This GCSE English Literature quiz is the first of two extract questions for Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare. It takes place during the first act of the play, after Romeo and his friends have decided to attend a party at the Capulet house, despite not having been invited. This passage presents Capulet and his cousin in fond conversation about their younger days and ends with the famous moment when Romeo and Juliet first meet. Read the passage through at least twice before tackling the questions. When answering, pay close attention to the text while also bearing in mind the wider issues of the play as a whole.
Ensuring you always read through the given passage more than once will improve your ability to answer extract questions in exams.
As you first read through, aim for a broad understanding of the passage and particularly how it relates to the question or questions which you will answer. Reading through a second time allows you to begin noting details and making annotations. Consider why the specific passage has been chosen. How does it relate to the rest of the text? What is its place in the structure of the text? Does the passage introduce any significant characters or themes? What happens next? Are later events foreshadowed? If so, how? Note any developments which occur between the beginning and end of the passage. Why might the chosen extract end where it does instead of elsewhere? Is the final line significant?
Now think carefully about the question you have been asked to answer. Perhaps you will be discussing the mood and atmosphere of the extract, or a particular character. You might be asked to discuss dialogue, behaviour or feelings. You will also need to relate these details to the themes of the text. Remember to explain the passage’s immediate context: what events precede the extract? How do these events relate to those of the extract? Pay attention to detail, to setting and to characterisation. When writing, group related ideas together, but be sure to discuss the entire passage in your answer. Don’t forget to pace yourself. It’s important to leave enough time to write about the whole passage rather than covering one section in detail and neglecting the remainder of the extract!
Read the passage below carefully before answering the questions.