Thursday, 28 July 2011

Secretaries of Juliet

The other day I watched 'Letter's to Juliet.' Yes it had that predictability about it like all romantic films do but I really enjoyed it. In the film the concept of the Secretaries of Juliet are explored and basically that's how the film starts - with someone writing to Juliet about her love situation, leaving it tucked in a wall at Juliet's house in Verona and never getting a reply until 50 years later when the letter is found.

I was pleasantly surprised when I looked on the internet and found that these secretaries are real and they answer thousands of letters sent in different languages, asking for help on what they should do, every year. Either that be about love lost, love found or love remembered. They have been answering these letters for over 70 years and sign them at the end 'The Secretaries of Juliet.' Amazingly, people still send these letters to this day and still get replies from volunteers who work there.

Juliet is one half of one of the most famous couples in literature. Perhaps the most famous couple. I love the story by Shakespeare about the couple who fight against what their parents and families have believed for years, all in the name of love. The families continue to fight over hatred but they have to fight for their love for one another. It's one of the greatest love stories ever written, which turns into one of the greatest tragedies ever known. I absolutely love the 1996 version of the film with Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes. There's actually a new Romeo and Juliet film being released in 2012 with Ed Westwick as Tybalt. Yes, the bad guy who kills Mercutio but still... Ed Westwick! Perfect casting in my opinion.

I think the way that people still send these letters to 'Juliet, Verona Italy' and still get replies is amazing. It's carrying on this incredible love story and making sure it carries on through the centuries. It promotes Verona as the new city of love and romance. The volunteers from Verona always write back to letters which have return addresses. Although Romeo and Juliet are fictional characters, girls go there as tourists and cry, visit her tomb and house, write her letter wanting advice and support or just for someone to listen to them, and then cry some more.

The Club di Giulietta (the secretaries) divide themselves up to answer the thousands of letters, which pour in to Juliet every year. These divisions are according to different languages or different romantic problems. Maybe it's crazy that people still send letters and recieve an answer back but I don't think that. I think it's really inspirational and think that more people should know about it around the world, that there are women out there that want to help in the name of love, keeping the romantic tales of what relationships should still be like.
"Juliet is a symbol of love," says Marchi, who has been answering letters for seven yearS. "Once you start, it's difficult to stop because it's so interesting. It gives you an intimate view of people's feelings. It is good to see that in the heart we are all the same, despite different countries, different cultures."



  1. I haven't seen the film, but I love the idea of these letters still getting replies, that's so nice in today's day and age of email, texts etc. I loved Romeo + Juliet, do we really need a new version? :) xx

  2. I love that the secretaries do that for people, I'd love to be a volunteer myself!

    I gave you an award!

  3. Rachel, I totally agree. And, I know - there are so many versions these days!

    Hazel, I would love to volunteer too. I think it would be an amazing experience. Thank You!! :)

  4. :O it's so amazing that people get replies to the letters sent over there! it's a wonderful way to carry on the story and not let the power of the love story fade over time. i want to see the 1996 version or the movie!

  5. Oh wow! Never heard of that before, seems so sweet! And real letters too, so lovely *--* Aaah, yayay, I can't wait for the new version of the film! :)<3

  6. Wow, they really do that?! That's amazing! I wonder how someone volunteers for something like that?! That should go on my bucket list :P So cool!
    Ed Westwick is PERFECT for the role! He is so good at playing the sly villain (like in Gossip Girl!). I'm looking forward to the new version then!

  7. Furree, I totally agree and the 1996 film is really good! I'm sure you'll enjoy it :)

    Meleonie, I hadn't either. Until the film was released it was probably never mentioned. I'm looking forward to it too :)

    Anna, I think it would be amazing to volunteer too. I totally agree about Ed Westwick - perfect choice! I love Chuck in Gossip Girl too, I could just see him playing the villain again!!


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