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Who/what is the most to blame for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet?

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Introduction

Who/what is the most to blame for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet? 'Romeo and Juliet' has been described as one of the greatest love tragedies in play history. It is filled with strong emotions and views, tension, action, violence, humour and most of all love, that binds the star-cross'd' lovers together. A wondrous play which captured the Elizabethan's attention and for generations to come. In this essay, I hope to explore the play and see what or who is the main cause of this catastrophic love story. Before the first scene begins, the chorus tells us what is to be expected in the play. " A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life; whose misadventur'd piteous overthrows, Doth with their death bury their parents strife." "The star-cross'd lovers" mean that Romeo and Juliet's love is to be hindered, because of the stars, that causes them to have bad luck in their relationship. This is described as "misadventur'd piteous overthrows" where someone or something has been a victim of something that they're innocent in, we feel pity for them, we can call this a tragedy. This prologue has basically told what the plot is, but as most would do in the Elizabethan period, they wouldn't be attentive at the start, especially if there's just a man standing on the stage rambling on, they need action, which is what the first scene provides. In Act 1, scene 4, Romeo changes his mind and decides going to the Capulet's banquet is not a good idea after all. He says, "I fear, too early; for my mind misgives, some consequence yet hanging in the stars." ...read more.

Middle

Perhaps if things had slowed down and were more thought about, then the consequences of Romeo and Juliet's' actions may not have been so fatal. As Friar Laurence suggested, " Wisely and slow they stumble that run fast" after he marries them, giving them a bit of advice. Friar Laurence thinks that Romeo is rushing into things, with regards to marrying Juliet. He doesn't think that Romeo could understand what love truly is, if he can stop loving one person for another in a matter of moments. In Friar Laurence's first soliloquy, he compares the plants to humans. He also says, " virtue itself turns vice, being misapplied; And vice sometimes by action dignified." He is saying that too much of a good thing can be dangerous and a bad thing can be used for the good. This is like a foreshadowment of the whole play. Romeo and Juliet fall in love and it causes their death, but their death brings the feud between the Capulet's and Montague's to an end. Friar Laurence is reluctant at the start to marry Romeo and Juliet, but then he says, " In one respect, I'll thy assistant be; For this alliance may so happy prove, to turn your households rancour to pure love." He thinks he should play a bit of match making and marry these two to end the feud. If he did not agree to marry them so quickly, then they would have slowed down, they might not have died. Though he does advises Romeo a lot, he acts like a 'father figure' to him. He tries to talk sense into him, just before he is to be married. "There violent delights have violent end..." ...read more.

Conclusion

Montague! See what a scourge is laid upon your hate, That heaven finds means to kill you joys with love" So the Friar's thinking, of how Romeo and Juliet's love could end the feud, was true, it did. Though it had to take the lives of two innocent beings for them to finally shake hands and make peace. Montague says at the end he will make a golden statue for Juliet and Capulet will do the same for Romeo. Overall, I think that all that I have mentioned above has played a fair share in the tragedy, but I think perhaps, that fate and fortune and the whole feud itself are probably the main causes for Romeo and Juliet's deaths. If the feud had not been going on between the two families, then Romeo and Juliet would not need to have gone through with the things they did, and throughout the play, little went right for them, luck didn't seem to be on their side. The play ends, with the Prince saying, "A glooming peace this morning with it brings, the Sun for sorrow will not show his head:...Some shall be pardon'd, and some punished. For never was a story of more woe, Than this of Juliet and her Romeo." This ends the play quite well, it ends with a rhyming couplet, "woe and" "Romeo". The Prince is saying, " Look what has been done, the sun will not come out, as it is weeping for Romeo and Juliet, some of you will be forgiven, but others will be punished, this story was a moving one and though good came out of it in the end, it is still a story of despair." ...read more.

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