Act 1, Scene 1

  1. Enter SAMPSON and GREGORY, of the house of Capulet, armed with swords and bucklers

  2. Sampson:

    Gregory, o' my word, we'll not carry coals.

  3. Gregory:

    No, for then we should be colliers.

  4. Sampson:

    I mean, an we be in choler, we'll draw.

  5. Gregory:

    Ay, while you live, draw your neck out o' the collar.

  6. Sampson:

    I strike quickly, being moved.

  7. Gregory:

    But thou art not quickly moved to strike.

  8. Sampson:

    A dog of the house of Montague moves me.

  9. Gregory:

    To move is to stir; and to be valiant is to stand: therefore, if thou art moved, thou runn'st away.

  10. Sampson:

    A dog of that house shall move me to stand: I will take the wall of any man or maid of Montague's.

  11. Gregory:

    That shows thee a weak slave; for the weakest goes to the wall.

  12. Sampson:

    True; and therefore women, being the weaker vessels, are ever thrust to the wall: therefore I will push Montague's men from the wall, and thrust his maids to the wall.

  13. Gregory:

    The quarrel is between our masters and us their men.

  14. Sampson:

    'Tis all one, I will show myself a tyrant: when I have fought with the men, I will be cruel with the maids, and cut off their heads.

  15. Gregory:

    The heads of the maids?

  16. Sampson:

    Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads; take it in what sense thou wilt.

  17. Greogry:

    They must take it in sense that feel it.

  18. Sampson:

    Me they shall feel while I am able to stand: and 'tis known I am a pretty piece of flesh.

  19. Gregory:

    'Tis well thou art not fish; if thou hadst, thou hadst been poor John. Draw thy tool! Here comes two of the house of the Montagues.

  20. Sampson:

    My naked weapon is out: quarrel, I will back thee.

  21. Gregory:

    How! turn thy back and run?

  22. Sampson:

    Fear me not.

  23. Gregory:

    No, marry; I fear thee!

  24. Sampson:

    Let us take the law of our sides; let them begin.

  25. Gregory:

    I will frown as I pass by, and let them take it as they list.

  26. Sampson:

    Nay, as they dare. I will bite my thumb at them, which is a disgrace to them, if they bear it.


  27. Abraham:

    Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?

  28. Sampson:

    I do bite my thumb, sir.

  29. Abraham:

    Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?

  30. Sampson:

    [Aside to GREGORY] Is the law of our side, if I say ay?

  31. Gregory:


  32. Sampson:

    No, sir, I do not bite my thumb at you, sir: but I bite my thumb sir.

  33. Gregory:

    Do you quarrel, sir?

  34. Abraham:

    Quarrel sir? No, sir.

  35. Sampson:

    If you do, sir, I am for you, I serve as good a man as you.

  36. Abraham:

    No better?

  37. Sampson:

    Well, sir.

  38. Gregory:

    Say 'better:' here comes one of my master's kinsmen.

  39. Sampson:

    Yes, better, sir.

  40. Abraham:

    You lie.

  41. Sampson:

    Enter Tybalt

    Draw, if you be men. Gregory, remember thy swashing blow.

    They fight

    Enter BENVOLIO

  42. Benvolio:

    Part fools, put up your swords, you know not what you do.

    Beats down their swords

  43. Tybalt:

    What art thou drawn, among these heartless hinds?
    Turn thee Benvolio, look upon thy death.

  44. Benvolio:

    I do but keep the peace, put up thy sword,
    Or manage it to part these men with me.

  45. Tybalt:

    What drawn, and talk of peace! I hate the word 
    As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee:
    Have at thee, coward.

    They fight

    Enter, several of both houses, who join the fray; then enter Citizens, with clubs

  46. First Citizen:

    Clubs, bills, and partisans! strike! beat them down!
    Down with the Capulets! down with the Montagues!


  47. Lord Capulet:

    What noise is this? Give me my long sword, ho!

  48. Lady Capulet:

    A crutch, a crutch: why call you for a sword?


  49. Lord Capulet:

    My sword, I say: Old Montague is come,
    And flourishes his blade in spite of me.

  50. Lord Montague:

    Thou villain Capulet. Hold me not, let me go.

