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, Research Paper

In the play Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare, two teenagers are controlled by a

chain of human actions. Act 4, scenes 1,3 and 5, are a good representation of the web of human

actions that cause tragedy between the pair of ?star crossed lovers? (prologue).

One example of human actions being dominant in those particular scenes is Friar

Lawrence. His actions, while being in good intent, caused much of the pain for the other

characters in the book. His first action was to offer his help to the depressed Juliet, thinking that

maybe he could ?spy a kind of hope? (Act 4, sc i, ll 68). His actions then led him to think of the

fake death which he tells to her. ?Hold then, go home, be merry? (Act 4, sc i, ll 89), he tells her,

while he gives her the poison and plans to give Romeo a message describing the plan. He doesn?t

however, make sure Romeo gets the message which is probably the most crucial human action in

the play.

The other example of human actions controlling the plot is Juliet. In those scenes she acts

in ways which seriously affect her life and the rest of the play. First, she comes to the Friar

looking for help. ?I long to die, if what thou speak?st speak not of remedy? (Act 4, sc i, ll 66-67)

is her attitude towards her situation. She then accepts the friar?s solution and decides to take the

poison. ?Give me, give me! Oh tell me not of fear? (Act 4, sc 1, ll 121) are her words spoken to

the friar. Her actions here are to be brave and to rush into the plan. Her actions are more

important than the friars in this scene because she has all the control. The friars actions are mostly

suggestions and thoughts while her actions are the ones that are physical and are actually put into


This scene isn?t the only scene that demonstrates human actions controlling the play. For

example, in the very first scene, Tybalt and Benvolio fight causing a certain amount of tension that

sets the play up for some of the major events that happen later. Another example of this is when

Romeo and Juliet meet, Romeo goes out of his way to see her again, once more, setting up the

plot. The web of human actions gets larger and stronger until finally, the two biggest human

actions occur and the two main characters lay dead. Lay dead because the actions they took led

them to suicide.

This incident, as tragic as it is, could probably have been avoided. If the actions that were

taken by the characters had been planned better and the consequences had been thought about

maybe a better outcome would have been reached. For example, if Friar Lawrence had thought

about what would happen if Romeo didn?t receive the message in time, he probably would have

taken better precautions. Or maybe if Romeo had thought twice about killing Tybalt, he would

have realized that it couldn?t help getting closer to Juliet. Therefore, my advice in this situation is

to think hard about your actions. Don?t be caught up in the outcomes of them like Romeo and

Juliet did.

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