The idea of fate in Romeo and Juliet is conveyed by Shakespeare in a series of events that coincidence occurs in. In Shakespearian time, society identified fate as Gods will. Because of this when a coincidence arises they believe that these are Gods intentions. We first see this in Romeo and Juliet when Capulets servant runs into Romeo and Benvolio, the servant cannot read so he asks these two boys to help him read the guest list to the party, where Romeo and Juliet are to meet and fall in love. The servant states “If you be not of the house of Montagues, I pray come and crush a cup of wine”. Shakespeare has also used coincidence to convey fate when Romeo drinks a poison which will end his life because he never got the news about Juliets fake death as he lay there dead Friar Lawrence came running into find Romeo dead and Juliet just waking up but it was to late. Friar quoted “Saint Francis be my speed! How oft tonight have my old feet stumbled at graves!”. These coincidences influence events in the story that Romeo and Juliets fate was to meet, fall in love and could not be prevented from killing themselves. Many other features work along side the plot in Romeo and Juliet to underline the requirement of the death of the two children and their families compromise.
Fate creates a powerful effect all throughout Romeo and Juliet, beginning in the prologue. The prologue starts the whole play off, explaining almost exactly everything bound to happen. “A pair of star-cross’d lovers take their life” is a line in the prologue, which implies battling against the stars. In Elizabethan England, your destiny was thought to be influenced by the stars. When Romeo exclaims that “Then I defy you, stars!” he is stating that he is not going to pay attention to what the stars are informing and he will continuously love Juliet, therefor not listening to his destiny.The prologue is significant to the story for it creates a sense of fate by providing the audience with knowledge at the start of the play. For instance when “A pair of star-cross’d lovers take their life” is used, and automatically it forms expectations for later on in the tale. The prologue impacts the assumptions made on the story and confirms the fate set to be throughout the storyline.
Consistently throughout Romeo and Juliet Shakespeare accounts metaphors. Metaphors create an image in the readers mind. In this case Shakespeare is using metaphors to create an image of fate, which is where something is destined to happen. Mostly metaphors throughout Romeo and Juliet have been focused around the start of the play. Including the words of Juliet which declare, “This bud of love, by summers ripening breathe, may prove a beauteous flower when we meet next”. The bud of a flower is undeveloped and yet to grow, claiming that this is what the relationship between Juliet and Romeo is. This statement is also referring to their relationship to be in fates hands, or letting fate control their path. Yet another example of Shakespeares metaphors leading to fate is when Romeo exclaims that “But he that hath the steerage of my course, direct my sail”. In this scene Romeo was weary and unsure what his future would hold because of his dreams. Romeo, Benvolio and Mercutio were heading to the Capulets party when Romeo started doubting and had one last concern: he includes a feeling that the night’s activities can set in motion the action of fate, leading to untimely death. Ultimately Shakespeare includes fate in may of his metaphors. Metaphors are only one of many features that carry fate throughout Romeo and Juliet.
Dramatic Irony creates