  51. Lady Montague:

    Thou shalt not stir a foot to seek a foe.

    Enter PRINCE

  52. Prince:

    Rebellious subjects, enemies to peace,
    Profaners of this neighbour-stained steel,--
    Will they not hear? What, ho! you men, you beasts,
    That quench the fire of your pernicious rage
    With purple fountains issuing from your veins,
    On pain of torture, from those bloody hands
    Throw your mistemper'd weapons to the ground,
    And hear the sentence of your moved prince.
    Three civil brawls, bred of an airy word,
    By thee old Capulet, and Montague,
    Have thrice disturb'd the quiet of our streets,
    And made Verona's ancient citizens
    Cast by their grave beseeming ornaments,
    To wield old partisans, in hands as old,
    Canker'd with peace, to part your canker'd hate:
    If ever you disturb our streets again,
    Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace.
    For this time, all the rest depart away. 
    You Capulet; shall go along with me:
    And, Montague, come you this afternoon,
    To know our further pleasure in this case,
    To old Free-town, our common judgment-place.
    Once more, on pain of death, all men depart.


  53. Lord Montague:

    Who set this ancient quarrel new abroach?
    Speak, nephew, were you by when it began?

  54. Benvolio:

    Here were the servants of your adversary, 
    And yours, close fighting ere I did approach. 
    I drew to part them. In the instant came
    The fiery Tybalt, with his sword prepared,
    Which, as he breathed defiance to my ears,
    He swung about his head and cut the winds,
    Who nothing hurt withal, hissed him in scorn.  
    While we were interchanging thrusts and blows,
    Came more and more, and fought on part and part,
    Till the Prince came, who parted either part.

  55. Lady Montague:

    O, where is Romeo, saw you him today?
    Right glad am I, he was not at this fray.

  56. Benvolio:

    Madam, an hour before the worshipped sun
    Peer'd forth the golden window of the east,
    A troubled mind drove me to walk abroad,
    Where, underneath the grove of sycamore 
    That westward rooteth from this city side,
    So early walking did I see your son.
    Towards him I made, but he was ware of me
    And stole into the covert of the wood.
    I, measuring his affections by my own,

    Which then most sought where most might not be found,
    Being one too many by my weary self,
    That most are busied when they're most alone,
    Pursued my humour not pursuing his,
    And gladly shunned who gladly fled from me.

  57. Lord Montague:

    Many a morning hath he there been seen
    With tears augmenting the fresh morning's dew,
    Adding to clouds more clouds with his deep sighs.
    But all so soon as the all-cheering sun
    Should in the furthest east begin to draw
    The shady curtains from Aurora[no-glossary]'s[/no-glossary] bed, [130]        
    Away from [no-glossary]light[/no-glossary] steals home my heavy son,
    And private in his chamber pens himself,
    Shuts up his windows, locks fair daylight out
    And makes himself an artificial night.
    Black and portentous must this humour prove,
    Unless good counsel may the cause remove.

  58. Benvolio:

    My noble uncle, do you know the cause?

  59. Lord Montague:

    I neither know it, nor can learn of him.

  60. Benvolio:

    Have you importuned him by any means?

  61. Lord Montague:

    Both by myself and many other friends.
    But he, his own affections' counsellor,
    Is to himself, (I will not say how true) 
    But to himself so secret and so close,
    So far from sounding and discovery,
    Ere he can spread his sweet leaves to the air

    Or dedicate his beauty to the same.
    Could we but learn from whence his sorrows grow,
    We would as willingly give cure as know.

    Enter ROMEO

  62. Benvolio:

    See, where he comes, so please you step aside, 
    I'll know his grievance, or be much denied.

  63. Montague:

    I would thou wert so happy by thy stay,
    To hear true shrift. Come madam, let's away.


  64. Benvolio:

    Good-morrow, cousin.

  65. Romeo:

                               Is the day so young?

  66. Benvolio:

    But new struck nine.

  67. Romeo:

                              Ay me, sad hours seem long.
    Was that my parents that went hence so fast?

  68. Benvolio:

    It was: what sadness lengthens Romeo's hours?

  69. Romeo:

    Not having that, which having, makes them short.

  70. Benvolio:

    In love?

