lit romeo and juliet Essay

Submitted By galarzamariana
Words: 808
Pages: 4

“O Romeo, Romeo Where art thou Romeo?” (2, 2, 35). William Shakespeare’s famous tragic love story, Romeo and Juliet, is a brilliant play he wrote early in his career about two star-crossed lovers that commit suicide that ends their household’s long feud. One great literary technique Shakespeare uses is foil characters, characters that enrich and magnify the others characters characteristics because of vast differences between them. Mercutio’s intense and disrespectful personality contrasts and complements Romeo’s romantic and passionate personality creating foil characters.
Mercutio is a foil character to Romeo because he is vulgar, earthy, and is often sexually explicit. Mercutio frequently refers to intercourse and disrespects women and their values. “That’s as much to say. Such a case as yours constrains a man to bow in the hams” (2, 4, 45). This quote occurs when Romeo returns from ditching Benvolio and Mercutio the night before, proposing to Juliet, and asking Friar Lawrence to wed Juliet and himself. Mercutio says the quote after Romeo apologizes and says he had important business implying that Romeo’s important business was sexual. The quote enhances the accusation that Mercutio and Romeo are complete opposites creating foils for each other because Mercutio lacks in sophistication unlike Romeo. Mercutio is not only crude, but he also has a special way with people: “Good king of cats, nothing but one of your nine lives that I mean to both withal, and, as you shall use me hereafter, dry-beat the rest of the eight. Will you pluck your sword out his pilcher by the ears? Make haste, lest mine be about your ears ere it be out” (3, 1, 75). Mercutio says this quote when Tybalt confronts him about demanding to duel with Romeo, making Mercutio very angry. Mercutio is easily provoked in to fighting in this scene as if he were pleading for it .Towards the middle of the play, Mercutio dies, cursing both the Montagues and the Capulets: “A plague o’ both your houses” (3.1.87), and still giving his witticisms and puns: “Ask for me tomorrow, and / you shall find me a grave man” (3.1.93–94). Unlike Romeo who blamed all his mishaps on fate, Mercutio dies cursing all Montagues and Capulets. Mercutio believes that specific people are responsible for his death rather than some external impersonal force presenting that Mercutio thinks thin unlike Romeo who thinks incredibly broad and almost unrealistic. Considering that Mercutio and Romeo have different beliefs and ways of thinking the differences between this characters enhance their personality.
Mercutio’s coarse language and jokes balance with Romeo’s respectful, passion filled speech and personality. Romeo ever seems to slip from his world of fantasy until he says to Juliet, when she has to leave quickly and only provides him with a kiss “O, wilt thou leave me so unsatisfied” (2, 1, ). Juliet questions him of what she could possibly offer and he offers a smooth save by replying with “The exchange of thy love’s faithful vows for mine” (2, 1, ). Though Romeo did say something that was similar to what Mercutio would say, the difference would be their responses after. Romeo exclaimed that loved her and wanted to cherish the…