Shakespeare used an effective and useful technique right at the beginning of the play. This was the use of a chorus. The ending of the play was explained right at the beginning so the reader/audience would know the result of the whole thing. The effect that this would give would be that people would want to know what cause such a tragic death and how the events in the play built up to this. Also this shows that fate would always win as what they did, the end result would still be the same.
Fate controlled the play in different ways. Firstly, the way Romeo and Juliet came together in the first place was by fate by them meeting at the party. This is how their love started. And of course, fate brought their deaths. This all comes to do with the social context that it was written in and the belief at the time.
Many characters were involved and responsible for the deaths of Romeo and Juliet. Firstly and a very important fact, they came from two separate houses. And the houses were huge enemies. After this comes the contribution of individuals adding to the end result.
Of course fate brought the two lovers together, but also Benvolio had a small part to play in this, although he was trying to help and made Romeo happy in the end. He persuaded Romeo to attend the Capulet ball and this is where Romeo meets Juliet. He specifically said “You must examine other beauties” So if Benvolio had not said anything maybe the two of them would have never met. From this moment, there was a mixture of fate and individual action. For example Tybalt killed Mercutio which filled Romeo with rage who then went on and killed Tybalt himself. This was after they had a formal warning from Prince Escales. He said that if there was another feud between the two houses the person responsible would be exiled. So punishment was taken upon Romeo. “And for that offence immediately we do exile him hence.” This of course upset Juliet very much especially after that had just got married.
The friar contributed in marrying the two of them and later helping Juliet fake her death and fool her family, but this also fooled Romeo which then sparked off the suicidal deaths. The nurse passed messages of importance between the two lovers and helped organize the time and place of the marriage and also did not tell anyone from Juliet’s family who obviously would not want them even to speak. And we can not blame the apothecary as much as the rest, although he did provide Romeo with the poison that killed him when he could have asked what for. But on the other hand, it is none of his business what his customers do his job is just to sell. It was also Romeo choice to purchase the poison, nobody forced him. Finally Romeo and Juliet can be blamed for their own deaths. Firstly for the obvious reason that they committed suicide rushed into it too quickly. They were selfish and were not thinking about anyone else. Also Romeo fell in and out of love very easily. He was deeply in love with Rosiline according to him, and when she rejected him he was morning for a long time. But when he saw Juliet his words were “Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight! For I ne’er saw true beauty till this night.” (Act 1 scene 5)
In my own opinion, I think that the deaths of the two star-crossed lovers was not caused by just a single doing or person. It was done in steps and built up through the action of various people, however I think that the biggest role in their deaths was fate. I think that this tragedy had a good build up to it and also had a point at the end. It also had some slightly humorous and comical characters at times which made the play more interesting to read or watch. Shakespeare put across the point that if you let fate govern and control your life, this is what happens to you, he put this through to the very people that had the belief for fate. This was an extremely effective skill that must have caught the attention of many readers and made them just think. Over all I conclude that the message that was put across about fate was taken into account and passed on from different times, gradually changing the attitudes of people and their view towards fate.