Romeo and Juliet Act II

Contributor: Melissa Kowalski. Lesson ID: 11333

Our plans usually involve other people, for better or worse. Can one find humor in tragedy? As Romeo and Juliet sneak toward forbidden marriage, see how it affects others, and examine comedic effect!


Literary Studies

learning style
Auditory, Visual
personality style
Grade Level
High School (9-12)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!


"O Romeo, O Romeo. Wherefore art thou Romeo?" is perhaps the most recognized line in all of Shakespeare's work. Read this line in the context of Act II, Scene 2 to find out if Romeo's name is an impediment to the budding love of this young couple!

As you learned in Act I, the young, proud Romeo Montague is all too quick to forsake his chaste, yet unseen, Rosaline for the fair young Capulet.

However, do you think Romeo was really in love with Rosaline? Why or why not?

It is at the masquerade ball that Romeo, while expressing his almost juvenile affection for Rosaline, spots Juliet, and is swept up by a wave of emotions that can only be explained as love. Although Juliet shares this affection for Romeo, things are not so simple for the young lovers.

The house of Montague, to which Romeo belongs, and the house of Capulet, to which Juliet belongs, have been engaged in a legendary feud, thus making theirs a forbidden love for the ages. Yet, could there be hope for this young couple? Lady Capulet herself speaks of not condemning the son for his father's sins. Read on to see if Romeo can handle this situation like the man he claims to be, or is the timid boy that hides behind swagger.

Before you delve into Act II, it is necessary to define a few vocabulary words from the scene, since Shakespeare was known for using a wide vernacular in his plays. Using Merriam-Webster, Incorporated, or another dictionary, look up each word in the list that follows, and write down the definition. After you have defined each word, use each in an original sentence, making sure the part-of-speech and definition are correct in the context. Once you have finished the definitions and the sentences, share them with your teacher or parent and have him or her check your work:

Act II Vocabulary Words














Once you have had your parent or teacher check your sentences for the correct use of each vocabulary word, you are ready to begin reading Act II of Romeo and Juliet.

I recommend you use the following version of Romeo and Juliet, because it is a revised version that normalizes the spelling of words and includes line numbers. You can also use another version of the text, as long as it is the complete, full text. The recommended text is:

Remember, you should be reading the play aloud in order to hear the dialogue as verbal expression. To help inspire your reading, watch the following Jeremy Goeckner — Romeo and Juliet — "Act 2, Scene 2" clip of a performance by Jeremy Goeckner. It is a clip of Act II, Scene 2, which is known as the famous "Balcony Scene," when Romeo and Juliet meet again after the ball:


After you watch the video, read Act II. When you have finished reading Act II, continue to the Got It? section to check your comprehension of this act.

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