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Romeo and Juliet

by William Shakespeare

Act 2, Scene 2 Easiest-to-Read Edition

 

 

 



Romeo and Juliet Act 2, Scene 2



Capulet's Orchard

Romeo and Juliet Act 2, Scene 2

ROMEO returns

ROMEO returns

ROMEO

He jests at scars that never felt a wound.

(He makes jokes about love, but he’s never been in love)

 

ROMEO

He jests at scars that never felt a wound.

 

JULIET appears in a window above

JULIET appears in a window above

But soft! What light through yonder window breaks?

It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.

Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,

fair sun=Juliet
kill=vanquish

Who is already sick and pale with grief,

That thou, her maid, art far more fair than she.

her maid=servant of the moon goddess, Diana

Be not her maid since she is envious.

Her vestal livery is but sick and green,

vestal livery=garments of Vestal virgins, devotees of the goddess Vesta
sick and green - virgins were thought to be subject to green-sickness, in which the skin actually takes on a greenish cast

And none but fools do wear it. Cast it off!

It is my lady. Oh, it is my love.

(Juliet appears.)

Oh, that she knew she were!

that=would that, if only

She speaks, yet she says nothing. What of that?

Her eye discourses. I will answer it.—

discourses=speaks

I am too bold. 'Tis not to me she speaks.

Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven,

Having some business, do entreat her eyes

having some business=needing to go somewhere else

To twinkle in their spheres till they return.

in their spheres=in their places
till they return=until they come back from handling their business

What if her eyes were there, they in her head?

were there=were in the sky in the place of two absent stars

The brightness of her cheek would shame those stars

As daylight doth a lamp. Her eye in heaven

in heaven=in the sky

Would through the airy region stream so bright

airy region=the sky

That birds would sing and think it were not night.

See how she leans her cheek upon her hand.

Oh, that I were a glove upon that hand

that=if only

That I might touch that cheek!

 

But soft! What light through yonder window breaks?

It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.

Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,

Who is already sick and pale with grief,

That thou, her maid, art far more fair than she.

Be not her maid since she is envious.

Her vestal livery is but sick and green,

And none but fools do wear it. Cast it off!

It is my lady. Oh, it is my love.

Oh, that she knew she were!

She speaks, yet she says nothing. What of that?

Her eye discourses. I will answer it.—

I am too bold. 'Tis not to me she speaks.

Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven,

Having some business, do entreat her eyes

To twinkle in their spheres till they return.

What if her eyes were there, they in her head?

The brightness of her cheek would shame those stars

As daylight doth a lamp. Her eye in heaven

Would through the airy region stream so bright

That birds would sing and think it were not night.

See how she leans her cheek upon her hand.

Oh, that I were a glove upon that hand

That I might touch that cheek!

 

JULIET

     Ay me!

 

JULIET

     Ay me!

 

ROMEO

     (aside) She speaks.

O, speak again, bright angel! For thou art

As glorious to this night, being o'er my head,

As is a wingèd messenger of heaven

Unto the white, upturnèd, wondering eyes

Of mortals that fall back to gaze on him

When he bestrides the lazy-puffing clouds

And sails upon the bosom of the air.

 

ROMEO

     (aside) She speaks.

O, speak again, bright angel! For thou art

As glorious to this night, being o'er my head,

As is a wingèd messenger of heaven

Unto the white, upturnèd, wondering eyes

Of mortals that fall back to gaze on him

When he bestrides the lazy-puffing clouds

And sails upon the bosom of the air.

 

JULIET

(not knowing ROMEO hears her) O Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?

wherefore art thou Romeo=why do you have Romeo for your name

Deny thy father and refuse thy name.

Or, if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love,

be but sworn my love=be my sworn love

And I’ll no longer be a Capulet.

 

JULIET

O Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?

Deny thy father and refuse thy name.

Or, if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love,

And I’ll no longer be a Capulet.

 

ROMEO

(aside) Shall I hear more, or shall I speak at this?

