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Intensional or Accidentall? Similarities between Romeo And Juliet and Much Ado

About Nothing!

There are many similarities between Shakespeare’s Much Ado About

Nothing and Romeo and Juliet. Was this Intentional or Accidental? Even though

Much Ado About Nothing is a comedy, and Romeo and Juliet, is one of his saddest

tragedies, the two plots share many common incidents. Did Shakespeare mean to

have these coincidences or did they happen by accident? In both of his dramatic

works, the Masque is a key element furthering the infatuation of the lovers.

Also the balcony scenes in both plays are crucial because without them the plot

could never have reached its denouement. It seems that God came into both of

the plays in the spirit of the friars, because they had good plans to keep love


In both plays, the masque functions as a dramatic device which initiates

the love plot. It occurs in a social gathering, but not without the help of

costumes. If it were not for costumes the result of love might have been

drastically different. How was the masque used to get lovers together? In the

case of Romeo and Juliet, Romeo hears about the masque and decides to go,

thinking that he might be able to get away with this scheme. Upon entering he

sees Juliet and right away, he knows it is love. If he had not worn the costume,

the hosts might have ejected him from the party and he might not have met

Juliet. Much Ado About Nothing has a similar but also different approach

towards love at the masque. In Much Ado, Count Claudio is not able to gather

the courage to court Hero. Instead Don Pedro, who is one of Claudio’s very

close friends, offers to go and woo Hero for his friend. This point is

illustrated by Don Pedro for his great plan to get Claudio and Hero together

“Thou wilt be like a lover presently/ And tire the hearer with a book of words. .

.. That thou began’st to twist so fine a story? “1 Don Pedro’s costume allows

him to woo Hero, posing as Claudio.

Balcony love scenes are familiar from both plays. The love was disparate

in each of Shakespeare’s plays. How are these scenes different but also similar?

In Romeo and Juliet, the balcony scene leads towards good love because Romeo

and Juliet are actually falling in love with each other. In Much Ado About

Nothing the scene is an act towards bad love and also to separation. We see

that it is a set up that Borachio between Don John had a scheme to damage the

entire love between Cluadio and Hero the night before their wedding. This evil

point is made clear by Borachio “Go then; find me a meet hour to draw Don Pedro

and the Count Claudio alone;… and there shall appear such seeming truth of

Hero’s disloyalty that jealousy shall be called assurance and all the

preparations overthrown.”2 Without the balcony scene in Much Ado, the heart of

the story would of been missing. If the Balcony scene had not happened in Romeo

and Juliet there would not have been a story.

The Friars seem to be the smartest people. It seems as they act as god

in both plays. How are the friars similar in the ways they present their great

plans? In Romeo and Juliet, the friar is the person who sits down and thinks of

an idea how the two lovers can be reacquainted with each other. He reveals his

idea, they agree with it, and all goes well until the timing fails. Timing

causes both Romeo and Juliet to lose their lives. In Much Ado About Nothing, it

is the friar who reveals his plan to save the love, and all worked well,

because at the end of Much Ado they marry and live happily thereafter. The

friar illustrates his confidence in his plan to save the marriage. “Marry, this

well carried shall on her behalf … Out of all eyes, tongues, and injuries.”3

The Friar causes both plays proceed the way that they did and they are the ones

who make the plays finish successfully.

The masque brings love together because it is unknown who is beneath

the disguises. The balcony scenes had much to do with building suspense and

adding to plot in both plays. They were similar but also different for the

reason that one brought the two together, and the other ripped them apart. The

Friars speak like God in both plays, with their outstanding plans. There are

many similarities between both plays. Did Shakespeare purposely make these

similarities or were they coincidence? I believe that Shakespeare did not intend

to make both the plays similar in romance but what happened was that he liked

the ideas he used in the first play and unknowingly used them in variation in

the second book. Did William Shakespeare personally require to have

similarities in love in both play or was he just forgetful about what he had

written in his other stories?

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