Friar Lawrence Responsible For The Death Of Romeo And Juliet

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Romeo and Juliet lay freshly dead and bleeding. The fate of these two lovers has caused many hearts to grieve, and the situation also gave rise to an age-old discussion: everyone wants to “know how this foul murder comes” (Shakespeare 5.3.198). Valid arguments of who caused the death of Romeo and Juliet can be made for many characters in Shakespeare’s play, but one figure is clearly the most responsible. Friar Laurence is most liable for the death of these two because of his decision to marry them, his half-baked plans, and the responsibility he gave immature teenagers. The first reason Friar Laurence is most responsible for the deaths of Romeo and Juliet is that he agreed to marry them in the first place. By doing this, the friar got their …show more content…

They believe that because his intentions were good and that he could not have known what happened to the two teens, he should not be blamed. It cannot be ignored that the Friar was marrying them with the best intentions. He wanted to “turn [their] households’ rancor to pure love” (Shakespeare 2.3.92). He also kept a constant watch on the progression of his plans, and attempted to make sure everything went as planned. For example, in Act 3, Scene 3, the Friar willingly hides Romeo in his cell to protect him. In Act 5, Scene 2, the Friar goes as fast as he can to the tomb once he knows that Romeo never received his message. And, in Act 5, Scene 3, he is even willing to die if he was found at fault for their deaths. Friar Laurence is a good and honest man. However, his intentions don’t offset the fact that he knew the personalities and tendencies of both kids (he admits this when he gives the sleeping potion to Juliet in Act 4, Scene 1 and when he is telling Romeo to ‘man up’ in Act 3, Scene 3), and he knew that they sometimes acted on a whim. Even with this knowledge, he did not place any extra protection or security on these kids, and he even encouraged them to be alone when they initiated their parts of the plan. In Act 4, Scene 1, he tells Juliet to “look that thou lie alone” and tells her that “Shall Romeo by my letters know our drift, And hither shall he come. And he and I will watch thy waking” (Shakespeare 4.1.91; 114-116). He is implying that Romeo should go alone to the vault and that he will come later. His plans gave Romeo and Juliet the opportunity to act independently (even though he knew they might not make the best decisions), and therefore caused their deaths. Also, he was the character that was most intimately involved in Romeo and Juliet’s decisions prior to their deaths. Romeo and Juliet both come to him for

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