Omnipresence Of Fate In Romeo And Juliet By William Shakespeare

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In Romeo & Juliet, Fate is depicted as a range of ‘misadventur’d’ coincidences in the plot development, which question the existence of free will. Shakespeare harnesses the presaging power of omens and dreams to present the omnipresence of Fate and uses fateful imagery to create a ‘black and portentous’ atmosphere.

Shakespeare structures the tragedy to incorporate the many sides of Fate and to investigate the notion of free will. The prologue tells of the 'ancient grudge ' between 'two households... A pair of starcross 'd lovers take their life ' (Prologue1-6) and frames the play. Shakespeare sets up the notion that within the lives of each character, while they believe that they are exercising free will, their Fate has been predetermined
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' (IIvi1-2), shows that he is unaware that this marriage will be the catalyst for Romeo and Juliet 's death. This shows Fate 's resolve to ensure the joint death of the lovers through forcing unrealistic ideals upon a holy man. Another fateful action that Romeo takes is the killing of Tybalt. He initially intends to 'reason coldy... Or else depart ', and refrain from the reprisal which the 'challenge ' and insults entail. However, the brutality of Fate reverses this 'choice ' and allows Tybalt to murder Mercutio. Fate cruelly forces the enraged Romeo upon killing Tybalt, Romeo then realises the ruthlessness of Fate in killing Mercutio to exile Romeo and exclaims 'O, I am Fortune 's fool '. In Mantua, Romeo awakes to the news from Balthasar that Juilet 's 'body sleeps in Capel 's monument ' and he exclaims 'Is it e 'en so? then I defy …show more content…
Upon meeting Romeo, Juliet describes their love 'rash, too unadvis 'd, too sudden, too like the lightning ' (IIii118-119). By using this fateful simile, Shakespeare emphasises the connection between Romeo and Juliet 's lives with dangerous and fleeting lightning. He reinforces that their lives are destructive and ephemeral. Friar Lawrence also notices this and warns: 'These violent delights have violent ends And in their triumph die, like fire and powder... Therefore love moderately, long love doth so '(IIvi9-14). This 'good counsel ' may be enough to save Romeo and Juliet 's lives but unnervingly associates their lives with the sudden expiration of gunpowder and fire; the passionate delights in each other 's company that Romeo and Juliet experience are indeed followed by their destruction as Fate intends. Whilst waiting for Romeo to consummate their marriage, Juliet states that he is 'whiter than new snow upon a raven 's back ', this juxtaposition between the purity and beauty of snow to a raven implies that Romeo will never overcome Fate or 'love-devouring death '. Imagery is used to suggest the lethal nature of Romeo and Juliet 's love due to Fate and creates an ominous atmosphere which leads to their

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