How we cite the quotes:
Citations follow this format: (Act.Scene.Line). Line numbers correspond to the 2008 Norton edition of the play.
| Quote #13
Ah, Juliet, if the measure of thy joy
Be heap'd like mine and that thy skill be more
To blazon it, then sweeten with thy breath
This neighbour air, and let rich music's tongue
Unfold the imagined happiness that both
Receive in either by this dear encounter.
Conceit, more rich in matter than in words,
Brags of his substance, not of ornament:
They are but beggars that can count their worth;
But my true love is grown to such excess
I cannot sum up sum of half my wealth.
Romeo asks Juliet to use language to express the love that they feel for each other, but Juliet tells him that's the wrong approach. The love they share has grown so great that they can no longer express it. (A similar idea occurs in King Lear, when Cordelia refuses to quantify her love for her father and says that language is not capable of expressing her devotion.)
| Quote #14
How oft when men are at the point of death
Have they been merry! which their keepers call
A lightning before death: O, how may I
Call this a lightning? O my love! my wife!
Death, that hath suck'd the honey of thy breath,
Hath had no power yet upon thy beauty:
Thou art not conquer'd; beauty's ensign yet
Is crimson in thy lips and in thy cheeks,
And death's pale flag is not advanced there.
Tybalt, liest thou there in thy bloody sheet?
O, what more favour can I do to thee,
Than with that hand that cut thy youth in twain
To sunder his that was thine enemy?
Forgive me, cousin! Ah, dear Juliet,
Why art thou yet so fair? shall I believe
That unsubstantial death is amorous,
And that the lean abhorred monster keeps
Thee here in dark to be his paramour?
For fear of that, I still will stay with thee;
And never from this palace of dim night
Depart again: here, here will I remain
With worms that are thy chamber-maids; O, here
Will I set up my everlasting rest,
And shake the yoke of inauspicious stars
From this world-wearied flesh. Eyes, look your last!
Arms, take your last embrace! and, lips, O you
The doors of breath, seal with a righteous kiss
A dateless bargain to engrossing death!
Come, bitter conduct, come, unsavoury guide!
Thou desperate pilot, now at once run on
The dashing rocks thy sea-sick weary bark!
Here's to my love!
O true apothecary!
Thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die.
Death becomes an act of love for Romeo, because he thinks that suicide will enable him to be with Juliet (he thinks she's dead). Check out "Symbols" for more on this.
| Quote #15
My only love sprung from my only hate!
Too early seen unknown, and known too late!
Prodigious birth of love it is to me,
That I must love a loathed enemy.
Apparently, Juliet never even considers the obvious conclusion: don't date your family's archnemesis. That makes "love" sound a lot like "fate"—something you couldn't escape even if you wanted to.