A foil character is one who enhances unique characteristics of another character. This is accomplished by a strong contrast between the two characters. The famous play writer, William Shakespeare uses numerous foil characters throughout his plays. One of these famous plays is Romeo and Juliet. This play has many foil characters which magnify qualities in other characters. Specifically Romeo, who Is the main character of the play and has three mall fool characters. Each one of these characters brings out a specials quality In Romeos character.
With his belief in loveless love, physical attraction, and no romantic actions, Mercuric brings out passionate love, emotional attraction, and romantic actions in Romeos character. First, Mercuric magnifies passionate love in Romeo. Mercuric is a wild man who lives on the edge. He dose not believe in serious relationships. He only meets women for pleasure. On the other hand, Romeo Is Interested In a meaningful relationship with passionate love. As a result Americium’s belief In loveless love magnifies passionate love in Romeos character.
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Similarly, Mercuric strives on hysterical attraction only; this makes Romeos emotional attraction stand out even more. Mercuric Is attracted to beautiful women only. While. Romeo is attracted to intelligent, nice, and beautiful women. Hence, Romeos attraction is brought out. Finally, Romeos romantic side is brought out by a lack off romantic side in Mercuric. Mercuric is only Interested in the act of love. Yet, Romeo is Interested In Romantic actions more than anything. Because of this, Romeos romantic qualities are emphasized by Americium’s lack of them.
Thus, Mercuric, who lacks them, stresses Romeos love characteristics. Table a main character and Gullet’s cousin, experiences moments of anger, rage, and lust for revenge. Romeo benefits from this because it shows his calm. Peaceful. And forgiving qualities. All through the play Table shows that he is angry at something or someone. For example, In the following quote: “It fits when such a villain Is a guest; I’ll not endure (l, v, 74-5) Table Is angry with Lord Caplet for not doing anything about Romeos presence during the party.
This underlines Romeos calm quality because he ignores Table and Lord Caplet’s presence and calmly talks to them as f hey were unknown people. Similarly, Table’s Rage is noticeable throughout the play. A good example of this is when Table recognizes Romeos voice at the party. He immediately calls for his sward. Yet, Romeo once again ignores Table’s presence and handles things peacefully. Furthermore, Table shows lust for revenge. After he was told by Lord Caplet to leave Romeo alone, Table comes looking for Romeo.
Once he finds Romeo he challenges him too fight. However, Romeo does not accept because he can not fight a family member even though a Caplet. Hence, Romeo shows he can forgive even his greatest enemies. Thus, Table’s anger, rage, and lust for revenge highlight Romeos calm, peaceful, and forgiving qualities, Benevolent, a Montague, is a unique character. Unlike Mercuric and Table, Benevolent ‘ Off extracts Romeos bad side. Although Romeo is peaceful, calm, and layout, Benevolent proves Romeo is still capable of rage, anger, and ignores the law.
He dose this by giving emphasis to Romeos bad characteristics through his extra peaceful, extra calm, and law obedient character. First, Benevolent accents Romeos rage through his extra peaceful character. For instance, Mercuric was an equal friend to Romeo as he as to Benevolent; Although, Benevolent did not fill with rage towards Table, when he killed Mercuric, as Romeo did. By this Benevolent highlights Romeos rage with his extremely peaceful character. Likewise, Venison’s calm character brings out Romeos anger filled character.
After killing Mercuric and disappearing, Table comes back. In the time he was gone Romeo built up anger towards Table. Upon seeing Table he says: “Alive in triumph, and Mercuric slain! Away to heaven, respective lenient, And fire-eyed fury be my conduct (Ill, I, 122-4) This would be considered a normal reaction; however, Benevolent did not react so strongly. By this he magnifies Romeos anger. Finally, Venison’s lawful character amplifies Romeos law breaking character.
An example of this is when Benevolent says: “We talk here in public haunt of men: Either with draw unto some private place, Or reason coldly of your grievances, Or else depart. Here all eyes gaze on us. “+ (Ill, I, 49-52) Benevolent remembers the prince’s words and warns that they should not fight in public. Even though he knows and was reminded of the new law, Romeo fights Table anyway. Consequently Romeos action is magnified because Benevolent warned and obeyed the law.
Hence, through his peaceful, calm, and lawful character, Benevolent magnifies rage, anger, and ignorance of law in Romeos character. Mercuric stresses Romeos love characteristics; Table stresses Romeos good qualities; Benevolent stresses Romeos bad qualities. Thus, Mercuric, Table and Benevolent are Romeos foil characters. Each one emphasizes a different side of Romeos character. With foil characters Shakespeare can play with the audience’s emotions by making them think what he wants them to think. Bibliography 1 . Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare, Oxford University Press 1982