Compare and contrast Shakespeare's plays Romeo and Juliet with A Midsummer Night's Dream. What are the defining qualities that make each play a tragedy and a comedy? 

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tinicraw eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The main difference between a tragedy and a comedy is that they each end differently; the tragedy usually ends with death of more than one of the main characters and the comedy usually ends with a marriage. Both stories are about young lovers who are not permitted to marry each other, so they decide to take fate into their own hands by eloping. Romeo and Juliet go to Father Lawrence and Juliet's nurse for help and guidance in the situation. In A Midsummer Night's Dream, though, the two young couples who end up in the forest are at the mercy of magical fairies and natural elements. Violence, anger, and rash impulsiveness afflict Romeo and Juliet whereas Love, misunderstanding, and magical twistedness influence the lovers in A Midsummer Night's Dream.

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Romeo and Juliet

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