Death as a Major Player in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

Death as a Major Player in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

Length: 1150 words (3.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
Death as a Major Player

Death plays a key role in Romeo and Juliet. During the story, six deaths occur that fashion Shakespeare’s publication into the calamity that’s known around the world. Each death pushes the story forward continuously, leading to the finale where the two lovers die due to love and hate from both feuding families.
Mercutio, the joker and comic relief of the play, dies first and foremost. Tybalt spies Romeo at Lord Capulet’s extravaganza and vows to continue his fighting match by saying:
“I will withdraw; but this intrusion shall,
Now seeming sweet, convert to bitt’rest gall” (I, V, 93-95)
Determined to duel with Romeo, in Act Three, Scene 1, he challenges the Montague but Romeo declines fighting with his brother-in-law, saying:
“I do protest I never injured thee,
But love thee better than thou canst devise” (III, 1,67-68),
His statement means he doesn’t want to cause Tybalt any harm but would rather leave the scene. Mercutio steps in for Romeo, Romeo comes between them, and Tybalt’s sword stabs Mercutio when Romeo was holding Mercutio back. As Mercutio lays wounded and waiting for a surgeon, he blames Romeo for his injury saying,
“Why the devil came you between us? I was hurt under your arm.” (III, I, 103-105)
Soon following, Romeo learns that Mercutio is dead by Benvolio who says:
“O Romeo, Romeo, brave Mercutio is dead!
That gallant spirit haths aspired the clouds,
Which too untimely here did scorn the earth.” (III, I, 118 – 120)
Romeo, enraged at the killing of one of his dearest friends, challenges Tybalt to a fight for revenge, saying:
“Now Tybalt, take the ‘villain’ back again
That late thou gavest me; for Mercutio’s soul
Is but a little way above our heads,
Staying for thine to keep him company.
Either thou or I, or both, must go with him.” (III, I, 127 – 131)
Tybalt takes up the challenge and the Capulet falls to the ground, dead by Romeo’s sword. Benvolio tells everyone including the Prince what has happened later saying:
“There lies the man, (Tybalt) slain by young Romeo,
That slew thy kinsman, brave Mercutio.” (III, I, 146 – 147)
     With Romeo banished and Juliet acting as if she was dead in the Capulet family tomb, Paris comes to her grave to mourn the loss of his fiancee. On the path of the family tomb, he spots a torch and puts his own out to listen the stranger, saying:

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Death as a Major Player in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet." 123HelpMe.com. 26 Feb 2020
    <https://www.123helpme.com/view.asp?id=61452>.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Romeo And Juliet Fate Essay

- Fate is a hidden but unavoidable force that leads to certain consequences in people’s lives, the theme of fate plays a crucial role in the main characters off the play, Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare. Romeo and Juliet share a destiny that dooms them to tragic deaths immediately after the exchange of their love. Despite their resolute attempts to change their destiny, the lovers still succumb to the relentless power of fate. In the Shakespearean play, Romeo and Juliet, the principle of fate propels the lovers together with infatuation tears them apart through a bitter period, yet ensures peace in Verona for many future generation....   [tags: Romeo and Juliet, Characters in Romeo and Juliet]

Research Papers
882 words (2.5 pages)

Romeo And Juliet Research Paper

- Are you at fault with everything that goes wrong in your life. Conflicts in life include many other people, it wouldn’t be a problem if it was just you that was affected. No one person is to blame about the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, the main people that contributed are Romeo, Juliet, Friar Laurence, and Nurse. No one person is to blame for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet but Romeo was a major person that contributed to his death. To begin with Romeo states, ”Shall bitterly begin his fearful date, With this night's revels and expire the term, Of a despised life closed in my breast, By some vile forfeit of untimely death”(Act 1 Scene 4)....   [tags: Romeo and Juliet, Characters in Romeo and Juliet]

Research Papers
801 words (2.3 pages)

Death in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Essay

- Death in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet The Capulet’s and Montague’s have been fighting for many years, and there are many people to blame for the many deaths which occur in the play. First of all, when you begin the play there is a short prologue (chorus), it mentions anger and violence, but most of all death. “From ancient grudge break new mutiny, where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.” Also “Doth with there death bury there parents strife. The fearful passage of there death-marked love,” all indicates the anger and violence which is going to be the ‘traffic’ of the play....   [tags: Free Romeo and Juliet Essays]

