How does Shakespeare create an atmosphere of tension in Act 1 Scene 5

This scene explores many themes and emotions and encourages the audience to feel tension. This is also a significant scene in the play. There are several reasons for this being so, one of which is the first encounter of Romeo and Juliet and their realisation of their love towards each other. We also come to realise that Tybalt has hatred towards each and every one of the Montagues.Whilst reading or watching this play the audience must take into consideration what has happened previous to this scene and also how it will take impact on the rest of the play. An important moment that has taken place before this scene is that Romeo ha comes to realise that his love Rosaline has told him that she does not love him. This fact also sets emotion to the play as the audience will feel sorry for Romeo since he has lost his love. Previous to this scene the audience learn that Juliet has been made to marry Paris. By this stage before the scene Shakespeare has also introduced a feud between two families, the Capulets and the Montagues.Before the scene commences the audience already have a sense of foreboding. This is due to all the background information that has already been presented. This all relates to how Shakespeare creates an atmosphere of tension.Act 1 scene 5 begins peacefully and with excitement through a group of servants cleaning up after a meal the guest had. The excitement of the running and the bickering between the servants allows Shakespeare to emphasise the importance of the scene also adding the atmosphere of tension.This scene also starts with a jolly theme which is portrayed through Capulet the head of the Capulet house who is also the host of the masked ball. Capulet is in a welcoming mood and is also being nostalgic about his past and how” you and I are past our dancing days”. Capulet also adds some humour to the start of the scene by commenting on the ladies for not dancing and not having a good time, humorously encouraging them into dancing by teasing them. Capulet then jokes around and explains that Ah, Ha, my mistresses, which of you all” indicating that all his guests have corns on their feet. This small act within the scene creates a humorous atmosphere with clownish behaviour through the character of Capulet.There is also a small rushed piece of excitement when Capulet asks his servants to make space and fore some “more light”. This creates an image of the scene being bright and full of colour ad further on within this scene becomes dark and miserable.The Capulet ball is masked ball; this has great significance to the scene. The reason is that the guests that have arrived have a hidden identity and therefore can only be by what the person could be wearing. The person behind the mask is likely to be found by what the person could be wearing or by what the individual’s voice is. Taking into consideration what the history it would be normal if Tybalt said “This by voice should be a Montague. Fetch me my rapier”, after hearing the voice of Romeo speaking a few short lines which is a soliloquy. This short line adds an atmosphere of tension and makes the audience feel foreboding.The Capulet ball has an important role to play in the relationship between Romeo and Juliet. As their first sighting of each of other may have bean without there masked on meaning that their love begun at first sight. The masked ball also has the role of allowing their love arise as they may have done this in secretes behind the defence of their masks. This again adds tension to the scene, as the audience anticipate that a bad moment might come and might lead to death.The scene begins with some humour and some nervousness through the servants discussing their work and the Capulet head encouraging his company to have a good time and dance. Further on there is a dramatic change in the atmospheres as it goes from nervousness and humour to a romantic and more serious moment with in the scene. The serious moment is portrayed through Romeo describing Juliet with the use of a soliloquy. Romeo describes Juliet as a “rich jewel in an Ethiops ear”. Romeo language shows that he is completely captivated by the beauty of Juliet. At this point within this scene the images that should be captured with your head should illustrate bright colours and a peaceful “snowy doves”, which stand out from a group of black “trooping crows”, as they symbolise darkness.Whilst Romeo describes Juliet to be a “too rich to be used”, Tybalt rudely interrupts Romeo’s soliloquy. This has a major significance to the atmosphere to the scene. The interruption symbolises that their relationship will face many obstacles and the person that will always come between their loves will be Tybalt. This interruption also has an importance in the atmosphere of this scene; the atmosphere changes from being romantic to a heated scene. This anger that is portrayed through Tybalt’s language, using insulting terms like “slave” and