William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet tells the tale of two "star-crossed lovers", divided by family but united by love.
William Shakespeare's plays, sonnets and poems at AbsoluteShakespeare.com
Home Plays Sonnets Poems Quotes Summaries Essays Glossary Links Help

HOME > Plays > Romeo and Juliet > Act II. Scene V.

Romeo and Juliet

Study Guides
Hamlet
Julius Caesar
King Henry IV
King Lear
Macbeth
Merchant of Venice
Othello
Romeo and Juliet
The Tempest
Twelfth Night

Trivia
Authorship
Bard Facts
Bibliography
Biography
FAQ
Films
Globe Theatre
Pictures
Quiz
Timeline

Act II. Scene V.

Scene V.—The Same. CAPULET'S Garden.

Enter JULIET.

Jul. The clock struck nine when I did send
the nurse;
In half an hour she promis'd to return.
Perchance she cannot meet him: that's not so.
O! she is lame: love's heralds should be
thoughts,
Which ten times faster glide than the sun's
beams,
Driving back shadows over lowering hills:
Therefore do nimble-pinion'd doves draw Love,
And therefore bath the wind-swift Cupid wings.
Now is the sun upon the highmost hill
Of this day's journey, and from nine till
twelve
Is three long hours, yet she is not come.
Had she affections, and warm youthful blood,
She'd be as swift in motion as a ball;
My words would bandy her to my sweet love,
And his to me:
But old folks, many feign as they were dead;
Unwieldy, slow, heavy and pale as lead.

Enter Nurse and PETER.
O God! she comes. O honey nurse! what
news?
Hast thou met with him? Send thy man away.
Nurse. Peter, stay at the gate. [Exit PETER.
Jul. Now, good sweet nurse; O Lord! why
look'st thou sad?
Though news be sad, yet tell them merrily;
If good, thou sham'st the music of sweet news
By playing it to me with so sour a face.
Nurse. I am aweary, give me leave awhile:
Fie, how my bones ache! What a jaunce have
I had!
Jul. I would thou hadst my bones, and I thy
news.
Nay, come, I pray thee, speak; good, good nurse,
speak.
Nurse. Jesu! what haste? can you not stay
awhile?
Do you not see that I am out of breath?
Jul. How art thou out of breath when thou
hast breath
To say to me that thou art out of breath?
The excuse that thou dost make in this delay
Is longer than the tale thou dost excuse.
Is thy news good, or bad? answer to that;
Say either, and I'll stay the circumstance:
Let me be satisfied, is't good or bad?
Nurse. Well, you have made a simple choice;
you know not how to choose a man: Romeo!
no, not he; though his face be better than any
man's, yet his leg excels all men's; and for a
hand, and a foot, and a body, though they be
not to be talked on, yet they are past compare.
He is not the flower of courtesy, but, I'll warrant
him, as gentle as a lamb. Go thy ways, wench;
serve God. What! have you dined at home?
Jul. No, no: but all this did I know before.
What says he of our marriage? what of that?
Nurse. Lord! how my head aches; what a
head have I!
It beats as it would fall in twenty pieces.
My back o' t'other side; O! my back, my
back!
Beshrew your heart for sending me about,
To catch my death with jauncing up and down.
Jul. I' faith, I am sorry that thou art not
well.
Sweet, sweet, sweet nurse, tell me, what says my
love?
Nurse. Your love says, like an honest gentle-
man, and a courteous, and a kind, and a hand-
some, and, I warrant, a virtuous,—Where is
your mother?
Jul. Where is my mother! why, she is
within;
Where should she be? How oddly thou re-
pliest:
'Your love says, like an honest gentleman,
Where is your mother?'
Nurse. O! God's lady dear,
Are you so hot? Marry, come up, I trow;
Is this the poultice for my aching bones?
Henceforward do your messages yourself.
Jul. Here's such a coil! come, what says
Romeo?
Nurse. Have you got leave to go to shrift
to-day?
Jul. I have.
Nurse. Then hie you hence to Friar Lau-
rence' cell,
There stays a husband to make you a wife:
Now comes the wanton blood up in your cheeks,
They'll be in scarlet straight at any news.
Hie you to church; I must another way,
To fetch a ladder, by the which your love
Must climb a bird's nest soon when it is dark;
I am the drudge and toil in your delight,
But you shall bear the burden soon at night.
Go; I'll to dinner: hie you to the cell.
Jul. Hie to high fortune! Honest nurse,
farewell. [Exeunt.
< PREVIOUS
Copyright 2000-2005 AbsoluteShakespeare.com. All rights reserved.  Contact Us  Privacy  Awards