Two Wooers and their Sonnets: On Poetic Forms in Romeo and Juliet

Journal Title: Studia Litterarum - Year 2017, Vol 2, Issue 3

Abstract

The article looks at the semiotics of the sonnet form used by Shakespeare in his tragedy Romeo and Juliet. Particular attention is paid to two sonnets, of Paris and of Romeo, in which different manners of courting are played out. The poetic “gift” from Romeo to Juliet, their shared sonnets, one complete and one interrupted (Act 1, Sc. 5, ls. 92–109), is a notorious and much discussed piece of Shakespeare’s dramatic poetry. However, the other wooing sonnet representing desires of Paris and mouthed by Lady Capulet (Act 1, Sc. 3, ls. 80–95), seems to lack that kind of attention. Our essay juxtaposes the two sonnets in question, which are built around extended metaphors (conceits). Romeo’s sonneteering is endowed with dramatic power that quickens the debate and inspires accord between the title’s heroes. The semantic charge of this shared sonnet resonates in the heroes’ scenic gestures, prompting the play’s outcome. By contrast, the rather inert sonnet of Paris is like a dead letter of bookish instruction, which neither inspires amorous response, nor moves Juliet. The article also places Romeo’s and Paris’s pieces against Shakespeare’s sonnets 128 and 126 of the 1609 edition.

Authors and Affiliations

E. V. Haltrin-Khalturina

Keywords

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  • EP ID EP26166
  • DOI 10.22455/2500-4247-2017-2-3-94-117
  • Views 215
  • Downloads 17

How To Cite

E. V. Haltrin-Khalturina (2017). Two Wooers and their Sonnets: On Poetic Forms in Romeo and Juliet. Studia Litterarum, 2(3), -. https://europub.co.uk/articles/-A-26166