villain”. This interruption will allow the audience to feel tension of murder and the conflict between the two families and what fate will this have for the two young lovers.This tension rises due to the presence of Capulet. This is accomplished by the description of Romeo that is given by Capulet “a well governed youth”, thus raising the image of Romeo in the audiences’ eyes. The presence of Capulet also lowers the image of Tybalt in the view of the audience; this is accomplished by Capulet by deliberately humiliating by explaining to Tybalt that his position is “goodman boy”. Tybalt humiliation is continued by the existence of Capulet. This humiliation that Tybalt is having to face is due to disturbance that Tybalt was trying to create among the guest due to the anger upon Romeo. Capulet expresses his anger upon Tybalt by using the term “go to”. Capulet also explains to Tybalt that if does create mutiny among his guest he will “make…the man”, meaning he will be a big boy then.After Tybalt’s rendezvous with Capulet the atmosphere is filled with rage. However it is soon filled with romance and religion. The first conversation between Romeo and Juliet is spoken through a sonnet. This language of love creates their innocent relationship. There are fourteen lines of holy and religious terminology. The picture that this sonnet creates shows an untainted connection between the two young lovers. This is achieved using pure sacred expressions like a “shrine”. the character of Romeo describes Juliet hand to be this shrine that he “profanes”, upon, using his lips to travel to the hands of Juliet as a pilgrim would, as he gives her his ” rough touch with a tender kiss”. She responds, as the “good pilgrim” shall not do “wrong … much”, the reason being that “pilgrims”, have the palms that are for the “saints” to touch, known as the holy palmers suitable greeting know as the kiss. The request was a kiss. And a kiss was given expressing their love is divine.Tybalts hatred and anger blends into this scene, Tybalts exit comes before this sonnet and his word are of the opposite nature. “Patience perforce”, he explains. But his “flesh trembles in different”. These feelings that fill Tybalt are of rage and frustration. Combining all these feeling that are shown through these characters blend as they are all mixed thus allowing the audience to feel the tension. The tension has that has bean created in this short space has occurred as the pure love that has just been created will be either disrupted or discovered.After the love and affection comes dismayed and distraught feelings thorough the characters of Romeo and Juliet, due to the realisations of their individual identity. The friction between the two families is well known amongst their offspring. The realisation of each others identity is what brings the depressed atmosphere. Romeo comes to the truth first by asking Juliet’s nurse” what is her mother”. She replies “her mother… lady of the house”. To Romeo comes the painful question “is she Capulet”. Not knowing she is the enemy, yet he still realise that if worst comes to happen he know his “life is… foes debt”.The nurse who is the bearer of the bad news is sent by young Juliet to find the identity of her new mysterious love, but he leaves before she can confront this man. The nurse knowing the identity opens up to her mistress, explaining that he is “The only son of your great enemy”. Juliet becomes horror-struck that her “only love sprung from her only hate”, she now knows her tender ears have learnt this monstrous news, yet her love is too strong. “To early seen… I love a loathed enemy”.Shakespeare has created this scene with many exciting moments that display a range of emotions. The scene begins with humour, laughter and this happy party atmosphere. Capulet is the main source to these joyful few moments by commenting on the women that shall not dance. The colourful atmosphere that has already bean created is then transformed into romance through Romeos initial sighting of the first real love of his life. This then leads to a sighting that brings darkness through the egotistic cousin Tybalt. Tybalt has introduced anger to the scene. He carries extreme rage toward the other family. Capulet intervenes and gives Tybalt his marching orders and settles the scene down where the romance shall spur again through a sonnet. Sadness is then evident as the realisation of identities creates heartbroken and dismayed feelings for both the young lovers. Through all these up and downs the audience can feel involved and feel the tension.This plays shocks the modern society as in this day and age we have yet to encounter two families that crave the others blood to this extreme. The situation of a young girl does not affect the audience that much as this age gap that they face is a normal occurrence but the age that they are facing is unusual as at they age that they are in they should enjoy themselves.

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