In this essay I will be investigating on who is to blame for the death of Romeo and Juliet. I will investigate on all the main characters and give my reasons on why they are to blame; I will prove this by using quotes from the play and backing them up by using evidence. I will also investigate on what role fate plays in tragedy.
After being rejected by Rosaline, Romeo was confused and when he met Juliet, he was desperate for a relationship because he desired to be loved by someone.
“Out of her favour where I am in love.”
This quotation tells me that Rosaline does not love Romeo, but Romeo is still in love with her. Romeo and Juliet were both young and inexperienced, out of desperation, Romeo jumped too quickly at the idea of jetting married to Juliet, he couldn’t wait and he rushed it with out any thoughts. This was undoubtedly a cause of future problems and a significant reason for the later tragedy.
By going to the Capulet’s party, the enemies of Romeos family, without an invitation Romeo provoked Tybalt, which inevitably led to a fight. There can be no surprise that this will lead to trouble. However Romeo did not want to fight Tybalt, so for the honour of Romeo, Mercutio decided he should fight in absence of Romeo, which led to Mercutio’s death.
“O Romeo, Romeo, brave Mercutio’s dead.”
The quotation above was told to Romeo when Mercutio died after the fight with Tybalt.
After the death of Mercutio, Romeo was emotionally unstable and he had his mind set on revenge against Tybalt.
” This shall determine that.”
After Romeo said the quotation above to Tybalt, they both have a fight and Romeo kills Tybalt. Romeo rushed the relationship between him and Juliet when he saw her for the first time in the party that he was not invited to.
“O then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do.”
The quotation above tells me that Romeo rushed into a relationship with Juliet without knowing her, the first time he saw her. When Romeo was thinking that he was better off dead, he wanted to commit suicide and surely committing suicide was totally irrational. This is an ultimate act of stupidity and recklessness. In the end he brought about the tragedy to himself. Romeo’s personality was too intense, he was serious about everything, and especially about marrying Juliet, when he has his heart set on something he does not use his mind. He did not even think about the consequences of his actions, also how he would affect the relationship between him and his family, and Juliet and her family. Throughout the play Romeo acted without thinking, many of his mistakes were made because of this, and this eventually led to his and Juliet death. These are my reasons why I think it was Romeos fault for his and Juliet’s death.
Juliet was also to blame because she suggested to get married too soon, when her and Romeo were not ready for it.
“And I will no longer be a Capulet.”
Juliet said this to Romeo; she was willing to get married to Romeo and be no longer a Capulet, but a Montague. She was so deeply in love and committed to Romeo that she was willing sacrifice anything, even her loyalty to her family.
Juliet wanted everything her own way, this was because she was a brat, she was impatient and she wanted everything straight away.
Juliet was being ungrateful to her parent’s; she betrayed their trust by wanting to marry Romeo, without her parent’s approval. This shows that Juliet is selfish and does not obey her parent’s wishes. She did not care about her parent’s wishes, that she should get married to Paris, who was a wealthy respected man who could provide for her and her family in the future.
“I will not marry yet; and when I do, I swear it shall be Romeo.”
Juliet said this to her mother telling her that she will not marry yet to Paris, but when she does marry it will be to Romeo.
Also, Juliet unfairly asked the Nurse to keep her and Romeo’s relationship a secret, which meant the Nurse betraying the Lord and Lady Capulet’s trust. This put the Nurse in an awkward position, for her love for Juliet, Nurse kept her secret but she also felt guilty for not telling Juliet’s parents.
The nurse tried to give Juliet honest advice, but Juliet was too stubborn to listen to the reasons given by the nurse, she refuses and does what she chooses.
These are my reasons for why I think Juliet is to blame for the tragedy of her and Romeo’s death.
Friar Lawrence plays an important role in the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. When he found out about Romeo and Juliet’s relationship, Friar Lawrence was naï¿½ve in thinking that he could stop the fighting and bring peace to the two families by uniting their only children.
“For this alliance may so happy prove
To turn your household’ rancour to pure love.”
Here, Friar was thinking of the good outcomes, the positive side but he forgot the negative side, for Romeo’s and Juliet’s family were enemies for a long time. He also made a mistake by marrying Romeo and Juliet when they were too young to make such a commitment and when so much was at stake.
“So smile the heavens upon this holy act”
Here, Friar is going to wed Romeo and Juliet without thinking of the consequences. When Romeo killed Tybalt in revenge for Mercutio’s death, he was banished from Verona, Friar Lawrence was stupid enough in thinking that the Prince would actually let Romeo back in the city. When Friar Lawrence discovered that everything was not going to plan he suggested to Romeo that he should go to Mantua; this led to a communication break down between him and Juliet. Friar Lawrence also suggested to Juliet to take the sleeping potion to fake her own death. He told her to take the potion on her wedding day, so that when her parents find her they will think that she is dead, and her marriage to Paris will be called off.
