To what three heavenly bodies does Romeo compare Juliet at the beginning of Act II, Scene ii in Romeo and Juliet?

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Noelle Thompson | High School Teacher | eNotes Employee

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At the beginning of Act II, Romeo moves from the celestial to the spiritual when he compares Juliet to the sun, the stars, and finally an angel.  First, in one of the most famous lines in the play, Romeo uses metaphor to compare Juliet to the sun:  "But soft!  What light through yonder window breaks? / It is the East, and Juliet is the sun!"  Secondly, it isn't long before Romeo decides to compare Juliet's eyes to celestial orbs as well.  "Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven / Having some business, do entreat her eyes / To twinkle in their spheres till they return."  Ah, yes, Juliet has stars in her eyes.  (Is this where the colloquialism came from?)  Finally, Romeo approaches the spiritual realm by comparing Juliet to an angel, not once but twice.  "O, speak again, bright angel! for thou art / As glorious to this night, being o'er my head, / As is a winged messenger of heaven."  Here Shakespeare reminds us subconsciously of the holy love introduced even Romeo's and Juliet's first conversation where Romeo, the humble pilgrim, approaches Juliet, the holy shrine.

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