Free Essays
848 words (2.4 pages)

Romeo And Juliet Death Essay

- Although many believe that fate plays a large role in determining the death of Romeo and Juliet, a few characters in the play should be held accountable for the deaths of the lovers. Romeo and Juliet, a play written by William Shakespeare, is set in Verona, Italy. The play describes the life of two lovers, who are apart of rival families, which ultimately ends in the death of both lovers. Many readers throughout the time the play was published until now believe that fate plays a major role in the events leading to the suicide of Romeo and Juliet....   [tags: Romeo and Juliet, Suicide]

Research Papers
1558 words (4.5 pages)

Romeo And Juliet Fate Essay

- There is a major question in Romeo and Juliet that can apply to everyday life in any generation. What if everything you ever loved was dependent on fate. Maybe you have the free will to change that. Could it be a little bit of both. The play “Romeo and Juliet” is a story of romance and conflict. Two lovers stuck in the middle of their families’ feud, but their love for each other and their families’ hatred for one another is what causes both of them to lay dead on a Thursday night. As Shakespeare himself said, “A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life.”(1.Prologue.6) It shows that Shakespeare himself believes that the lovers take their life due to a greater power is controlling thei...   [tags: Romeo and Juliet, Characters in Romeo and Juliet]

Research Papers
1271 words (3.6 pages)

Romeo And Juliet Plot Analysis Essay examples

- Analytical Exposition of Romeo and Juliet Fate is defined as ‘the universal principle or ultimate agency by which the order of things is presumably prescribed; the decreed cause of events; time’. The time in which ‘Romeo and Juliet’ was written, people in the society believed in spirits that controlled everyone and everything. In the world famous play ‘Romeo and Juliet’ by William Shakespeare, he refers to, ‘Star Crossed lovers” being Romeo and Juliet, with every action they take, follows a path leading to the inevitable, their tragic deaths....   [tags: Romeo and Juliet, Characters in Romeo and Juliet]

Research Papers
1280 words (3.7 pages)

The Many Changes in Romeo Throught the Play Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

- The Many Changes in Romeo Throught the Play Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare The play “Romeo and Juliet“, which was written by William Shakespeare conveys many different ways in which the character of Romeo changes during the tragic play of Romeo and Juliet as well as the ways this contributes to the tragedy. It is very clear that the character of Romeo changes for many different reasons, the main reasons being the way he speaks, they way in which the characters speak to him, the way he speaks with other characters, what others do to him and how this contributes to the tragedy along with any other factors that should be considered....   [tags: Free Romeo and Juliet Essays]

Free Essays
954 words (2.7 pages)

The Role of the Friar in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Essays

- The Friar directly and indirectly took part in suicide, murder, and other tragic happenings. The Friar is an honored man, who sells herbs and medicines to the people of Verona. He is a type of ancient pharmacist, who has potions for both causes of good and evil. There are three specific instances of the Friar playing a major role in Romeo and Juliet: the impossible marriage of Romeo and Juliet, Juliet's "death" plan, and Romeo's death. Without the Friar many crucial and tragic events would not have happened in Romeo and Juliet....   [tags: William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet]

Free Essays
1029 words (2.9 pages)

Essay on Nurse and Friar Lawrence in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

- Nurse and Friar Lawrence in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Juliet’s nurse and Friar Lawrence play a major part in the build up to the death of Romeo and Juliet, and they contribute to the tragedy of the play in many ways. They are the two people who arrange the marriage and try their best to make Romeo and Juliet be together. Friar Lawrence is involved with both the character of Romeo, and the character of Juliet, and it is his job to look after them, as he is their confessor, and they go to him to talk about things they have done wrong and things they are worried about....   [tags: Free Romeo and Juliet Essays]

Free Essays
1252 words (3.6 pages)

