Contents

Previous Next  

 

Romeo and Juliet

by William Shakespeare

Act 3, Scene 2 Easiest-to-Read Edition

 

 

 



Romeo and Juliet Act 3, Scene 2



An apartment in Capulet's house

Romeo and Juliet Act 3, Scene 2

Enter JULIET alone

Enter JULIET alone

JULIET

Gallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds,

apace=quickly

fiery-footed – feet of the horses pulling the sun across the sky

Toward Phoebus' lodging. Such a wagoner

Phoebus=god of the sun

lodging=his home beneath the western horizon

As Phaeton would whip you to the west

Phaeton=the driver, son of Pheobus

And bring in cloudy night immediately.

Spread thy close curtain, love-performing night,

close curtain – curtain of secrecy, which night provides

That runaways' eyes may wink, and Romeo

(runaways – meaning unknown)

Leap to these arms, untalked of and unseen.

Lovers can see to do their amorous rites

By their own beauties, or, if love be blind,

(the lovers’ beauties give light to their lovemaking)

It best agrees with night. Come, civil night,

civil=soberly dressed

Thou sober-suited matron, all in black,

And learn me how to lose a winning match

learn=teach

(by giving away her love she wins the game)

Played for a pair of stainless maidenhoods.

pair – maidenhoods of both Romeo and Juliet

Hood my unmanned blood bating in my cheeks,

hood, a verb – cover up, as a falcon is covered up when hooded

bating=fluttering – a falcon beats its wings wildly when trying to escape

With thy black mantle, till strange love grows bold,

strange=shy

[and] Thinks true love acted simple modesty.

acted=behaved with

Come, night. Come, Romeo. Come, thou day in night,

For thou wilt lie upon the wings of night

Whiter than new snow upon a raven’s back.

Come, gentle night, come, loving, black-browed night,

Give me my Romeo. And when I shall die,

Take him and cut him out in little stars,

And he will make the face of heaven so fine

That all the world will be in love with night

And pay no worship to the garish sun.

Oh, I have bought the mansion of a love,

But not possessed it, and though I am sold,

Not yet enjoyed. So tedious is this day

As is the night before some festival

To an impatient child that hath new robes

And may not wear them.

 

JULIET

Gallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds,

Toward Phoebus' lodging. Such a wagoner

As Phaeton would whip you to the west

And bring in cloudy night immediately.

Spread thy close curtain, love-performing night,

That runaways' eyes may wink, and Romeo

Leap to these arms, untalked of and unseen.

Lovers can see to do their amorous rites

By their own beauties, or, if love be blind,

It best agrees with night. Come, civil night,

Thou sober-suited matron, all in black,

And learn me how to lose a winning match

Played for a pair of stainless maidenhoods.

Hood my unmanned blood bating in my cheeks,

With thy black mantle, till strange love grow bold,

Think true love acted simple modesty.

Come, night. Come, Romeo. Come, thou day in night,

For thou wilt lie upon the wings of night

Whiter than new snow upon a raven’s back.

Come, gentle night, come, loving, black-browed night,

Give me my Romeo. And when I shall die,

Take him and cut him out in little stars,

And he will make the face of heaven so fine

That all the world will be in love with night

And pay no worship to the garish sun.

Oh, I have bought the mansion of a love,

But not possessed it, and though I am sold,

Not yet enjoyed. So tedious is this day

As is the night before some festival

To an impatient child that hath new robes

And may not wear them.

 

Enter NURSE with cords (a rope ladder)

Enter NURSE with cords

Oh, here comes my Nurse,

And she brings news, and every tongue that speaks

But Romeo’s name speaks heavenly eloquence.—

Now, Nurse, what news? What hast thou there? The cords

That Romeo bid thee fetch?

 

Oh, here comes my Nurse,

And she brings news, and every tongue that speaks

But Romeo’s name speaks heavenly eloquence.—

Now, Nurse, what news? What hast thou there? The cords

That Romeo bid thee fetch?

