Romeo and Juliet - Act 1, scene 2
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Last updated: Fri, Jul 31, 2015
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Act 1, scene 2
In conversation with Capulet, Count Paris declares his wish to marry Juliet. Capulet invites him to a party that night.
Capulet gives a servant the guest list for the party and orders him off to issue invitations. The servant cannot read the list and asks for help from Romeo and Benvolio. When they find out that Rosaline, on whom Romeo dotes, is invited to the party, they decide to go too.Enter Capulet, County Paris, and ⌜a Servingman.⌝
0262 But Montague is bound as well as I,
0263 In penalty alike, and ’tis not hard, I think,
0264 For men so old as we to keep the peace.
0265 Of honorable reckoning are you both,
0266 5 And pity ’tis you lived at odds so long.
0267 But now, my lord, what say you to my suit?
0268 But saying o’er what I have said before.
0269 My child is yet a stranger in the world.
0270 She hath not seen the change of fourteen years.
0271 10 Let two more summers wither in their pride
0272 Ere we may think her ripe to be a bride.
0273 Younger than she are happy mothers made.
0274 And too soon marred are those so early made.
0275 Earth hath swallowed all my hopes but she;
0276 15 She’s the hopeful lady of my earth.
0277 But woo her, gentle Paris, get her heart;
0278 My will to her consent is but a part.
0279 And, she agreed, within her scope of choice
0280 Lies my consent and fair according voice.
0281 20 This night I hold an old accustomed feast,
0282 Whereto I have invited many a guest
0283 Such as I love; and you among the store,
0284 One more, most welcome, makes my number more.
0285 At my poor house look to behold this night
0286 25 Earth-treading stars that make dark heaven light.
0287 Such comfort as do lusty young men feel
0288 When well-appareled April on the heel
0289 Of limping winter treads, even such delight
0291 30 Inherit at my house. Hear all, all see,
0292 And like her most whose merit most shall be;
0293 Which, on more view of many, mine, being one,
0294 May stand in number, though in reck’ning none.
0295 Come go with me.⌜To Servingman, giving him a list.⌝
0296 35 Go, sirrah, trudge about
0297 Through fair Verona, find those persons out
0298 Whose names are written there, and to them say
0299 My house and welcome on their pleasure stay.
⌜Capulet and Paris⌝ exit.
SERVINGMAN 0300 Find them out whose names are written
0301 40 here! It is written that the shoemaker should
0302 meddle with his yard and the tailor with his last, the
0303 fisher with his pencil and the painter with his nets.
0304 But I am sent to find those persons whose names
0305 are here writ, and can never find what names the
0306 45 writing person hath here writ. I must to the learned.
0307 In good time!
Enter Benvolio and Romeo.
BENVOLIO, ⌜to Romeo⌝
0308 Tut, man, one fire burns out another’s burning;
0309 One pain is lessened by another’s anguish.
0310 Turn giddy, and be helped by backward turning.
0311 50 One desperate grief cures with another’s languish.
0312 Take thou some new infection to thy eye,
0313 And the rank poison of the old will die.
0314 Your plantain leaf is excellent for that.
0315 For what, I pray thee?
ROMEO 0316 55 For your broken shin.
BENVOLIO 0317 Why Romeo, art thou mad?
0318 Not mad, but bound more than a madman is,
0320 Whipped and tormented, and—good e’en, good
0321 60 fellow.
SERVINGMAN 0322 God gi’ good e’en. I pray, sir, can you
0324 Ay, mine own fortune in my misery.
SERVINGMAN 0325 Perhaps you have learned it without
0326 65 book. But I pray, can you read anything you see?
0327 Ay, if I know the letters and the language.
SERVINGMAN 0328 You say honestly. Rest you merry.
ROMEO 0329 Stay, fellow. I can read.(He reads the letter.)
0330 Signior Martino and his wife and daughters,
0331 70 County Anselme and his beauteous sisters,
0332 The lady widow of Vitruvio,
0333 Signior Placentio and his lovely nieces,
0334 Mercutio and his brother Valentine,
0335 Mine Uncle Capulet, his wife and daughters,
0336 75 My fair niece Rosaline and Livia,
0337 Signior Valentio and his cousin Tybalt,
0338 Lucio and the lively Helena.
0339 A fair assembly. Whither should they come?
SERVINGMAN 0340 Up.
ROMEO 0341 80Whither? To supper?
SERVINGMAN 0342 To our house.
ROMEO 0343 Whose house?
SERVINGMAN 0344 My master’s.
0345 Indeed I should have asked thee that before.
SERVINGMAN 0346 85Now I’ll tell you without asking. My
0347 master is the great rich Capulet, and, if you be not
0348 of the house of Montagues, I pray come and crush a
0349 cup of wine. Rest you merry.⌜He exits.⌝
0350 At this same ancient feast of Capulet’s
0352 With all the admirèd beauties of Verona.
0353 Go thither, and with unattainted eye
0354 Compare her face with some that I shall show,
0355 And I will make thee think thy swan a crow.
0356 95 When the devout religion of mine eye
0357 Maintains such falsehood, then turn tears to fire;
0358 And these who, often drowned, could never die,
0359 Transparent heretics, be burnt for liars.
0360 One fairer than my love? The all-seeing sun
0361 100 Ne’er saw her match since first the world begun.
0362 Tut, you saw her fair, none else being by,
0363 Herself poised with herself in either eye;
0364 But in that crystal scales let there be weighed
0365 Your lady’s love against some other maid
0366 105 That I will show you shining at this feast,
0367 And she shall scant show well that now seems best.
0368 I’ll go along, no such sight to be shown,
0369 But to rejoice in splendor of mine own.