 

ROMEO

(aside) Shall I hear more, or shall I speak at this?

 

JULIET

(still not knowing ROMEO hears her) 'Tis but thy name that is my enemy.

Thou art thyself, though not a Montague.

though not=even if you were not

What’s Montague? It is nor hand, nor foot,

Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part

Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!

What’s in a name? That which we call a rose

By any other word would smell as sweet.

So Romeo would, were he not Romeo called,

Retain that dear perfection which he owes

owes=owns

Without that title. Romeo, doff thy name,

And for that name, which is no part of thee,

for that name=in place of that name

Take all myself.

 

JULIET

'Tis but thy name that is my enemy.

Thou art thyself, though not a Montague.

What’s Montague? It is nor hand, nor foot,

Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part

Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!

What’s in a name? That which we call a rose

By any other word would smell as sweet.

So Romeo would, were he not Romeo called,

Retain that dear perfection which he owes

Without that title. Romeo, doff thy name,

And for that name, which is no part of thee,

Take all myself.

 

ROMEO

   I take thee at thy word.

Call me but love, and I’ll be new baptized.

Henceforth I never will be Romeo.

 

ROMEO

   I take thee at thy word.

Call me but love, and I’ll be new baptized.

Henceforth I never will be Romeo.

 

JULIET

What man art thou that, thus bescreened in night,

So stumblest on my counsel?

counsel=private thoughts

 

JULIET

What man art thou that, thus bescreened in night,

So stumblest on my counsel?

 

ROMEO

     By a name

I know not how to tell thee who I am.

My name, dear saint, is hateful to myself

Because it is an enemy to thee.

Had I it written, I would tear the word.

 

ROMEO

     By a name

I know not how to tell thee who I am.

My name, dear saint, is hateful to myself

Because it is an enemy to thee.

Had I it written, I would tear the word.

 

JULIET

My ears have not yet drunk a hundred words

Of that tongue’s uttering, yet I know the sound.

Art thou not Romeo, and a Montague?

 

JULIET

My ears have not yet drunk a hundred words

Of that tongue’s uttering, yet I know the sound.

Art thou not Romeo, and a Montague?

 

ROMEO

Neither, fair maid, if either thee dislike.

 

ROMEO

Neither, fair maid, if either thee dislike.

 

JULIET

How camest thou hither, tell me, and wherefore?

The orchard walls are high and hard to climb,

And the place death, considering who thou art,

If any of my kinsmen find thee here.

 

JULIET

How camest thou hither, tell me, and wherefore?

The orchard walls are high and hard to climb,

And the place death, considering who thou art,

If any of my kinsmen find thee here.

 

ROMEO

With love’s light wings did I o'erperch these walls,

o’erperch=surmount

For stony limits cannot hold love out,

And what love can do, that dares love attempt.

Therefore thy kinsmen are no stop to me.

 

ROMEO

With love’s light wings did I o'erperch these walls,

For stony limits cannot hold love out,

And what love can do, that dares love attempt.

Therefore thy kinsmen are no stop to me.

 

JULIET

If they do see thee they will murder thee.

 

JULIET

If they do see thee they will murder thee.

 

ROMEO

Alack, there lies more peril in thine eye

Than twenty of their swords. Look thou but sweet,

And I am proof against their enmity.

 

ROMEO

Alack, there lies more peril in thine eye

Than twenty of their swords. Look thou but sweet,

And I am proof against their enmity.

 

JULIET

I would not for the world they saw thee here.

 

JULIET

I would not for the world they saw thee here.

 

ROMEO

I have night’s cloak to hide me from their eyes,

And, but thou love me, let them find me here.

and but thou love me=unless you love me

My life were better ended by their hate

Than death proroguèd, wanting of thy love.

prorogued=delayed

wanting of=lacking

 

ROMEO

I have night’s cloak to hide me from their eyes,

And, but thou love me, let them find me here.

My life were better ended by their hate

Than death proroguèd, wanting of thy love.

