Romeo and Juliet: Act 3, Scene 2




           Enter JULIET alone.

      JULIET
1. gallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds:
2. Phoebus' lodging: i.e., below the western horizon.  wagoner: charioteer. 3. Phaëthon: the son of Helios who lost control of the chariot of the sun.
5. close: concealing.
6-7. That  . . .  unseen:
  1   Gallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds,
  2   Towards Phoebus' lodging: such a wagoner
  3   As Phaëthon would whip you to the west,
  4   And bring in cloudy night immediately.
  5   Spread thy close curtain, love-performing night,
  6   That runaways' eyes may wink and Romeo
  7   Leap to these arms, untalk'd of and unseen.
8-9. Lovers  . . .  beauties: Lovers can make love by the light of their own beauty.
10. civil: grave.
  8   Lovers can see to do their amorous rites
  9   By their own beauties; or, if love be blind,
 10   It best agrees with night. Come, civil night,
 11   Thou sober-suited matron, all in black,
12. learn me: teach me.  12-13. lose a winning match ... maidenhoods: Both Juliet and Romeo will lose their virginity (their "maidenhoods") and win consummation of their love. 14. Hood my unmann'd blood, bating in my cheeks: 15-16. till strange love grow bold, / Think true love acted simple modesty: until shy love grows bold, and comes to think of love-making as innocent chastity.
 12   And learn me how to lose a winning match,
 13   Play'd for a pair of stainless maidenhoods.
 14   Hood my unmann'd blood, bating in my cheeks,
 15   With thy black mantle, till strange love grow bold,
 16   Think true love acted simple modesty.
 17   Come, night, come, Romeo, come, thou day in night;
 18   For thou wilt lie upon the wings of night
 19   Whiter than new snow on a raven's back.
 20   Come, gentle night, come, loving, black-brow'd night,
 21   Give me my Romeo; and, when I shall die,
 22   Take him and cut him out in little stars,
 23   And he will make the face of heaven so fine
 24   That all the world will be in love with night
 25   And pay no worship to the garish sun.
26-28. O, I have bought the mansion of a love, / But not possess'd it, and, though I am sold / Not yet enjoy'd: In this metaphor Juliet buys the mansion of love, and then becomes the "sold" mansion.
 26   O, I have bought the mansion of a love,
 27   But not possess'd it, and, though I am sold,
 28   Not yet enjoy'd: so tedious is this day
 29   As is the night before some festival
 30   To an impatient child that hath new robes
 31   And may not wear them. O, here comes my nurse,
 32   And she brings news; and every tongue that speaks
 33   But Romeo's name speaks heavenly eloquence.

           Enter NURSE, [wringing her hands],
cords: a rope ladder.
          with cords.

 34   Now, nurse, what news? What hast thou there? the cords
 35   That Romeo bid thee fetch?

      Nurse
 35                                                Ay, ay, the cords.

           [Throws them down.]

      JULIET
 36   Ay me! what news? why dost thou wring thy hands?

      Nurse
37. weraday: alas.
 37   Ah, weraday! He's dead, he's dead, he's dead!
 38   We are undone, lady, we are undone!
 39   Alack the day! he's gone, he's kill'd, he's dead!

      JULIET
40. envious: malicious.
 40   Can heaven be so envious?

      Nurse
 40                                           Romeo can,
 41   Though heaven cannot. O Romeo, Romeo!
 42   Who ever would have thought it? Romeo!

      JULIET
 43   What devil art thou, that dost torment me thus?
 44   This torture should be roar'd in dismal hell.
 45   Hath Romeo slain himself? Say thou but "ay,"
 46   And that bare vowel "I" shall poison more
47. cockatrice: lengendary creature which killed with a look.
49. Or those eyes shut: or if those eyes [Romeo's] are shut in death.

51. Brief sounds determine of my weal or woe: short sounds will decide my happiness or woe.
53. God  . . .  mark: A common expression used to avert an ill omen. 54. corse: corpse.
 47   Than the death-darting eye of cockatrice:
 48   I am not I, if there be such an "ay";
 49   Or those eyes shut, that make thee answer "ay."
 50   If he be slain, say "ay"; or if not, "no":
 51   Brief sounds determine of my weal or woe.

      Nurse
 52   I saw the wound, I saw it with mine eyes,—
 53   God save the mark!—here on his manly breast:
 54   A piteous corse, a bloody piteous corse;
 55   Pale, pale as ashes, all bedaub'd in blood,
56. gore-blood: clotted blood.  swounded: swooned.
 56   All in gore-blood; I swounded at the sight.

      JULIET
 57   O, break, my heart! Poor bankrupt, break at once!
 58   To prison, eyes, ne'er look on liberty!
59. Vile earth: i.e., her body. resign: surrender, return.
60. thou: i.e., her body.
 59   Vile earth, to earth resign; end motion here;
 60   And thou and Romeo press one heavy bier!

      Nurse
 61   O Tybalt, Tybalt, the best friend I had!
 62   O courteous Tybalt! honest gentleman!
 63   That ever I should live to see thee dead!

      JULIET
64. blows so contrary: blows in such different directions.
 64   What storm is this that blows so contrary?
 65   Is Romeo slaughter'd, and is Tybalt dead?
 66   My dearest cousin, and my dearer lord?
67. trumpet: the "last trump," signalling doomsday, the Day of Judgment.
 67   Then, dreadful trumpet, sound the general doom!
 68   For who is living, if those two are gone?

