How does Romeo compare Juliet to the sun, moon, and stars?

Romeo compares Juliet to the sun by urging her to rise and up and "kill the envious moon." Juliet is more beautiful than the moon, which makes the moon "sick and pale with grief." And Juliet's eyes are so beautiful that they twinkle in the place of two of the brightest stars in the sky while they are absent.

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In act 2, scene 2, Romeo provides some of the most quoted lines in English literature, his words full of figurative language:

But soft, what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.
Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,
Who is already sick and pale with grief
That thou, her maid, art far more fair than she. (II.ii.1-6)

And a few lines later, he continues,

The brightness of her cheek would shame those stars
As daylight doth a lamp; her eye in heaven
Would through the airy region stream so bright
That birds would sing and think it were not night. (II.ii.19-22)

In these lines, Romeo establishes the competing symbolism of light and darkness, which is a powerful theme running through the play. The sun is often symbolic of life and power. It provides its own light, not relying on the reflections of other sources to illuminate the world. By contrast, the moon is only useful at night, a time of darkness. It has no power in itself but only reflects the light of the sun.

In these lines, Romeo notes that Juliet is more like the sun than the moon. She radiates her own beauty and represents life for Romeo. Thus, Romeo believes that the moon itself is envious of Juliet, because her own beauty is more powerful than the moon's.

Romeo goes on to compare her to the stars, noting that Juliet's eyes are more beautiful than the stars in the heavens. Romeo considers that if Juliet's eyes were placed in the sky, the beautiful light they would generate would outshine every other star in the sky, making the birds think that night was day. Juliet thus has the ability to transform darkness (often representing evil) into light (or goodness), and Romeo stands in awe of her glorious beauty.

Romeo uses the sun, moon, and stars to convey his sense of awe and wonder for the beautiful Juliet. The passions she awakens within him are warm, like the sun, and outshine other, more pale loves by comparison.

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In act 2, scene 2 of Romeo and Juliet, Romeo is so completely enamored of Juliet's remarkable beauty that he uses flowery language to describe it. Using elaborate metaphors drawn from the heavens, Romeo tries to put into words the extraordinary effect that Juliet's beauty has upon him.

First of all, he describes Juliet as the sun, which is of course the most powerful source of light. He urges this "fair sun" to rise and "kill the envious moon." The implication here is that the moon, "sick and pale with grief," is jealous of Juliet's remarkable beauty. And no wonder; the moon is being outshone by the light of that beauty, which in metaphorical terms has the power to transform night into day. That's certainly what Juliet has done for Romeo.

Romeo then goes on, in ever more elaborate language, to compare Juliet's eyes to the brightest stars in the heavens. It's as if those stars went away on business and asked Juliet's eyes to twinkle in their place until they returned.

If her eyes were in the sky and the stars were in her head, then the “brightness of her cheek” would outshine the stars, just as daylight would outshine a lamp. Juliet's eyes would be so bright, shining up there in the heavens, that birds would sing, thinking that it wasn't night.

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In Act Two, Scene 2, Juliet appears on the balcony and Romeo immediately compares her to the sun. Romeo commands Juliet to rise up like the beautiful, fair sun and kill the jealous moon. The sun brings life and is bright and radiant. In Romeo's mind, Juliet's presence reminds him of the sun and can make the night turn into day. Romeo then personifies the moon by calling it "sick and pale with grief." In Roman mythology, the goddess of virginity, Diana, was personified as the moon. Romeo is essentially saying that the goddess of virginity is jealous of Juliet's beauty and he encourages Juliet to lose her virginity to him. Romeo has also compared Rosaline to the moon earlier in the play, and Juliet now "outshines" her. Romeo then compares Juliet's eyes to the stars in heaven by saying,

"Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven, having some business, do entreat her eyes to twinkle in their spheres till they return" (2.2.16-19).

Romeo suggests that Juliet's eyes are so bright and luminous that they could take the place of stars in the sky. Shakespeare's use of light and dark imagery displays Romeo's love for Juliet. The fact that this scene takes place at night alludes to the reality that Romeo and Juliet's love is forbidden. By comparing Juliet to celestial bodies that only shine at night, Romeo demonstrates his admiration and love for Juliet in an unaccepting, dark world. 

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In Act 2, at the beginning of the balcony scene, Romeo overflows with the first raptures of love for Juliet. His initial thought as the sun rises and he sees her in the window is that she is the sun. He accuses the moon of being pale (sick) and green with envy at how much more beautiful the "sun" of Juliet is. He connects the moon with virginity, a classical way of understanding it, calling it the "vestal" [virginal] moon and saying it would be less of a fool if it would cast off the "livery" or clothing of the virgin. 

 Romeo, still in raptures, likens Juliet's eyes to the stars in the heavens. He says that her eyes are so beautiful that "two of the fairest stars" in heaven, off to do business, have asked her eyes to "twinkle" in their place until they return. Juliet's cheeks, says Romeo, are so bright they put those stars to shame. In fact, returning to her eyes again, Romeo says they shine so brightly they would light up the night sky like the sun, so "that birds would sing and think is was not night." Juliet is incredibly beautiful to Romeo, a sun in the sky, brighter than the stars and the moon.

This hyperbolic or over-the-top language represents how head-over-heels in love Romeo is with Juliet and foreshadows the great lengths he will go to in order to be with her.  

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