Soliloquy Examples


Soliloquy is used in drama, and it is a speech spoken by a character to reveal his or her inner thoughts. Essentially, the character speaks to him or herself-regardless of whether others are on stage or not. The character does not acknowledge the presence of other actors. Soliloquy reveals the character's thoughts, and it also is used to advance the plot.

Examples of Soliloquy:

From Romeo and Juliet-Juliet speaks her thoughts aloud when she learns that Romeo is the son of her family's enemy:

O Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?

Deny thy father and refuse thy name.

Or, if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love,

And I'll no longer be a Capulet.

'Tis but thy name that is my enemy.

Thou art thyself, though not a Montague.

What's Montague? It is nor hand, nor foot,

Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part

Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!

What's in a name? That which we call a rose

By any other word would smell as sweet.

So Romeo would, were he not Romeo called,

Retain that dear perfection which he owes

Without that title. Romeo, doff thy name,

And for that name, which is no part of thee

Take all myself.

From Romeo and Juliet-Juliet speaks her thoughts aloud just before she drinks the potion that will make her appear to be dead:

Come, vial. (holds out the vial)

What if this mixture do not work at all?

Shall I be married then tomorrow morning?

No, no. This shall forbid it. Lie thou there.

(lays her knife down)

What if it be a poison, which the friar

Subtly hath ministered to have me dead,

Lest in this marriage he should be dishonored

Because he married me before to Romeo?

I fear it is. And yet, methinks, it should not,

For he hath still been tried a holy man.

How if, when I am laid into the tomb,

I wake before the time that Romeo

Come to redeem me? There's a fearful point.

Shall I not, then, be stifled in the vault

To whose foul mouth no healthsome air breathes in,

And there die strangled ere my Romeo comes?

From Hamlet-Hamlet muses on life and death.

To be, or not to be? That is the question-

Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer

The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,

Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,

And, by opposing, end them? To die, to sleep-

No more-and by a sleep to say we end

The heartache and the thousand natural shocks

That flesh is heir to-'tis a consummation

Devoutly to be wished! To die, to sleep.

To sleep, perchance to dream-ay, there's the rub,

For in that sleep of death what dreams may come

When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,

Must give us pause. There's the respect

That makes calamity of so long life.

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