Romeo and Juliet who is to blame?

Romeo and Juliet who is to blame?

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Throughout time, there have been many tragedies cause by romance. For example, the play Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare, is known for its romantic tragedy between two star-crossed lovers. With all the deaths, who is truly to blame for Romeo and Juliet's deaths? Friar Laurence is most to blame for many obvious, yet overlooked reasons.

The forbidden wedding of Romeo and Juliet could not have happened without the Friar. First of all, the Friar unwisely agreed to marry Romeo and Juliet, even though he knows it will cause later problems. In the beginning, the Friar thinks that "...this alliance may so happy prove/ To turn your households' rancor to pure love." (II iv 91-92) This shows that the Friar has a slight hope of their marriage possibly working. Therefore, he decides to marry the two lovers. However, as time moves on, the Friar lets on that he has regrets about the marriage. The Friar feels that "too swift arrives as tardy as too slow." (II vi 15) In other words, the Friar means that he senses that this whole wedding is happening too fast and starts to have second thoughts. If the Friar had thought this important decision clearly through, he may have prevented many future tragedies. Therefore, the Friar knows all along that, "These violent delights have violent ends." (II vi 9) The Friar knew that this is an impossible situation, which if made possible by himself will without a doubt end up in tragedy in one way or another. Under these conditions, as the Friar predicts, Romeo sinks into a deep depression; as a result of the fact that he cannot see his wife. Similarly, Juliet becomes depressed and is grieving over the truth of her and Romeo's separation. Without the Friar the two lovers would not have been married, which would have prevented both depressions and future problems to come.

The Friar is responsible for many problems as well, as assisting Juliet with her "death" plan. When Romeo and Juliet realize they can’t be together, and Juliet is expected to marry Paris, she needs an escape plan. Juliet pays a visit to the Friar, who creates a plan for Juliet to fake her death with a sleeping potion. When Juliet asks the Friar to help her break free from her wedding with Paris, he replies that:
If, rather than to marry County Paris,
Thou has the strength of will to slay thyself;

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Then it is likely thou wilt undertake
A thing like death to elude away this shame,
That cop'st with death himself to scrape from it;
And, if thou darest, I'll give thee remedy. (IV i 71-76)

Therefore, for the second time, the Friar acts unwisely and agrees to give Juliet this deadly potion. The Friar invents this entire plan, which will take total perfection and cooperation on everyone's part to work. The Friar has to make sure that Romeo is informed of the plan. However, the Friar puts too much trust in Friar John, who consequently fails to deliver the letter to Romeo. It is Friar Lawrence's' fault that Romeo is not informed and ends up confused about the recent happenings involving Juliet. The Friar played an important role in this part of Romeo and Juliet. Due to his careless actions, Romeo and Juliet could have been living happily ever after somewhere in Mantua.
Finally, it is the Friars' fault that Romeo and Juliet are dead, which makes him undoubtedly to blame for Romeo and Juliet’s death. Romeo, who is not informed of the Friar's plan, kills himself when he thinks that Juliet is dead. Juliet arises and sees Romeo dead, and takes her own life. The Friar is overcome by guilt and realizes that he has "...a short date of breath." (V iii 229) This could also be a confession that he is to blame. If the Friar was not the reason for the two suicides he would have no reason for guilt.

In the end, the Friar recollects the past events and cannot avoid responsibility for these two tragedies. This simple fact shows just how much of a key role the Friar plays in Romeo and Juliet. Without, the Friar, many important and tragic events would not have happened in Romeo and Juliet. The marriage of Romeo and Juliet, which led to Juliet needing to lie and escape another marriage, finally led to the deaths of Romeo and of Juliet. None of these events would have been possible if it were not for the Friar. In conclusion, the Friar Lawrence is most to blame for Romeo and Juliet’s deaths.
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