 

NURSE

Ay, ay, the cords.

 

NURSE

Ay, ay, the cords.

 

JULIET

Ay me, what news? Why dost thou wring thy hands?

 

JULIET

Ay me, what news? Why dost thou wring thy hands?

 

NURSE

Ah, welladay (expression of grief)! He’s dead, he’s dead, he’s dead!

We are undone, lady, we are undone!

Alack the day! He’s gone, he’s killed, he’s dead!

 

NURSE

Ah, welladay! He’s dead, he’s dead, he’s dead!

We are undone, lady, we are undone!

Alack the day! He’s gone, he’s killed, he’s dead!

 

JULIET

Can heaven be so envious (malicious)?

 

JULIET

Can heaven be so envious?

 

NURSE

     Romeo can,

Though heaven cannot. O Romeo, Romeo!

Who ever would have thought it? Romeo!

 

NURSE

     Romeo can,

Though heaven cannot. O Romeo, Romeo!

Who ever would have thought it? Romeo!

 

JULIET

What devil art thou that dost torment me thus?

This torture should be roared in dismal hell.

Hath Romeo slain himself? Say thou but “ay,”

And that bare vowel I shall poison more

Than the death-darting eye of cockatrice.

cockatrice=fabulous creature that killed by its glance

I am not I if there be such an I,

Or those eyes shut that makes thee answer “ay.”

If he be slain, say “ay,” or if not, “no.”

Brief sounds determine of my weal or woe.

weal=happiness

 

JULIET

What devil art thou that dost torment me thus?

This torture should be roared in dismal hell.

Hath Romeo slain himself? Say thou but “ay,”

And that bare vowel I shall poison more

Than the death-darting eye of cockatrice.

I am not I if there be such an I,

Or those eyes shut that makes thee answer “ay.”

If he be slain, say “ay,” or if not, “no.”

Brief sounds determine of my weal or woe.

 

NURSE

I saw the wound, I saw it with mine eyes—

God save the mark!—here on his manly breast.

God save the mark=God protect us

A piteous corpse, a bloody piteous corpse.

Pale, pale as ashes, all bedaubed in blood,

All in gore blood. I swoonèd at the sight.

 

NURSE

I saw the wound, I saw it with mine eyes—

God save the mark!—here on his manly breast.

A piteous corse, a bloody piteous corse.

Pale, pale as ashes, all bedaubed in blood,

All in gore blood. I swoonèd at the sight.

 

JULIET

O, break, my heart, poor bankrupt, break at once!

To prison, eyes, ne'er look on liberty.

Vile earth, to earth resign. End motion here,

motion=signs of life

vile earth=dust (Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return)

And thou and Romeo press one heavy bier.

bier=a frame to hold a coffin

 

JULIET

O, break, my heart, poor bankrupt, break at once!

To prison, eyes, ne'er look on liberty.

Vile earth, to earth resign. End motion here,

And thou and Romeo press one heavy bier.

 

NURSE

O Tybalt, Tybalt, the best friend I had!

O courteous Tybalt! Honest gentleman!

That ever I should live to see thee dead.

 

NURSE

O Tybalt, Tybalt, the best friend I had!

O courteous Tybalt! Honest gentleman!

That ever I should live to see thee dead.

 

JULIET

What storm is this that blows so contrary?

Is Romeo slaughtered, and is Tybalt dead?

My dearest cousin and my dearer lord?

Then, dreadful trumpet, sound the general doom!

trumpet=trumpet announcing the Day of Judgment

For who is living if those two are gone?

 

JULIET

What storm is this that blows so contrary?

Is Romeo slaughtered, and is Tybalt dead?

My dearest cousin and my dearer lord?

Then, dreadful trumpet, sound the general doom!

For who is living if those two are gone?

 

NURSE

Tybalt is gone, and Romeo banishèd.

Romeo that killed him—he is banishèd.

