How does Juliet mature and become more independent throughout the play Romeo and Juliet? Please give specific examples.

Expert Answers info

mwestwood eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2006

write16,149 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Rather than maturing throughout the play, Juliet becomes more impetuous as her relationship with Romeo deepens.  That her acts of defying the Nurse and her father demonstrate Juliet's maturation are rather questionable.  Rather, Juliet acts defensively since she knows that she cannot obey them because she is already married.  Her defiance is simply desperation.   

Ironically, at the play's beginning Juliet displays a certain caution which she abandons later on.  For instance, when her mother suggests that she consider Paris as a husband, Juliet makes no commitment; she agrees only to look:

I'll look to like, if looking liking move;
But no more deep will I endart mine eye

Than your consent gives strength to make it fly (1.3)

Then, in the last scene of Act V, when Romeo first approaches her and tries to  touch  her, she is reserved and tells him "you do wrong your hand too much." Again in the balcony scene of Act II Juliet is cautious as she tells Romeo who has made a vow to her "by yonder blessed moon."

O, swear not by the moon, th'inconstant moon,

That monthly changes in her circled orb,

Lest that thy love prove likewise variable. (2.2)

Yet, later on in the play, Juliet hurriedly elopes with her beloved, "her loathed enemy" of scene 5 of Act I.  When she learns that Romeo is banished, Juliet rushes to Friar Laurence and recklessly threatens to kill herself.  And, of course, she impulsively goes along with the scheme of Friar Laurence.  Again with great impetuosity, Juliet kills herself after finding Romeo dead.  So, her later acts certainly do not reflect her previous caution, nor...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 560 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

litteacher8 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2008

write15,968 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

lizbv eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2005

write158 answers

starTop subjects are Literature and History

check Approved by eNotes Editorial