Translate the meaning of the phrase "There stays a husband to make you a wife."

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D. Reynolds eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Juliet has been waiting breathlessly for her nurse, who is acting as a go-between, to tell her whether it is possible to marry Romeo. The nurse comes in and, after stalling, asks Juliet if she has permission to go to confession ("shrift") that day. Juliet says yes, and the nurse gives her the following directions:

Then hie you hence to Friar Lawrence’s cell.
There stays a husband to make you a wife.
In other words, she is to hurry to Friar's Lawrence's instead of going to confession.
"There stays a husband to make you a wife" means that Romeo will be waiting there to marry Juliet.
There's a sexual overtone, or double entendre, to the sentence, for Juliet blushes deeply. As the nurse puts it, "Now comes the wanton blood up in your cheeks." The "wanton blood" or blush comes because Juliet knows that for Romeo to truly make her a wife, they will have to consummate the marriage. The nurse alludes to the sexual aspect of the marriage a second time when she says she has put out a rope to Juliet's bedroom for Romeo to climb and notes, "you shall bear the burden soon at night."
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johncraig1978 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The Nurse speaks these words to Juliet, after her meeting with Romeo. She is referring to the Church of Saint Peter, where Romeo will meet Juliet the next day to marry her.

The phrase itself means literally: "Romeo will be waiting for you there [in the church] to marry you", thus confirming that the feelings he has for Juliet are not passing fancy, and the love he bears for her is real.

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mickey2bailey eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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In Act II, Scene 5, the Nurse, upon returning from her meeting with Romeo, tells Juliet that she is to go to shrift to Friar Laurence's cell and there Romeo will be waiting to make her his wife and Friar Laurence will perform the ceremony.

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blacksheepunite eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The entire line should read:

Then hie you hence to Friar Lawrence's cell/ There stays a husband to make you a wife.

It means go to Friar Lawrence's. A husband (Romeo) is waiting to marry you there.

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meowmix eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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This is when the Nurse tells Juliet that Romeo will be waiting for her in Friar Laurence's cell. The direct translation would be "There is a husband that is going to make you his wife".

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