Romeo and Juliet: Act 1, Scene 4

Romeo, Benvolio and Mercutio, all wearing masks have gathered with a group wearing masks on their way to the Capulet feast. Still sad over his love for Rosaline, Romeo wonders how they will get into the feast as they are hated by the Capulets. Romeo tells the men how he is feeling and tells them that he has a ‘soul of lead.’

Romeo tells his friends that he had a dream about going to the feast and that he feels that it is a bad idea. (Use of foreshadowing and highlighting the importance of fate)

Romeo forces Mercutio to stop his incessant talking about Queen Mab and then repeats again that he feels that tonight’s actions will set in motion the hand of fate, resulting in untimely death. “my mind misgives some consequence hanging in the stars shall bitterly begin his his fearful date……by some vile forfeit of untimely death.” This can be described as a premonition that Romeo is having, a feeling that something bad is going to happen.

But he decides to put himself in the hands of “he who hath the steerage of my course, direct my sail.” Again, this shows the importance of fate in the play.

Questions:

  1. “I have a soul of lead,” what does Romeo mean when he says this?
  2. Benvolio and Romeo both mention Cupid in this scene, do some research on Cupid and write down three facts about him.
  3. Romeo once again describes what love is like. How does he describe it and what he is trying to say about it?
  4. Why did Romeo have a bad feeling about going to the party?
  5. Why do you think he went to the party anyway?
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