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Act V

. . . heaven finds means to kill your joys with love


(5.3.293).

Act V
Tragedy: a drama in which the central
character(s) suffer disaster as a result of fate or
a character flaw or both
Fateful (chance) events:
chance meeting at the Capulets party
Romeo does not receive Friars note

Both Romeo & Juliet are:


Impulsive - quick to act
Stubborn
Insistent on having things their own way

Act V
Theme in tragedy: central idea about life
that explains why the tragedy occurred
Those who act in haste (impulsively)
bring about their own destruction.

Act V
Metaphorical language: language in which
unlike things are compared to deepen
meaning
Sweet flower, with flowers thy bridal bed I
strew (5.1.12).
(Paris compares Juliet, in death, to a flower and
her tomb to a bridal bed.)

Act V, scene 1
Romeo dreams he
has died and Juliet
revives him with her
sweet kisses.
(foreshadows his
death)

Act V, scene 1
Balthasar, Romeos
servant, reports to
Romeo that Juliet has
died.
Romeos response,
I defy you stars!
(5.1.24)

Act V, scene 1
Impulsively, Romeo orders Balthasar to:
buy two horses
get him a pen and paper

Act V, scene 1
Enroute to
Verona, Romeo
and Balthasar
stop at an
apothecary to
purchase poison.

Act V, scene 1
For 40 ducats Romeo buys poison
strong enough to kill 20 men.
Romeo shames the apothecary into
selling him the illegal drug by appealing
to the mans poverty.

Act V, scene 1
Then goes on to say that the real
poison is the money he uses to
purchase the poison. It causes more
destruction to mens souls than poison
to their bodies.
(metaphorical language: Romeo compares
the money to poison)

Act V, scene 1
There is thy gold, worse poison to
mens souls, doing more murder in this
loathsome world, than these poor
compounds [poisons], that thou mayest
not sell. I sell thee poison. . . (5.1.8083)

Act V, scene 2
Friar Lawrences letter to Romeo is not
delivered.
Hell go alone to greet Juliet as she
awakens.
Hell send another letter to Romeo to meet
at Friars cell.
(tragic influence of chance or fate)

Act V, scene 3
Wednesday night Paris goes to the vault to
place flowers around Juliets body.
Sweet flower, with flowers thy bridal bed I strew
(5.1.12).
(Paris compares Juliet, in death, to a flower and her
tomb to a bridal bed.)

Unbeknownst to him, Romeo approaches the


vault too.

Act V, scene 3
Romeo threatens Balthasars life if he
dare follow him into the vault.
Alarmed by Romeos wild demeanor, he
hides nearby just in case, and then falls
asleep.

Act V, scene 3
Paris sees Romeo, whom he blames for
indirectly killing Juliet - her incessant
mourning over Tybalts death - and
confronts him.
He surmises Romeos intent is to sack
the vault.

Act V, scene 3
Romeo warns him to back away before
he commits another murder:
. . . Tempt not a desprate man . . . I

beseech thee . . . Put not another sin


upon my head by urging me to fury. . .
For I come armed against myself
(5.3.59-65).

(dramatic irony: We know Romeos intent but


Paris does not.)

Act V, scene 3
Paris advances anyway.
Romeo slays him, unaware of his
identity.
Romeo realizes it is Paris he has killed
and drags him into the vault.

Act V, scene 3
Once in the vault, Romeo sees Juliet.
Hes surprised that she still has color in
her cheeks and lips.
He wonders if death has kept her
beautiful to be his bride.
He vows to stay and protect her.

Act V, scene 3
Next he vows to Tybalt, also in the
tomb, that hell avenge his death by
killing his murderer - Romeo will take
his own life.

Act V, scene 3
Finally, Romeo kisses Juliet one last time,
and then drinks the poison:
Come bitter conduct [poison] Thou
desperate pilot [Romeo as ship captain], now at
once run on the dashing rocks thy seasick
weary bark! Heres to my love! (5.3.116-119).
(metaphorical language: He compares himself to
a captain facing death as his ship is ravaged in
a storm.)

Act V, scene 3
Now Friar Lawrence approaches, seeing a
light in the tomb.
As he enters the burial vault he sees the
bloody swords and then the bodies of Paris
and Romeo.
Juliet awakens, sees the carnage around
her, but will not leave when a noise from
outside startles Friar, who flees.

Act V, scene 3
Juliet spies the empty cup from which Romeo
drank the poison.
She kisses him hoping enough poison remains
on his lips to kill her, but none remains.
Again she hears noises from outside.
Panicked, she reaches for his dagger:

Act V, scene 3
Relieved, she says:
O happy dagger! This is thy sheath; there
rust, and let me die (5.3.168-169).
(metaphorical language: She asks the dagger to
take her body as its sheath and remain in her,
taking her life.)

At last the star-crossed lovers are united


for eternity in death.

Act V, scene 3
Prince arrives on the scene.
Friar Lawrence and Balthasar are
apprehended.
Montagues and Capulets arrive at vault.
We learn that Lady Montague died after
hearing that her son, Romeo, was banished.

Act V, scene 3
Friar Lawrence Testifies to All
I secretly married Romeo & Juliet on
Monday afternoon, just prior to Tybalts
death.
Romeo was banished to Mantua, causing
Juliet grief.
Lord Capulet mistook the cause of grief
and moved the wedding to Wednesday to
cheer his daughter.

Act V, scene 3
Juliet came to me threatening suicide unless I
helped her avoid the arranged marriage to
Paris.
I came up with the sleeping potion that feigned
Juliets death.
I sent a letter to Romeo describing the plan, but
the letter was never delivered.
I went to the tomb alone on Wednesday night,
only to find Romeo and Paris dead.

Act V, scene 3
As Juliet awoke, I heard noises outside the burial
vault and entreated Juliet to flee with me but she
remained.
It appears she committed suicide after I left.
By the way, Nurse knew about the secret
marriage too.
I am to blame; take my life.

Act V, scene 3
Balthasar testifies:
I saw Juliet dead and brought word to
Romeo in Mantua.
Immediately we set out for Verona, but
when we reached the tomb Romeo told me
to scram.
I have a letter written by Romeo for his
father.

Act V, scene 3
Paris servant testifies:
Paris came to the tomb to put flowers on Juliets
grave.
He was interrupted by someone and attacked
him.
I ran to get help.

Act V, scene 3
Prince reads Romeos letter to his father.
The letter corroborates Friars testimony.
Prince chastises the warring families:
See what scourge is laid upon your hate, that
heaven finds means to kill your joys with love
(5.3.211-212).

Act V, scene 3
Capulet & Montague make amends.
Prince concludes:
Some shall be pardoned, and some
punished: For never was a story of more
woe than this of Juliet and her Romeo
(5.3.309-310).

The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet