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Romeo & Juliet :: Characters

Romeo & Juliet Characters

Chorus introduces each of the first two acts, setting both the theme of the play and its style. Speaking in sonnet form, he accustoms the ear to listen for echoes of that style.

 
 

Prince Escalus of Verona has the misfortune of ruling over a state where two major families are locked in an unending war. 

 
 

County Paris is a nobleman of Verona, close kin to the Prince and to Mercutio. 

 
 

Montague is the head of an old family of Verona. 

 
 

Capulet is the head of an old family of Verona.

 
 

Old Capulet, Capulet’s cousin, is an old man, possibly even his uncle. He sits with Capulet at the feast and gossips of old times and people they know.

 
 

Romeo is the only son of the Montague family of Verona.

 
 

Mercutio is a kinsman of the Prince’s, and a close friend of Romeo’s. 

 
 

Benvolio is Montague’s nephew. By nature law-abiding and peaceful, he attempts to break up the opening quarrel only to end up embroiled in it. 

 
 

Tybalt is the nephew of Capulet’s wife, and that family’s chief troublemaker. 

 
 

Petruchio is one of Tybalt’s friends. He is present at the Capulets’ feast and accompanies Tybalt when the latter goes seeking Romeo the next day. 

 
 

Friar Laurence is a Franciscan friar who is confessor to both Juliet and Romeo, and whom Paris immediately thinks of when he requires a priest for his wedding. 

 
 

Friar John is sent by Friar Laurence to Mantua, with letters informing Romeo that Juliet is not in fact dead. 

 
 

Balthasar is Romeo’s manservant. 

 
 

Abram is one of Montague’s servingmen.

 
 

Sampson is one of Capulet’s servants. 

 
 

Gregory is one of Capulet’s servants. He has a tendency towards wordplay, and plays this well with Sampson. 

 
 

Peter is a servingman of the Capulets’ who accompanies the Nurse when she goes out of the house, partly as her protection and partly to carry her fan. 

 
 

Paris’s Page accompanies his master to Juliet’s grave. Frightened of graveyards at night, he stays all the same, until he sees his master in a fight with some unknown man, and runs to fetch the Watch.

 
 

Apothecary is a poor, starving, skeletal man with massive eyebrows whose shop does little business. 

 
 

Lady Montague, tries to hold back her husband from doing any actual fighting, and is worried that her son Romeo might have joined in. 

 
 

Lady Capulet is approximately 28, and makes mock of her aged husband’s pretensions to fighting. 

 
 

Juliet is the only child of the Capulet family. A fortnight shy of fourteen, she is an obedient child, but reveals herself to be passionate and willing to betray all that she has been brought up to when she falls in love with Romeo. 

 
 

Nurse is Juliet’s closest companion, the woman who in essence brought her up. 

 
 

Citizens of Verona are thoroughly fed up with both Capulets and Montagues, and come out armed with clubs to beat them all up in the hopes that they’ll stop fighting.

 
 

First Servingman is a superior servant in the Capulet household, with permission to address Lady Capulet directly. He orders others about as they serve the feast, and has a taste for marzipan.

 
 

Second Servingman (Clown) is unable to read, which does not prevent Capulet from sending him out to deliver the invitations to his feast.

 
 

The Third Servingman is unaware of Juliet’s identity, and is therefore likely to have been hired just for the night of Capulet’s feast.

 
 

Anthony is a servant of Capulet’s, overworked the night of the feast. He is sent to invite the guests to Juliet’s wedding.

 
 

Potpan is a servant of Capulet’s, overworked the night of Capulet’s feast.

 
 

First Musician is hired for Juliet’s wedding, and after her death refuses to play a merry song for Peter, particularly as he cannot pay. He most likely plays a lute, or other plucked-string instrument.

 
 

Second Musician plays the rebec. He attempts to have Peter calm down and put his dagger away. Like the first musician, he will not play without pay. He convinces his fellow musicians to stick around to profit from the food.

 
 

Third Musician is a singer. He does not quite know how to react to Peter.

 
 

First Watchman is brought by Paris’s Page to the Capulets’ monument. 

 
 

Second Watchman arrives at the graveyard with the First Watchman. He is sent to search for anybody who may be around, and finds Balthasar.

 
 

Third Watchman arrives at the graveyard with the Chief Watchman. He is sent to search for anybody who may be around, and finds Friar Lawrence.

 
 

Mercutio’s Page [mute role] runs to fetch a doctor after his master is wounded.

 
 
 
 
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