Romeo et juliette
By William Shakespeare
Verona, Italy — 1590's, July
ROMEO Son of MONTAGUE
BENVOLIO Montague cousin of ROMEO
LORD MONTAGUE Father of ROMEO
LADY MONTAGUE Mother of ROMEO
JULIET Daughter of CAPULET
TYBALT Capulet cousin of JULIET
LORD CAPULET Father of JULIET
LADY CAPULET Mother of JULIET
NURSE Capulet servant to JULIET
MERCUTIO Friend of ROMEO
PARIS To wed JULIET
PRINCE Prince of Verona
FRIAR LAWRENCE Marries ROMEO & JULIET
JOHN Carries message for FRIAR LAWRENCE
APOTHECARY Sells poison to ROMEO
CITIZENS, SERVANTS, MUSICIANS, GUARDS, etc.
Edited and adapted by David Hundsness, 2008. This adaptation may be used for free in part or whole for performance, even for profit; I ask only that you contact me at email@example.com to let me know who is using it, and give credit to David Hundsness and www.hundsness.com where appropriate.
This adaptation retains Shakespeare’s original language. It has been shortened to under two hours, cutting scenes that are typically slow to modern audiences. Dated references are minimized so the story may be set anytime and anywhere. A Wedding Ceremony and Juliet's Funeral are created from cut-and-pasted lines, and some scenes are altered for dramatic impact (all from the original script, of course). To see all lines that were cut, see the unabridged version at www.hundsness.com/plays.
The original play was first performed around 1595. This text is based on the Second Quarto of 1599, with corrections and alternate text from the First Quarto of 1597, Second Quarto of 1599, Third Quarto of 1609, Fourth Quarto of 1622, First Folio of 1623, and later editions. Spelling and punctuation are modernized (American) with some indications of pronunciation. Stage directions are clarified. Side notes are given for vocabulary, figurative language, and allusions.
1 1.1a Capulets and Montagues get into a fight; Prince stops