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two lovers depicted in literature music dance and theatre and best known from a play 1594-95 written by William Shakespeare The appeal of the young hero and heroine--whose families the Montagues and Capulets respectively are implacable enemies--is such that they have become in the popular imagination the representative type of star-crossed lovers Shakespeares principal source for the plot was The Tragicall Historye of Romeus and Juliet 1562 a long narrative poem by the English poet or Brooke d 1563 Broke had based his poem on a French translation of a tale by an Italian writer Matteo Bandello 1485-1561 Shakespeare set the scene in Verona Italy during July Juliet a Capulet and Romeo a Montague fall in love at a masked ball of the Capulets and profess their love when Romeo later visits her at her private balcony in her familys home Because the two noble families are enemies the couple is married secretly by Friar Laurence Tybalt a Capulet kills Romeos friend Mercutio in a quarrel Romeo kills Tybalt and is banished to Mantua When Juliets father insists on her marrying Count Paris Juliet consults the friar He gives her a potion that makes one appear to be dead He proposes that she take it and that Romeo rescue her she complies Unaware of the friars scheme Romeo returns to Verona on hearing of Juliets death He encounters Paris kills him and finds Juliet in the burial vault He gives her a last kiss and kills himself with poison Juliet awakens sees the dead Romeo and kills herself The families learn what has happened and end their feud The story has been adapted for various works including choral symphony Hector Berlioz 1839 opera Charles Gounod 1867 orchestral overture Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky 1869 1870 1880 ballet Sergey Prokofiev 1935-36 and film 1908 1936 1954 1968 Tools More About This Topic 1999-2000 Britannicacom Inc
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