Topic: Prince Escalus announces that “Some shall be pardon’d, and some punished” at the end of Romeo and Juliet. Clearly identify and discuss THREE (3) characters who were responsible for the tragic outcome of this play. William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet tells the tale of two star crossed lovers who end their lives because of their love for one another.
Rash unadvised decisions, meddling, and dueling matches were the primary factors that affected Romeo and Juliet’s deaths. The people who are responsible for their passing are: Friar Laurence, Tybalt, and Romeo himself. Through their actions, not only were they the main causes of Romeo and Juliet’s deaths, but they had also caused suffering throughout the city of Verona. Friar Laurence appeared to be helping Romeo and Juliet, but he was planning and scheming for his benefit. He was against performing their marriage until he thought about how it would stop the fueding between the two households, not even thinking that Romeo and Juliet actually loved one another. “For this alliance may so happy prove, to turn your households’ rancour to pure love.” (II,iii,94-95) He gave Juliet a potion to make it appear as if she were dead, but never really thought the plan through.
He was too rash. He didn’t predict Friar John (who had the letter stating to Romeo all of the Friar’s arranged plans) might get held up. “But he which bore my letter, Friar John, was stayed by accident, and yesternight, returned my letter back.” (V,iii, 256-258) Overall, Friar Laurence was short-sighted, and if his plans had gone according to his predictions, they might have lived.
Capulet’s pugnacious nephew, Tybalt hates Montagues, so naturally, Romeo would fit the criteria. “I hate the word as I hate hell, all Montagues and thee,” (I,i,60-61) His anger had finally boiled over when Romeo had attended the Capulet’s ball. He had wanted to straighten him right then but the Capulets had spoken against it.
Tybalt had made a promise to revenge Romeo for attending the party. “I will withdraw, but this intrusion shall, now seeming sweet, convert to bitterest gall.” (I,v,93-94) When Tybalt was looking for Romeo the following day, Mercutio had taunted Tybalt into a brawl, which he of course could not resist. It ended with Mercutio becoming worm’s meat. Romeo slaughtered Tybalt which resulted in his banishment. If he had not been banished, Juliet would never have had to stab herself, and there deaths would not have happened then and there. Finally, we come to Romeo.
He is probably the most responsible for Juliet’s, and his own death. He shouldn’t have been so impulsive in believing Balthasar about Juliet’s death. He should have found out himself. He was too rash. Believing that she was dead, he went to the apothecary to buy a potion that would kill himself. His eagerness was overwhelming, and had resulted in his death.
Without these three people, Romeo and Juliet might have lived a few days longer. They might have been married, they might have stopped the fueding between the two households, or who knows. The Friar’s meddling, Tybalt’s eagerness to fight, and Romeo’s rashness had caused their destruction.