Key Quotes Love is a smoke raised with the fume of sighs; Being purged, a fire sparkling in lovers’ eyes; Being vexed a sea nourish’d with loving tears: What is it else? a madness most discreet, A choking gall, and a preserving sweet. (Act 1, Scene 1)
Explanation: Romeo uses elaborate language here to describe the effects of love. He compares it to the earth’s elements, like smoke, fire and sea. It is apparent that Romeo has a strong appreciation for love, as he uses descriptive language to convey his feelings. It could also be suggested that love leads to madness, as he describes a series of emotional experiences that come with falling in love. Romeo appears to have some knowledge and understanding of love, making him appear intelligent for his young age.
If I profane with my unworthiest hand This holy shrine, the gentle fine is this: My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss. (Act 1, Scene 5)
Explanation: Here Romeo is speaking to Juliet when they first meet. He uses religious symbolism to convey his love for her. He compares his lips to “blushing pilgrims” which suggests that he practically worships Juliet and how love is essentially a religious experience. He asks Juliet to kiss his lips to smooth that “rough touch” this contrasting language symbolizes Romeo’s harsh nature to Juliet’s softer nature.
But soft, what light through yonder window breaks? It is the east, and Juliet is the sun. Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon, Who is already sick and pale with grief That thou, her maid, art far more fair than she. (Act 2, Scene 2)
Explanation: Here Romeo compares Juliet to the sun. The fact that he compares her to the sun suggests her lofty position in his eyes. Romeo continuously elevates Juliet to convey his adoration of her, he uses a range of metaphors to explain this. The elaborate use of language empathizes his romantic and sensitive nature.
“Alive in triumph, and Mercutio slain! Away to heaven, respective lenity, And fire-eyed fury be my conduct now.— Now, Tybalt, take the ‘villain’ back again That late thou gavest me, for Mercutio’s soul Is but a little way above our heads.” (Act 3, Scene 1)
Explanation: Here Romeo, displays the importance of his masculinity. The death of his closest friend, Mercutio fills him with fury, and he seeks to revenge. This quote contrasts with Romeo’s usual romantic language and shows that he also possesses an aggressive and assertive side to his personality. The quote also conveys Romeo’s fiercely loyal nature to his nearest and dearest.