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To what degree is Fate responsible for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet?

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Introduction

To what degree is Fate responsible for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet? I have written this essay to show sufficient evidence that none of the character's decisions or coming together was down to fate. I think that the characters made their own decisions that led to the eventual suicide of Juliet in Act 5. I am going use evidence from the text to support my theory that none of the events leading up to the tragic death of Juliet were down to fate. Friar Lawrence contributed to Juliet's tragedy by giving her the option to drink a potion that would put her to sleep. ...read more.

Middle

Friar Lawrence was the trigger for these events, for the idea of the potion was his, so I don't believe this was down to fate. The Capulet family was also responsible for Juliet's fate because they were feuding with the Montagues. This made her angry and desperate as she couldn't see Romeo because of a family feud that had been going for years but no one knew why. Juliet was growing more restless of the fact that she couldn't see Romeo and she was more likely to try more irrational things to be with him. Juliet thought that the family feud was pointless because she couldn't be with Romeo. ...read more.

Conclusion

We know this when Balthasar says, "Her body sleeps in Capulets monument" (5.1 Line 18) and Romeo replies "Is it e'en so? then I defy you stars!" (5.1 Line 24). Romeo didn't believe that Juliet was dead and it slowly began to dawn on him and he began to feel it in his heart. Romeo then went to Mantua to buy a lethal potion. If Balthasar hadn't misunderstood Juliet's supposed death then Juliet wouldn't have killed herself because Romeo would have got the Friar's message and would have been at her side when she awoke. I conclude that fate in the Shakespeare play Romeo and Juliet is not the reason for Juliet's tragic death in the Capulets chamber. Instead it is the miscommunication of Balthasar that led to Juliet's suicide in Act 5. ...read more.

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