What's the significance and literary device for this specific quote from Romeo and Juliet? How would I figure it out? I fear, too early: for my mind misgives Some consequence yet hanging in the...

What's the significance and literary device for this specific quote from Romeo and Juliet? How would I figure it out?

I fear, too early: for my mind misgives

Some consequence yet hanging in the stars

Shall bitterly begin his fearful date

With this night's revels and expire the term

Of a despised life closed in my breast

By some vile forfeit of untimely death.

But He, that hath the steerage of my course,

Direct my sail! On, lusty gentlemen.  (I,iv,106-113)

 

 

Expert Answers
mercut1469 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

On the way to Capulet's party in Act I, Scene 4, Romeo tells Mercutio that he has had a dream, but before he can speak about it, Mercutio launches into his monologue about Queen Mab. Only at the end of the scene, in an aside, does Romeo reveal his thoughts. An aside is a dramatic device where a character tells his thoughts only to the audience. Other characters are still on stage, but they do not hear what is said. It is usually only a brief comment, as opposed to a monologue or soliloquy which is longer.

In these lines Romeo foreshadows the events to come, especially his own death at a very young age. He recognizes that by going to Capulet's party fate may intervene to change his life. Fate is described as: "Some consequence yet hanging in the stars." He fears this "consequence" will end in his death. Nevertheless he goes on. Fate is personified in the following lines:

But he that hath the steerage of my course
Direct my sail. On, lusty gentlemen.
Romeo, of course, is right. He meets Juliet at the party propelling the plot toward the ultimate tragedy of the two young lovers.
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Romeo and Juliet

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