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Shakespeare at Winedale

Romeo and Juliet Synopsis

Romeo and Juliet
Set in the city of Verona, Romeo and Juliet tells the tragic tale of two young lovers divided by fate and an ongoing family feud. Romeo, a Montague, learns of a party held by the Capulet family, long-standing and bitter rivals to the Montagues. He and his friends wear masks to crash the party, but they are still recognized by Tybalt, a hotheaded Capulet. During the festivities, Romeo meets—and immediately falls desperately in love with—the only daughter of the Capulet family, Juliet.

To avoid his rowdy friends as they leave the party, Romeo climbs over the Capulets’ garden wall and overhears Juliet lamenting that she has fallen in love with a Montague. Once Romeo reveals himself, the two profess their loves for each other, and make plans to meet and be married the next day by Friar Laurence. The Friar agrees to perform the act because he thinks it will settle the feud between the two families, and with the help of Juliet’s friend and ally, the Nurse, the two lovers meet at Friar Laurence’s cell and are married.

Hours after his wedding ceremony, Romeo is challenged by Tybalt to a duel, but when he refuses, his friend Mercutio steps in to fight. As Romeo tries to part them, Tybalt mortally wounds Mercutio. In revenge, Romeo kills Tybalt, and is banished from Verona as a result. Despite this, Romeo spends the night before his banishment with Juliet. After he leaves, Juliet’s parents inform her that she will be marrying a local nobleman, Count Paris, and her protestations fall on deaf ears. For help, she turns once more to Friar Laurence, who gives her a potion to help her fake her death.

The Friar tries to send a letter to the banished Romeo to tell him all is well, and that he can soon elope with Juliet, but the news of her death travels faster, and Romeo returns to Verona thinking she is dead indeed. Once inside the tomb he drinks a poison, dying just before Friar Laurence arrives and Juliet wakes. Seeing Romeo dead, and hearing the commotion of townsfolk coming to investigate, Juliet stabs herself. The Friar is left to try and explain the tragedy and his part in it, and the warring families, grief-stricken, make peace at last.