10 Epic Quotes from Romeo and Juliet: My Unique Teaching Collection

10 of the best quotes from romeo and juliet to teach to your students!

Quotes from Romeo and Juliet

I promise these are not all the usual famous quotes from Romeo and Juliet.

I have been teaching this play for 7 years and over time I’ve come to notice a few little gems from the play that I love analyzing with students.

This is one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays, which means that the WHOLE WORLD seems to know at least some of the most famous quotes from Romeo and Juliet!

And while there are many memorable quotes from the play, some stand out more than others. Here are the top 10 most important quotes from Romeo and Juliet.

My Favourite Juicy Quotes

  1. “These violent delights have violent ends…”
  2. “With love’s light wings did I o’erperch these walls…”
  3. “My only love sprung from my only hate…”
  4. “Deny thy father and refuse thy name…”
  5. “What, drawn, and talk of peace?…”
  6. “A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life…”
  7. “’Tis but thy name that is mine enemy…”
  8. “A plague o’ both your houses…”
  9. “Wisely and slow, they stumble that run fast.” 
  10. “Sin from thy lips? O trespass sweetly urged!…”

Keep reading to learn how and why I always teach these quotations to students!

Quote #1: These Violent Delights have Violent Ends

“These violent delights have violent ends, And in their triumph die, like fire and powder, Which as they kiss consume” – Friar Lawrence

This famous quote from the play focuses on the impermanence of pleasure and is SO FUN to analyze with students! Plus I think fire is one of the most underrated symbols in Romeo and Juliet.

 “Violent delights” refers to the passionate and intense feelings of love shared between Romeo and Juliet, while the “violent ends” paint a more somber picture, suggesting that despite its power, their love will not last forever.

The metaphor of fire and powder emphasizes this idea further; when fire and powder come together, it creates an explosive reaction which only lasts a short moment before dissipating. Just like Romeo and Juliet’s love, these violent delights must eventually come to an end. These profound words serve as a reminder that although intense emotions are captivating in the moment, they will not remain.

Of all the quotes from Romeo and Juliet, this one has gained notoriety in recent years since it has been used as a title for a popular YA book .

Romeo and Juliet famous quote these violent delights have violent ends

Quote #2: Romeo's Delusion, aka Crazy in Love

“With love’s light wings did I o’erperch these walls, For stony limits cannot hold love out; And what love can do, that dares love attempt. Therefore thy kinsmen are no stop to me.” – Romeo

I love pointing out this quotation to students! It’s a powerful example of how love can make us feel invincible! Sometimes the feeling of love is so intense we feel limitless and without boundaries, willing to take risks it means being with the person we love.

The brave words spoken by Romeo show that he has no fear of opposing his lover’s kin despite their disagreement with him, which only strengthens the bond between Romeo and Juliet – showing that nothing can keep them apart from each other. Therefore this quotation ties directly into a romantic idea, prompting us to consider whether indeed true love cannot be measured or constrained.

Quote #3: Juliet's Moment of Utter Horror

“My only love sprung from my only hate, Too early seen unknown, and known too late! Prodigious birth of love is it to me, that I must love a loathed enemy.” – Juliet

This powerful quotation from Romeo and Juliet speaks of the intense, complex emotions of love: both its appearance as well as its simultaneous combination with hate.

It describes how Romeo has discovered that his “only love” is one who he initially hated – it’s a shocking revelation.

The idea of loving someone who they once loathed represents a “prodigious birth of love” to him, meaning that due to the force of the emotion at hand, Romeo feels as if his experience is something extraordinary.

Through its contrast between love and hate, this quote emphasizes the dramatic intensity behind Romeo’s newfound feelings for his beloved Juliet.

Juliet quotation my only love has sprung from my only hate.

Quote #4: The "What's in a Name" quote... but better...

“Deny thy father and refuse thy name. And I’ll no longer be a Capulet. ‘Tis but thy name that is my enemy” – Juliet

Of all the famous quotes from Romeo and Juliet, this one speaks to the passionate love between the two characters. Romeo is telling Juliet that if she denies her family name, the Capulets, then he will no longer consider them to be his enemies.

In other words, Romeo is promising Juliet his eternal loyalty and suggesting that if they come together, then class or race would not matter in their relationship.

This beautiful sentiment speaks of a love that transcends boundaries, declaring that choosing something broader for love is more important than anything else. It’s a testament to love’s powers and its ability to supplant seemingly insurmountable challenges. 

I always this the 1968 movie version of this scene, and my students LOVE IT!

Quote #5: Tybalt words cut like a knife!

“What, drawn, and talk of peace? I hate the word as I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee.” – Tybalt

This quote is spoken by Tybalt as he enters the scene and finds his opponents represented by their family crest.

The phrase serves to express the deep animosity that Tybalt feels for the Montague family, even to the point of hating them more than hell itself.

