This is exposition at its baldest. A prologue of fourteen lines is spoken, in which the whole story is told and the whole world of the play revealed.
Two households, both alike in dignity, In fair Verona, where we lay our scene, From ancient grudge, break to new mutiny, Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. From forth the fatal loins of these two foes A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life’ Whose misadventured piteous overthrows Do with their death bury their parent’s strife. The fearful passage of their death-marked love, And the continuance of their parent’ rage, Which, but their children’s end, nought could remove, Is now the two hours’ traffic of our stage; The which if you with patient ears attend, What here shall miss, our toil will strive to mend.