Rhythm in act 2, scene 2


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Rhythm in act 2, scene 2

  1. 1. Working out the rhythm of Shakespeare’s lines.This is how you work out the rhythm of the lines in Shakespeare and theEFFECT of the rhythm. 1. In pairs, read these passages out aloud. 2. Work out what the lines mean using the 5Ws: who is speaking? What are they saying? What is the situation at that moment? 3. Re-read the lines and work out where the soft and heavy stresses come in the line, and write a – above a soft stress and a X above a heavy stress. 4. Try and work out what the effect of the beats in the lines are; is there a rising beat? Or a falling beat? Is there a regular pattern of beats or an irregular rhythm? Think about the effect of the rhythm and the words that the rhythm makes you think more about. All literary techniques are there to DRAW ATTENTION to key ideas, thoughts, feelings. 5. There are two main types of rhythm, RISING and FALLING. RISING rhythms are created by iambs (di-DUM) and anapests (di-di-DUM) and often indicate a positive attitude or mood, an optimistic outlook, a sense of hope, FALLING rhythms are created by trochees (DUM-di) and anapests (DUM-di-di) and often create a sense of things being irregular, things being uncertain, possibly worried and anxious. 6. Work out what important words or images that the rhythm draws attention to. Discuss why the rhythm draws attention to these words. 7. Mostly Shakespeare wrote in iambic pentameter (di-DUM FIVE times, ie FIVE rising beats and ten syllables) but he does vary his rhythm quite a lot to create interest in certain words, or to create certain moods. You have to work out what the rhythm makes you FEEL and THINK…In a nutshell: read the lines, work out the rhythm, and discuss the EFFECT ofthe rhythm like I’ve done in answer for MODEL 1.ROMEOShe SPEAKS,( NOTICE THE PAUSE IN THE LINE HERE) YET she SAYSnothing. WHAT of THAT?Her eye discourses. I will answer it.—I am too bold. Tis not to me she speaks. 1
  2. 2. MODEL answer for line 1:―Notice how this first line has a very irregular pattern. Romeo starts the linewith an iamb, she SPEAKS; he begins with a sense of hope, but the next partof the line has a pause in it, created by the comma, followed by a trochee –YET she – which creates a falling, anxious mood, which underlined by thedactyl that follows ―SAYS nothing‖. His question that follows ―what of that?‖ isirregular in rhythm too. Overall, the line is very irregular – it is hardly iambic atall; the line mirrors his uncertain, anxious mood. He is looking up at Juliet andseeing her speaking to herself, but can’t work out who or what she is talkingabout. The line is full of dramatic pauses and uncertainly. The rhythm of theline reveals his worry about whether she is really thinking about him.‖b) ROMEOSee how she leans her cheek upon her hand.Oh, that I were a glove upon that handThat I might touch that cheek!c) JULIETO Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?Deny thy father and refuse thy name.d) JULIETWhat man art thou that, thus bescreened in night,So stumblest on my counsel?e) JULIETHow camest thou hither, tell me, and wherefore?The orchard walls are high and hard to climb,And the place death, considering who thou art, 2
  3. 3. If any of my kinsmen find thee here.f) ROMEOWith love’s light wings did I oerperch these walls,For stony limits cannot hold love out,And what love can do, that dares love attempt.Therefore thy kinsmen are no stop to me.g) JULIETDost thou love me? I know thou wilt say ―ay,‖And I will take thy word. Yet if thou swear’stThou mayst prove false. At lovers perjuries,They say, Jove laughs. O gentle Romeo,If thou dost love, pronounce it faithfully.h) ROMEOLady, by yonder blessèd moon I vow,That tips with silver all these fruit-tree tops— i) ROMEOWhat shall I swear by?JULIET Do not swear at all. 3
  4. 4. Or, if thou wilt, swear by thy gracious self,Which is the god of my idolatry,And I’ll believe thee.j) ROMEOO, wilt thou leave me so unsatisfied?JULIETWhat satisfaction canst thou have tonight?ROMEOTh exchange of thy love’s faithful vow for mine.k) JULIETMy bounty is as boundless as the sea,My love as deep. The more I give to thee,The more I have, for both are infinite.l) JULIETIf that thy bent of love be honorable,Thy purpose marriage, send me word tomorrowBy one that I’ll procure to come to theeWhere and what time thou wilt perform the rite,And all my fortunes at thy foot I’ll layAnd follow thee my lord throughout the world. 4