Romeo and Juliet: Act Two

Act Two begins with a prologue. The act is the most joyful in the play, conveying the pure love between the two. When Romeo leaves the ball, he is determined to see Juliet once more. He parts with his friends and sneaks into the Capulet’s orchard. He overhears Mercutio jokingly mocking him over his love of Rosaline but remains silent, keen not be found. He suddenly sees Juliet appear alone on the balcony, and this scene can be considered one of the most famous in the play. Juliet is seen speaking to herself and makes a plea for their love, to which Romeo responds. She is embarrassed and startled to see Romeo in her orchard and worries that someone may see him, putting his life in danger. 

Romeo elaborately expresses his love for Juliet. She is slightly hesitant at first, cautious of how quickly their relationship has developed. She then asks Romeo to marry her the following day if his love is genuine. The nurse begins to call Juliet, and she retreats back to her quarters. Romeo sets off to arrange their marriage.

Romeo meets his friend Friar Lawrence to discuss his marriage to Juliet. The Friar is surprised by the fickleness of Romeo’s love, having moved on so swiftly from Rosaline. He agrees to marry the two in secret, in hopes that the ongoing feud between the two families will come to an end. He warns Romeo to love in moderation stating  “these violent delights have violent ends”. The two meet at Friar Lawrence’s cell and are married.