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Who is responsible for the deaths of Romeo and Juliet?

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Who is responsible for the deaths of Romeo and Juliet? Nick Hayden 10NS At the end of the play 'Romeo and Juliet' the Prince blames the two parents for the deaths of the 'two star-crossed lovers' death: 'See what a scourge is laid upon your hate, That heaven finds means to kill your joys with love!' (Act V, Scene III Lines 292-293) But the parents are not entirely to blame for the tragic deaths of Romeo and Juliet. Everyone who comes into close contact with either Romeo or Juliet contributed to their deaths. Both the friends and family, even the two lovers themselves can be partly to blame for the deaths. Although these characters donated something to make the young couple slay themselves, it could also be said that fate; 'Inevitable destination or necessity destined term of life; doom,' had a part to play. In the prologue at the beginning of the play it states: 'A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their live.' (Prologue Line 6) This shows that the couple met by fate and destiny led their lives. Friar Lawrence holds more responsibility than most as he meddles with others affairs to benefit himself. Friar Lawrence marries Romeo and Juliet even though he forebodes that this hasty marriage may lead to a catastrophic outcome. ...read more.


This means that the Montague's and Capulet's are oblivious to what their children are doing and how they are growing up: 'Nurse where is my daughter? Call her forth to me,' (Act I, Scene II, Line 1). This shows that Lady Capulet does not have a strong bond with Juliet as she refers to her as 'daughter' instead of her name. The parents are so involved with their own affairs and the feud that they neglect their children. Capulet has many temperaments in which he is both very loving and understanding: 'My child is yet a stranger in the world, She hath not seen the change of fourteen years; Let two more summers wither in their pride, Ere we may think her ripe to be a bride.' (Act I, Scene II, Lines 7-10) This show Capulet as kind and thoughtful towards his daughter, as he has allowed two more years to pass before Paris could marry her. But Capulet also demonstrates that he could be unjust and threatening: 'Hang thee, young baggage, disobedient wretch! I tell thee what: get thee to church a'Thursday, Or never after look me in the face. Speak not, reply not, do not answer me!' ...read more.


It is thought that the two 'star-crossed' lover's lives were guided by the result of the events which were influenced by the characters that are responsibly for there deaths. All the things mentioned could be responsibly for Romeo and Juliet's death. Some of the characters hold more responsibility than others but all the characters grasp a heavy burden of accountability. The Friar, Nurse, the Capulet's, the Montague's, Tybalt, Benvolio and Mercutio can be blamed but Romeo and Juliet must be to blame more then others as they themselves can make the decisions. It is said that fate leads the lovers to death, but each character has his/her freewill and is responsible for his/her actions. The hasty marriage, wrongful use of potion, failure to send the letter, hatred, selfishness, lust, revenge, intolerance and rivalry are causes for the deaths. The tragedy of Romeo and Juliet should be designated as the failure of human responsibility or human error rather than fate. Who should be blamed for this tragedy may remain long controversial, but the story of the two star-crossed lovers will remain timelessly in the world of literature. 'For never was a story of more woe, than this of Juliet and her Romeo' (Act V, Scene III, Lines 309-310) ...read more.

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