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Please explain Friar Lawrence's quote, "Jesu Maria, what a deal of brine/Hath wash'd...

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ronnesnotes | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 19, 2012 at 7:28 PM via web

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Please explain Friar Lawrence's quote, "Jesu Maria, what a deal of brine/Hath wash'd thy sallow cheeks for Rosaline."

 

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William Delaney | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted March 19, 2012 at 8:39 PM (Answer #1)

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Friar Lawrence is only commenting that Romeo has been shedding many salty tears over Rosaline and now suddenly has forgotten her and fallen in love with Juliet. Brine is salty, like tears. Sallow is a sickly yellow color, signifying in this context that Romeo's complexion looks pale and sickly because he hasn't been able to eat due to pining over Rosaline, and also that his cheeks have lost their natural healthy color because they have been washed by so many briny tears for Rosaline.

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