In Act I of Romeo and Juliet, how are Benvolio and Tybalt characterized?

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mwestwood eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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A cousin and friend of Romeo's, Benvolio is usually the voice of reason for the more emotional Romeo. In Act I, he judiciously tells the street brawlers, 

Part, fools!
Put up your swords; you know not what you do. (1.1.54-55)

After Lord Montague rushes out to the street, Benvolio offers him a calm, rational, and blameless explanation of the situation, telling him that the Capulet servants were fighting with theirs when the fiery Tybalt Capulet entered and wielded his sword against him. Benvolio adds that they were only exchanging "thrusts and blows...Till the Prince came" and parted them. Then, when Romeo's father asks about his...

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ajmchugh eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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khayre10 | Student

Benvolio is the peacekeeper while Tybalt is the tyrant (haha, is sound the same).  They are together to show each other's characteristics.  Benvolio seem even more innocent next to Tybalt as Tybalt seem more violent next to Benvolio.  Also, Romeo's secret behavior is due to his love to Rosaline.  At least, only durring the time his father/Benvolio mention it.

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