Mercutio is, like Shakespeare himself, an irrepressible wordsmith with an imaginative flair. As they are walking to the Capulet's party, he tries to cheer up the mooning Romeo by evoking the story of the tiny Queen Mab and the dreams she brings to people. Of course, dreams and love are connected in a larger sense, as the beloved is always idealized, and Mercutio's speech about dreams as being more inconstant than the wind (which always changes direction), foreshadows the sudden change Romeo's love will take at the party:
True, I talk of dreams,
Which are the children of an idle brain,
Begot of nothing but vain fantasy,
Which is as thin of substance as the air
And more inconstant than the wind...
As a foil to Romeo, Mercutio takes a darker, more pragmatic view of love:
If love be rough with you, be rough with love.
Prick love for pricking, and you beat love down
He's also mercurial or emotional, as his name implies, and can't leave Juliet 's nurse be, pushing her into a rage by his joking wordplay...
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