Shakespeare's great tragedy 'Romeo and Juliet' tells the tale of two, 'star crossed lovers' who through a series of complex twists, come to an ultimately tragic end. However did Shakespeare intend to suggest that the tragic outcome was due entirely to fate, as it suggests through the dialogue of the characters? Or otherwise, was it due to the personalities of the characters and the unfortunate context of their warring families? I will discuss this in my essay.
Shakespeare begins this play with a prologue to set the scene, in which it says, 'death mark'd.' This quote gives the impression that the story will be tainted by misfortune from the very beginning of the play.
Following this quote, is one that is said through the dialogue of Romeo, 'By some vile forfeit of untimely death.' This quote suggests that something out side of his control, will act upon him, resulting in death.
Later in the play, Romeo's character again applies that fate is influencing him. This is shown when he says, ' o, I am fortunes fool.' Towards the end of the play, Romeo once more suggests that fate played a part in the events that occurred. This is shown when Romeo says the following, 'then I defy you stars.' All of these quotes suggest that Shakespeare evidently held fate responsible for the events that took place in the play.
However Romeo's personality is one that cannot be ignored in this play, due to his 'risk-taking' attitude, which could have ultimately led to the tragic ending. In this play we can see that Romeo's 'risk taking' initiates the meeting of Juliet, by his attending the Capulet's party. Romeo is again seen 'risk taking' when he spends the night with Juliet after he has been banished from Verona, if...