      Nurse
 69   Tybalt is gone, and Romeo banished;
 70   Romeo that kill'd him, he is banished.

      JULIET
 71   O God! did Romeo's hand shed Tybalt's blood?

      Nurse
 72   It did, it did; alas the day, it did!

      JULIET
73. flowering face: beautiful face.
74. keep: dwell in.
 73   O serpent heart, hid with a flowering face!
 74   Did ever dragon keep so fair a cave?
 75   Beautiful tyrant! fiend angelical!
 76   Dove-feather'd raven! wolvish-ravening lamb!
77. Despised  . . .  show: despicable reality with most divine appearance. 78. Just  . . .  seem'st: exactly opposite of what you truly seem to be by your appearance.
80. what  . . .  hell: what would you be doing in hell?
81. bower: lodge.
 77   Despised substance of divinest show!
 78   Just opposite to what thou justly seem'st,
 79   A damned saint, an honorable villain!
 80   O nature, what hadst thou to do in hell,
 81   When thou didst bower the spirit of a fiend
 82   In mortal paradise of such sweet flesh?
 83   Was ever book containing such vile matter
 84   So fairly bound? O that deceit should dwell
 85   In such a gorgeous palace!

      Nurse
 85                                                 There's no trust,
 86   No faith, no honesty in men; all perjured,
87. naught: worthless, wicked.
88. man: servant.  aqua-vitae: alcoholic spirits.
 87   All forsworn, all naught, all dissemblers.
 88   Ah, where's my man? Give me some aqua vitae;
 89   These griefs, these woes, these sorrows make me old.
 90   Shame come to Romeo!

      JULIET
 90                                         Blister'd be thy tongue
 91   For such a wish! he was not born to shame:
 92   Upon his brow shame is ashamed to sit;
 93   For 'tis a throne where honor may be crown'd
 94   Sole monarch of the universal earth.
 95   O, what a beast was I to chide at him!

      Nurse
 96   Will you speak well of him that kill'd your cousin?

      JULIET
 97   Shall I speak ill of him that is my husband?
 98   Ah, poor my lord, what tongue shall smooth thy name,
 99   When I, thy three-hours wife, have mangled it?
100   But, wherefore, villain, didst thou kill my cousin?
101   That villain cousin would have kill'd my husband.
102   Back, foolish tears, back to your native spring;
103. Your tributary drops belong to woe, / Which you, mistaking, offer up to joy: your tear-drops of tribute should be dedicated to woe, [but] those tear-drops, confusing joy and woe, are [actually] offered up to joy. In other words, Juliet's tears of sorrow for the death of Tybalt are really tears of joy for the life of Romeo.
109. fain: very willingly.
103   Your tributary drops belong to woe,
104   Which you, mistaking, offer up to joy.
105   My husband lives, that Tybalt would have slain;
106   And Tybalt's dead, that would have slain my husband:
107   All this is comfort; wherefore weep I then?
108   Some word there was, worser than Tybalt's death,
109   That murder'd me: I would forget it fain;
110   But, O, it presses to my memory,
111   Like damned guilty deeds to sinners' minds:
112   "Tybalt is dead, and Romeo—banished."
113   That "banished," that one word "banished,"
114   Hath slain ten thousand Tybalts. Tybalt's death
115   Was woe enough, if it had ended there;
116. delights in fellowship: i.e., "loves company."
117. needly: necessarily.  rank'd with: included with, counted as equal with.
116   Or, if sour woe delights in fellowship
117   And needly will be rank'd with other griefs,
118   Why follow'd not, when she said "Tybalt's dead,"
119   Thy father, or thy mother, nay, or both,
120. Which  . . .  moved: which might have provoked ordinary lamentations.
121-122. But  . . .  banished"?:
120   Which modern lamentations might have moved,
121   But with a rearward following Tybalt's death,
122   "Romeo is banished"? To speak that word,
123   Is father, mother, Tybalt, Romeo, Juliet,
124   All slain, all dead. "Romeo is banished!"
125   There is no end, no limit, measure, bound,
126. sound: (1) express; (2) fathom.




128. corse: corpse.
126   In that word's death; no words can that woe sound.
127   Where is my father, and my mother, nurse?

      Nurse
128   Weeping and wailing over Tybalt's corse.
129   Will you go to them? I will bring you thither.

      JULIET
130   Wash they his wounds with tears: mine shall be spent,
131   When theirs are dry, for Romeo's banishment.
132. beguiled: tricked, cheated.
132   Take up those cords: poor ropes, you are beguiled,
133   Both you and I; for Romeo is exiled:
134   He made you for a highway to my bed;
135   But I, a maid, die maiden-widowed.
136   Come, cords, come, nurse; I'll to my wedding-bed;
137   And death, not Romeo, take my maidenhead!

      Nurse
138   Hie to your chamber: I'll find Romeo
139. wot: know.
139   To comfort you: I wot well where he is.
140   Hark ye, your Romeo will be here at night.
141   I'll to him; he is hid at Laurence' cell.

      JULIET
142   O, find him! give this ring to my true knight,
143   And bid him come to take his last farewell.

           Exeunt.