Romeo and Juliet opens with the traditional Shakespearian Chorus introducing two feuding families in Verona: the Capulets and the Montagues. It is the height of summer, and the young, hot-headed men of each family meet for a public brawl, forcing Prince Escalus, the Prince of Verona, to intercede. Unless the two families can co-exist peacefully, he threatens to banish them from the kingdom.
Lord Capulet announces a family feast, at which he wants to introduce his young daughter, Juliet, to Count Paris. Paris wants to marry Juliet, although Lord Capulet warns him that he may not marry Juliet until she is a little older. Lord Montague's son Romeo and his friends (Benvolio and Mercutio) hear of the party and decide to gatecrash it in masquerade fancy dress. Romeo hopes to see his beloved Rosaline at the party, but he is thrown off course when he meets Juliet. The young rivals instantly fall in love with each other, but Juliet's cousin, Tybalt, recognizes the Montague boys and