Philip Weller caricature
Philip and Weller hugging

Welcome to my web site, now under development for more than twenty years.   
-- Philip Weller, November 13, 1941 - February 1, 2021
Dr. Weller, an Eastern Washington University professor of English and Shakespearean scholar for more than 50 years.

Romeo and Juliet: Act 5, Scene 2

           Enter FRIAR JOHN.

  1   Holy Franciscan friar! brother, ho!

           Enter [FRIAR] LAURENCE.

  2   This same should be the voice of Friar John.
  3   Welcome from Mantua! What says Romeo?
  4   Or, if his mind be writ, give me his letter.

  5   Going to find a bare-foot brother out,
6. associate me: accompany me.
  6   One of our order, to associate me,
  7   Here in this city visiting the sick,
8. searchers of the town: i.e., health officers.
  8   And finding him, the searchers of the town,
  9   Suspecting that we both were in a house
 10   Where the infectious pestilence did reign,
 11   Seal'd up the doors, and would not let us forth;
12. my speed to Mantua there was stay'd: my [intended] speedy journey to Mantua stopped there [in the house in Verona where I was quarantined].
 12   So that my speed to Mantua there was stay'd.

13. bare: bore, delivered.
 13   Who bare my letter, then, to Romeo?

14. here it is again: i.e., here, I'm giving it back to you.
 14   I could not send it,—here it is again,—
 15   Nor get a messenger to bring it thee,
 16   So fearful were they of infection.

 17   Unhappy fortune! by my brotherhood,
18. nice: trivial.  charge: weighty matter.
19. dear import: urgent importance.
 18   The letter was not nice but full of charge
 19   Of dear import, and the neglecting it
 20   May do much danger. Friar John, go hence;
21. iron crow: crowbar.
 21   Get me an iron crow, and bring it straight
 22   Unto my cell.

 23   Brother, I'll go and bring it thee.


24. the monument: i.e., the Capulet family funeral vault.
 24   Now must I to the monument alone;
 25   Within three hours will fair Juliet wake.
26. beshrew: rebuke.
27. accidents: events.
 26   She will beshrew me much that Romeo
 27   Hath had no notice of these accidents;
 28   But I will write again to Mantua,
 29   And keep her at my cell till Romeo come —
30. corse: corpse.  closed: enclosed, imprisoned.
 30   Poor living corse, closed in a dead man's tomb!