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ACT II, SCENE II

LINES 1-49

Romeo's hiding in an orchard but he's heard Mercutio's sarcastic remarks. "He jests at scars that never felt a wound!" Romeo complains.

But then Romeo realizes where he is, and the whole scene turns around. By coincidence he's in the Capulets' orchard, and Juliet-who's also too excited to sleep-has come to her window.

Romeo can't believe his good luck. Still hidden in the orchard, he gazes up at the girl the same way he would gaze at the heavens. He turns his wonder and joy into poetry. Juliet again represents light to him-she is the sun, and her eyes are brighter than two stars. But although his love poetry about Juliet is much more creative and mature than his verses about Rosaline, Romeo still keeps his distance. Instead of speaking to her, he muses,

See how she leans her cheek upon her hand! O, that I were a glove upon that hand That I might touch that cheek. (II, ii, 23-25) Then, to Romeo's delight, Juliet begins to speak. This is the second time that someone who's been talking to him or herself has been overheard. And, for the second time, it changes the course of the play.



The lovestruck Juliet is talking to herself about Romeo. But instead of comparing him to stars and gods (as Romeo compared her) she gets down to the practical matter of wondering why he has to be a Montague. "Tis but thy name that's my enemy," she says. What do names matter anyway? "That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." She ends by proclaiming

Romeo, doff thy name; And for that name, which is no part of thee Take all myself. (II, ii, 47-49)

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