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Explore the importance of fate in Romeo and Juliet

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Explore the Importance of Fate in the Play 'Romeo and Juliet' Responding to actual question and style and Fate, a concept often linked with the stars, is a main theme that runs throughout the play. Romeo and Juliet, 'a pair of star crossed lovers' are always destined for a tragic and 'untimely' death. There are many interpretations on the role of fate in the play: as a 'greater power' that has ultimate control over the lives of the characters; a force that has arisen out of the society lived in by Romeo and Juliet, which influences their choices and causes them to be impulsive and at times foolish, and some think that fate may be put down to the personalities of the lovers, and their fatal flaws which often cause the situation to deteriorate further. In my opinion Romeo's fatal flaw is impetuousness: he is 'hot-headed' and acts impulsively and hastily on several occasions. For example at the beginning of the play, Romeo decides to go to the party of his enemy Capulet, even though her knows it will make the feud worse and anger Tybalt and any other Capulet with a similarly fiery temperament. He also has his reservations and worries about going. Saying, 'my mind missives some consequence'. ...read more.


But yet I'll make assurance double sure, and take a bond of fate: thou shalt not live; that I may tell pale-hearted fear it lies, And sleep in spite of thunder'. This is conveyed in the play as it is clearly shown from the beginning that fate is in control and will thrust misfortune and desolation on Romeo and Juliet. All areas surrounding the lovers are manifested by fate: the feud between their families, that causes them to go to such extremes to be together; the death of Mercutio that causes Romeo to seek revenge on Tybalt; Juliet's parents' determination for her to be married to county Paris; the series of misfortunes that mean Friar Lawrence's plan goes devastatingly wrong; and the tragic, heart-wrenching timings of Romeo's suicide and Juliet's awakening. The Capulet feast and the circumstances surrounding it, is where fate begins to take a leading role in this play. It is left to the reader to determine whether, Peter and Romeo and Benvolio's meeting was a significant coincidence, or an encounter set up by fate. Romeo therefore learns of the party and urged by Benvolio, decides to go, with the hope that by seeing other beautiful woman he shall 'think thy swan a crow'. As Romeo, Benvolio and Mercutio prepare for the feast, Romeo has his misgivings. ...read more.


Friar Lawrence realises the impact this trick of fate will have and says 'unhappy fortune!' It is fate that accounts for this dire mischance and that will result in the deaths of four characters. Romeo has brought poison from a 'caitiff wretch' - a penniless apothecary, and has gone to the Juliet's tomb to kill himself along side his love. It is fate that allows Romeo to find an apothecary so poor that he has to sell Romeo poison, in order that he can 'buy food, and get thyself in flesh'. Again fate inflicts devastation, when it doesn't allow Friar Lawrence to reach the Capulet tomb in time to stop Romeo from committing suicide and explain to him their plan to elude Juliet's marriage to Paris and the circumstances therefore surrounding her death. Romeo says before he drinks the poison, that dying will mean he is able to 'Shake the yoke of inauspicious stars'. What he means by that by death, he will escape the horrific fate that has been thrust on him. He is however there when Juliet wakes up and explains to her 'a greater power than we can contradict has thwarted our intents'. He is informing her of the failure of the plan and is trying to tell her that her 'Husband there lies dead'. The 'greater power' he talks of is in fact fate. ...read more.

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