In what ways does the nurse tease, tantalize and frustrate Juliet?
The Nurse is set up as a foil for Juliet in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. A foil is a character who provides a contrast to another character. The Nurse is older than Juliet and not as quick to reveal information as Juliet would like. She teases, tantalizes and frustrates Juliet in three different scenes.
In Act I, Scene 3, she teases Juliet about the girl's childhood. She recounts a bawdy story that her husband told involving Juliet falling on her face when she was a toddler and hoping to fall on her back when she was older. The Nurse says,
And then my husband (God be with his soul,
He was a merry man) took up the child.
“Yea,” quoth he, “Dost thou fall upon thy face?
Thou wilt fall backward when thou hast more wit,
Wilt thou not, Jule?” And, by my holidam,
The pretty wretch left crying and said “Ay.”
Now is the sun upon the highmost hill
Of this day’s journey, and from nine till twelve
Is thre long hours, yet she is not come.
Had she affections and warm youthful blood,
She would be as swift in motion as a ball;
My words would bandy her to my sweet love,
And his to me.
But old folks, many feign as they were dead,
Unwieldy, slow, heavy, and pale as lead.
I’ faith, I am sorry that thou art not well.
Sweet, sweet, sweet nurse, tell me, what says my
What devil art thou that dost torment me thus?
This torture should be roared in dismal hell.
Hath Romeo slain himself? Say thou but “Ay,”
And that bare vowel “I” shall poison more
Than the death-darting eye of cockatrice.