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Juliet about everything else


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CAPULET: the change of fourteen years
[Act 1, scene 2] Unlike in the original story from which Shakespeare takes most of his plot, his Juliet is notably and deliberately made younger: both to enhance her vulenrability and innocence, and to heighten the tragedy of her untimely death. Here, Shakespeare makes clear from the start that Juliet isn't quite 14 years old (the nurse confirms this later) but also implies that she's not yet gone through virginity ("the change") so should still be considered a child, rather than an available woman.
JULIET: It is an honour that I dream not of.
[Act 1, scene 3] Shakespeare establishes Juliet's disposition - before meeting Romeo - to the duty she has to be married for the benefit of her house. She is characterised as shrewdly aware of her social expectations but not looking forward to the "honour". This contrast allows for Shakespeare to sigificantly change both Romeo and Juliet: Romeo learning what true love is; Juliet learning that marriage can be more than duty.
JULIET: I wonder at this haste; that I must wed / Ere he, that should be husband, comes to woo.
[Act 3, scene 5] Juliet seems overtly critical of her father's marriage plans here where, perhaps, her mother is acted as slightly critical. The character's "wonder" (thinking, amazed, and shocked) creates a sense that Juliet recognises she is being traded to consolidate the family's failing power.
JULIET: Not proud, you have; but thankful, that you have: / Proud can I never be of what I hate; / But thankful even for hate, that is meant love.
[Act 3, scene 5] Shakespeare characterises Juliet here as carefully negotiating the difficult situation she has been placed in by her father arranging her marriage to Paris. The actor playing Juliet must be at once shocked and possibly outraged that her previous freedoms have been removed, and respectful to her father. Hence Shakespeare strucurally contrasts those loaded nouns "thankful" and "proud".
JULIET: Go, counsellor; / Thou and my bosom henceforth shall be twain. / I'll to the friar, to know his remedy: / If all else fail, myself have power to die.
[Act 3, scene 5] Once alone on stage, we witness Juliet's true reaction to the Nurse's suggestion that she marries Paris. Juliet turns away from the Nurse here, planning to resolve her situation secretly with the Friar's help or - if she cannot - through suicide.
JULIET: I long to die, / If what thou speak'st speak not of remedy.
[Act 4, scene 1] Pre-empting and foreshadowing Juliet's deadly potential - realised in Act 5 - we see Shakespeare have the character claim she will kill herself if the Friar cannot solve her problem. The Friar's sleeping potion seems convoluted and far-fetched unless we recognise that Juliet is likely to harm herself in the near future. In that context, the Friar rendering her unconscious until he can contact Romeo seems a logical, if short-term, "remedy".
JULIET: gentle nurse, / I pray thee, leave me to my self to-night, / For I have need of many orisons
[Act 4, scene 3] Following the nurses advice that Juliet should marry Paris and hide her marriage to Romeo, Shakespeare had Juliet renounce the nurse and swear that "Thou and my bosom henceforth shall be twain" (Act 3, scene 5). Here we see an example of just that, where Shakespeare has Juliet dismiss the nurse and act truely alone. Juliet claims to have need to pray ("orisons") and calls the nurse "gentle" - so there's tenderness there but also secrecy.
JULIET: Farewell! God knows when we shall meet again. / I have a faint cold fear thrills through my veins, / That almost freezes up the heat of life
[Act 4, scene 3] The phrase "God knows" here is polysemous: both the fear of the unknown and the surety that heaven will decide Juliet's fate. As an audience, we know from the Prologue that Juliet will kill herself - will this be the moment? Shakespeare foreshadows possible impending death through the verb phrases "almost freezes up" and the noun phrase "a faint cold fear", creating tension as we wait and see. The pronoun "I" here is the first of many instances in this speech where Shakespeare emphasises Juliet's isolation and vulnerability.
JULIET: My dismal scene I needs must act alone. / Come, vial.
[Act 4, scene 3] Having dismissed the nurse and her mother, Shakespeare has Juliet aware of her isolation and her need to make the fatal decision to drink the Friar's potion. Like Romeo choosing whether to fight Tybalt, we see our other tragic protagonist forced into a near-impossible decision, and commit an act of hamartia (fatal error) that will result in her death.