Who Is Responsible in Deaths of Romeo And Juliet Essay Example


There is no doubt that Romeo and Juliet is one of the most tragic love stories out there, but many people question and contemplate, who is the one responsible for all of these deaths? In this famous piece of literature, Romeo and Juliet come from rival families, but they catastrophically fall in love. Due to many unfortunate actions from the characters, they are torn apart and needing to be together. Their love ultimately leads to their untimely deaths no longer than a week after they meet. In Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, Romeo is to blame for the death of himself and Juliet by going to the Capulet party, killing Tybalt and being banished, and not waiting for a letter from the Friar regarding Juliet’s death. 

In the first scene of this play, it is revealed that Romeo has recently been dumped by Rosaline and is heartbroken, so he goes to the Capulet party with his friend Benvolio to realize that Rosaline is nothing special. Benvolio tells Romeo after he hears about he party, “Go thither, and with unattained eye/ Compare her face with some that I shall show/ And I will make thee think a swan a crow” (Shakespeare 1.2. 87-89). In this quote,  Benvolio is trying to convince Romeo to go to this party, and he eventually gives in and goes. Romeo goes against his instinct, and ends up encountering Juliet at the party. If he had never attended this party, he would not have fallen deeply in love with Juliet. 

The turning point of the play is when Romeo kills Tybalt and is banished, leaving Juliet stranded in Verona. Benvolio warns Romeo after he kills Tybalt, “Romeo, away, be gone/ The citizens are up, and Tybalt slain!/ Stand not amazed. The prince will doom thee death” (Shakespeare 3.1. 128-130). Benvolio knows that Romeo will be badly punished, so he tells him to run. Once Romeo is banished, Juliet longs to be with him. They can’t stand being apart, and they know that they somehow have to find a way to be together. She and the Friar hatch a plan for them to both be together, which leads to both of their demise. Juliet plans on taking a sleeping potion to fake her own death, and the Friar will retrieve her from the tomb after 48 hours. However, not everything goes according to plan, and what happens next is the most convincing reason why Romeo is to blame. 

In the end of the play, Romeo’s impatience and lack of trust kills them both when Romeo does not wait for a letter regarding Juliet’s death. After Balthazar tells Romeo of Juliet’s death, Romeo responds to him, “Tush, thou art deceived/ Leave me and do the thing I bid thee do/ Hast thou no letters to me from the friar?” (Shakespeare 5.1 30-32). Balthazar replies, “No, my good lord” (Shakespeare 5.1 33). The scene comes to a close as Romeo says, “No matter. Get thee gone/ And hire those horses. I’ll be with thee straight” (Shakespeare 5.1 34-35). Romeo decides at this moment not to wait for letters from the Friar, and departs for Verona. If he would have abided in Mantua for a few days longer, he would have known the plan and not killed himself. His character traits lead to both of their doom. 

Although the actions of many different people could reason for the deaths of the star-crossed lovers, Romeo is most to blame because of his recklessness and impatience. Because he is so heartbroken over Rosaline, kills Tybalt and is banished, and doesn’t wait for a letter to a Friar about Juliet’s death, Romeo is most responsible. The traits of patiences and calm in hard times can be learned from the tragedies in this play, as well as love and passion. Just as the prince says in the final lines of the play, “There never was a story of more woe/ Than this of Juliet and her Romeo” (Shakespeare 5.3 325-326). 

Works Cited 

Durband, Alan, editor. Romeo and Juliet Modern English Version Side-By-Side With Full Original Text. Barron’s Educational Series, Inc., 1985.

 

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