The Role of Authority in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

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The Role of Authority in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet This play was written by William Shakespeare in the late 16th century. It was intended to be performed to a live audience in the Elizabethan period. It was not proposed for a modern day audience. It the period it was written views such as religion, life, authority and much more so their views are much different to ours. There are three main types of authority. The state was one of those key figures. Prince Escalus of Verona was the head of state. This means he had the power to make new laws, arrest people, imprison them, execute and banish people. He was probably in charge of an army or a police force. At this point of time …show more content…

Someone like the nurse uses simple language more like the language we use today, for example ‘An honour, were not so I thine only nurse, I would say thou hadst suck’d wisdom from thy teat’ The language used here by the nurse is very simple and has a lot of sarcasm in it. The sarcasm comes from the word ‘teat’ because this phrase would indicate that the wisdom in Juliet comes from her. The audience would find this amusing; the nurse is one of Shakespeare’s comedy characters. The sarcasm in this text in Shakespeare’s time noble people didn’t use sarcasm; this shows the nurses background of being from quite a poor background. Another main authority was the church. In Verona the church is represented by Friar Lawrence. He is a calm character and very reasonable his language indicates this. He has authority because he is part of the church, he is seen as a member of god and you must obey his wishes to go to heaven. He uses his authority by advising people what to do, although his authority leads to the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet’s deaths. But one of the reasons of using that authority to give that advice of marriage was that he thought that Romeo and Juliet would break the sin of fornication. So he was partly forced into that decision. When giving the advice for Romeo and Juliet to marry he was calm and collected. For example ‘For by your

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