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Act 2, Scene 6


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Original Play

Modern Translation 

 

Enter FRIAR LAWRENCE and ROMEO

FRIAR LAWRENCE and ROMEO enter.
 




 

FRIAR LAWRENCE
So smile the heavens upon this holy act
That after-hours with sorrow chide us not.

FRIAR LAWRENCE
May the heavens smile upon this holy act of marriage, so that afterwards nothing happens to make us feel sorrowful about it.

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5



 

ROMEO
Amen, amen. But come what sorrow can,
It cannot countervail the exchange of joy
That one short minute gives me in her sight.
Do thou but close our hands with holy words,
Then love-devouring death do what he dare;
It is enough I may but call her mine.

ROMEO
Amen, amen. But whatever sorrow comes, it couldn’t overwhelm the joy I feel from a single look at her. If you join our hands with holy words, then love-devouring death can do whatever it wants. It’s enough for me if I can just call her mine.

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10
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15
 

FRIAR LAWRENCE
These violent delights have violent ends
And in their triumph die, like fire and powder,
Which, as they kiss, consume. The sweetest honey
Is loathsome in his own deliciousness
And in the taste confounds the appetite.
Therefore love moderately. Long love doth so.
Too swift arrives as tardy as too slow.

FRIAR LAWRENCE
Such passionate joys have violent endings. They die in their moment of triumph, just like a spark and gunpowder, when they touch, destroy themselves in an explosion. Even the most delicious honey is loathsome when you’ve had too much, and takes away your appetite. Loving in moderation is therefore the key to long-lasting love. Going too fast is as bad as going too slow.

 

Enter JULIET, somewhat fast, and embraceth ROMEO

JULIET rushes in and embraces ROMEO.
 

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20
 

Here comes the lady. Oh, so light a foot
Will ne’er wear out the everlasting flint.
A lover may bestride the gossamers
That idles in the wanton summer air,
And yet not fall. So light is vanity.

Here comes the lady. Oh,a footstep as light as hers will never endure the rocky road of life. Lovers are so light they can walk on a spiderweb floating on a summer breeze, and yet not fall. That’s how flimsy and unreal pleasure is.

 

JULIET
Good even to my ghostly confessor.

JULIET
Good evening, my spiritual confessor.

 

FRIAR LAWRENCE
Romeo shall thank thee, daughter, for us both.

FRIAR LAWRENCE
Romeo will thank you, my girl, for both of us.

 

JULIET
As much to him, else is his thanks too much.

JULIET
I’ll give him equal thanks, so we’re even.

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25




 

ROMEO
Ah, Juliet, if the measure of thy joy
Be heaped like mine, and that thy skill be more
To blazon it, then sweeten with thy breath
This neighbor air, and let rich music’s tongue
Unfold the imagined happiness that both
Receive in either by this dear encounter.

ROMEO
Ah, Juliet if you’re as happy as I am, and you’re better with words, tell me about the happiness you imagine we’ll have in our marriage.

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30




 

JULIET
Conceit, more rich in matter than in words,
Brags of his substance, not of ornament.
They are but beggars that can count their worth.
But my true love is grown to such excess
I cannot sum up sum of half my wealth.

JULIET
I can imagine more than I can say—I have more on my mind than words. Anyone who can count how much he has is poor. My true love has made me so rich that I can’t count even half of my wealth.

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35


 

FRIAR LAWRENCE
Come, come with me, and we will make short work.
For, by your leaves, you shall not stay alone
Till holy church incorporate two in one.

FRIAR LAWRENCE
Come, come with me, and we’ll do the job quickly. Because if you don’t mind, I’m not leaving you two alone until you’re united in marriage.

 

Exeunt

They exit.
 

 

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