The following summary is reprinted from William Shakespeare. John Masefield. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1911.

The houses of Montague and Capulet are at feud in Verona.

Romeo, of the house of Montague, falls in love with Juliet, of the house of Capulet. She returns his love. A friar marries them.

In a street brawl, which Romeo does his best to stop, Mercutio, Romeo's friend, is killed by Tybalt, Juliet's cousin. Carried away by passion, Romeo kills Tybalt. He is banished from Verona.

The Capulets plan to marry Juliet to the Count Paris.

Juliet, in great distress, consults the Friar who married her to Romeo. He gives her a potion to create an apparent death in her, to the end that she may be buried in the family vault, taken thence and restored to life by himself, and then conveyed to Romeo. He writes to Romeo, telling him of the plan; but the letter miscarries. Juliet takes the potion, and is laid in the tomb as dead.

The Count Paris comes by night to the tomb, to mourn her there. Romeo, who has heard only that his love is dead, also comes to the tomb. The two lovers fight, and Romeo kills Paris. He then takes poison and dies at Juliet's side.

The friar enters to restore Juliet to life. Juliet awakens to find her lover dead. The friar, being alarmed, leaves the tomb. Juliet stabs herself with Romeo's dagger and dies.

The feud of the Montagues and Capulets is brought to an end. The leaders of the two houses are reconciled over the bodies of the lovers.


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