Romeo and Juliet

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 1 Scene 1

page Act 1 Scene 1 Page 2

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GREGORY

That shows thee a weak slave, for the weakest goes to the wall.

GREGORY

That means you’re the weak one, because weaklings get pushed up against the wall.

SAMPSON

'Tis true, and therefore women, being the weaker vessels, are ever thrust to the wall. Therefore I will push Montague’s men from the wall, and thrust his maids to the wall.

SAMPSON

You’re right. That’s why girls get pushed up against walls—they’re weak. So what I’ll do is push the Montague men into the street and the Montague women up against the wall.

GREGORY

The quarrel is between our masters and us their men.

GREGORY

The fight is between our masters, and we men who work for them.

SAMPSON

'Tis all one. I will show myself a tyrant. When I have fought with the men, I will be civil with the maids. I will cut off their heads.

SAMPSON

It’s all the same. I’ll be a harsh master to them. After I fight the men, I’ll be nice to the women—I’ll cut off their heads.

GREGORY

The heads of the maids?

GREGORY

SAMPSON

Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads.
Take it in what sense thou wilt.

SAMPSON

Cut off their heads, take their maidenheads—whatever. Take my remark in whichever sense you like.

GREGORY

25They must take it in sense that feel it.

GREGORY

The women you rape are the ones who’ll have to “sense” it.

SAMPSON

Me they shall feel while I am able to stand, and
’tis known I am a pretty piece of flesh.

SAMPSON

They’ll feel me as long as I can keep an erection. Everybody knows I’m a nice piece of flesh.

GREGORY

'Tis well thou art not fish. If thou hadst, thou hadst been poor-john.

GREGORY

It’s a good thing you’re not a piece of fish. You’re

dried and shriveled

They are joking about Sampson’s private parts.

dried and shriveled
like salted fish.
Enter ABRAM and another SERVINGMAN
ABRAM and another servant of the Montagues enter.
Draw thy tool! Here comes of the house of Montagues.
Pull out your tool now. These guys are from the house of Montague.

SAMPSON

30My naked weapon is out. Quarrel! I will back thee.

SAMPSON

I have my naked sword out. Fight, I’ll back you up.