 

JULIET

By whose direction found’st thou out this place?

 

JULIET

By whose direction found’st thou out this place?

 

ROMEO

By love, that first did prompt me to inquire.

He lent me counsel and I lent him eyes.

I am no pilot. Yet, wert thou as far

As that vast shore washed with the farthest sea,

I would adventure for such merchandise.

 

ROMEO

By love, that first did prompt me to inquire.

He lent me counsel and I lent him eyes.

I am no pilot. Yet, wert thou as far

As that vast shore washed with the farthest sea,

I would adventure for such merchandise.

 

JULIET

Thou know’st the mask of night is on my face,

Else would a maiden-blush bepaint my cheek

For that which thou hast heard me speak tonight.

for that=because of that

Fain would I dwell on form. Fain, fain deny

fain=willingly

What I have spoke. But farewell compliment!

Dost thou love me? I know thou wilt say “ay,”

And I will take thy word. Yet if thou swear’st

yet=despite

Thou mayst prove false. At lovers' perjuries,

They say, Jove laughs. O gentle Romeo,

Jove=king of the Roman gods

If thou dost love, pronounce it faithfully.

Or if thou think’st I am too quickly won,

I’ll frown and be perverse and say thee nay,

So thou wilt woo. But else, not for the world.

so=in this way

In truth, fair Montague, I am too fond,

And therefore thou mayst think my 'havior light.

But trust me, gentleman, I’ll prove more true

Than those that have more coying to be strange.

coying=skill at coquetry

strange=distant

I should have been more strange, I must confess,

But that thou overheard’st, ere I was 'ware,

My true love’s passion. Therefore pardon me,

And not impute this yielding to light love,

Which the dark night hath so discovered.

discovered=disclosed

 

JULIET

Thou know’st the mask of night is on my face,

Else would a maiden-blush bepaint my cheek

For that which thou hast heard me speak tonight.

Fain would I dwell on form. Fain, fain deny

What I have spoke. But farewell compliment!

Dost thou love me? I know thou wilt say “ay,”

And I will take thy word. Yet if thou swear’st

Thou mayst prove false. At lovers' perjuries,

They say, Jove laughs. O gentle Romeo,

If thou dost love, pronounce it faithfully.

Or if thou think’st I am too quickly won,

I’ll frown and be perverse and say thee nay,

So thou wilt woo. But else, not for the world.

In truth, fair Montague, I am too fond,

And therefore thou mayst think my 'havior light.

But trust me, gentleman, I’ll prove more true

Than those that have more coying to be strange.

I should have been more strange, I must confess,

But that thou overheard’st, ere I was 'ware,

My true love’s passion. Therefore pardon me,

And not impute this yielding to light love,

Which the dark night hath so discovered.

 

ROMEO

Lady, by yonder blessèd moon (I vow),

That tips with silver all these fruit-tree tops—

 

ROMEO

Lady, by yonder blessèd moon (I vow),

That tips with silver all these fruit-tree tops—

 

JULIET

O, swear not by the moon, th' inconstant moon,

That monthly changes in her circle orb,

orb=orbit

Lest that thy love prove likewise variable.

JULIET

O, swear not by the moon, th' inconstant moon,

That monthly changes in her circle orb,

 

Lest that thy love prove likewise variable.

 

ROMEO

What shall I swear by?

 

ROMEO

What shall I swear by?

 

JULIET

     Do not swear at all.

Or, if thou wilt, swear by thy gracious self,

Which is the god of my idolatry,

And I’ll believe thee.

 

JULIET

     Do not swear at all.

Or, if thou wilt, swear by thy gracious self,

Which is the god of my idolatry,

And I’ll believe thee.

 

ROMEO

     If my heart’s dear love—

 

ROMEO

     If my heart’s dear love—

 

JULIET

Well, do not swear. Although I joy in thee,

I have no joy of this contract tonight.

It is too rash, too unadvised, too sudden,

Too like the lightning, which doth cease to be

Ere one can say “It lightens.” Sweet, good night.