 

NURSE

Tybalt is gone, and Romeo banishèd.

Romeo that killed him—he is banishèd.

 

JULIET

O God, did Romeo’s hand shed Tybalt’s blood?

 

JULIET

O God, did Romeo’s hand shed Tybalt’s blood?

 

NURSE

It did, it did. Alas the day, it did.

 

NURSE

It did, it did. Alas the day, it did.

 

JULIET

O serpent heart hid with a flowering face!

Did ever dragon keep so fair a cave?

Beautiful tyrant! Fiend angelical!

Dove-feathered raven, wolvish-ravening lamb!

ravening=devouring

Despisèd substance of divinest show,

Just opposite to what thou justly seem’st.

A damnèd saint, an honorable villain!

O nature, what hadst thou to do in hell

When thou didst bower the spirit of a fiend

bower=give a dwelling to

In moral paradise of such sweet flesh?

Was ever book containing such vile matter

So fairly bound? Oh, that deceit should dwell

In such a gorgeous palace!

 

JULIET

O serpent heart hid with a flowering face!

Did ever dragon keep so fair a cave?

Beautiful tyrant! Fiend angelical!

Dove-feathered raven, wolvish-ravening lamb!

Despisèd substance of divinest show,

Just opposite to what thou justly seem’st.

A damnèd saint, an honorable villain!

O nature, what hadst thou to do in hell

When thou didst bower the spirit of a fiend

In moral paradise of such sweet flesh?

Was ever book containing such vile matter

So fairly bound? Oh, that deceit should dwell

In such a gorgeous palace!

 

NURSE

     There’s no trust,

No faith, no honesty in men. All perjured,

All forsworn, all naught, all dissemblers.

all naught=all wicked

Ah, where’s my man?—Give me some aqua vitae.—

man=servant

aqua vitae=water of life (alcoholic)

These griefs, these woes, these sorrows make me old.

Shame come to Romeo!

 

NURSE

     There’s no trust,

No faith, no honesty in men. All perjured,

All forsworn, all naught, all dissemblers.

Ah, where’s my man?—Give me some aqua vitae.—

These griefs, these woes, these sorrows make me old.

Shame come to Romeo!

 

JULIET

   Blistered be thy tongue

For such a wish! He was not born to shame.

Upon his brow shame is ashamed to sit,

For ’tis a throne where honor may be crowned.

Sole monarch of the universal earth,

Oh, what a beast was I to chide at him!

 

JULIET

   Blistered be thy tongue

For such a wish! He was not born to shame.

Upon his brow shame is ashamed to sit,

For ’tis a throne where honor may be crowned.

Sole monarch of the universal earth,

Oh, what a beast was I to chide at him!

 

NURSE

Will you speak well of him that killed your cousin?

 

NURSE

Will you speak well of him that killed your cousin?

 

JULIET

Shall I speak ill of him that is my husband?

Ah, poor my lord, what tongue shall smooth thy name,

When I, thy three hours' wife, have mangled it?

But wherefore, villain, didst thou kill my cousin?

That villain cousin would have killed my husband.

Back, foolish tears, back to your native spring.

Your tributary drops belong to woe,

woe=sadness over Tybalt’s death

tributary=contributing

Which you, mistaking, offer up to joy.

mistaking=having made a mistake

joy=joy at Romeo’s survival

My husband lives, that Tybalt would have slain,

And Tybalt’s dead, that (who) would have slain my husband.

All this is comfort. Wherefore (why) weep I then?

Some word there was, worser than Tybalt’s death,

That murdered me. I would forget it fain,

fain=gladly

But oh, it presses to my memory,

Like damnèd guilty deeds to sinners' minds.

“Tybalt is dead, and Romeo banishèd.”

That “banishèd,” that one word “banishèd

Hath slain ten thousand Tybalts. Tybalt’s death

Was woe enough, if it had ended there.

