Measure for Measure

Back to List of Characters


Juliet is a fascinating character in William Shakespeare's play, Measure for Measure. She is a young woman who finds herself entangled in a complex web of power, morality, and deceit. Juliet is introduced as a nun-in-training, living in a convent and devoted to a life of religious dedication.

However, Juliet's life takes an unexpected turn when Angelo, the strict and hypocritical deputy ruler of Vienna, sentences her brother Claudio to death for the crime of fornication. Desperate to save her brother's life, Juliet seeks the help of Isabella, another young woman who is about to become a nun. Together, they hatch a plan to convince Angelo to pardon Claudio.

The Transformation

Juliet undergoes a remarkable transformation throughout the play. Initially portrayed as a timid and obedient young woman, she gradually becomes more assertive and resourceful in her pursuit of justice. Juliet's determination to save her brother is unwavering, and she is willing to take great risks to achieve her goal.

As Juliet becomes more involved in the political machinations of Vienna, she begins to question the moral authority of those in power. She challenges Angelo's hypocritical behavior and exposes the flaws in the justice system. Juliet's courage and intelligence make her a compelling and admirable character.

Ultimately, Juliet's efforts are successful, and Claudio is spared from execution. However, her victory comes at a great personal cost. Juliet is forced to make a difficult choice when Angelo offers to pardon Claudio in exchange for her sexual favors. In a powerful and emotional scene, Juliet refuses to compromise her integrity and remains steadfast in her principles.

Juliet's story in Measure for Measure is a testament to the power of individual agency and the importance of standing up for what is right. Her character serves as a symbol of resistance against injustice and oppression. Juliet's journey from a sheltered young woman to a courageous advocate for justice is a captivating and inspiring narrative.