Annotated list of all appearances and all mentions


The Citizens

In the first scene, Benvolio tries to stop the fight between the servants of Capulet and Montague, but is drawn into the fight by the fierce Tybalt. As soon as Tybalt and Benvolio begin fighting, some citizens, who are sick of both the Capulets and Montagues, join in. They shout, "Clubs, bills, and partisans! strike! beat them down! / Down with the Capulets! down with the Montagues!" (1.1.73-74). "Clubs, bills, and partisans" was a cry used by London apprentices to call everyone out for a riot. [Scene Summary]

After killing Tybalt, Romeo stands in a daze. Benvolio tries to snap him out of it, saying "Romeo, away, be gone! / The citizens are up, and Tybalt slain" (3.1.132-133) . Romeo flees, and the danger the citizens could pose to him is illustrated by a moment of macabre humor. A citizen asks Benvolio, "Which way ran he that kill'd Mercutio? / Tybalt, that murderer, which way ran he?" (3.1.137-138) . Benvolio points out the body of Tybalt and the citizen tries to make a citizen's arrest of Tybalt, saying, "Up, sir, go with me; / I charge thee in the Prince's name, obey" (3.1.139-140). [Scene Summary]

Capulet and his wife are summoned by a watchman, then hear cries of "Juliet" and "Romeo" in the street as they come to the funeral monument of their family. When they arrive, Capulet asks, "What should it be, that they so shriek abroad?" (5.3.190), and Lady Capulet says, "The people in the street cry "Romeo," / Some "Juliet," and some "Paris"; and all run, / With open outcry toward our monument" (5.3.191-193). We never see the citizens, but these two speeches make it clear that the problems of the Capulets and Montagues have once again disturbed the peace. [Scene Summary]