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Romeo and Juliet Act II Scene II

Mr Torpy

Question: Why does Romeo make several allusions to astronomy when complimenting Juliet’s beauty? (Use at least two small quotes - lines 4-5, 15-17, 19-22 to explain your answer):

Within Act II, Scene II of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, the titular Romeo makes several connections to astronomy when complimenting Juliet’s beauty. Through his declaration that “Juliet is the sun”, Romeo conveys that Juliet has brought a warmth and light to his life following his heartbreak from Rosaline. The implication of the sun being at the center of the universe also suggests that Juliet is now the most important factor in his life. Additionally, the comparison of Juliet’s eyes to “two of the fairest stars in all the heaven” evokes a sense of divinity within Juliet’s beauty. Rather than being seen as a mere person, Romeo’s passion has bestowed the Capulet with god-like qualities. However, this too reminds one of the play’s prologue in which the titular characters are deemed “star-cross’d” - which recalls the inevitable and impending doom that awaits the young couple. Despite this, the astronomy motif throughout Romeo’s dialogue allows Shakespeare to emphasise not only the individual’s intensely passionate love for Juliet, but truly the notion that his love is awe-inspiring and infinite.