Act 1 Scene 1 Romeo and Juliet.
Sampson and Gregory, servants of the house of Capulet, go out looking for trouble. Enter Abraham and Balthasar:
Sampson and Gregory almost pick a fight with Abraham and Balthasar, servants of the house of Montague. Enter Benvolio:Seeing a Capulet kinsman, Sampson and Gregory start to fight with Abraham and Balthasar. Benvolio tries to stop the fight, but Tybalt enters and attacks Benvolio. The citizens of Verona attack both the Capulets and Montagues. Capulet and Montague try to join the fight, but are restrained by their wives. Enter Prince Escalus with his Train:Prince Escalus stops the riot, threatens everyone with death, and takes Capulet with him. Exeunt all but Montague, Lady Montague, and …show more content…
Sorry for the crude language, but Sampson is a crude character, and he gets worse. Gregory points out that the feud is between the Capulet and Montague men, not the women, but that makes no difference to Sampson. He declares that he will fight the men and then politely cut off the heads of the women. Or their maidenheads, "take it in what sense thou wilt (1.1.25-26). Gregory responds with another pun, a fairly feeble one: "They must take it in sense that feel it" (1.1.27). Gregory has turned the phrase "take it in what sense" into the phrase "take it in sense," which means "to feel with the physical senses," and he means that it's the Montague maids who are going to "take it in sense." This joke pleases Sampson, because he's sure he's the stud who can give what the maids are going to "take in sense." He says, "Me they shall feel while I am able to stand: and 'tis known I am a pretty piece of flesh" (1.1.28-29). Earlier Sampson used the word "stand" in the sense of "stand and fight"; now he's referring to the sturdiness of his male member. This brings another joke from Gregory: "'Tis well thou art not fish; if thou hadst, thou hadst been poor-John" (1.1.30-31). "Poor-John" was the cheapest kind of dried fish. Dried fish were commonly sold whole -- head, tail, and all -- and they were so thoroughly dried that they were as hard as wood. Thus a dried