On a street in Verona, Capulet takes a walk with Paris, a noble kinsman of Prince Escalus. They discuss the fact that Paris wishes to marry Capulet’s daughter, Juliet. Capulet tells him that he is delighted but tells Paris that he must wait, as Juliet has not celebrated his fourteenth birthday yet. He tells him to wait two years. He also invites him to the evening’s masquerade feast, where he tells him that he can win Juliet’s heart.
Capulet sends his servant Peter with a list of people to invite to the feast but as he walks away, Peter reveals to the audience that he cannot read.
Romeo and Benvolio walk by and Peter asks them to read the list of people to him. Romeo notices that Rosaline’s name is on the list and when Peter invites the two of them, providing that they are not Montagues, both agree to go. Romeo, because he wants to see Rosaline and Benvolio because he believes that seeing beautiful women will help him forget about Rosaline.
Fate plays a big part in this scene as Romeo and Benvolio would not have been going to the party except for the fact that Peter can’t read and that they walked past at that exact moment.
- Write down three important things that happen in this scene.
- What is your view of Paris’ proposal to marry Juliet? How is this different from today’s world?
- What is Paris’ reaction to Capulet’s suggestion that he needs to wait before they can marry? Do this surprise you?
- Why does Peter stop with Benvolio and Romeo?
- How does the writer use dramatic irony in this scene?
- How does fate play an important role in this scene?
- Why does Benvolio want Romeo to go to the party?
- Why does Romeo agree to go to the party?
- What is your impression of Romeo from what you have read so far?