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Chorus

Henry V, Romeo and Juliet

Richard, Romeo, Juliet and the Sonnet

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Two of Shakespeare’s earliest playsRichard III and Romeo and Juliet, open with sonnets and then employ variations on the sonnet’s structure for dramatic and poetic effect, which is not surprising. At this point in Shakespeare’s life he seems to have had dual career goals. First, he wanted to make money, which he could accomplish through theatre.
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O, for a muse of fire

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O, for a muse of fire that would ascend
The brightest heaven of invention!Metaphor

A kingdom for a stage, princes to act,
And monarchs to behold the swelling scene!Anapodoton

Can this cockpit hold
The vasty fields of France? Or may we cram
Within this wooden O the very casques
That did affright the air at Agincourt?
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Source:
Act 1
Scene Prologue
Line 1

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, , , , , ,

Two households, both alike in dignity

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Two households, both alike in dignity,
In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudgeParenthesis
break to new mutiny,
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.Antanaclesis & Synecdoche
From forth the fatal loins of these two foesAlliteration, Oxymoron & Synecdoche
A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life;Epithet
Whose misadventur'd piteous overthrows
Doth with their deathAlliteration bury their parents' strife.
The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love,Transferred Epithets
And the continuance of their parents' rage,
Which, but their children's end, nought could remove,Parenthesis
Is now the two hours' traffic of our stage;
The which if you with patient ears attend,
What here Alliterationshall miss, our toil shall strive to mend.Parenthesis & Synecdoche

Now old desire doth in his deathbed lie

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Now old desire doth in his deathbed lie,
And young affection gapes to be his heir;
That fair for which love groan'd for and would die,
With tender Juliet match'd, is now not fair.
Now Romeo is beloved and loves again,
Alike bewitchèd by the charm of looks,
But to his foe supposed he must complain,
And she steal love's sweet bait from fearful hooks.
Being held a foe, he may not have access
To breathe such vows as lovers use to swear,
And she as much in love, her means much less
To meet her new belovèd anywhere.
But passion lends them power, time means, to meet
Temp'ring extremities with extreme sweet.

Source:
Act 2
Scene Prologue
Line 1

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,

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Connected Notes:
Sonnets in Romeo and Juliet

They sell the pasture now to buy the horse

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They sell the pasture now to buy the horse.
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Source:
Act 2
Scene 1

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Come, now a roundel and a fairy song

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Titania
Come, now a roundel and a fairy song;
Then, for the third part of a minute, hence—
Some to kill cankers in the muskrose buds,
Some war with reremice for their leathern wings
To make my small elves coats, and some keep back
The clamorous owl that nightly hoots and wonders
At our quaint spirits.
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Source:
Act 2
Scene 2
Line 1

Source Type:
,

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, ,

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,

Thus with imagin’d wing our swift scene flies

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Thus with imagin’d wing our swift scene flies
In motion of no less celerity
Than that of thought.
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Source:
Act 3
Scene 1

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