What are examples of familial love in Romeo and Juliet?  

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mercut1469 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There are three good examples of familial love in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. Lord Montague, the Nurse, and Lord Capulet all show their love to either Romeo or Juliet. In Act I, Scene 1, Lord Montague is very concerned about Romeo. Romeo is sad and depressed and his father can't figure out why. He tells Benvolio,

Could we but learn from whence his sorrows grow,
We would as willingly give cure as know.
Montague is a good father and he asks Benvolio to discover Romeo's problem. Romeo, of course, is the victim of unrequited love.
Lord Capulet also shows signs of being a good father. When Count Paris asks for Juliet's hand in marriage, Capulet displays his concern for his daughter by urging Paris to win her love. Juliet's happiness is important and he will not agree to marry her unless she is satisfied with the choice. He tells Paris in Act I, Scene 2,
But woo her, gentle Paris, get her heart;
My will to her consent is but a part.
And, she agreed, within her scope of choice
Lies my consent and fair according voice.
Later, Capulet changes his mind. Even then, though, he is thinking of his family when he tries to bring a "day of joy" with a wedding after the death of Tybalt, Juliet's cousin.
The Nurse, who must be considered a member of the Capulet family, is obviously very loving toward Juliet. In Act I, Scene 3, she talks of how she literally nursed the girl. She says,
Thou wast the prettiest babe that e’er I nursed.
Juliet too is quite fond of the Nurse, and the woman is her closest confidant until Act III, Scene 5 when the Nurse advises her to forget Romeo and marry Paris. Even here the Nurse is just doing what she thinks is right for the girl.
Read the study guide:
Romeo and Juliet

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