The heroes are responsible for their own misfortune. Their personal decisions lead to a chain reaction of destruction. It's not particularly happy stuff, but alas, it is a Shakespearean tragedy. Romeo and Juliet is not a tragedy because they both die, but rather because all of it could have been avoided at several points throughout the play.
This play can be considered as a tragic comedy. Like all of Shakespeare's tragedies, a lot of character die at the end of Romeo and Juliet. The major difference with this play is that time after time, their deaths could have been prevented.
They could have run away together, the Friar could have made better decisions, they could have told their parents, etc. The is an emphasis on youths as well because Shakespeare pokes fun at the two characters and the impact on their age to their love lives.
Romeo was madly in love with an uninterested party right before he falls madly in love with Juliet. Think about how two high school students act when they are in love, and you have these two characters! It shows as an extreme example of how Shakespeare's writing has crossed time, and it still relatable.
Romeo and Juliet is one of Shakespeare's most famous plays; however, it is very tragic. There are quite a few elements that make this play a tragedy.
One of the first is the downfall of the main characters, Romeo and Juliet, culminating in their deaths at the end of the play. Second, are the many events that lead up to the deaths of Romeo and Juliet. Some of these include the fact that each comes from each other's loathed enemy family, Juliet's father insists that she marry Paris and then he moves the wedding up a day, Romeo kills Tybalt, etc. We usually expect the protagonist s to have a happy ending; however, this does not happen.
As a result, these are some of the elements that make Romeo and Juliet a tragedy. Why is Romeo and Juliet a tragedy? Expert Answers shake99 Certified Educator. Having heard of this decision by the Prince, Lady Montague dies from grief, a tragic death that might not have happened if the two families had ended their brawl. Thereafter, Romeo kills Paris after Paris challenges him to a duel and soon Romeo and Juliet take their lives. All these deaths could have been prevented but due to the ongoing dispute there was no chance.
The whole play was in total five days long. The length of time adds to the build up of tragedy in the play. One death alone could not have made this play a tragedy but six takes the plunge and over the course of only five days. Early in the play, Romeo is painfully aware of the passage of time as he pines for Rosaline: Soon time begins to aid in the destruction of the lovers.
Capulet rushes ahead the marriage date, insisting Juliet wed Paris a day early, and thus forcing her into swift and, ultimately, fatal action which lead to her death. The fast pace in which the play moved on demonstrates the rash decisions made throughout the play and that is forwarded to the audience by Shakespeare. Another factor which contributed to the death of Romeo and Juliet was the Capulets.
Their outraged and raging behaviour towards Juliet when she refused to marry Paris drew the line for Juliet to seriously think about her position. Old Capulet fails Juliet as he contradicts what he had said in the very beginning about her marriage to Paris. Nevertheless, Old Capulet changes his mind and moves it forward when before he was determined to wait two summers. His rash and sudden decision of engaging Paris and Juliet meant that Friar Laurence had less time to get the letter to Romeo.
Likewise, Capulet cannot believe that his faithful daughter would adopt such an attitude. She believes Juliet is better off dead than disobedient. Lady Capulet here demonstrates that she has never had to deal with a willful child. Their attitude at the time was very common for wealthy and well known residents of Verona, Italy as parents usually chose who their children would marry and the two people in question had no say in the matter. It was also normal for parents to disown their child if they refused to accept the person they chose for them to marry.
Marriage for girls usually began once they hit puberty and soon after they would have children of their own. It was the parents responsibility to make sure that their children married and was known to be their duty. She is portrayed as being the nurse of Juliet who was responsible for taking care of her.
Even though the Nurse is aware of the looming engagement of Juliet and Paris she does nothing at the beginning to try and separate and stop the growing attachment of Romeo and Juliet, instead acts as messenger because she liked being involved in the relationship.
The sense of betrayal for Juliet is tremendous. Suddenly the name of the Nurse, Angelica, seems to contradict her personality because of her trickery. The person whom she felt most close to, a friend who was there for had now turned against her? The Nurse was also quick to side Tybalt when she realized that for her, blood was thicker than water. At this point of the play it seems that all odds are against them and the audience are rooting for them to overcome the trials and tribulations.
Here there is a genuine feeling of the readers feeling sorry for them and this one factor has a great impact in making the play seem so tragic. However, nothing that he touches turns out right. Yet, one of his most favourable traits is that he is good intentioned.
He believes that through this act the feud between the brawling households might come to an end. The length of hatred and love prove too much as the plan is a lot to ask for in a marriage that was so hasty and very secretive.
