What literary techniques does Shakespeare apply to show lust's affect on Romeo when he loves Rosaline? What devices are used when Romeo believes that the friar is not up-to-date with his love for...

What literary techniques does Shakespeare apply to show lust's affect on Romeo when he loves Rosaline? What devices are used when Romeo believes that the friar is not up-to-date with his love for Juliet? 

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Hollis Sanders eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Ever the lovesick exaggerator, Romeo weaves melodramatic metaphor after metaphor to lament his unrequited love for Rosaline. Romeo's friends, particularly Mercutio, seem to loosely tolerate his over-the-top self-pitying for being unable to have the woman he loves most. He even makes the absurd claim that Rosaline is the most attractive woman in the world with a metaphor about burning out his own eyes when Benvolio tells him that there will be so many beautiful women at the party that Rosaline will look shoddy by comparison:

When the devout religion of mine eye

Maintains such falsehood, then turn tears to fire.

In regard to the scene with Friar Lawrence, Romeo uses the phrase "ghostly father" as a double entendre when Lawrence still believes that Romeo is enraptured with Rosaline. On the one hand, he is simply referring to Lawrence as the spiritual leader that his is. On the other, he is comparing him to a "ghost" in regard to being old, lost in the past, and out-of-touch with current events.

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tinicraw eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Romeo describes his experience of wanting Rosaline, but not being able to have her, with metaphors and similes to get his point across to Mercutio. Romeo is depressed and sad. He uses a metaphor and a pun (play on words) to emphasize how he feels. First, he compares Mercutio to a pair of "dancing shoes/ with nimble soles;" but then says that he, himself is the opposite of that by saying, "I have a soul of lead/ So stakes me to the ground I cannot move" (I.iv.14-16). The pun is played on the words "sole" and "soul." Later, with Friar Lawrence, Romeo applies iambic pentameter to is answer in couplets by saying, "With Rosaline, my ghostly father? No!/ I have forgot that name, and that neame's woe" (II.iii.46-47). He also calls the friar a "ghostly father" referring to him as a spiritual leader in Romeo's life, but also uses it in a way of mocking as if the friar were out of the loop of life just as much as he is out of the loop with Romeo's life.

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