  71. Romeo:


  72. Benvolio:

    Of love?

  73. Romeo:

    Out of her favour, where I am in love.

  74. Benvolio :

    Alas that love so gentle in his view,
    Should be so tyrannous and rough in proof!

  75. Romeo:

    Alas that love, whose view is muffled still,
    Should without eyes see pathways to his will:
    Where shall we dine? O me: What fray was here?
    Yet tell me not, for I have heard it all:
    Here's much to do with hate, but more with love:
    Why, then, O brawling love, O loving hate
    O anything, of nothing first create:
    O heavy lightness, serious vanity,
    Misshapen chaos of well-seeming forms,
    Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health,
    Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is.
    This love feel I, that feel no love in this.
    Dost thou not laugh?

  76. Benvolio:

                             No coz, I rather weep.

  77. Romeo:

    Good heart, at what?

  78. Benvolio:

    At thy good heart's oppression.

  79. Romeo:

    Why such is love's transgression.                          
    Griefs of mine own lie heavy in my breast,
    Which thou wilt propagate, to have it pressed
    With more of thine. This love that thou hast shown
    Doth add more grief to too much of mine own.
    Love is a smoke made with the fume of sighs,         
    Being purged, a fire sparkling in lovers' eyes,

    Being vex'd a sea nourish'd with loving tears.

    What is it else? A madness most discreet,
    A choking gall and a preserving sweet.
    Farewell, my coz.

  80. Benvolio:

                            Soft I will go along. 
    An if you leave me so, you do me wrong.

  81. Romeo:

    Tut, I have lost myself, I am not here,
    This is not Romeo, he's some other where.

  82. Benvolio:

    Tell me in sadness, who is that you love?

  83. Romeo:

    What, shall I groan and tell thee?

  84. Benvolio:

    Groan? Why, no. But sadly tell me who.

  85. Romeo:

    Bid a sick man in sadness make his will. A word ill urged to one that is so ill.
    In sadness, cousin, I do love a woman.

  86. Benvolio:

    I aim'd so near, when I supposed you loved.

  87. Romeo:

    A right good mark-man, and she's fair I love.

  88. Benvolio:

    A right fair mark, fair coz, is soonest hit.

  89. Romeo:

    Well, in that hit you miss, she'll not be hit
    With Cupid's arrow, she hath Dian's wit.
    And, in strong proof of chastity well-armed,
    From love's weak childish bow she lives uncharmed.
    She will not stay the siege of loving terms,
    Nor bide th' encounter of assailing eyes,
    Nor ope her lap to saint-seducing gold.
    O she is rich in beauty, only poor
    That when she dies, with beauty dies her store.

  90. Benvolio:

    Then she hath sworn that she will still live chaste?

  91. Romeo:

    She hath, and in that sparing makes huge waste,
    For beauty starved with her severity
    Cuts beauty off from all posterity.
    She is too fair, too wise, wisely too fair,  
    To merit bliss by making me despair.
    She hath forsworn to love, and in that vow
    Do I live dead, that live to tell it now.

  92. Benvolio:

    Be ruled by me, forget to think of her.

  93. Romeo:

    By giving liberty unto thine eyes,
    Examine other beauties.

  94. Romeo:

                                    'Tis the way
    To call hers (exquisite) in question more.
    These happy masks that kiss fair ladies' brows,
    Being black, put us in mind they hide the fair.
    He that is strucken blind cannot forget
    The precious treasure of his eyesight lost.
    Show me a mistress that is passing fair.
    What doth her beauty serve but as a note,
    Where I may read who passed that passing fair?
    Farewell, thou canst not teach me to forget.

  95. Benvolio:

    I'll pay that doctrine, or else die in debt.

    They Exit.

  96. I’ll pay that doctrine, or else die in debt.
    At an ancient feast of Capulet's where
    Mercutio our friend this night doth dance,
    Sups the fair Rosaline whom thou so loves:
    With all the admired beauties of Verona,
    Go thither and with unattainted eye,
    Compare her face with some that I shall show,
    And I will make thee think thy swan a crow.

  97. I'll go along, no such sight to be shown,
    But to rejoice in splendor of mine own.

  98. Exeunt