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striding over a poetic statement that spans more then one line.
Enjambment is the continuation of a sentence or clause over a line-break

Good heart, at what?
At thy good heart's oppression.
(I.i 178-179)


a verse form consisting of 14 lines with a fixed rhyme scheme
A lyrical poem of fourteen lines, almost always written in iambic pentameter and usually following strict patterns of stanza division and rhyme

Chorus section of Act I of Romeo and Juliet

Iambic Pentemeter (Blank Verse)

10 syllables; stressed and unstressed; used to make one person sound better than another


Two lines of verse, usually in the same meter and joined by rhyme, forming a unit.

The which if you with patient ears attend,
What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to mend.
Act I, scene I, lines 13-14


The repetition of the same stressed vowel sounds and any succeeding sounds in two or more words

Then she hath sworn she will still live chaste?
She hath, and in that sparing makes huge waste;
(I.i 12-13)


A joke exploiting the different possible meanings of a word or the fact that there are words that sound alike but have different meanings.
A play on words

SAMPSON 'Tis all one, I will show myself a tyrant: when I have fought with the men, I will be cruel with the maids, and cut off their heads.
GREGORY The heads of the maids?
SAMPSON Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads; take it in what sense thou wilt.
Act I, scene i, lines

Foil Character

A foil is a character who serves as a contrast to another perhaps more primary character, so as to point out specific traits of the primary character

Benvolio: peace maker; calm
Tybalt: fighter; bad tempered


A brief, usually indirect reference to a person, place, or event--real or fictional
Allusions can help the reader understand the values of the writer or time period, as authors usually only make allusions to items or ideas that most of the viewers/ readers will recognize.

Well, in that hit you miss: she'll not be hit
With Cupid's arrow; she hath Dian's wit;
Act I, scene i, lines


A figure of speech in which apparently contradictory terms appear in conjunction

O heavy lightness! serious vanity! Mis-shapen chaos of well-seeming forms! Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health! Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is! This love feel I, that feel no love in this.
Act I, scene i, lines


The attribution of a human characteristics to something nonhuman

Did my heart love till now?
Act I, scene v, lines


The repetition of the same sounds or of the same kinds of sounds at the beginning of words or in stressed syllables

Sally sells seashells by the sea shore.


Exaggerated statements or claims not meant to be taken literally

What, drawn, and talk of peace! I hate the word,
As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee:
Act I, scene i


the central idea or ideas explored by a literary work

One of the most overt themes in "Romeo and Juliet" is that of love.


A distinctive feature or dominant image in an artistic or literary composition

Shakespeare frequently calls upon references to stars, the sun, and the moon. Therefore, heavenly bodies is a motif in "Romeo and Juliet."

Comic Relief

a relief from the emotional tension especially of a drama that is provided by the inclusion of a comic episode or element

In the scene where Juliet's "dead" body is found, the musicians have an argument and nearly get into a fight.

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