Romeo and Juliet Question. Please help x?

what does the bit where she says her husband says, “Thou wilt fall backward when thou comest to age.” mean. I know it has a crude meaning but i dont know how to put it for an oral in english.

Its along the topic of whats the nurses attitude towards love.

Please help! Thanks:) x

1 Answer

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    Summary of Act 1, Scene 3

    Just the day before she was weaned, Juliet had fallen and bruised her forehead, and the Nurse's husband had picked her up and made a joke which three-year-old Juliet made even better:

    "Yea," quoth he, "dost thou fall upon thy face?

    Thou wilt fall backward when thou hast more wit;

    Wilt thou not, Jule?" and, by my holidame,

    The pretty wretch left crying and said "Ay."

    To see, now, how a jest shall come about!

    I warrant, an I should live a thousand years,

    I never should forget it: "Wilt thou not, Jule?" quoth he;

    And, pretty fool, it stinted and said "Ay." (1.3.41-48)

    A woman would "fall backward" to have sex, but of course little Juliet doesn't know that, so when she says "Ay" it's hilarious in a truth-out-of-the-mouths-of-babes kind of way. The Nurse thinks the story is so funny she tells it twice, laughing and probably imitating the cute, innocent way the child said "Ay."

    Lady Capulet, on the other hand, is tired of listening to the Nurse talk and asks her to please shut up, but the Nurse is so wrapped up in her memory that she tells the punchline of the story another two times. Again Lady Capulet asks the the Nurse to stop, which she does, though not before saying to Juliet, "God mark thee to his grace! / Thou wast the prettiest babe that e'er I nursed: / An I might live to see thee married once, / I have my wish" (1.3.59-62).

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