Courtly love- is non-physical love; it is the worshiping of the lady in waiting
Stages of Courtly Love
1. Attraction to the lady, usually via eyes/glance
2. Worship of the lady from afar
3. Declaration of passionate devotion
4. Virtuous rejection by the lady
5. Renewed wooing with oaths of virtue and eternal fealty
6. Moans of approaching death from unsatisfied desire (and other physical manifestations of lovesickness)
7. Heroic deeds of valor which win the lady's heart
8. Consummation of the secret love
9. Endless adventures and subterfuges avoiding detection
Courtly love was secret and between members of the nobility. Courtly love does not lead to marriage normally. Shakespeare displays courtly love from the very start of the play through the character Romeo and his courtly love for Rosaline.
Shakespeare used the relationship of Romeo and Rosaline, Paris and Juliet to present courtly love. Romeo is terribly in love with Rosaline but the love is not returned which turns out Romeo unrequited love to Rosaline. “ Shut up his windows, lock fair daylight out and makes himself an artificial night.” (I, i, 134-135) The imagery made a depressed atmosphere, Shakespeare created a difference between light and dark, also portrayed the miserable and sorrowful feeling of Romeo. Same as Romeo, Paris loved Juliet very much. “So will ye, I am sure, that you love me.” (IV, i, 26) Paris is accepted by Capulet and glad to marry Juliet but he doesn’t know that Juliet is married to Romeo secretly by Friar Lawrence.
The main theme in Shakespeare’s play Romeo and Juliet is that of love. Shakespeare uses various ways to display the theme of love, notably in the characters varied attitudes towards love and also the different language devices in the play. Characters attitudes towards love are sometimes developed and changed throughout the play, allowing for Shakespeare to show more opinions of love that may have been common in his day. From the play it is noticeable that...