This bud of love, by summer’s ripening breath,

May prove a beauteous flower when next we meet.

Good night, good night! As sweet repose and rest

Come to thy heart as that within my breast.

(May repose and rest, as sweet as that within my breast, come to thy heart)

 

JULIET

Well, do not swear. Although I joy in thee,

I have no joy of this contract tonight.

It is too rash, too unadvised, too sudden,

Too like the lightning, which doth cease to be

Ere one can say “It lightens.” Sweet, good night.

This bud of love, by summer’s ripening breath,

May prove a beauteous flower when next we meet.

Good night, good night! As sweet repose and rest

Come to thy heart as that within my breast.

 

ROMEO

O, wilt thou leave me so unsatisfied?

 

ROMEO

O, wilt thou leave me so unsatisfied?

 

JULIET

What satisfaction canst thou have tonight?

 

JULIET

What satisfaction canst thou have tonight?

 

ROMEO

Th' exchange of thy love’s faithful vow for mine

 

ROMEO

Th' exchange of thy love’s faithful vow for mine

 

JULIET

I gave thee mine before thou didst request it,

And yet I would it were to give again.

 

JULIET

I gave thee mine before thou didst request it,

And yet I would it were to give again.

 

ROMEO

Wouldst thou withdraw it? For what purpose, love?

 

ROMEO

Wouldst thou withdraw it? For what purpose, love?

 

JULIET

But to be frank, and give it thee again.

frank=open (generous)

And yet I wish but for the thing I have.

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.

 

JULIET

But to be frank, and give it thee again.

And yet I wish but for the thing I have.

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.

 

NURSE calls from within

NURSE calls from within

I hear some noise within. Dear love, adieu.—

Anon, good Nurse!—Sweet Montague, be true.

Stay but a little. I will come again.

 

I hear some noise within. Dear love, adieu.—

Anon, good Nurse!—Sweet Montague, be true.

Stay but a little. I will come again.

 

Exit JULIET, from above

Exit JULIET, above

ROMEO

O blessèd, blessèd night! I am afeard,

Being in night, all this is but a dream,

Too flattering sweet to be substantial.

 

ROMEO

O blessèd, blessèd night! I am afeard,

Being in night, all this is but a dream,

Too flattering sweet to be substantial.

 

Enter JULIET, from above

Enter JULIET, above

JULIET

Three words, dear Romeo, and good night indeed.

If that thy bent of love be honorable,

Thy purpose marriage, send me word tomorrow

By one that I’ll procure to come to thee

Where and what time thou wilt perform the rite,

And all my fortunes at thy foot I’ll lay

And follow thee my lord throughout the world.

 

JULIET

Three words, dear Romeo, and good night indeed.

If that thy bent of love be honorable,

Thy purpose marriage, send me word tomorrow

By one that I’ll procure to come to thee

Where and what time thou wilt perform the rite,

And all my fortunes at thy foot I’ll lay

And follow thee my lord throughout the world.

 

NURSE

(from within) Madam!

 

NURSE

(from within) Madam!

 

JULIET

I come, anon.—But if thou mean’st not well,

I do beseech thee—

 

JULIET

I come, anon.—But if thou mean’st not well,

I do beseech thee—

 

NURSE

(from within) Madam!

 

NURSE

(from within) Madam!

 

JULIET

By and by, I come.—

To cease thy strife and leave me to my grief.

Tomorrow will I send.

 

JULIET

By and by, I come.—

To cease thy strife and leave me to my grief.

Tomorrow will I send.

 

ROMEO

So thrive my soul—

 

ROMEO

So thrive my soul—

 

JULIET

A thousand times good night!

 

JULIET

A thousand times good night!

 

Exit JULIET, from above

Exit JULIET, above

ROMEO

A thousand times the worse to want thy light.

(leaving you is a thousand times worse than not leaving)

Love goes toward love as schoolboys from their books,

But love from love, toward school with heavy looks.

