In Act III Scene i of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, Frair Laurence cautions Romeo about the dangers of falling in love too quickly, which helps develop the theme ‘love is powerful’ through the use of foreshadowing, metaphor and character relationship. To start with, Frair Laurence uses foreshadowing to show that by falling in love to quickly, it can cause an unwanted outcome. It foreshadows the death of Romeo and Juliet. This quotation is shown when Romeo asks the Friar to join his and Juliet’s hand in marriage, when Frair Laurence hears about this, he says, “these violent delights have violent ends, And in their triumph die, like fire and powder” (II. vi. 9-10). The Frair is cautioning Romeo to take his love slow as there is an unpleasant end that will occur to Romeo and Juliet. Along with this, he is warning Romeo about risks associated with wanting something too quickly and badly. In this quotation, a violent delight is used to describe the marriage that Romeo and Juliet want to have. The words ‘violent end’ is foreshadowing the death that will follow their marriage. By comparing their love to ‘fire and powder,’ it shows that their love is destructive and will not end well, just like if you put fire and powder together, it will cause an explosion. In this situation, love has given Romeo and Juliet a lot of happiness, to the point where they want to get married as soon as possible, but because love is so powerful, it will also bring them great sadness, such as death. They love each other to the point where they will do anything to be together, they would rather die than live in a world without each other. Furthermore, Shakespeare uses a metaphor to give Romeo a better understanding about the dangers of falling in love too quickly. Frair Laurence compares love to honey, saying that too much love is bad for you and could make you sick, just like how “the sweetest honey Is loathsome in his own deliciousness, And in the taste confounds the appetite” (II. vi .11-13). If Romeo were to love Juliet so powerfully and intensely, it could end badly, he could either end up hating or losing her. This quotation is comparing love to honey and stating that if you love to quickly, you will get sick. Just like if you eat too much honey, you will get sick. Love gets worn out if all the ‘exciting’ moment such as marrying each other are done too early. There will not be anything to look forward too in the future. Romeo is feeling lust instead of love. Romeo and Juliet’s love is so powerful that it is making them rush into marriage, if they rush their love, it will end badly. Along with this, if you eat honey quickly, it will hurt your stomach just like if you love too quickly, it will end up in sorrow. Romeo is marrying Juliet for the sake of marrying her, he is in love with the idea of love instead of love itself. The power of love makes you feel as though you are in love, Romeo takes this ‘love’ and makes big decisions based off of it. Because they are getting married so early, it will end in the death of both characters as they are so persevered to be together.
Lastly, this is shows how hasty Romeo is as he is rushing his love. He wants to marry Juliet although they haven’t even spent a day apart. This is shown when Romeo asks Friar Laurence to marry them, he responds with,
These violent delights have violent ends,
And in their triumph die, like fire and powder,
Which as they kiss consume. The sweetest honey
Is loathsome in his own deliciousness
And in the taste confounds the appetite;
Therefore, love moderately; long love doth so;
Too swift arrives as tardy as too slow.
(III. vi. 9-15)
This quote shows that ‘love is powerful’ as their love is making them rush into marriage. In the quote, it says that if Romeo rushes love, it will end up bad. Love is making them rush into marriage as they can not wait to live together. Marriage means living together, there is nothing more that Romeo wants. Romeo is rushing his love, Juliet did say previously that this love is too sudden.