Influence Of The Destinies Of The Major Characters
Romeo and Juliet is a play based on love, fate, change and
tragedy. It tracks the story of two lovers from opposing families’
ancient feud, in death. Like most stories, the major characters
play an important role, such as the decisions in which they take.
Yet the minor characters also have a good deal of influence over
the ultimate destinies of Romeo and Juliet.
The first minor character to be mentioned should be Tybalt. He was
a butter enemy of Romeo, and had he not been `slain’, Romeo would
never had been banished. In Act 3, Scene 1, Tybalt kills Mercutio
when Romeo attempts to come between the combatants and averts the
fight. Out of blind rage, Romeo kills Tybalt. “And in my tmeper
soften’d valours see!” Had Romeo not decided to exact revenge on
Tybalt, perhaps the Capulets might have accepted him as a son.
This would mean that Romeo and Juliet would not have had to hide
their love for each other. Tybalt, indeed, had a large effect on
the lives of Romeo and Juliet, by killing Mercutio.
Another minor character thought to have shaped the destinies of
Romeo and Juliet is Paris. In Act 3, Scene 5, Lady Capulet
announces that Juliet is to marry Paris. “The County Paris, at
Saint Peter’s church, Shall happily make thee there a joyful
bride.” Juliet obviously refuses and goes to Friar Laurence for
help. Friar Laurence devises a plan, which will prevent the
marriage and reunite Romeo with Juliet. However, this plan goes
horribly wrong, perhaps causing the deaths of Romeo and Juliet. If
Paris had not wished to be with Juliet, none of the following
would have occurred.
Friar Laurence gives a letter to Friar John to send to Romeo about
Juliet’s plans. But Friar John was unable to find Romeo. “Nor get
a messenger to bring it thee, So fearful were they of infection”.
This is another example of a minor character playing an important
Balthasar brings Romeo the news of Juliet’s `death’. Romeo then
goes to Juliet’s tomb and lays with her that night. He looks for
an apothecary to sell him some poison, and succeeds. Had the
apothecary refused to sell him the poison, Romeo might have been
delayed, giving Friar Laurence time to find him and tell him the
The above paragraphs are simply speculation on what might or might
not have happened, but it does help explain the view that the
minor characters helped shape the destiny of Romeo and Juliet.
Perhaps their deaths could not be prevented. Maybe Romeo and
Juliet were `pawns’ in a game to end their families’ ancient feud.
It is possible that a higher force was at work here – fate. One
thing is known for certain, there has never been a “story of more
woe than this of Juliet and her Romeo.”