William Shakespeare : The Effect Of Literary Devices

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The Effect of Literary Devices William Shakespeare lived and wrote over 400 years ago, but his wonderful plays continue to entertain and influence the audiences of the Twenty-First Century. Despite the outdated content and language of his works, Shakespeare’s plays remain popular with modern readers and play watchers for another reason. In all of his works, including William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, he uses countless literary devices and techniques to affect the mood of the audience and enhance their enjoyment. He utilizes puns and juxtaposition to create a comical or light hearted mood. He also uses dramatic irony and oxymorons for a dramatic or serious mood. Although Shakespeare’s work does not include modern language or modern situations, the literary devices that he uses work to keep an audience of any time feeling involved and absorbed in his plays. Shakespeare uses examples of puns and juxtaposition to create a lighthearted and comical atmosphere throughout several scenes of Romeo and Juliet. When two Capulet servants see several Montagues walking towards them on the street, they try to act tough and intimidate the servants by saying, “Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maiden- / heads. Take it in what sense thou wilt” (1.1.li 26-27). The sexual pun exclaimed by one of the servants, Sampson, creates comedy for the audience’s benefit and provides a lighthearted beginning to the play. Sampson and Gregory play with the syntax of “maidenheads” to make

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