Please qualify the "love" that Romeo and Juliet have for each other in Romeo & Juliet.What about Romeo and Juliet, are they experiencing love or infatuation?

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Since Romeo and Juliet's "violent delights has a violent ends" in only three days, a conclusive judgment upon the quality of their love is difficult, if not impossible.  However, there is no question that theirs is an instant attraction, "a violent delight," and must, therefore, involve the physical senses.  As such their love must be erotic, and, thus, an infatuation.

However, there are indications that this infatuation could mature into true love since Romeo unselfishly puts himself in the way of Tybalt's sword and explosive temper as he seeks to allay the situation between the Capulet and his friend, Mercutio.  Romeo tells Tybalt that he loves the man; a statement that reflects no infatuation, of course, but an unselfish desire to ameliorate the feelings of antipathy between Tybalt and the Montagues in order to bring peace to the families of which he is part.

Later, that Romeo is willing to die rather than live without Juliet, and does not display this self-sacrifice for love even as he bemoans the loss of Rosalind seems to indicate that his love for Juliet goes beyond the physical level and mental level of mere delight of being in love with love, a characteristic of infatuation.  Hopelessly devoted to Juliet as his ideal and as his reason for living, Romeo possesses the qualities of true love.  The purity of their love is certainly exemplified in the sonnet that they share in which the metaphor of two religious pilgrims personifies their feelings.

Juliet, too, seems equally devoted.  As she mourns Tybalt, whom she has long loved as a family member, she feels equally troubled for Romeo.  In fact, life has little meaning for her without Romeo.  Yet, as with Romeo, Juliet's impetuosity leaves doubt in many readers as to the maturity of the lovers' feelings, as well as the depth of these emotions and ideas.

missy575 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In my opinion, Romeo and Juliet do have a love for each other. It is beyond infatuation. The link I have provided below share different types of love: eros, ludus, mania and more. It offers some suggestions for you to think through and it offers comments of others and their perspectives. The reason I think it is more than infatuation is because they are both willing to sacrifice familial ties and their very own lives.

If you are writing a paper, I would choose a type of love for each of them and link their actions throughout the story to the defining characteristics of those love types.

Good luck, and I hope this site helps you. The taxonomy of love in Romeo and Juliet might be worth googling as well.

kirkmurray | Student

Love is cant defined and messured. its a feeling from hearts. The Valentine’s Days to come. I am very happy to wait that day.Please wait for that day.....!1

stegny | Student

Love is the thing which exists after infatuation has faded.

Infatuation is fleeting, love is more permanent.


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Romeo and Juliet

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