In Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, what are four literary devices used in Act III, Scene 1?

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Tamara K. H. | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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Since formatting limits the length of answers, I had to shorten your question to refer to only one Act. Also, scenes 2 through 5 of Act III have already been analyzed for literary devices in previous questions, therefore I focused on Act III, Scene 1.

Two similes can be found in this scene:
1) Mercutio tells Benvolio: "Thou art as hot a Jack in thy mood as any in Italy." This is a simile comparing Benvolio's temper to the fiery temper characteristic of Italians. The name Jack is being used similar to how we would use John Doe to represent any average person. Hence Mercutio is saying Benvolio's temper is as aggressive as anyone's in Italy.

2) Mercutio: "Thy head is full of quarrels as an egg is full of meat." Mercutio is comparing Benvolio's head to that of an egg, saying that his head is as densely packed with arguments as an egg is densely packed with protein.

Assonance, the repetition of vowel sounds can be found in Mercutio's line: "What eye but such an eye would spy out such a quarrel." This line repeats the long vowel sound "i."

A pun, or play on words can be found in Tybalt's and Mercutio's exchange. Tybalt says: "Mercutio, thou consort'st with Romeo,--"
Mercutio responds: "Consort! what, dost though make us minstrels?"
Tybalt is using consort to refer to companionship or association, while Mercutio translates it by its musical definition, referring to a group of instrumentalists or singers performing together.

Alliteration can be seen in the phrase: "fire-eyed fury." The "f" consonants are repeated at the beginning two words near each other.

Sources:

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