 

ROMEO

A thousand times the worse to want thy light.

Love goes toward love as schoolboys from their books,

But love from love, toward school with heavy looks.

 

Moves to exit. Reenter JULIET, from above

Moves to exit. Reenter JULIET, above

JULIET

Hist! Romeo, hist!—Oh, for a falconer’s voice,

(a falconer has a strong voice to call the falcon home)

To lure this tassel-gentle back again!

tassel-gentle=male peregrine falcon

Bondage is hoarse, and may not speak aloud,

bondage=Juliet’s confinement within her house

Else would I tear the cave where Echo lies,

(Echo repeatedly called for her lover, Narcissus)

And make her airy tongue more hoarse than mine,

With repetition of “My Romeo!”

 

JULIET

Hist! Romeo, hist!—Oh, for a falconer’s voice,

To lure this tassel-gentle back again!

Bondage is hoarse, and may not speak aloud,

Else would I tear the cave where Echo lies,

And make her airy tongue more hoarse than mine,

With repetition of “My Romeo!”

 

ROMEO

It is my soul that calls upon my name.

How silver-sweet sound lovers' tongues by night,

Like softest music to attending ears!

 

ROMEO

It is my soul that calls upon my name.

How silver-sweet sound lovers' tongues by night,

Like softest music to attending ears!

 

JULIET

Romeo!

 

JULIET

Romeo!

 

ROMEO

 My nyas (young  hawk)?

 

ROMEO

 My nyas?

 

JULIET

   What o'clock tomorrow

Shall I send to thee?

 

JULIET

   What o'clock tomorrow

Shall I send to thee?

 

ROMEO

   By the hour of nine.

 

ROMEO

   By the hour of nine.

 

JULIET

I will not fail. 'Tis twenty year till then.

I have forgot why I did call thee back.

 

JULIET

I will not fail. 'Tis twenty year till then.

I have forgot why I did call thee back.

 

ROMEO

Let me stand here till thou remember it.

 

ROMEO

Let me stand here till thou remember it.

 

JULIET

I shall forget, to have thee still stand there,

Remembering how I love thy company.

 

JULIET

I shall forget, to have thee still stand there,

Remembering how I love thy company.

 

ROMEO

And I’ll still stay, to have thee still forget,

Forgetting any other home but this.

 

ROMEO

And I’ll still stay, to have thee still forget,

Forgetting any other home but this.

 

JULIET

'Tis almost morning. I would have thee gone.

And yet no further than a wanton’s bird,

That lets it hop a little from his hand

Like a poor prisoner in his twisted gyves,

gyves=shackles

And with a silken thread plucks it back again,

So loving-jealous of his liberty.

 

JULIET

'Tis almost morning. I would have thee gone.

And yet no further than a wanton’s bird,

That lets it hop a little from his hand

Like a poor prisoner in his twisted gyves,

And with a silken thread plucks it back again,

So loving-jealous of his liberty.

 

ROMEO

I would I were thy bird.

 

ROMEO

I would I were thy bird.

 

JULIET

     Sweet, so would I.

Yet I should kill thee with much cherishing.

Good night, good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow

That I shall say good night till it be morrow.

 

JULIET

     Sweet, so would I.

Yet I should kill thee with much cherishing.

Good night, good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow

That I shall say good night till it be morrow.

 

Exit JULIET, above

Exit JULIET, above

ROMEO

Sleep dwell upon thine eyes, peace in thy breast.

Would I were Sleep and Peace, so sweet to rest.

so sweet to rest=sweetly to rest with you

Hence will I to my ghostly friar’s close cell,

ghostly=holy

close=private

His help to crave and my dear hap to tell.

dear hap=good luck

 

ROMEO

Sleep dwell upon thine eyes, peace in thy breast.

Would I were sleep and peace, so sweet to rest.

Hence will I to my ghostly friar’s close cell,

His help to crave and my dear hap to tell.

 

Exit

Exit

 

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