“A thing like death to chide away this same”
Friar here tells Juliet his plan on her to take the potion. Again he jumps straight to a plan with thinking of the negative side. This shows that the Friar is very foolish. Her parents would lay her to rest in the family tomb, where Romeo will be waiting for her. When she wakes she will join Romeo and live a life of exile. However, all did not go to plan, for Romeo did not receive the warning letter telling him of the plan, when he found out Juliet had died he truly thought she was dead. This lead to Romeo to become emotionally unstable, he had one thing on his mind; he wanted to see Juliet.
He travelled back to the city, even though he knew the penalty of being caught there was death. But he was way beyond caring. He purchased a vial of poison and went to the Capulet’s tomb. When he saw Juliet’s body he wanted to join her in death so that they could be together, so he drank the poison and died beside Juliet.
However Juliet was not dead, so when she awoke from her sleep, she saw Romeo’s lifeless body and out grief she killed herself. As a result of Friar Lawrence’s stupid plans, both Romeo and Juliet killed themselves. Friar Lawrence had no common sense, if he did then he would have not have suggested these stupid ideas. This is why I think Friar Lawrence is to blame for the death of Romeo and Juliet.
The Nurse is also to blame for the death of Romeo and Juliet, if she had acted with more responsibility then the tragedy could have been evaded. Firstly the Nurse plays too many important roles in Juliet’s life, she is a mother, sister, nurse and servant to Juliet, and Juliet has grown to depend on her.
“Go, girl, seek happy nights to happy days.”
The quotation was said by the Nurse to Juliet, and it means for Juliet to follow her heart and look for love.
As a result, Juliet relies on Nurse and always asks her for advice.
When Nurse discovered Juliet’s secret she encouraged the messages between Juliet and her lover Romeo, even though she knew Romeo was a Montague.
I will tell her, sir, that you do protest, which, as I take it, is gentlemanlike offer.”
Nurse here encourages Romeo to get married to Juliet; she also passes the message on to Juliet, which she regrets later on. Here the nurse did not think of the consequences and the trouble gets her self into. She should have known better than to encourage Juliet, she should have acted more maturely and sensibly. Nurse also helped influence Juliet with her plans to marry Romeo; she kept the marriage a secret therefore betraying the trust of Juliet’s parents, by encouraging their only daughter to marry the son of their enemy.
Furthermore, she betrays her friendship with Juliet by suggesting that Juliet forgets about Romeo, by marrying Paris instead. This contradicts the advice Nurse gives Juliet earlier on in the play when she encouraged Juliet to marry Romeo, this proves that Nurse was confused and did not know what she was doing or saying.
No faith, no honesty in men; all perjured,
All forsworn, all naught, all dissemblers.
Ah, where’s my man? Give me some aqua vitae.
These griefs, these woes, these sorrows make me old.
Shame come to Romeo.
Nurse said the quotation above to Juliet, which was about Romeo. Nurse here totally changed her mind about the wedding; she tries to convince Juliet to forget about Romeo. Nurse was also in an awkward position; she was torn between either losing the love of Juliet or betraying the trust of Lord and Lady Montague. When Nurse told Juliet to marry Paris, Juliet felt isolated, she felt as if she was on her own and had no one to turn to except the foolish Friar Lawrence. If Nurse had told Lord and Lady Capulet about Romeo and Juliet at the beginning, they could have stopped it before it went too far. This is why the Nurse is also to blame for the death of Romeo and Juliet.
Mercutio is also to blame for the tragedy, he was Romeo’s cousin and because of his influence on Romeo, he led Romeo to Juliet. Firstly, Mercutio was the one who encouraged Romeo to go to the Capulets party, where Romeo met Juliet and fell in love with her. If they had not gone to the party, Romeo would have not met Juliet and the tragedy would have been avoided.
“Nay, gentle Romeo, we must have you dance.”
Here Mercutio encourages Romeo to have some fun and he is trying to introduce his idea of going to the Capulet’s party. Secondly, Mercutio was too bigheaded; he thought he was brave so when Romeo refused to fight Tybalt, out of shame Mercutio got involved. Because of his stupidity, Mercutio got himself killed, which led Romeo killing Tybalt, which eventually led to Romeo being banished from Verona.
“Tybalt, you rat-catcher, will you walk.”
Here Mercutio is foolishly challenging Tybalt to fight him. Mercutio was being stupid and trying to show he’s bravery. As a result of this, Romeo was separated from Juliet, which caused Romeo to be emotionally unstable. If Mercutio had acted more maturely then the tragedy would have never occurred. These are my reasons why Mercutio is also to blame.
