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Thread: Why Romeo and Juliet is regarded as Shakespeare's most famous play at present?

  1. #1
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    Why Romeo and Juliet is regarded as Shakespeare's most famous play at present?

    What is make Romeo and Juliet famous?
    How can I prove that?

    For me, it is the memorable love because they sacrifice themselves with love.
    What do you think?

  2. #2
    Artist and Bibliophile stlukesguild's Avatar
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    Well the question of why the play is the "most famous" is not the same as to whether it is the best. I certainly don't believe so, nor do most critics I have read. Hamlet, King Lear, Macbeth, and Othello are probably the greatest of Shakespeare's plays... although many of the rest are still better than the best works of most other authors. I'm particularly fond of A Midsummer Night's Dream. Still, why is Romeo and Juliet so famous? Well the tragic love theme has certainly appealed to people over the ages. Artist's have made endless paintings and prints illustrating the work. Composers have written musical suites and operas and ballets set to the theme. There are also a number of filmed versions of the play. The fact that the play is seemingly read in every junior-high and high-school by teachers who undoubtedly adds to its "fame". Certainly, I think it is a marvelous work complete with some exquiste poetic passages... I just think that he wrote better.
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    I wont say anything about best or worst, but Romeo and Juliet has been both the easiest and most enjoyable to teach.

    I have taught Julius Caesar, Macbeth and Twelfth Night to 15/16 year olds but none have r the Shakespearian "charm"of Romeo and Juliet which really won over the students and kept them rapt to the end.

    The characters are so boldly drawn and well-defined. The plot is riveting.

  4. #4
    still waiting to be found amanda_isabel's Avatar
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    the theme of romeo is what made it famous. love is pretty strong, nad the effect it has on other people is different. so it inspired people to write and paint and what not.. that's what makes it famous. though i do agree with stlukesguild, he wrote better.
    ...don't need therapy to rehabilitate my smile...

  5. #5
    The Story of My Life bibliophile190's Avatar
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    I guess I'm strange. I thought Julius Caesar was better than Romeo and Juliet. I did like the poetic passages in Romeo and Juliet, but I thought the whole thing was a little soppy.
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    I think it may have something to do with the fact that it is one of the easier plays to read. The themes and dialog are all easy to follow, and it doesn't have the intrigues of some of his other work. It is also a love story which appeals to people throughout the ages. Finally, this and Macbeth are what is generally taught in school, so everyone is exposed to it. I don't think this was one of his best works. I much prefer Hamlet or Titus, but it is the best known.

  7. #7
    Bibliophile JBI's Avatar
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    I guess because of its wide range. The beginning is more comedy than tragedy in build, and the hamartia is rather subtle rather than in Macbeth's case, quite obvious. The build up is quite nice, it continues as still a comedy, fueled with Mercutio's great witty lines. The break point of course is also very well executed, as is the finish which appeals to the romantic in people.

    Generally however, people have trouble with Romeo's "wimpyness". This in my opinion only adds to the play, being that it shows you how silly everything really is.

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