comparison essay romeo and juliet 1

Now that you have finished reading Romeo and Juliet, which is Shakespeare’s retelling of the legend of Pyramus and Thisbe, you can better appreciate the similarities and differences in the two stories. While Shakespeare used many plot elements from the original myth, he also made some significant changes.

Begin this project here to review the structure and organization of a comparison essay, then complete a graphic organizer of your ideas. This organizer will be submitted with your final essay.

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After completing the comparison organizer, which is your pre-writing activity for this essay, you will write a short (2 to 3 page) essay evaluating the decisions Shakespeare made when writing his play.

Some questions to address in your essay are:

      What plot devices, characters, or settings did Shakespeare keep from the original myth?

      What changes did he make in plot, character, or setting and why?

      What did Shakespeare add to the story?

      Is the theme of Romeo and Juliet the same as Pyramus and Thisbe?

Your essay should follow MLA formatting guidelines, should incorporate quotations from both sources to support your claims, and should have both a clear introduction as well as a distinct conclusion.


See the following rubric:

Indicator/Point Value


Instructor Comments

Indicator: Graphic Organizer is included


Point Value: 10

      The graphic organizer is included in the submission.

       The graphic organizer clearly demonstrates an understanding of the differences and similarities of the two stories.


Indicator: Essay compares the two stories.


Point Value: 60

      Essay contains a clear introductory paragraph.

      Introductory paragraph contains a strong thesis that outlines the argument the essay will support.

      Essay answers each of the following questions: What plot devices, characters, or settings did Shakespeare keep from the original myth? What changes did he make in plot, character, or setting and why? What did Shakespeare add to the story? Is the theme of Romeo and Juliet the same as Pyramus and Thisbe?

      Essay contains textual evidence to support claims.

      Essay is at least 2-3 pages w/ appropriate MLA formatting.

      Essay contains a clear concluding paragraph.


Indicator: Essay maintains correct formatting.


Point Value: 15

      12-point Arial or Times New Roman font

      Double spaced

      One inch margins

      Any text cited appropriately



Indicator: Essay demonstrates correct grammar, punctuation, and spelling.


Point Value: 15

      Essay is free of spelling or word use errors.

      Essay contains a mixture of simple, complex, and compound/complex sentence structure.

      Essay is free of run-on sentences or sentence fragments.

      All punctuation is used appropriately.

      All proper nouns and the beginnings of sentences are capitalized appropriately.

      All other standard English grammar, punctuation, and spelling are followed.