Shakespeare's Tragic Thorns

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The rose is a truly beautiful flower, with a scent just as fine. Its petals come in a variety of magnificent colors: yellow, pink, white, and red. It’s become the universal symbol for love, the flower’s petals littered everywhere during Valentine’s. The rose is almost perfect, but it bears one flaw; it’s thorns. As the rose is the symbol of love, Romeo and Juliet has become the archetype for love stories today. Besides representing love, they are both alike in having thorns. The tragic story of forbidden love is its own thorn. The events leading up to the deaths of the two teens were just as terrible. Such as the deaths of a few key characters, Mercutio and Tybalt, whose deaths mark the start of the dreadful half of the play. The separation between the two lovers, Rome and Juliet, that occurs after Mercutio and Tybalt are slain, is also one of the many other depressing occurrences. One of the last scenes, the suicides of Romeo and Juliet, is the last and the most heart-wrenching scene for the audience. These three scenes, of the deaths, separation, and suicides of the characters, are only few of the numerous examples that show that, William Shakespeare’s, Romeo and Juliet, is indeed, a tragedy.
Every Shakespearean tragedy has a scene that marks the start of the tragic part of the play. In Romeo and Juliet, this would be where Tybalt and Mercutio’s altercation takes a turn for the worse. In Act. 3, scene 1, after Mercutio is badly wounded, Romeo says, “ I thought all for the best,” (123). Not long after that, Mercutio dies and so does Tybalt. Romeo’s line makes these deaths more devastating because, when he was just trying to resolve the feud between the families, it only resulted in the death of his best friend. Though it may ...

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...ed to a much more viewer-satisfying one. This omission and many others make it easy to forget that Romeo and Juliet was a tragedy. The events of Mercutio and Tybalt’s deaths, and Romeo’s banishment from Verona turned and formed this play into the heart-wrenching tragedy that it is. Like a rose, luring people in with its beauty and splendor, distracting them from its thorns, Shakespeare does the same in Romeo and Juliet. Even though it was mentioned in the prologue that, “ …A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life…” (7), the audience is still completely bewildered and shocked by the way the two lovers end up ‘together.’ Like a rose, Shakespeare manages to submerge his audience into this story of true and forbidden love, making them forget of the tragic ending, only then to continue to prick them with its thorn. The play’s thorn being that it is indeed a tragedy.
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