A Drug More Delicate than a Flower
“A flower cannot blossom without sunshine, and man cannot live without love” (“100”). Max Muller’s saying may sound ridiculous, but every word stands true for Romeo Montague in William Shakespeare’s play, The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet.
When two kids from rivaling clans fall madly in love, they go to lengths they’d never imagined. They get married in secret, which leads to unexpected consequences, and a chilling outcome for both them, and their close family and friends. Romeo’s action’s however, lead to the worst consequences and result of all. When the young, love crazy Montague decides to go to a Capulet party, he causes Juliet to fall for him instead of Paris, Tybalt’s revenge, his own banishment from Verona, and ultimately his and Juliet’s death. The first outcome to Romeo’s attending the Capulet party is that he makes Juliet fall in love with him instead of Paris. Originally, Lord Capulet had invited Paris, a county who was interested in his daughter, to attend the party in order to try win his Juliet over.
Romeo’s presence however, prevented this from happening. Before the party, Lord Capulet says to Paris, “But woo her, gentle Paris, get her heart; / My will to her consent is but a part” (1.2.16-17). Not only was Lord Capulet allowing Paris to try win Juliet over, but he was giving himself an opportunity to reach a higher social status.
Romeo, however, forever halted these plans because of his presence at the party. The young Montague says to Juliet as he grabs her hand, “If i profane with my unworthiest hand / This holy shrine, the gentle sin is this: / My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand / To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.” (1.5.95-98) These words are not only the first thing Romeo says to Juliet, but they are also what make Juliet head over heels for Romeo, and not Count Paris.
Clearly, Romeo’s attendance to the Capulet feast caused Juliet to fall for him instead of Paris. Another result of Romeo’s attendance to the Capulet party is Tybalt’s revenge on him. Just moment’s after Romeo arrives at the party, Tybalt, a member of the Capulet family, quickly notices Romeo, identifies him as a Montague, and reports of his presence to his uncle. “Uncle, this is a Montague, our foe, / A villain, that is hither come in spite / To scorn at our solemnity this night” (1.5.63-65).
Romeo’s presence alone gets Tybalt furious. After his uncle tells him to let Romeo be, Tybalt remarks, “I will withdraw; but this intrusion shall, / Now seeming sweet, convert to the bitt’rest gall” (1.5.93-94). This dark comment was a hint of what was to come because of Romeo’s attendance to the Capulet party. The next day in the streets of Verona, Tybalt comes and approaches some of Romeo’s friends.
After much questioning and talk over the whereabouts of Romeo, Romeo appears but refuses to fight because, unknowingly to Tybalt, he is now a member of the Capulet family. With Romeo not willing to fight, Tybalt turns towards Mercutio, who he kills. “This gentleman, the prince’s near ally, / My very friend, hath got this mortal hurt / In my behalf – my reputation stained / With Tybalt’s slander – Tybalt, that an hour / Hath been my cousin” (3.1.111-115).
Since Mercutio, a dear friend of Romeo’s, is dead, Tybalt is happy with his revenge and flees. This wretched consequence is only another of the many that occur because of Romeo’s attendance to the Capulet party. Romeo’s banishment from Verona is a third consequence to his attending the Capulet party. The reason Romeo was banished was because after Tybalt slew Mercutio, Romeo became furious and killed Tybalt. Now the prince of Verona doesn’t know who owes what. “Romeo slew him; he slew Mercutio.
/ Who now the price of his dear blood doth owe?” (3.1.184-185). The Montagues however, point out that Mercutio was Romeo’s friend and he was only getting pay back. The prince then declares: “And for that offence / Immediately we do exile him hence” (3.1.
188-189). The only reason that Romeo was exiled was because Tybalt had been mad at him for attending the party, and in turn Romeo became angered with Tybalt for taking revenge on his friend. Romeo’s banishment from Verona is evidently yet another development of his attending the Capulet party. The last result of Romeo’s visit to the Capulet feast is his and Juliet’s death. Love is like a drug; once you take it, you aren’t able think straight or logically anymore.
By Romeo attending the Capulet’s party he was able to share his addiction to love with Juliet, which, in turn, made her thinking distorted too. It is seen that soon after the party both the young Montague and the young Capulet begin to have suicidal thoughts when they think about not being together. Juliet tells her nurse as the party comes to an end, “Go ask his name. -If he be married, / My grave is like to be my wedding bed” (1.5.136-137).
Juliet already begins to think of suicide only moments after meeting a complete stranger. Romeo also acts the same way when he hears of his banishment from Verona. “For exile hath more terror in his look, / Much more than death. Do not say “banishment” (3.3.13-14).
Here, Romeo shows that he’d rather die than be banished from Verona and apart from Juliet. This perverted thinking eventually leads to their ultimate death. Romeo’s last words are, “Thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die” (5.3.
120), and Juliet’s “This is thy sheath; there rust, and let me die” (5.3.170). Romeo’s attendance to the Capulet’s feast undeniably caused both he and Juliet’s death. In closing, Romeo’s presence at the Capulet’s party lead to many chain reactions.
It caused Juliet to fall in love with him, instead of Paris. This, in result, kept the Capulet’s from being promoted in social status. Romeo’s choice to attend also caused Tybalt to become furious, which resulted in the life of Romeo’s friend, Mercutio. In addition, Romeo caused his own banishment from Verona by attending the party. By being where he wasn’t supposed to, Mercutio and Tybalt died, and Romeo was exiled. Last, Romeo’s choice to visit the party caused him to introduce Juliet to love, and how great and powerful it could be, which ultimately ended in both he and Juliet’s death.
Maybe there are men or women that can live without love, but there are many that can’t. Love is a delicate drug that must be dispensed properly; for if it falls into the wrong hands, we might have a rerun of the Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet.