Help with metaphors in Romeo and Juliet


In the following excerpt from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, what metaphors does Friar Lawrence use to reveal his true feelings about the wedding?

Act II, Scene 6

“These violent delights have violent ends

And in their triumph die, like fire and powder,

Which, as they kiss, consume. The sweetest honey

is loathsome in its own deliciousness

And in the taste confounds the appetite.

Therefore love moderately. Long love doth so.

Too swift arrives as tardy as too slow.”


Hello Abby!

Remember that a metaphor is a comparison between two mostly unlike things that do have some characteristics in common (See this link for more help with metaphors).

In the excerpt you’ve chosen to analyze, the Friar is sharing his final words with Romeo before Juliet arrives to the wedding ceremony. The Friar uses phrases such as “violent delights have violent ends” and “the sweetest honey is loathsome in its own deliciousness” as metaphors that show how he truly feels about their relationship. The Friar believes that rash love is very dangerous… although, he still goes through with the plan of marrying the teens, so it begs the question of why did he agree to perform the ceremony? Is he liable for the deaths of Romeo and Juliet?

That’s another question for another day, but hopefully that helps you determine which parts of the Friar’s speech are metaphors!