Romeo: is He in Control of His Destiny or is it Fate?

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Nicholas Tessitore                                                         Tuesday, March 25, 2003

English - Honors - Essay                                                          Mrs. Antoinette

Romeo: is He in Control of His Destiny or is it Fate?

        In the play Romeo and Juliet by Shakespeare after Romeo kills Tybalt, he exclaims, "Oh, I am fortune's fool," as various decisions have altered Romeo's life.   However, Romeo contradicts himself, as he is not "fortune's fool," because Romeo was really in control of his own destiny.  Through the use of literary devices, Shakespeare is able to portray how Romeo and Juliet were not "star-crossed lover," yet in fact they were in control of their own destiny.

        Clearly, "Wisely and slowly.  They stumble that run fast," is good advice, but no matter how good advice is, if it is not take, it's worthless.  These words were the wise words of Friar Lawrence, who advised Romeo and Juliet to let love take its course, as they were progressing too hastily in their relationship.  Before Romeo met Juliet he "feared too early for his mind misgives some consequence yet hanging in the stars," but he did not adhere to his own word.  This foolishness resulted with him going to the Capulet party, meeting Juliet, and in return he received "untimely death."  Ironically, Romeo's and Juliet's "grave is like to be their wedding bed," as such decisions led them to this.  It was fate however, that brought the two together, but yet it was not fate's choice to fall in love, as there "never was a story of more woe than this of Juliet and her Romeo."  Nonetheless, "fortune is fickle." And despite Romeo and Juliet being "star-crossed lovers" Romeo continually pursues Juliet as this is what he chose, and from this metaphorically "Romeo shall soon jest at scars that never felt a wound."

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        "O fortune is fickle," as one's fortune can often change dramatically, if drastic decisions are not thought out.  Romeo led to his own demise, as he was in control of his destiny.  When Romeo first met Juliet he did not have to "let lips do what hands do" and kiss Juliet, thus marking the beginning of their relationship.  Symbolically, this also marks the beginning of the end for Romeo, as was his choice.  Also, another factor that Romeo was in control of is whether or not their relationship should be public or private, foolishly he decided it to be private, ...

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