Modern English Romeo & Juliet Ebook: Sample of Act 1, Scene 5

If Capulet recognized Mercutio’s friends he concealed it well, even welcoming them with hearty handshakes. He was in high spirits as the hall filled up: he hopped about like a bird and greeted his guests with smiles, backslaps and jokes.

Come in. come in,’ he said as each group of masked youths arrived at the doorway. ‘Don’t stand there, come in. Look at all the girls. Go in, go in. And I want to see you dancing. Only those girls with corns on their feet will say no.’

‘I’m a doctor tonight.’ he told a group of girls, beaming. ‘I can tell which of you have corns – those who don’t get up and dance right away.’ And when all except one rushed off, giggling, to find partners, he winked at the shy one left standing on her own. ‘Have I hit the nail on the head?’ he said. making her blush even more. He turned away to greet some new arrivals.

The hard work he had put into the preparations was paying off. The great hall was festooned with colourful banners and flowers and the tables were spread with enticing food. He looked this way and that, missing nothing. With the saddest expression on his face he told some young men not to waste time – there were plenty of girls. It would be tragic for them not to take advantage of opportunities like this because before they knew it they would be old men like him and then it would be too late. Was it only yesterday that he was whispering sweet nothings in the ears of young ladies? He shook his head. ‘Those were the days. All gone now.’ He looked as though he was going to cry but made an immediate recovery, gesturing with waving arms to the musicians to get on with it. Why had they stopped? Were they taking a holiday? He shouted at the servants, telling them to bring more light, to move the tables so that the guests could dance, and he told them to put the fire out: where were their brains? If he was sweating so badly what would it be like for the dancers?

Before long the hall was brightly lit. A space had been cleared and music was playing again. Guests began taking to the floor.

Once they were in the hall Mercutio and his friends put their masks on and went their separate ways. Each one had his own idea of how he was going to enjoy himself.

Romeo had made up his mind that he wouldn’t dance. He would find Rosaline and declare himself to her again. He wandered about, picking at snacks and watching out for her. He was also keeping one eye on Tybalt, staying as far away from him as possible. Tybalt was dancing with a pretty girl, smiling and being charming, but you never knew what he was going to do. What the Prince had said made no difference: Tybalt was always looking for a fight. It was best to give him a wide berth.

Mercutio was in a corner, entertaining some girls who laughed at every word he uttered. There was nothing new in that. Benvolio was dancing and Horatio was nowhere to be seen.

A serving man with a jug approached the table where Romeo was standing and poured some wine into a glass. He lifted the glass and handed it to Romeo but just as Romeo was about to take it a girl he had never seen before passed in front of him, dancing with a rather formal looking stranger.

Romeo drew his breath in sharply. The serving man, thinking Romeo had taken the glass, let go and it crashed on the floor. It made Romeo snap out of his trance. He looked down to see his shoes splashed with wine and the serving man trying to wipe it off with his apron. He didn’t take it in, though – his mind was completely preoccupied with the heavenly image before him, moving so gracefully to the music.

Download the complete Modern English Romeo & Juliet ebook now for $14.95!

Buy Now!


Read modern Romeo & Juliet scene by scene >>

Download the complete Modern English Romeo & Juliet ebook now for $14.95:

Buy Now!

About Romeo & Juliet Ebook
  • Translated as an easy to read, exciting teenage novel
  • Follows the acts & scenes of original Romeo & Juliet text
  • Allows you to master the plot, characters & language of Romeo & Juliet
Ebook Resources

Search all of Shakespeare’s sonnets:

Sonnet 1, Sonnet 2, Sonnet 3, Sonnet 4, Sonnet 5, Sonnet 6, Sonnet 7, Sonnet 8, Sonnet 9, Sonnet 10, Sonnet 11, Sonnet 12, Sonnet 13, Sonnet 14, Sonnet 15, Sonnet 16, Sonnet 17, Sonnet 18, Sonnet 19, Sonnet 20, Sonnet 21, Sonnet 22, Sonnet 23, Sonnet 24, Sonnet 25, Sonnet 26, Sonnet 27, Sonnet 28, Sonnet 29, Sonnet 30, Sonnet 31, Sonnet 32, Sonnet 33, Sonnet 34, Sonnet 35, Sonnet 36, Sonnet 37, Sonnet 38, Sonnet 39, Sonnet 40, Sonnet 41, Sonnet 42, Sonnet 43, Sonnet 44, Sonnet 45, Sonnet 46, Sonnet 47, Sonnet 48, Sonnet 49, Sonnet 50, Sonnet 51, Sonnet 52, Sonnet 53, Sonnet 54, Sonnet 55, Sonnet 56, Sonnet 57, Sonnet 58, Sonnet 59, Sonnet 60, Sonnet 61, Sonnet 62, Sonnet 63, Sonnet 64, Sonnet 65, Sonnet 66, Sonnet 67, Sonnet 68, Sonnet 69, Sonnet 70, Sonnet 71, Sonnet 72, Sonnet 73, Sonnet 74, Sonnet 75, Sonnet 76, Sonnet 77, Sonnet 78, Sonnet 79, Sonnet 80, Sonnet 81, Sonnet 82, Sonnet 83, Sonnet 84, Sonnet 85, Sonnet 86, Sonnet 87, Sonnet 88, Sonnet 89, Sonnet 90, Sonnet 91, Sonnet 92, Sonnet 93, Sonnet 94, Sonnet 95, Sonnet 96, Sonnet 97, Sonnet 98, Sonnet 99, Sonnet 100, Sonnet 101, Sonnet 102, Sonnet 103, Sonnet 104, Sonnet 105, Sonnet 106, Sonnet 107, Sonnet 108, Sonnet 109, Sonnet 110, Sonnet 111, Sonnet 112, Sonnet 113, Sonnet 114, Sonnet 115, Sonnet 116, Sonnet 117, Sonnet 118, Sonnet 119, Sonnet 120, Sonnet 121, Sonnet 122, Sonnet 123, Sonnet 124, Sonnet 125, Sonnet 126, Sonnet 127, Sonnet 128, Sonnet 129, Sonnet 130, Sonnet 131, Sonnet 132, Sonnet 133, Sonnet 134, Sonnet 135, Sonnet 136, Sonnet 137, Sonnet 138, Sonnet 139, Sonnet 140, Sonnet 141, Sonnet 142, Sonnet 143, Sonnet 144, Sonnet 145, Sonnet 146, Sonnet 147, Sonnet 148, Sonnet 149, Sonnet 150, Sonnet 151, Sonnet 152, Sonnet 153, Sonnet 154,