Love, with its binding, twisting labyrinth of emotions, often has diverse effects on those caught in its grasp. To the lovers in Shakespeare s Romeo & Juliet, love is an overwhelming, overpowering emotion to which all else must yield. Both of the teenagers felt an immediate tug at the first sight of one another and desperately acknowledged that nothing was to be left in the onslaught of that sweeping tide. Not only was there love between the lovers in the play; there was also love for fighting, love between friends, and love for passionm, and drama.
Romeo, the love I bear thee can afford
Even when this is said to Romeo, Romeo replys with something that tries to persuade Tybalt to fight. He replys that he would like to be friends with Tybalt, and that is the motivation that restrains his anger. And he turns to leave and bids Tybalt farewell. Tybalt replys that, there is no excuse for the insults that he has given him, and he draws his sword, to fight Romeo. Romeo does not draw his sword but replys with,
I do protest I never injured thee,
But love thee better than thou canst devise
And so, good Capulet, which name I tender
As dearly as my own, be satisfied.
Mercutio feels that Romeo is being a coward and tries to antagonize Tybalt to the point where he will fight. Tybalt and Mercutio begin to fight. Ignoring Romeo s cry that the Prince has banned this fighting in Veronas streets, and that they will die if a fight breaks out. Tybalt then stabs Mercutio who then moments later dies. Romeo now furious with rage that his cousin is dead he gives in to Tybalts original wish to fight, and he kills Tybalt. This incident which ended in two mens lives was all due to there passion of sword fights, even with the knowing of the princes decree.
Love for friends was, and is, a necessity for the characters. Romeo had been in love with Rosalin,who didn’t feel love the same way that he did. Consequently, Romeo was distraught. He thought no woman could be as fare as Rosaline, and that he would never meet any other woman that compared to her. Romeo’s friend, Benvolio, thought differently. Benvolio encouraged Romeo to go to the Capulet’s feast and accurately predicted that Romeo look upon other girls more beautious than Rosaline. This was highlighted when Benvolio said
“Compare her face with one that I show,
And I will make thee think thy swan a crow.” ( 1. 2. 86-87).
Benvolio s help leads to Romeo meeting Juliet which effect the entire outcome of the play.
Juilet has recieved the potion that shall put her to sleep where she shall be presumed dead by those who look upon her. When she is presumably dead, her loved ones will put her in a tomb where her relatives lie peacefully. However she will awaken by her Romeo who will come and rescue her from the tomb, where she has been thought to be placed dead. Thus she will have escaped the marriage to Paris. Juliet is now in her bedroom before her wedding day to Paris pondering weather she should drink what is inside the bottle or not. Her mind drifts and she is able to consider all the possibilities that may await her.
What if this mixture do not work at all?
Shall I be married tomorrow morning?….
What if it be a poison which the Friar
Subtly hath ministered to have me dead,
Lest in this marriage he should be dishonored
Because he married me before to Romeo?
I fear it is; yet methinks it should not,
For he hath still been tried a holy man.
I wake before the time that Romeo
Come to redeem me? There s a fearful point!
Shall I not, then, be stifled in the vault,
To whose foul mouth no healthsome air breathes in,
And there die strangled ere my Romeo comes?
Or, if I live, is it not very like,
The horrible conceit of death and night,
Together with the terror of the place,–
As in a vault, an ancient receptacle,
Where, for these many hundred years, the bones
Of all my buried ancestors are packed:
Where bloody Tybalt, yet but green in earth,
Lies festering in his shroud; where, as they say,
At some hours in the night spirits resort;–
Alack, alack, is it not like that I,
So early waking, what with loathsome smells,
And shrieks like mandrakes’ torn out of the earth,
That living mortals, hearing them, run mad:–
O, if I wake, shall I not be distraught,
Environed with all these hideous fears?
And madly play with my forefather’s joints?
And pluck the mangled Tybalt from his shroud?
And, in this rage, with some great kinsman’s bone,
As with a club, dash out my desperate brains?
O, look! methinks I see my cousin’s ghost
Seeking out Romeo, that did spit his body
Upon a rapier’s point: stay, Tybalt, stay!
Romeo, I come! this do I drink to thee. (4.3. 20-58)
Juilet has thought about all the pain and suffering that may come from drinking what is inside the vial. For instance that she might awake befoer her Romeo comes to rescue her from her tomb, and that she will die of suffication. Also that she might become mad and leap from her crypt and begin to play with her dead ancestors bones. However her love for Romeo takes over the part of her that does not want to take the potion. Therefore she drinks what is inside for she was succombed with the love that she feels for Romeo, no matter what the consiquences she may face from drinking the contents.
From these lovers, from their every word and sigh, one understands that, to them, love of each other is everything. In the end, they sacrifice all on the altar of passion even their lives. Both offer up their names as payment for their love:
Or, if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love,
And I ll no longer be a Capulet (2.2.35-36) and
Art thou not Romeo and a Montague?
Neither, fair maid, if either thee dislike (2.2.60-61).
They willingly abandon the long years of enmity that their families cherished at the first declaration of love; hatred that lasted lifetimes, swept away in the flood of teenage feelings. Juliet decides to desert her family and the lifestyle she has always known knowingly causing her loved ones anguish they need naught to have suffered to follow her beloved into banishment:
Farewell! God knows when we shall meet again (3.1.14).
Is it even so? Then I defy you, stars! (5.1.24).
Finally, both of those young, beautiful youths took their own lives in tribute to the other. Their love was so deep, so spectacular, that the thought of living without the other simply did not occur. Suicide was ever a running thought in their minds an effect of the madness love set in their souls. Both threatened numerous times to end their lives until irrevocably, desperately, the action was put into play by both Romeo:
Here s to my love! O true apothecary!
Yea, noise? Then I ll be brief. O happy
This is thy sheath; there rust, and
Let me die. (5.3.167-170).
Love subdues all of those who are faced with it. They are taken over by it s grace and power. It had harsh consequences for those who were faced with it in the play Romeo and Juliet. Love, was felt not only by the lovers in the play but by the spectators that interacted with the lovers.