What are some personality traits of Lords Montague and Capulet in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet?
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We are shown far more about Lord Capulet than we are about Montague as Lord Montague only appears twice, once in the very first scene and again in the very last scene. However, we do learn a few things about his personality, especially when we compare the two.
Of the two, Capulet appears to be a bit more hotheaded and a bit more emotional in general. We can make this speculation due to a couple of facts. For one thing, Capulet is the first to join the servants in the brawl in the very first scene. He witnesses the servants fighting and is quick to assume that Montague is attacking. He demands his sword to join in the fight, saying that Old Montague is attacking, as we see in his lines, "My sword, I say! Old Montague is come / And flourishes his blade in spite of me" (I.i.73-74). By saying "in spite of me," he is saying despite me, meaning despite the fact that he, Capulet, is trying to maintain the peace. However, Capulet's claim that Montague is attacking is absurd as we see Montague enter the scene after Capulet, in the very next lines. Therefore, one thing we know of Capulet's personality is that he is very quick to become emotional and very quick to blame his actions on others. Montague, on the other hand, appears to be the much more sedate one, much more level-headed.
Another way in which we see Capulet being the far more emotional of the two is that, in the final scene, he is actually the first to respond to the Prince's chastisements and make amends. After Prince Escalus asserts that Romeo's and Juliet's deaths are God's punishment for the feud, saying, "All are punish'd," Lord Capulet is the first to ask Montague for his hand in reconciliation (V.iii.306). Montague then offers to build a statue of Juliet in pure gold to honor her while Capulet offers to do the same for Romeo. Since Capulet is the first to offer reconciliation, again, we see that Capulet is the more emotionally responsive of the two while Montague is much more sedate.
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