Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Romeo and Juliet (Modern)
  • Editor: Roger Apfelbaum
  • ISBN: 1-55058-299-2

    Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Roger Apfelbaum
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Romeo and Juliet (Modern)

    [The Nurse goes to the bed.]
    Nurse Mistress, what, mistress! Juliet! -- Fast, I warrant her, she. --
    Why lamb, why lady. Fie, you slugabed!
    Why, love, I say, Madam, sweet heart, why, bride!
    What, not a word? -- You take your pennyworths now.
    2580Sleep for a week, for the next night, I warrant,
    The County Paris hath set up his rest
    That you shall rest but little. -- God forgive me,
    Marry, and amen. How sound is she asleep!
    I needs must wake her. -- Madam, madam, madam!
    2585Ay, let the County take you in your bed;
    He'll fright you up i'faith. -- Will it not be? [She draws back the curtains.]
    What, dressed, and in your clothes, and down again?
    I must needs wake you. Lady, lady, lady!
    Alas, alas! Help, help! My lady's dead. --
    2590Oh, weraday that ever I was born!
    Some aqua-vitae, ho! -- My Lord! my lady!
    [Enter Capulet's wife.]
    Capulet's Wife
    What noise is here?
    O lamentable day.
    Capulet's Wife
    What is the matter?
    Look, look! O heavy day!
    Capulet's Wife O me, O me, my child, my only life!
    Revive, look up, or I will die with thee.
    Help, help! Call help!
    Enter Father [Capulet]
    2600Capulet For shame, bring Juliet forth. Her Lord is come.
    Nurse She's dead, deceased. She's dead, alack the day!
    Capulet's Wife Alack the day, she's dead, she's dead, she's dead.
    Capulet Ha, let me see her. Out, alas she's cold.
    Her blood is settled, and her joints are stiff.
    2605Life and these lips have long been separated.
    Death lies on her like an untimely frost
    Upon the sweetest flower of all the field.
    O lamentable day!
    Capulet's Wife
    O woeful time!
    2610Capulet Death, that hath ta'en her hece to make me wail,
    Ties up my tongue and will not let me speak.
    Enter Friar Laurence and the County Paris [with musicians].
    Friar Laurence Come, is the bride ready to go to church?
    Capulet Ready to go, but never to return.
    2605O son, the night before thy wedding day
    Hath death lain with thy wife. There she lies,
    Flower as she was, deflowerèd by him.
    Death is my son-in-law, death is my heir.
    My daughter he hath wedded. I will die
    2620And leave him all; life living, all is death's.
    Paris Have I thought love to see this morning's face,
    And doth it give me such a sight as this?
    Capulet's Wife Accursed, unhappy, wretched hateful day!
    Most miserable hour that e'er time saw
    2625In lasting labor of his pilgrimage!
    But one, poor one, one poor and loving child,
    But one thing to rejoice and solace in,
    And cruel death hath catched it from my sight!
    Nurse O woe, O woeful, woeful, woeful day!
    2630Most lamentable day, most woeful day
    That ever, ever I did yet behold!
    O day, O day, O day, O hateful day,
    Never was seen so black a day as this!
    O woeful day, O woeful day!
    2635Paris Beguiled, divorcèd, wrongèd, spited, slain!
    Most detestable death, by thee beguiled,
    By cruel, cruel, thee quite overthrown!
    O love, O life, not life, but love in death!
    Capulet Despised, distressèd, hated, martyred, killed!
    2640Uncomfortable time, why cam'st thou now
    To murder, murder our solemnity?
    O child, O child, my soul and not my child!
    Dead art thou, alack, my child is dead,
    And with my child my joys are burièd.
    2645Friar Laurence Peace, ho for shame! Confusion's cure lives not
    In these confusions. Heaven and yourself
    Had part in this fair maid; now heaven hath all,
    And all the better is it for the maid.
    Your part in her you could not keep from death,
    2650But heaven keeps his part in eternal life.
    The most you sought was her promotion,
    For 'twas your heaven she should be advanced;
    And weep ye now, seeing she is advanced
    Above the clouds, as high as heaven itself?
    2655Oh, in this love you love your child so ill
    That you run mad, seeing that she is well.
    She's not well married that lives married long,
    But she's best married that dies married young.
    Dry up your tears, and stick your rosemary
    2660On this fair corse, and, as the custom is,
    And in her best array, bear her to Church;
    For though some nature bids us all lament,
    Yet nature's tears are reasons merriment.
    Capulet All things that we ordainèd festival
    2665Turn from their office to black funeral:
    Our instruments to melancholy bells,
    Our wedding cheer to a sad burial feast,
    Our solemn hymns to sullen dirges change,
    Our bridal flowers serve for a buried corse,
    2670And all things change them to the contrary.
    Friar Laurence Sir, go you in, and madam, go with him,
    And go, Sir Paris. Everyone prepare
    To follow this faire corse unto her grave.
    The heavens do lour upon you for some ill;
    2675Move them no more by crossing their high will.
    Exeunt. Manet [Nurse with Musicians].
    1 Musician Faith, we may put up our pipes and be gone.
    Nurse Honest good fellows, ah, put up, put up,
    For well you know, this is a pitiful case.
    Exit [Nurse]
    1 Musician Ay, by my troth, the case may be amended.
    Enter [Peter].
    Peter Musicians, O musicians, "Hearts ease," "Hearts ease." Oh, an you will have me live, play "Hearts ease."
    1 Musician Why "Hearts ease"?
    2685Peter O musicians, because my heart itself plays "My heart is full." 2686.1Oh, play me some merry dump to comfort me.
    1 Musician Not a dump, we. 'Tis no time to play now.
    Peter You will not then?
    1 Musician No.
    2690Peter I will then give it you soundly.
    1 Musician What will you give us?
    Peter No money, on my faith, but the gleek. I will give you the minstrel.
    1 Musician Then will I give you the serving-creature.
    2695Peter Then will I lay the serving-creature's dagger on your pate. I will carry no crotchets; I'll re you, I'll fa you. Do you note me?
    1 Musician And you re us and fa us, you note us.
    2 Musician Pray you, put up your dagger 2700and put out your wit.
    Peter Then have at you with my wit. I will dry-beat you with an iron wit, and put up my iron dagger. Answer me like men.
    2705"When griping grief the hart doth wound,
    2705.1And doleful dumps the mind oppress,
    2705Then music with her silver sound --"
    Why "silver sound"? Why "music with her silver sound"? What say you, Simon Catling?
    1 Musician Marry, sir, because silver hath a sweet sound.
    2710Peter Prates. What say you, Hugh Rebeck?
    2 Musician I say "silver sound" because musicians sound for silver.
    Peter Prates too. What say you, James Soundpost?
    3 Musician Faith, I know not what to say.
    Peter Oh, I cry you mercy, you are the singer. 2715I will say for you. It is "music with her silver sound" because musicians have no gold for sounding:
    "Then music with her silver sound
    With speedy help doth lend redress."
    1 Musician What a pestilent knave is this same!
    27202 Musician Hang him, Jack. Come, we'll in here, tarry for the mourners, and stay dinner.