Tybalt is also to blame for the tragedy. Tybalt was a Capulet; he was Juliet’s cousin and he was responsible for Mercutio’s death. He had no acceptable reason to fight Romeo, which then led to a fight with Mercutio. Tybalt was always looking for fights, he was a troublemaker, he hated the Montague family and he wanted them dead. He hated peace and was always stirring trouble. He was cold hearted towards the Montagues, he despised them and he is always looking to start another war with them in anyway he can.
“Fetch me my rapier”
As soon as Tybalt saw Romeo in the party he told his servant to get his rapier, which is a sword. You can see that he hates Romeo and straight away he wants to start a fight with Romeo. When Romeo came to the Capulets party, Tybalt wanted revenge on Romeo for coming to his family’s party without any invitation, Tybalt did not want him in the party, so he went looking for him the next day. Just because Romeo came to the party, that was no reason to look for a fight, there for you can see that Tybalt was a troublemaker. Even though Lord Capulet told Tybalt to leave Romeo alone he still sent a letter to Lord Montague challenging Romeo to duel, which Romeo refused.
“Boy, this shall not excuse the injuries
That thou hast done me.”
When Romeo refused to fight, Tybalt did not care and he had his mind on fighting Romeo. You can see that he had no heart or pity for Romeo. Mercutio fought in Romeos place, he was killed and because of this Romeo was forced to seek revenge. If it hadn’t been for Tybalt’s interference the tragedy could have been avoided. These are my reason why Tybalt was also to blame for the death of Romeo and Juliet.
Lord and Lady Capulet are also to blame for the death of Romeo and Juliet. Lady Capulet should have been a better mother to Juliet; she should have asked Juliet if she wanted to get married and whom she wanted to get married to. Lord Capulet is largely to blame also; he tried to force Juliet to marry Paris when she was in love with Romeo. Lord Capulet wanted Juliet to marry Paris because Paris was a rich man; the marriage of his daughter to Paris meant his family could increase in status and power.
“Speak briefly, can you like of Paris’ love.”
Here Juliet’s mother is asking Juliet to love Paris. You can see that Juliet’s mother don’t care of Juliet’s feelings. Juliet’s mum was forcing Juliet to do something she can not do so that left Juliet desperate to do any thing that she can to not marry Paris. Juliet was given enormous responsibility by her father, she was faced with either pleasing her father and marrying Paris or going against her father and being with Romeo. After the death of Tybalt, Juliet’s cousin, Lord Capulet panicked and tried to rush Juliet’s marriage to Paris. This made Juliet and consequently Friar Lawrence seek drastic measures to halt the marriage. When Juliet refused to marry Paris, Lord Capulet threatened to assault and disown Juliet if she did not go through with the marriage.
“Or I will drag thee on a hurdle thither.”
Here Lord Capulet threatens Juliet that if she does not marry Paris he will abuse her. This made Juliet more eager to get away from home and not to marry Paris. This put Juliet under tremendous pressure, and forced her to take the sleeping potion to fake her own death. Because of the stupidity of her parents Juliet did what she did, this is why they are responsible for the tragedy.
Prince Escalus was also to blame for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet; it was his fault because he allowed the Montagues and Capulets to have a long running feud. He is also to blame because he banished Romeo from Verona, cutting off the communication link between him and Juliet. As a result of this separation, both Romeo and Juliet were forced to find another way to be together.
“Immediately we do exile him hence.”
Here Prince Escalus banishes Romeo and cutting off the link between the two lovers. By being separated from Juliet, Romeo became emotionally unstable and he believed he might as well be dead. Theses are my reasons why Prince Escalus is partly to blame for the death of Romeo and Juliet.
Fate is one of the main issues in the play “Romeo and Juliet”; it plays a significant role and is one of the main reasons why the tragedy occurred. Fate was the reason why the two young lovers were bought together, and were relentlessly torn apart. Romeo and Juliet’s relationship was destined to go wrong, it was written in their stars.
“From forth the fatal lions of these two foes, A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life.”
Romeo and Juliet’s relationship seemed to be having all the bad luck, because of fate and bad luck they died so young. It was fate that made the only two children from warring families meet and fall in love, fate is the reason why Mercutio was killed, fate made Friar Lawrence’s plan go wrong and because of fate Friar John could send his letter warning Romeo on time. What happened to Romeo and Juliet was destined to be.
Overall, I think that each of the characters named above are all to blame for the tragedy, if they all had not made silly mistakes the tragedy could have been avoided. However, the main reason why the tragedy happened was fate, Romeo and Juliet’s relationship was destined to end this way, it was written in the stars. Therefore I conclude that everyone is to blame for the tragedy of the deaths of Romeo and Juliet, including fate.