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Romeo's Character in Romeo and Juliet Essay


The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare, is a story of two young lovers who, upon first seeing one another, become totally star-crossed and infatuated. I think that the most interesting character in this play is Romeo, A sixteen-year-old Montague who falls in love with the only daughter of his familys greatest enemy, Lord Capulet. After reading or watching the entire play, a reader/observer can easily see how very love-struck, hysterical, and drastic Romeo is.

Romeo knew from the very moment that he saw Juliet that that was the girl for him. Needless to say just hours before seeing Juliet he was just as infatuated with Rosaline, who was completely disinterested in Romeo. Romeo tends to take love way too seriously. The only things that were on his mind throughout the entire play were how to get Rosaline to like him and his love for Juliet. Whenever Mercutio, a good friend of Romeos, would tease Romeo about his many infatuations with women, Romeo would just deny it or think nothing of it. Act 2 scene 1 is a good example of Romeos dodging Mercutio and his cousin Benvolios teasing him about taking love so seriously. Romeo is so obsessed with Juliet that, near the end of the play when Romeo thinks that Juliet has died, he decides he cant live without her and kills himself.

Romeo is fairly calm during the events of the play up until the point where he is banished for avenging Mercutios death and killing Tybalt. At that point in the play Romeo loses his ability to think clearly and becomes completely hysterical. If Friar John had not helped Romeo to regain his sanity he might have just gone and killed himself right then. Of course, he did not get much better after hearing from his servant, Balthasar, that back in Verona Juliet had killed herself (Juliet was not really dead, but in a controlled coma brought about by the Friars elixir). At that point Romeo lost all contact with reality. He came back to Verona without regard for his own safety, went straight to Juliets tomb, killed Paris, then killed himself with a potion he had bought in Mantua. Romeo was not a very mentally stable person.

Romeo takes everything way too seriously. Even if Juliet had really died then he shouldnt have killed himself. Romeos head was just too clouded by blind love to see that he was just as in love with Juliet as he was with Rosaline earlier in the play. If he had thought about that then he would have seen that there are many other girls that he could have just as easily loved and forgotten about Juliets death. We are not given any information concerning where Romeo was living in Mantua such as did he have his own house, an apartment, a mansion, or was he totally homeless and just living on what money he had left. The question that this brings up is Could Romeo live (and live fairly well) in Mantua by himself? The answer to such a question is not determinable because it wasnt important to the story line that Shakespeare made up. He also takes love very seriously. When he first lays eyes on Juliet he is certain that she is the only girl for him. He is so certain that the two of them get married the very next day. Without even spending a week with Juliet he has already dedicated his life to her.

Romeos heart was in the right place throughout the play, he thought what he was doing was just right. His mind is so clouded with emotions of all sorts that he is unable to make, and think over those that he had already made, intelligent decisions. That is what happens to those who believe in fate and love at first sight. Believing in fate is no more than making excuses for problems and things going wrong, while love at first sight is nothing more than pure lust. The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet is centered on these concepts and is, hence, a story of infatuation, lust, and ultimately death.

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