Capulet’s Garden
Reading Comprehension Activity

Author: William Shakespeare

Act II, Scene 2 passage: This passage is from the balcony scene of “Romeo and Juliet.” Students will read part of Romeo’s speech and answer questions on the metaphors used, the meaning of the text, and Romeo’s character.

Topic(s): Dramatic Tragedies. Skill(s): Summary, Character Traits, Figurative Language. Genre(s): Drama

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Act II, Scene 2: The party at the Capulet house is over, and Romeo has left after meeting Juliet for the first time. He is avoiding his friends and has climbed into the Capulet’s garden.


[Enter Romeo.]

He jests at scars that never felt a wound.-
[Juliet appears above at a window.]
But soft! what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Juliet is the sun!-
Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,
Who is already sick and pale with grief,
That thou her maid art far more fair than she:
Be not her maid, since she is envious;
Her vestal livery is but sick and green,
And none but fools do wear it; cast it off.-
It is my lady; O, it is my love!
O, that she knew she were!-
She speaks, yet she says nothing: what of that?
Her eye discourses, I will answer it.-
I am too bold, ’tis not to me she speaks:
Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven,
Having some business, do entreat her eyes
To twinkle in their spheres till they return.
What if her eyes were there, they in her head?
The brightness of her cheek would shame those stars,
As daylight doth a lamp; her eyes in heaven
Would through the airy region stream so bright
That birds would sing and think it were not night.-
See how she leans her cheek upon her hand!
O that I were a glove upon that hand,
That I might touch that cheek!

Comprehension Questions

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