Romeo and Juliet: Love vs. Lust

1161 words 5 pages
True Love Mistaken for True Lust
“An intense feeling of deep attraction.” That is the definition of love. Love between a man and a dog, a kid and ice-cream, a mother and her family, and love between two selfless people. This is true love. In the play, Romeo and Juliet, written by William Shakespeare, the feeling of attraction between the two main characters is not true love. The setting of this play is the streets of Verona, Italy, during a time when arranged marriages at the age of 14 were socially acceptable. Two young teens, Romeo and Juliet, were convinced that they had feelings for each other, but acted more out of lust than anything else. Lust is defined as “a very strong sexual desire”, and it becomes more apparent as the
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So shows a snowy dove trooping with crows
As yonder lady o'er her fellows shows. (I. V. 42-47)
This is Romeo’s description of Juliet the very first time he laid eyes on her. Romeo describes Juliet as hot as fire, and too beautiful for this world. He even describes her like a dove amongst crows (Ivory amongst Ebony). In all of the three previous quotes, the colorful language focused mainly on the looks of the other person signals that their feelings may be more lust than love. Not once was a personality trait mentioned, or any other sign of love than physical attractiveness. Although Romeo and Juliet do not show true love for each other throughout the play, there is real love that exists between other characters. One of the greatest examples of love in the play is the love Capulet has for his daughter, Juliet. Capulet said; Too soon marred are those so early made
Earth hath swallowed all my hopes but she.
She’s the hopeful lady of my earth.
But woo her, gentle Paris, get her heart.
My will to her consent is but a part.
An she agreed within her scope of choice,
Lies my consent and fair according voice. (I. ii. 13-19)
Capulet is going against society, and taking into consideration Juliet’s feelings about marriage. Capulet wants Juliet to be happy. This is an unusual act for the time, but this quote by Capulet to Paris exemplifies the genuine