Or, if sour woe delights in fellowship

And needly will be ranked with other griefs,

needly=necessarily

will be=must be

Why followed not, when she said “Tybalt’s dead,”

“Thy father” or “thy mother,” nay, or both,

Which modern lamentations might have moved?

(which might have provoked ordinary lamentations)

But with a rearward following Tybalt’s death,

rearward=attack by the rearguard of a marching army

“Romeo is banishèd.” To speak that word,

Is father, mother, Tybalt, Romeo, Juliet,

is=are

All slain, all dead. “Romeo is banishèd.”

(all dead - the word “banished” kills everybody)

There is no end, no limit, measure, bound,

In that word’s death. No words can that woe sound.

Where is my father and my mother, Nurse?

 

JULIET

Shall I speak ill of him that is my husband?

Ah, poor my lord, what tongue shall smooth thy name,

When I, thy three hours' wife, have mangled it?

But wherefore, villain, didst thou kill my cousin?

That villain cousin would have killed my husband.

Back, foolish tears, back to your native spring.

Your tributary drops belong to woe,

Which you, mistaking, offer up to joy.

My husband lives, that Tybalt would have slain,

And Tybalt’s dead, that would have slain my husband.

All this is comfort. Wherefore weep I then?

Some word there was, worser than Tybalt’s death,

That murdered me. I would forget it fain,

But oh, it presses to my memory,

Like damnèd guilty deeds to sinners' minds.

“Tybalt is dead, and Romeo banishèd.”

That “banishèd,” that one word “banishèd

Hath slain ten thousand Tybalts. Tybalt’s death

Was woe enough, if it had ended there.

Or, if sour woe delights in fellowship

And needly will be ranked with other griefs,

Why followed not, when she said “Tybalt’s dead,”

“Thy father” or “thy mother,” nay, or both,

Which modern lamentations might have moved?

But with a rearward following Tybalt’s death,

“Romeo is banishèd.” To speak that word,

Is father, mother, Tybalt, Romeo, Juliet,

All slain, all dead. “Romeo is banishèd.”

There is no end, no limit, measure, bound,

In that word’s death. No words can that woe sound.

Where is my father and my mother, Nurse?

 

 

NURSE

Weeping and wailing over Tybalt’s corse.

Will you go to them? I will bring you thither.

 

NURSE

Weeping and wailing over Tybalt’s corse.

Will you go to them? I will bring you thither.

 

JULIET

Wash they his wounds with tears? Mine shall be spent

When theirs are dry, for Romeo’s banishment.

Take up those cords.—Poor ropes, you are beguiled,

beguiled=cheated

Both you and I, for Romeo is exiled.

He made you for a highway to my bed,

But I, a maid, die maiden-widowèd.

Come, cords.—Come, Nurse. I’ll to my wedding bed.

And death, not Romeo, take my maidenhead!

 

JULIET

Wash they his wounds with tears? Mine shall be spent

When theirs are dry, for Romeo’s banishment.

Take up those cords.—Poor ropes, you are beguiled,

Both you and I, for Romeo is exiled.

He made you for a highway to my bed,

But I, a maid, die maiden-widowèd.

Come, cords.—Come, Nurse. I’ll to my wedding bed.

And death, not Romeo, take my maidenhead!

 

NURSE

Hie to your chamber. I’ll find Romeo

hie=hurry

To comfort you. I wot well where he is.

wot=know

Hark ye, your Romeo will be here at night.

I’ll to him. He is hid at Lawrence' cell.

 

NURSE

Hie to your chamber. I’ll find Romeo

To comfort you. I wot well where he is.

Hark ye, your Romeo will be here at night.

I’ll to him. He is hid at Lawrence' cell.

 

JULIET

(gives the NURSE a ring) O, find him! Give this ring to my true knight,

And bid him come to take his last farewell.

 

JULIET

(gives the NURSE a ring) O, find him! Give this ring to my true knight,

And bid him come to take his last farewell.

 

Exeunt

Exeunt

 

Next