In Act IV, scene 1 of "Romeo and Juliet", how does Paris explain the hasty marriage to the Friar?

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sullymonster | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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Paris tells the Friar that Capulet wants the marriage to happen quickly because Juliet has been weeping constantly for the death of her cousin Tybalt.  Capulet believes that the marriage to Paris will help his daughter get over her grief.

The dramatic irony of this scene is that the audience knows that Juliet is not weeping for Tybalt, but that she is already married and weeping because her husband Romeo has been banished for Tybalt's death.  The audience also knows that the Friar is aware of all this, though Paris is ignorant of it.

Many critics believe that Capulet wasn't so concerned about his daughter's grief.  Instead, he was concerned about the Prince giving out punishment for the death of Mercutio, his cousin.  These critics believe that Capulet wanted the marriage to happen quickly because Paris is also the Prince's cousin, and then the Capulet's and the Prince would be connected... perhaps preventing punishment for the family.

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