What does Romeo mean when he says, "Oh, dear account! My life is my foe's debt"?

Expert Answers info

pohnpei397 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write35,413 answers

starTop subjects are History, Literature, and Social Sciences

Romeo says this in Act I, Scene 5.  What he is referring to is the fact that he has just found out that Juliet is a Capulet.  It is too late for him -- he is already totally in love with her.  So that is why he says this.

What he means is that his life now belongs to his foe.  This is because he is so in love with Juliet that she is his whole life.  And since she "belongs" to Lord Capulet, Lord Capulet (who is the enemy of Romeo's family) holds Romeo's life in his hands.

The "dear account" part means it's a big price (dear means expensive here) to pay.  The Nurse has just told him that whoever marries Juliet gets a lot of money, Romeo says he would be paying a high price for it.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial