Romeo & Juliet - Human Fallibility

Essay by jadorediorJunior High, 9th gradeA, February 2004

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William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet is one of the greatest literary examples of human fallibility. In the play, many characters, which include Friar Lawrence, the Montagues, and the Capulets, make seemingly small, absurd mistakes that cost the two young lovers, Romeo and Juliet, their lives, proving how erroneous even adults can be.

The irrationality of the Montagues and the Capulets lies in their inability to recognize how their ongoing feud is destroying both them and their enemies. They continue to feud, and put no effort into stopping the feud. Although the quarrels are usually amongst the servants or disgruntled cousins, they still affect the relations between the families. Romeo and Juliet, in love, but not wanting to upset their families and spark another fuse, marry in secret. This is where the trouble begins. All goes well until Juliet's parents inform her she is engaged to Paris, a friend of the Prince of Verona.

However, as we know, one can't marry two people.

Desperately seeking help, she goes to Friar Lawrence, who suggests she fake her death, a plan that seems doomed from the start. He gives her a potion which will cause her to appear dead while Friar Lawrence sends for Romeo, who is in exile after killing a Capulet, Juliet's cousin. However, Romeo's serving man spots her and assumes she has died, which is, as we know, not true. He rushes to Romeo before the Friar can send for him. Romeo arrives at her tomb and meets up with Paris. They duel, and Paris is slain. Romeo, under the false assumption that Juliet is dead, leaving him no purpose in life, kills himself. Juliet awakens shortly after to find both Paris and Romeo dead. She, too, takes her own life.

If this story does not prove human...