Romeo and Juliet

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

BENVOLIO

By giving liberty unto thine eyes.
Examine other beauties.

BENVOLIO

Do it by letting your eyes wander freely. Look at other beautiful girls.

ROMEO

     'Tis the way
220To call hers exquisite, in question more.
These happy masks that kiss fair ladies' brows,
Being black, puts us in mind they hide the fair.
He that is strucken blind cannot forget
The precious treasure of his eyesight lost.
225Show me a mistress that is passing fair;
What doth her beauty serve but as a note
Where I may read who passed that passing fair?
Farewell. Thou canst not teach me to forget.

ROMEO

That will only make me think more about how beautiful she is. Beautiful women like to wear black masks over their faces—those black masks only make us think about how beautiful they are underneath. A man who goes blind can’t forget the precious eyesight he lost. Show me a really beautiful girl. Her beauty is like a note telling me where I can see someone even more beautiful. Goodbye. You can’t teach me to forget.

BENVOLIO

I’ll pay that doctrine or else die in debt.

BENVOLIO

I’ll show you how to forget, or else I’ll die owing you that lesson.
Exeunt
They exit.