Conflict and Fate In Romeo and Juliet Abbie Towler
Conflict and Fate In Romeo and Juliet
“What, drawn, and talk of peace! I
hate the word"
Tybalt is one to settle disagreements and disputes through violence and fighting rather than peaceful methods. He causes a few problems for Romeo throughout the play and he is killed by Romeo as revenge for Mercutio's life.
'You have drawn your weapon and still you speak of peace? I hate the word' - Tybalt shows his hate for the noun 'peace', meaning he prefers to quarrel and settle disputes through violence than peaceful methods. He is also angry that one would speak of peace with their weapon drawn ('What, drawn, and talk of peace!')
“Romeo, the hate I bear thee can
No better term than this,—thou art
'Nothing can better describe my hate for you Romeo, you are a villain.' - Tybalt shows here that he has a burning hate for Romeo as he is a Montague and is in love with his cousin (Juliet), He calls Romeo a villain, not to taunt but to desperately show Romeo that he believes he is a criminal.
“My sword, I say! Old Montague is
come, And flourishes his blade in
spite of me.”
Capulet hears of Montague arriving and taunting him with a weapon and so Capulet wishes to fight him, hence why he calls for his sword to settle conflict which he would've originally caused by rising to the challenge that Montague gives him.
Capulet wishes to protect those around him, yet his instinct when there are ugly disputes is to call for someone to get him a weapon to fight and solve the arguments. This shows that he sometimes thickens situations within the play instead of making them better. Despite this, he still has a good heart as is shown with his protection of his family (Capulet). yet he is a violent man like Tybalt who looks for a fight, especially with Montague.
“What noise is this? Give me my
long sword, ho!”
'What is this noise? Give me my longsword!' - Capulet hears conflict and angry disputes between enemies and instead of facing the situation with a peaceful mind he decides to join in and try to settle violence with more violence.
"These violent delights have violent
ends." (At the wedding)
All violent happiness (extreme happiness) always has dreadful and violent ends to them (meaning they end with pain and suffering). This could also be linked to fate and it is showing part of a future for Romeo and Juliet at their wedding.
Friar Lawrence is a very wise character in the play, here he shows some fate and conflict. As he describes that all happiness which is plenty (a lot of happiness), will have violent endings and in particular 'these violent delights' showing that he is warning Romeo and Juliet that it will end badly no matter how happy they are. This could link to fate as well.
“His name is Romeo, and a
The only son of your great enemy.”
His name is Romeo Montague, the enemy - this shows that Nurse wishes to avoid any conflict as she is one to attempt to keep the peace. This is why she tells Juliet everything that she knows of Romeo (Romeo Montague, son of Montague who is an old enemy)
Nurse shows care for many people within the play and so a hate for conflict and therefore she tries to avoid it wherever she can, be it releasing the correct information to people or keeping things secret, she always aims to avoid conflict to make sure no one is harmed.
"My only love sprung from my only
hate; too early unknown and
known too late."
A poetic quote written with rhyme, 'only love sprung from only hate' is a contrast of two very opposite things (
) and shows that Juliet is instead at conflict with her own feelings and with the problems she faces from falling in love with a Montague (her family's sworn enemy).
Juliet is another main cause of conflict along with Romeo however she tries (unlike Romeo) to make a change to it. She uses oxymorons when speaking in this quote, showing that she has mixed feelings about many things.
“Tybalt, you ratcatcher, will you
An insult of Tybalt being a 'ratcatcher' and then a taunt ('will you walk?') meaning 'Will you leave?' (as I take it). This could serve as a threat or a taunt when handling conflict.
Mercutio ends up being killed by conflict in the play, yet he quarrels often with the Capulets (being a friend of Romeo's), this is one example of him insulting and trying to humiliate one of the Capulets.
(To Tybalt) “Either thou or I, or
both, must go with him”
A threat to Tybalt saying one or both of them must 'go with him' (assuming him is God or Death or maybe even Mercutio after his death), then it is a threat saying that one or both must die as neither can live. (If it is after Mercutio's death then it is a threat to take revenge)
Romeo is not one to intentionally cause much conflict in the play however he is one of the main causes of it. He causes Mercutio's death and even Juliet's death. He quarrels with many in the play and takes revenge when something terrible happens.
"I defy you stars"
The 'stars' are well-known to be tellers of fate, yet Romeo is determined to not follow what his fate is meant to be according to the stars. This is why he is 'defying' them (going against them)
Romeo feels that he can easily succumb to luck and fortune yet he wishes to defy his set out fate, he thinks of himself as a 'fool' because of his fickle belief in fortune. All throughout the play you see him fall for love, and that love is his 'fortune' so eventually he wishes to defy it and not follow his fate.
"O, I am fortune's fool!"
Fortune is controlling Romeo's fate, but it is misleading him and taunting him yet he is weak to it. Romeo feels this way about his 'fortune' (luck), saying that he is easily led by luck but he ends up being hurt by it, causing him to be a fool.
“Unhappy fortune!” (About the
letter not being delivered)
It is a sad misfortune (a stroke of bad luck/fate) about the letter to Romeo not being delivered about Juliet. Meaning it is a decision of fate but an unfortunate one (or 'unhappy' one)
Friar Lawrence feels that fate is something which can't be changed and sometimes it is 'unhappy' (or unfortunate), shown in the quote above. Yet still, as shown later in the play he tries to stop fate and get the message delivered to Romeo despite the letter not being able to (which is a decision of fortune as it seems). However, it seems to be shown as more of a stroke of bad luck instead of a decision made by 'stars' (from Romeo's quote)
(About Montagues) “I will
withdraw, but this intrusion
shall now seeming sweet, convert
to bitterest gall”
The 'sweet' disagreement which happens between the Montagues and Capulets, while currently seeming small and petty, will become something much larger in future.
Tybalt feels that fate is controlled by people's actions as it's his and the Montague's choice for an 'intrusion' to turn to a 'bitterest gall'. It's like a warning that Tybalt is giving the Montagues or others around him (perhaps like a threat).
(About Romeo) “Methinks I see
thee, now thou art below, As one
dead in the bottom of a tomb.”
Juliet believes that she sees Romeo 'dead at the bottom of a tomb' (which ends up becoming true later on in the play). This is when she is viewing Romeo from above and so she sees him as a dead person
I believe that Juliet feels that fate is determined by current actions as seen in this quote where she is viewing Romeo from above and sees him as 'dead in the bottom of a tomb', this ends up becoming true as he dies in a tomb upon Juliet's 'dead' body.
“A plague o’both your houses”
A plague of both your houses - something of which 'plagues' (causes problems and suffering) both 'houses' (Montagues and Capulets)
Mercutio seems to see fate (assuming that is the subject which he talking about) is a 'plague' which therefore consequently causes problems and suffering within each house of Montague and Capulet. This means that he views it as a bad thing.
(Prologue) “A pair of star-cross'd
lovers take their life”
A pair (couple) who were made for each other through fate take their lives as another result of fate. Star-crossed meaning caused by the stars (fate) like which Romeo speaks of in one of his quotes ("I defy you stars")