Although Friar hopes for a brighter future, he also acknowledges the fact that the marriage might turn out to be a terrible disaster with terrible consequences. The Friar also has a good relationship with Romeo and acts as a voice of reason to temper the rising tragedy from unfolding. Soon after Romeo kills Tybalt he rushes to Friar and grieves over his banishment. However, he receives no sympathy from Friar as he is disgusted at the melodramatic emotions Romeo was showing.
However, the strange advice that Friar gives Romeo is that before he leaves for Mantua, he should visit Juliet for his honeymoon night. For Romeo going to the Capulet house would be a death sentence in the face of the events that had occurred and extremely risky. Was he looking out for Romeo, Juliet or himself? Friar believed that quick passionate and melodramatic love affairs end in disaster. This may be because the two people in question, Romeo and Juliet, fell in love on the basis of superficial motives, just looks and not mutual understanding.
For a relationship to develop there must be a sense of understanding between the two people. These words reflect how aware Friar was of the consequences yet, he was foolish enough to believe that somehow everything would be okay.
His short sightedness was a mistake that he should have noticed when everything was plain to see that there were going to be drastic consequences. Unknowing and rather foolishly Friar encourages Paris to marry Juliet when Paris speaks of his engagement to Juliet. He then further deceives everyone by persuading Juliet to fake her own death. When presently through all thy veins shall run, A cold and drowsy humour, for no pulse, Shall keep his native progress, but surcease.
In this quote Friar Laurence is telling Juliet to take the vial and to drink it when she goes to bed. This fluid, while going through her vein, will make her cold and drowsy and make it appear as if she does not have a pulse. However, her blood will continue moving naturally and will not stop.
It might seem that what Friar is doing is very noble because he is risking his own reputation and not to mention life by trying to bring together Romeo and Juliet, his deeds were actually making things worse for them.
To the audience the plan of using the sleeping potion is a drastic and outrageous plan. How sure was he that the plan would work? Did he even know that the potion might cause Juliet difficulty physically? The worse thing was that before he actually found this out he had planned that he would keep Juliet in his cell whilst Romeo returned.
How on earth was he sure that he could unbury Juliet on time before she woke up or be sure that she woke up after the grieving families left? His unpredictable behaviour and outrageous plan intensifies the build of tragedy in the play. Instead of taking this rash decision of making Juliet take the potion, Friar, at this point of the play, should have just there and then confessed the truth to both the families. Maybe the reason why Friar chose not to was because he knew he was in too deep and it was too late to climb out.
His attitude becomes even less appealing when he goes to awaken Juliet but finds Romeo dead, he flees the scene. His action is cowardice after everything that had happened. Through his actions the audience are made to feel that Friar was probably too fond of his reputation and name in society.
What Friar should have done was stay put, comfort Juliet when she woke up, bring order and try to contact the families. The Friar had a lot to be condemned for and a little excused; excused for the part of bringing together Romeo and Juliet in an attempt to end the bitter dispute because his intentions were for a right cause.
However, he could have taken more cautious and responsible actions as an adult and priest when guiding Romeo and Juliet instead of deceiving everyone. Towards the end of the play Friar Lawrence seems like the most to blame due to his actions taken and the audience are also quick to recognize this.
It might be possible that Shakespeare had a reason for placing the blame on him as the general attitude towards Catholicism during the reign of Queen Elizabeth was not officially illegal, but any form of practiced Catholicism was.
This rule meant that it was against the law to go to Mass, to make a confession, to be married by a priest, and to openly practice the religion. When looking closely into the historical events it can be known that Catholics were tortured and sometimes executed if they did not submit to the Angelic Church. Shakespeare uses the symbolism of the poison to add to the tragedy of the play. Friar Lawrence describes the plants, herbs and stones to have uses for both good and bad Act 2, Scene 3.
His remark views poison, a natural substance, to be made lethal only by humans because of the way it is used and thus, it is not entirely evil. When the potion was given to Juliet it was meant to create the appearance of death yet, due to the circumstances Friar Lawrence was unable to control, the potion does evidently bring about fatal disaster when Romeo commits suicide. This shows how humans can cause untimely deaths without even intending to do so.
In this play Shakespeare shows how peoples good intentions and qualities can turn to poison by the factors of the world.
Essay on The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet By William Shakespeare - The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet By William Shakespeare "Romeo and Juliet" is a story of love that is wrecked by a feud between the two lovers' families. Romeo, a Montague is madly in love with Juliet, a Capulet. They are both young and fall madly in love.
Tragedy fits into Romeo and Juliet due to the tragic death that occurs at the end of the play and because of this is considered to be tragedy. There are three topics to consider when looking at tragedy.
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