The tragic love story of Romeo and Juliet has become the epitome of love and devotion over the centuries. The story was penned into words by William Shakespeare. Shakespeare borrowed the plot from an original Italian tale based inVerona.
The Capulet and Montague families had unsettling disputes, which made them feuding. Romeo was the young blooded handsome lad of the Montague family with a charming personality. Romeo was in love with Rosaline, a fair maiden from a reputed family. He and his friends planned to attend the feast of Capulet family where Rosaline was expected to make an appearance. It was a costume party and hence Romeo and his friends got the opportunity of admiring the beauty of Rosaline. That was when Romeo first sighted the lovely Juliet and was so captivated with her charm that he no more thought of Rosaline.
Romeo was desperate to know the identity of the charming lady in his mind, so he asked the people present, and his voice was recognized by a member of the Capulet family, Tybalt. Tybalt called off his sword to challenge Romeo for a duel, but the elders intruded and asked that no bloodshed should happen at this occasion. This gave Romeo the prospect to stay long enough to have a word with Juliet. He begged her to let him kiss her hand, which she shied away from. Not able to resist, he told her how he desires her lips. Juliet skipped her breath and could not hold her desire to kiss him any longer, but soon they were interrupted by her nurse and hence Romeo found the name of his love: Juliet Capulet.
Romeo could not get the image of Juliet out of his mind and hides in the bush under her balcony in the hope of a fleeting look of this enchanting women. Soon after Juliet comes to the balcony and thinks about Romeo and says…
“O Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?
Deny thy father and refuse thy name. . .
What’s a Montague? It is nor hand, nor foot,
nor arm, nor face, nor any other part
Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!
What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
by any other name would smell as sweet.”
Romeo, surprised and happy beyond imagination confesses his love for her and wishes that if he would not have been a Montague than marrying her was so easy.
The two rejoice their love and agree to meet the next morning at nine ‘o’ clock to get married.
The next morning Romeo presents himself at the friar Lawrence and begs him to get Juliet married to him. Friar was taken aback at first, but as soon as he realized the sincerity of Romeo, he agreed to perform the ceremony and wished that this sacred union may someday settle disputes between the two families. Friar Lawrence asked the now married Romeo and Juliet to keep their marriage secret for some time.
While returning, Romeo sees tybalt Capulet having an argument with his dear friend Mercutio. Tybalt tries to get Romeo involved in the fight by teasing him, but Romeo had no intentions to harm his wife’s kinsman and tries to make peace. Mercutio is embarrassed by the sweet words of Romeo and calls the sword. Romeo tries to appease his friend but before that tybalt slays Mercutio.
Romeo gets distressed by his friend’s death and enraged walks to get tybalt. Tybalt, on the other hand, is exasperated at Romeo’s reluctant approach. Romeo, not reluctant anymore slays tybalt and soon after realises what a mistake he has made “O, I am fortune’s fool!”
Juliet receives the news and gets shattered, but she still loved Romeo and understood his intentions.
The prince ofVerona, who had already warned the two families for anymore fights, exiles Romeo fromVeronafor killing tybalt and warns him that if he ever returns he will be killed.
Romeo spends the night secretly at Juliet’s chamber, and they make love throughout the night. Juliet thinks of this night as a wedding night that is also a farewell.
Romeo is forced to leave at dusk by the arrival of Juliet’s mother. Juliet was then asked to marry Count Paris, and when she refused, she was told that lord Capulet will disown her. Juliet could not tell about her secret marriage to her parents, so she runs to the Friar for help.
Friar Lawrence proffers her a drug that would send her in a coma for two days, and she would appear dead to people. He also promises Juliet to send a messenger to Romeo so that he can know the plan and joins her when she wakes up after two days. The night before her wedding toParis, Juliet takes the drug and falls asleep.
The messenger of Friar could not reach Romeo and instead he learned about his beloved’s demise. Romeo is devastated by the news and comes to see Juliet. Romeo buys poison before reaching the Capulet crypt.
“Come, cordial and not poison, go with me
To Juliet’s grave; for there must I use thee.”
There, he findsParismourning Juliet privately.Parischallenges Romeo for a duel and Romeo kills him.
Believing that Juliet is dead, Romeo gets caught up by grief and heartache. He does not want to live without her and kiss her for the last time
“Eyes, look your last.
Arms take your last embrace.
And, lips, O you the doors of breath,
Seal with a righteous kiss
a dateless bargain to engrossing death”
Drinking the poison he dies. Juliet wakes up only to find Romeo dead… She could not take the sight of her lover lying lifeless by her side and takes his dagger to stab herself. Friar too reaches at that moment and tries to stop Juliet, but remain unsuccessful. Juliet stabs herself with Romeo’s dagger and joins him in the journey after death. Soon after the whole town comes and the Montague and Capulet family, now grief-stricken and remorseful make peace between themselves.
This is how the death of these two lovers united their feuding families forever. The tragedy though is inconsolable.