The Blame for Romeo and Juliet's Death Essay examples

- The Blame for Romeo and Juliet's Death The story of Romeo and Juliet originally came from a myth around the old town of Verona, later on in history Shakespeare took this idea of 'two star-crossed lovers' and made it into the 'Romeo and Juliet' we know today. In Elizabethan Verona the story begins with two families, the Capulets, and the Montagues. The families have been feuding for many years, much to the dismay of the Prince of the town. The Capulet family has only one child, Juliet....   [tags: Romeo and Juliet Essays]

Research Papers
1178 words (3.4 pages)

Related Searches

     “What curse foot wanders this way tonight
     To cross my obsequies and true love’s rite?
     What, with a torch? Muffle me, night awhile.” (V, III, 19 – 21)
Romeo doesn’t know that Paris is near him, but he dismisses Balthasar to leave him alone and not return. The angry Paris interrupts Romeo’s plan to open the tomb and kill himself so Romeo lie next to Juliet forever. Paris thinks that the killing of Tybalt by Romeo killed his beautiful Juliet, so he wants to avenge Juliet by killing Romeo. He challenges Romeo by saying:
     “Stop thy unhallowed toil, vile Montague!
     Can vengeance be pursued further than death?
     Condemned villain, I do apprehend thee.
     Obey, and go with me; for thou must die.” (V, III, 54 – 57)
Romeo bids Paris leave as he was going to kill himself, but Paris continues to provoke Romeo by calling him a felon. Angered, Romeo decides to fight by saying:
     “Wilt thou provoke me? Then have at thee, boy!” (V, V, 70)
Paris is killed by Romeo and asks one favor, saying:
     “O, I am slain! If thou be merciful,
     Open the tomb, lay me with Juliet.” (V, III, 72 – 73)
For the first time, Romeo sees his dueler and discovers it is Paris. He lays Country Paris into the tomb besides Juliet.
     As Romeo sees Juliet, he remembers her beauty and how he loves her so much that he can’t live without her. Romeo wants to be with her eternally in the tomb. Taking the apothecary that he had gotten previously out, Romeo drinks it quickly, saying:
     “Come bitter conduct; come unsavory guide!
     Thou desperate pilot, now at once run on
     The dashing rocks thy seasick weary bark!
     Here’s to my love! O true apothecary!
     Thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die.” (V, III, 116 – 120)
His guilt for the deaths of Mercutio, Tybalt, and Paris makes him want to give his to life to pay them back with “a life for a life” attitude. Romeo’s sorrow for Juliet was stronger than anything, and not even life itself could stop it. All of these factors contribute to the choice of suicide for Romeo.
     Juliet wakes from her tomb bed and finds Romeo dead by her side and Paris deceased and in the tomb as well. Upset how the plan didn’t work how she wanted it to and her one true love dead, Juliet finds the dagger next to her. As she hears the “watch” coming, she plunges the dagger into her heart and kills herself, saying:
     “Yea, noise? Then I’ll be brief. O happy dagger!
This is thy sheath; there rust. And let me die.”(V, III, 169 – 170)
As the rest of the Montague and Capulet clans show up at the tomb, Lord Montague sadly explains the death of his wife, saying:
“Alas, my liege, my wife is dead tonight!
Grief of my son’s exile hat stopped her breath.
What further woe conspires against mine age?” (V, III, 210 – 212)
The families learn of the death of their children, and the six deaths that had happened over the past few days puts the families into a state of shock and sadness.
     The Prince points out the central problem of Romeo and Juliet clearly at the end of the story by saying to the families:
“See what a scourge is laid upon your hate,
That heaven finds means to kill your joys with love,” (V, III, 292 – 293)
The hatred between the two houses of Montague and Capulet that was initiated so long ago that know one remembers why the other family hates the other one was so strong that many innocent lives were finished. The only children and offspring, Romeo and Juliet, saw past the hate and loved each other with such a burning passion that nothing could come between the pair, not even death. Hatred is brought to sorrow, and then to love from the families towards one another as they both try to get through the tragedy as the story brings to a close. The conflict is solved with the Montagues and Capulets resolving their differences as the Prince says:
     “A glooming peace this morning with it brings.
     The sun for sorrow will now show his head.
     Go hence, to have more talk of these sad things;
     Some shall be pardoned, and some punished;
For never was a story of more woe
Than this of Juliet and her Romeo.’ (V, III, 305 – 310)





Return to 123HelpMe.com