Essay Help Page

Forgot how to write an essay? No problem. Use the information below to help.

An essay is a long answer to deep or open ended question. There are many kinds of essays. You will be writing a persuasive essay. A persuasive essay is used to give an opinion and show the merits of that opinion. It, like all essays has a special structure that must be followed when writing it. Examine the terms, images, and example essay below. If you have questions, please see Mr. Brunken.

Parts of an Essay

  • Thesis Statement: This is the most important part of your essay. It gives your opinion and your three main supporting reasons for your opinion. This sentence is the last sentence of your introduction and the first of your conclusion.
  • Concession statement: This is the first sentence of your second paragraph. It shows that others have different opinions, but yours is the best.
  • Topic sentences: These introduce the main idea for each body paragraph.
  • Transitions: These restate your main points to remind your readers how right you are
  • Examples and facts: These sentences are found in your body paragraphs, they use details, facts, and examples from the book to show your opinion is correct.

Organizing an Essay

Example Essay

Question: Who do you think is the most memorable or influential character from William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet?

by Amber Tyan (8th Grade)

Playwright William Shakespeare has an incredible influence in our world.  Not only are most of the words we use commonly today created by him, such as the words “bloodstained”, “bedroom”, or even “anchovies”, movie directors use some of Shakespeare’s plots sometimes, even all the moons of Uranus are named after Shakespearean characters, such as the characters in Romeo and Juliet, Juliet and Mab.  Shakespeare’s creations are so memorable that people use them in everyday life.  His characters are just as extraordinary, such as Mercutio in the play Romeo and Juliet.  It was a pity Shakespeare killed him off so early in the play, but in my opinion Mercutio remained alive in everyone’s mind because he was humorous, brave, and a loyal friend.

     Mercutio is a charming character, but in my opinion his humor is what makes him most memorable.  This play is very serious and there isn’t much laughter within.  However, Mercutio adds color to the play and also the smiles and laughs.  He isn’t always just humorous, sometimes he is very mischievous and witty, too.  For example, in Act 2, Scene 1, he was teasing Romeo about Rosaline.  He said,”The ape is dead, and I must conjure him.  I conjure thee by Rosaline’s bright eyes, by her high forehead and scarlet lip, by her fine foot, straight leg and quivering thigh.”  He was teasing Romeo about his old love, Rosaline, talking about how he would conjure Romeo to his side by Rosaline’s body.  Mercutio wasn’t just humorous during everyday life.  Even when he was stabbed by Tybalt and was about to die, he said,”No, tis not so deep as a well, nor so wide as a church door, but tis enough, twill serve.  Ask for me tomorrow and you shall find me a grave man.” (Act 3, Scene 1)  That last line made sure that nobody would ever forget him because he was still joking about his wound, saying it wasn’t as deep as a well nor as wide as a church door, but it was enough to kill him and that he would be a “grave” men the next day.  Some people certainly left the world without a trace, but Mercutio left the world with a brilliant sentence at the end.

Mercutio is very humorous, but I think he is so memorable because he is brave, too.  In Act 3, Scene 1, Mercutio stood against Tybalt, who was an accomplished swordsman.  I think most people would just back away because of Tybalt’s fierceness.  However, Mercutio stood his ground and even challenged Tybalt.  He said to Tybalt,”And but one word with one of us?  Couple it with something: make it a word and a blow!”  Tybalt hadn’t said anything at this point, but Mercutio still gallantly challenged him.  Maybe he knew his chances were small and the odds weren’t in his favor, but he still fought Tybalt.  Mercutio wasn’t just brave in action, but he was also courageous in a strange, witty way.  In Act 1, Scene 4, Mercutio brought his Montague friends, Benvolio and Romeo to a Capulet dinner party.  Romeo was anxious because he knew that they were gate-crashing the party.  However, Benvolio and Mercutio told him to relax, that they were just going to dance, nothing else.  Although Mercutio assured Romeo nothing could go wrong, he himself knew that it could still be dangerous if someone found out that they were Montagues.  Nevertheless, he dared take them to a Capulet party, which I think must take some courage.  Another example of his witty bravery is in Act 2, Scene 4, when Juliet’s nurse approached Romeo with a message.  Benvolio, Mercutio, and Romeo were feeling a bit giddy then, so they started to ridicule Nurse.  Romeo started to make fun of Nurse’s clothing, then Mercutio joined in.  When Peter (Nurse’s servant) handed Nurse a fan, Mercutio said, “Good Peter, to hide her face, for her fan’s the fairer face.”  Perhaps Mercutio said that because Nurse really was not good-looking, or maybe he just wanted to goof around with Romeo.  After some conversation with Nurse, Mercutio started singing a ridiculous song about hare meat pie.  He sang, “An old hare hoar, and an old hare hoar, is very good meat in Lent; But a hare that is hoar is too much for a score, when it hoars ere it be spent.” (Lines 136~141)  Most people might just think Mercutio was plain silly,  but I think that to speak (or sing) like that in public takes plenty of courage, too.  To act silly seems like a piece of cake, but it isn’t easy.  It may seem to be very ridiculous, but it is also a type of bravery.

    In my opinion, Mercutio is unforgettable not only because he is humorous and brave, but also because he is a loyal friend.  In Act 3, Scene 1, Tybalt called Romeo his “man” (which meant “servant” in those days) and Mercutio became enraged.  He said to Tybalt, “But I’ll be hanged, sir, if he wear your livery!  Marry, go before to field, he’ll be your follower!  Your Worship in that sense may call him ‘man’!”  Mercutio told Tybalt that Romeo would fight him if he challenged him, but he would never be Tybalt’s “man”.  Mercutio did make fun of Romeo often, but he must be a very loyal friend, too, standing up for Romeo like that.  I’m sure not many people would have done that, even for a close friend.  They would probably just let the offense go, however Mercutio wouldn’t even let those simple words get past him so easily.  Also in Act 1, Scene 4, Mercutio was trying to convince Romeo to attend the Capulet party.  Romeo was still very upset because of Rosaline then, so Mercutio wanted to cheer him up.  However, Romeo said he thought going to the party wasn’t a wise thing to do because he had a dream about it.  Then Mercutio went into his most famous lines, the long-winded story about Queen Mab and dreams.  He talked on and on until Romeo cut him off.  Romeo said, “Peace, peace, Mercutio, peace!  Thou talk’st of nothing.”  Mercutio replied, “True, I talk of dreams, which are the children of an idle brain, begot of nothing but vain fantasy, which is as thin of substance as the air and more inconstant than the wind, who woos even now the frozen bosom of the north, and, being angered, puffs away from thence, turning his face to the dew-dropping south.”  Mercutio meant that dreams are just a kind of childish fantasy the brain creates, they lack of substance, they don’t mean a thing.  He wanted Romeo to forget about all those dreams and just enjoy himself at the party.  Mercutio really cared for Romeo, and he wanted him to be happy.  In my opinion, this scene really shows that Mercutio is a very loyal friend to Romeo.

    In conclusion, Mercutio is so memorable because he is cunningly humorous, courageous, and a very loyal friend.  Shakespeare’s work has been rewritten, copied, and reused all over the globe.  His influence over our lives is so immense but yet so common that we never stop to think about it.  If we pay more attention, we might discover that not only the words we commonly use today are coined by him, but even how we think and act are also influenced by Shakespeare.  His creations are the greatest achievements in the English language, and they will last forever.