This extreme expression of his disdain for his enemies and the word “peace” makes it clear how unlikely it is for a reconciliation between rival families to take place.

Tybalt expresses that he cannot think of anything more detestable than peace between two families so vehemently opposed to one another; this builds on tension already surrounding the series of unfortunate events that are about to unfold over the course of the play.

No time to lesson plan?

Check out all my zero prep teaching resources on TPT

Quote #6: The spoiler quote from Romeo and Juliet

“A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life, whose misadventured piteous overthows doth with their death bury their parents’ strife.” – Prologue

This well-known quotation from William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet poetically reflects the tragedy of two young lovers whose ill-fated fate ends their lives and the long-standing conflict between their respective families.

By using the term “star-crossed lovers,” Shakespeare creates a sense of inevitability and foreboding, implying that it was never meant to be for Romeo and Juliet – as if they were never meant to find peace in life.

The phrase “piteous overthows” also speaks to this, suggesting a feeling of sadness and helplessness over their deaths. Ultimately, their premature passing serves a greater purpose; by ending their own lives, Romeo and Juliet are able to bring an end to the generations-long disagreement between their families, thus putting an end the overall cycle of violence associated with these two particular families in Verona.

Quote #7: The famous Rose quote where Juliet gets meta

“’Tis but thy name that is mine enemy: What’s Montague? It is not hand nor foot, Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part. What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, By any other name would smell as sweet.” – Juliet

Of all the quotes from Romeo and Juliet, this might be one of the most famous! In the play much is said about the power of names. This particular quotation speaks to how our labels can often be misleading or unimportant; ‘Tis but thy name that is mine enemy. In other words, we should not judge someone based on their name alone.

Even if one was named Montague in this story, it would not make them an enemy because names are mere words and do not define who we are as people. This line references roses as an example of something which will always smell sweet regardless of what it is called.

Our identities should not be defined by labels; only then can we get to know a person truly and beyond their name or family ties.

Quote #8: Mercutio uses his dying breath to shout a curse!

“A plague o’ both your houses! They have made worms’ meat of me” – Mercutio

Mercutio’s heart-wrenching final words in Romeo and Juliet serve as a testament to the tragedy of the feud between the two noble families, which eventually causes Mercutio’s death.

I love the way this scene is depicted in the 1996 movie of Romeo and Juliet – read this about why I always show this version of the movie to students.

With a bitter irony, he curses those responsible for his passing and their entire ancestry, wishing upon them a most severe punishment – a plague. This condemnation held great severity in the context of 16th-century England, directly referencing the devastating Black Plague that wiped out an estimated 30-60 million people.

Mercutio conveys his powerful message by describing himself as being “made worms’ meat” – consumed and destroyed by another creature, just as how he was demolished by people caught up in a fight far bigger than him.

Moreover, he compares their actions to that of vermin or worms, which consume dead bodies, implying that they have indirectly caused his death without even meaning to. It’s a woeful plea for peace that resounds deeply with anyone familiar with this classic play.

Romeo and Juliet quote from Mercutio a plague on both your houses they have made worms meat of me.

Quote #9: A Forshadowing Quote from Friar Lawrence

“Wisely and slow, they stumble that run fast.” – Friar Lawrence

This thought-provoking quote from Romeo and Juliet, spoken by Friar Lawrence, summarizes an important life lesson.

The phrase “wisely and slow” implies that thoughtful decisions should be made deliberately with care and patience. Haste can ultimately lead to missteps and mistakes, showing why moving too quickly can be detrimental.

To illustrate the idea further, Friar Lawrence adds “they stumble that run fast;” this suggests that people who rush through things don’t always get the desired results.

Ultimately, it is important to take the time to truly consider outcomes before making your decision as opposed to acting impulsively. By advancing carefully and thoughtfully, you will have greater success overall.

Quote #10: The best quote from Romeo and Juliet about their first kiss

“Sin from thy lips? O trespass sweetly urged! Give me my sin again.”

This famous quote from Romeo and Juliet is spoken by the titular character Juliet, when her soon-to-be husband Romeo affirms he had just kissed her.

The words express her conflicting feelings about the transgression of stealing a kiss: on one hand it was wrong to do so, yet sweet at the same time.

We can infer from Juliet’s request for “my sin again” that she consciously enjoyed what Romeo did regardless of its immorality and even wished for him to continue doing it, if only she was not kept socially bound by rules she must abide to, or else face social ostracization.

This captures the tension between free will and conformity which has often stirred within young lovers of varying ages throughout the ages. Ultimately we understand that though Juliet may regret giving into temptation this time around, love always trumps propriety.

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Picture of Carley 📚 Teacher Author @ Visual Thinking Classroom

Carley 📚 Teacher Author @ Visual Thinking Classroom

B.A., B.Ed., Graduate Certificate in Teacher Librarianship // carley@visualthinkingclassroom.com