As the feud between two families, Capulet and Montague, continue, their children, Juliet
Capulet and Romeo Montague, face a bigger problem; forbidden love. Taking place in Verona, an ignorant Romeo first meets a childish Juliet at the Capulet’s party. Romeo and his kinsman, Benvolio, attend the party masked, searching for his first love, Rosaline. Coincidentally, Romeo meets Juliet, a new beauty, and falls in love with her not knowing the fact that she is a Capulet. The feud continues, leading one mistake after another, until both families realize their selfishness at the last minute. The unfortunate tragedy of two “star-crossed lovers” is ironically caused by the impetuosity of Romeo and Juliet themselves (Shakespeare 7).
Impetuosity is the main flaw that leads to the early death of Romeo and Juliet.
Impetuosity in their sense of honor, love, and their sense of idealism contributed to Romeo and Juliet to an early death. They both had a sense of honor and were full of love and idealism. These virtues, honor, love and idealism, that seek to sustain life, end up destroying them. Romeo and Juliet become victims of their own fate because they carry everything to the highest standards and are too inexperienced to decide the fate of the love between them. Romeo had honor as his virtue, which caused him to fight Tybalt for killing Mercutio:
Romeo. …My very friend, hath got this mortal hurt / In my behalf – my
reputation stained / With Tybalt’s slander – Tybalt, that an hour… / And in my
temper softened valor steel! (3.1.116-122)
Romeo denies the fate of Mercutio who fought against Tybalt and lost, so he challenges Tybalt to fight in defense of his honor. His sense of honor would not allow himself to ignore the death of Mercutio. It mandated his absurd behavior to take Tybalt’s life which even further separated the Montague and Capulet family. Moreover, Romeo still decides to marry Juliet after he takes Tybalt’s life. His sense of honor leads him to find Father Lawrence who will marry both Juliet