warrant, an I should live a thousand years,

I never should forget it. “Wilt thou not, Jule?” quoth he.

And, pretty fool, it stinted and said “ay.”

stinted=stopped crying

NURSE

Even or odd, of all days in the year,

Come Lammas Eve at night shall she be fourteen.

Susan and she—God rest all Christian souls!—Were of an age. Well, Susan is with God.

She was too good for me. But, as I said,

On Lammas Eve at night shall she be fourteen.

That shall she. Marry, I remember it well.

'Tis since the earthquake now eleven years,

And she was weaned—I never shall forget it—

Of all the days of the year, upon that day.

For I had then laid wormwood to my dug,

Sitting in the sun under the dovehouse wall.

My lord and you were then at Mantua.—

Nay, I do bear a brain.—But, as I said,

When it did taste the wormwood on the nipple

Of my dug and felt it bitter, pretty fool,

To see it tetchy and fall out with the dug!

“Shake!” quoth the dovehouse. 'Twas no need, I trow,

To bid me trudge.

And since that time it is eleven years,

For then she could stand alone. Nay, by the rood,

She could have run and waddled all about,

For even the day before, she broke her brow.

And then my husband—God be with his soul!

He was a merry man—took up the child.

“Yea,” quoth he, “Dost thou fall upon thy face?

Thou wilt fall backward when thou hast more wit,

Wilt thou not, Jule?” and, by my holy dame,

The pretty wretch left crying and said “ay.”

To see now, how a jest shall come about!

I warrant, an I should live a thousand years,

I never should forget it. “Wilt thou not, Jule?” quoth he.

And, pretty fool, it stinted and said “ay.”

LADY CAPULET

Enough of this. I pray thee, hold thy peace.

LADY CAPULET

Enough of this. I pray thee, hold thy peace.

NURSE

Yes, madam. Yet I cannot choose but laugh

To think it should leave crying and say “ay.”

And yet, I warrant, it had upon its brow

A bump as big as a young cockerel’s stone,

cockerel’s stone=rooster’s testicle

A perilous knock, and it cried bitterly.

“Yea,” quoth my husband, “Fall’st upon thy face?

Thou wilt fall backward when thou comest to age.

Wilt thou not, Jule?” It stinted and said “ay.”

NURSE

Yes, madam. Yet I cannot choose but laugh

To think it should leave crying and say “ay.”

And yet, I warrant, it had upon its brow

A bump as big as a young cockerel’s stone,

A perilous knock, and it cried bitterly.

“Yea,” quoth my husband, “Fall’st upon thy face?

Thou wilt fall backward when thou comest to age.

Wilt thou not, Jule?” It stinted and said “ay.”

JULIET

And stint thou too, I pray thee, Nurse, say I.

JULIET

And stint thou too, I pray thee, Nurse, say I.

NURSE

Peace, I have done. God mark thee to his grace!

Thou wast the prettiest babe that e'er I nursed.

An I might live to see thee married once,

I have my wish.

NURSE

Peace, I have done. God mark thee to his grace!

Thou wast the prettiest babe that e'er I nursed.

An I might live to see thee married once,

I have my wish.

LADY CAPULET

Marry, that “marry” is the very theme

Marry=Virgin Mary

I came to talk of. Tell me, daughter Juliet,

How stands your disposition to be married?

LADY CAPULET

Marry, that “marry” is the very theme

I came to talk of. Tell me, daughter Juliet,

How stands your disposition to be married?

JULIET

It is an honor that I dream not of.

JULIET

It is an honor that I dream not of.

NURSE

An honor! Were not I thine only nurse,

I would say thou hadst sucked wisdom from thy teat (the breast that fed you).

NURSE

An honor! Were not I thine only nurse,

I would say thou hadst sucked wisdom from thy teat.

LADY CAPULET

Well, think of marriage now. Younger than you

Here in Verona, ladies of esteem

Are made already mothers. By my count,

I was your mother much upon these years

That you are now a maid. Thus then in brief:

The valiant Paris seeks you for his love.

LADY CAPULET

Well, think of marriage now. Younger than you

Here in Verona, ladies of esteem

Are made already mothers. By my count,

I was your mother much upon these years

That you are now a maid. Thus then in brief:

The valiant Paris seeks you for his love.

NURSE

A man, young lady! Lady, such a man

As all the world. Why, he’s a man of wax.

man of wax=man made to order

NURSE

A man, young lady! Lady, such a man

As all the world. Why, he’s a man of wax.

LADY CAPULET

Verona’s summer hath not such a flower.

LADY CAPULET

Verona’s summer hath not such a flower.

NURSE

Nay, he’s a flower. In faith, a very flower.

NURSE

Nay, he’s a flower. In faith, a very flower.

LADY CAPULET

What say you? Can you love the gentleman?

This night you shall behold him at our feast.

Read o'er the volume of young Paris' face

And find delight writ there with beauty’s pen.

Examine every married lineament

And see how one another lends content,

And what obscured in this fair volume lies

Find written in the margin of his eyes.

This precious book of love, this unbound lover,

To beautify him only lacks a cover.

The fish lives in the sea, and ’tis much pride

For fair without the fair within to hide.

That book in many’s eyes doth share the glory

That in gold clasps locks in the golden story.

gold clasps=golden clasps

So shall you share all that he doth possess

By having him, making yourself no less.

LADY CAPULET

What say you? Can you love the gentleman?

This night you shall behold him at our feast.

Read o'er the volume of young Paris' face

And find delight writ there with beauty’s pen.

Examine every married lineament

And see how one another lends content,

And what obscured in this fair volume lies

Find written in the margin of his eyes.

This precious book of love, this unbound lover,

To beautify him only lacks a cover.

The fish lives in the sea, and ’tis much pride

For fair without the fair within to hide.

That book in many’s eyes doth share the glory

That in gold clasps locks in the golden story.

So shall you share all that he doth possess

By having him, making yourself no less.

NURSE

No less? Nay, bigger. Women grow by men.

 

NURSE

No less? Nay, bigger. Women grow by men.

 

LADY CAPULET

Speak briefly. Can you like of Paris, love?

 

LADY CAPULET

Speak briefly. Can you like of Paris, love?

 

JULIET

I’ll look to like if looking liking move.

if looking liking move=if looking increases liking

But no more deep will I endart mine eye

endart=shoot out (like a dart)

Than your consent gives strength to make it fly.

(I will look only so far as you empower me)

 

JULIET

I’ll look to like if looking liking move.

But no more deep will I endart mine eye

Than your consent gives strength to make it fly.

 

Enter PETER

Enter PETER

PETER

Madam, the guests are come, supper served up, you called, my young lady asked for, the Nurse cursed in the pantry, and every thing in extremity. I must hence to wait. I beseech you, follow straight.

 

PETER

Madam, the guests are come, supper served up, you called, my young lady asked for, the Nurse cursed in the pantry, and every thing in extremity. I must hence to wait. I beseech you, follow straight.

 

LADY CAPULET

We follow thee.—Juliet, the county stays.

the county stays=the Count is waiting for you

 

LADY CAPULET

We follow thee.—Juliet, the county stays.

 

NURSE

Go, girl, seek happy nights to happy days.

(to [end] happy days)

 

NURSE

Go, girl, seek happy nights to happy days.

 

Exeunt

Exeunt

 

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