Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliet Act 4, scene 4 Summary & Analysis

Read our modern English translation of this scene.
As the Capulet household readies for the wedding the following morning, Capulet sends the Nurse to wake Juliet. But Juliet is dead. The Nurse, Lady Capulet, and Capulet cry out in grief. Just then, Paris and Friar Laurence arrive with musicians. Paris joins in the mourning. But Friar Laurence chides them. He says that Juliet is now happy in heaven, and says they must prepare the funeral. The Capulets, Paris, the Nurse, and Friar Laurence all exit.
The Friar's chiding of the Capulets for immoderate grief mirrors his advice to Romeo about immoderate passion. But now Friar Laurence is using his advice to lie. Even if he's doing it to help Juliet, it seems a pretty un-friarlike thing to do.
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The sudden exit of the Capulets leaves the musicians all alone. Peter requests that they play a happy song to lessen his sadness, but they refuse because Peter has no money to pay them. This leads to a confrontation with a furious Peter, but the musicians don't give in. After Peter leaves, the musicians decide to stick around for a while to see if they can get a free lunch at the funeral reception.
A noblewoman has apparently died on her wedding day, and musicians are wondering if it means they won't get lunch. The musicians, who work for their living, have to care about their own well-being.
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