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Romeo and Juliet

William Shakespeare

Act 5 Scene 3

page Act 5 Scene 3 Page 1

Original Text

Modern Text

Enter PARIS and his PAGE
PARIS enters with his PAGE.


Give me thy torch, boy. Hence, and stand aloof.
Yet put it out, for I would not be seen.
Under yon yew trees lay thee all along,
Holding thine ear close to the hollow ground—
5So shall no foot upon the churchyard tread,
Being loose, unfirm, with digging up of graves,
But thou shalt hear it. Whistle then to me,
As signal that thou hear’st something approach.
Give me those flowers. Do as I bid thee, go.


Give me your torch, boy. Go away and stay apart from me. Put the torch out, so I can’t be seen. Hide under the yew-trees over there. Listen to make sure no one is coming through the graveyard. If you hear any one, whistle to me to signal that someone is approaching. Give me those flowers. Do as I tell you. Go.
PAGE extinguishes torch, gives PARIS flowers
The PAGE puts out the torch and gives PARIS the flowers.


10(aside) I am almost afraid to stand alone
Here in the churchyard. Yet I will adventure.


(to himself) I am almost afraid to stand alone here in the graveyard, but I’ll take the risk.
PAGE moves aside
The PAGE moves aside


(scatters flowers at JULIET'S closed tomb)
Sweet flower, with flowers thy bridal bed I strew—
O woe! Thy canopy is dust and stones—
15Which with sweet water nightly I will dew.
Or, wanting that, with tears distilled by moans,
The obsequies that I for thee will keep
Nightly shall be to strew thy grave and weep.


(he scatters flowers at JULIET’s closed tomb) Sweet flower, I’m spreading flowers over your bridal bed. Oh, pain! Your canopy is dust and stones. I’ll water these flowers every night with sweet water. Or, if I don’t do that, my nightly rituals to remember you will be to put flowers on your grave and weep.
PAGE whistles
The PAGE whistles
The boy gives warning something doth approach.
20What cursèd foot wanders this way tonight
To cross my obsequies and true love’s rite?
What with a torch! Muffle me, night, awhile.
The boy is warning me that someone approaches. Who could be walking around here tonight? Who’s ruining my rituals of true love?
It’s someone with a torch! I must hide in the darkness for awhile.