“Two households, both alike in dignity, in fair Verona, where we lay our scene. From ancient grudge break to new mutiny, where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. From forth the fatal loins of these two foes a pair of star-cross’d lovers take their life.”
This week’s Women Who Wow Wednesday celebrates Shakespeare’s Juliet.
Born to the house of Capulet, the young Juliet discovers her life is not her own. Her father plans to betroth his daughter to the wealthy Count Paris of Prince Escalus’ family. Under formal agreement, the engagement would provide an honorable means to secure the Capulet’s future among the elite. Not part of the arrangement is Juliet’s reaction.
At thirteen, Juliet believes in love—the kind of love that would stop thunder from cracking over the skies, but at the same time, the kind of love that would strike like a lightning bolt searing an unsuspecting heart. When she sees Romeo for the first time, her legs buckle at the knees.
His words give her life:
(taking JULIET’s hand)
If I profane with my unworthiest hand
This holy shrine, the gentle sin is this:
My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.
Good pilgrim, you do wrong your hand too much,
Which mannerly devotion shows in this,
For saints have hands that pilgrims’ hands do touch,
And palm to palm is holy palmers’ kiss.
Have not saints lips, and holy palmers too?
Ay, pilgrim, lips that they must use in prayer.
O, then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do.
They pray; grant thou, lest faith turn to despair.
Saints do not move, though grant for prayers’ sake.
Then move not, while my prayer’s effect I take.
Thus from my lips, by thine, my sin is purged.
Then have my lips the sin that they have took.
Sin from thy lips? O trespass sweetly urged!
Give me my sin again.
(They kiss again)
A consuming flame overtakes her heart causing her to inquire of the handsome boy. But to Juliet’s dismay, she discovers Romeo is a Montague, an enemy of her family. If her father ever found out of their love, she would surely die by his own hands.
No one must know.
She resolves to marry Romeo in secret.
And there’s more.
Given today is New Year’s Day, a day of new beginnings, best knowing Juliet makes the decision of a lifetime out of love and nothing more. In her short life she learns about being happy from a boy who shows her the world through his eyes. A set of eyes filled with hope and dreams. Juliet grabs a hold in faith and never lets go. She doesn’t know what comes next, but she knows it feels right. And that’s all that matters to her.
Have you read Romeo and Juliet? If so, what did you learn from it?
14 thoughts on “Juliet”
Reblogged this on THE RAMBOVA FILES.
Thanks so much for the reblog. I really appreciate it!
When Juliet kisses dead Romeo after she wakes up, and says, “Thy lips are warm”. Oh my word. One of the saddest and most beautiful lines in all of English literature.
Hey, Jack. I don’t know if you like Pokemon or not, but if you do, would you mind looking at my Pokemon Emerald Nuzlocke story? And maybe give me a few writhing tips? Here is the link.
well I see what might have got you stumbling across my page… but I’m surprised you liked my post if you really do believe it’s such a beautiful story… though I do have to give Juliet credit for risking it all to follow her hearts desire…
I enjoy reading a logical argument regardless of personal feelings. And you had done a great job at expressing your opinion!
thank you… and it’s always nice to meet people who don’t mind hearing the other side… makes life interesting… 😀
I’ve never read Romeo and Juliet. I have watched some movies with the same “opposites attract” concept, of course the lovers don’t die in those movies like they do in Romeo and Juliet.
Interesting post. I did read Romeo and Juliet and learned that couples need to be strong in their commitment in spite of external influences. Tragic endings are fine in a play, but really anticlimactic in real life. Happy New Year Jack
Happy happy New Year!
‘Women that wow’ is a great idea and concept however Juliet is about 13 and I think even in Shakespeare’a time she would be a young girl
Have you ever thought about her nurse as WwWow? Think of the nurse’s words to Juliet, basically, one guy is good as another-go with Paris?
The Nurse gives -as Emilia in ‘Othello’ very practical advise: switch and love another and then another and then…
Live for another day. Now to get the Nurse -who has known man-to stay with you with your words fir one night-
That would be a Wow
Hey there, Charles, great seeing you again! Have a look at my response to inkwellknightuk. Also, I love the idea of The Nurse for a Women Who Wow Wednesday highlight!
Awesome choice for the first day of the year. I love ‘two blushing pilgrims’ HNY!
She’s really a great role model though. If we all ended up with the people we liked when we we’re 13 where the hell would our lives be? I mean my first crush is always going to be special to me… but I kind of moved on and so has she. We are different people. Granted she is the smarter of the pair, but Juliet isn’t an amazing woman, Romeo just a but of a screw up (mainly because of his character flaw of haste.) Seriously at that party where they meet Romeo falls in love twice. If there is an amazing female character in Rome and Juliet it is the Nurse. She has to make the means to get them both together, keep the families ignorant, control hormonal teenagers and all the time putting herself at risk. The priest is going to protected by the church so he’s can go off with the plan, but the Nurse could easily have lost her job (or her head since the Judge doesn’t seem to be able to properly control the houses without giving out blank sentences and ignoring the circumstances.) In short Juliet is a likable girl, but she isn’t a woman. The Nurse got crap done, that was the woman who should wow this day if we’re focusing on Romeo and Juliet.
So very true! The Nurse deserves more recognition for her role in hiding and protecting Juliet’s love affair. No doubt she could have lost her life for what she did for the young girl.
However, Juliet, even though she was all but thirteen, makes an adult decision well beyond her years. Had she not married Romeo in secret in order to experience love honorably, she would have lived a life in a loveless marriage with the affluent Paris, who her father, Lord Capulet, had arranged for her in dowry. She recognized that if she didn’t escape, her soul would have died and it would have been as if she had never lived. She chose to risk her life for Romeo–a decision that should not rest on the shoulders of a child, but an adult.
Thanks for the suggestion about The Nurse! She may one day also make the Women Who Wow Wednesday roster!