How did Romeo and Juliet die?

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Following Friar Lawrence's scheme to avoid having to marry Paris, Juliet drinks a bottle of sleeping potion that the Friar gives to her to fake her own death. Juliet's nurse and her family have her entombed. Romeo is oblivious to the scheme, since Friar Lawrence's letter explaining everything isn't delivered to him—he only hears the news of Juliet's death, so he arrives at Juliet's tomb to grieve her. He swallows poison in his grief, longing to join Juliet in death, and Juliet, upon waking to find Romeo's dead body, also dies by suicide: she stabs herself with Romeo's dagger.


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The death of the two infatuated lovers is truly tragic and illustrates how impetuousness can lead to rash decision-making with disastrous consequences. 

Because Romeo and Juliet were caught in the feud between their families, it was apparent that their relationship would face some difficult obstacles that they had to overcome. They naively believed that their secret marriage would be the salve to heal all wounds, as the friar stated:

...For this alliance may so happy prove,
To turn your households' rancour to pure love.

But it was not to be. The decision proved to be much too impulsive because firstly, Romeo was banished at the risk of death from Verona for killing Tybalt and, secondly, Juliet's father, Lord Capulet, practically forced his daughter to marry Paris. She could obviously not tell him that she had already been wed and sought advice from the friar.

Friar Laurence, for his part, suggested that she drink a potion which would render her so completely unconscious that it would be assumed that she had died. She would then be interred in the family burial vault, where Romeo would later come to rescue her. An urgent message would be sent to Romeo in Mantua informing him about the details of the plan.

It is unfortunate that Romeo never received the message. Fate intervened and the messenger was unable to complete his task. Romeo heard of Juliet's unfortunate "demise" from Balthasar and decided to take his own life by drinking a powerful potion prepared by an apothecary. He would join his beloved Juliet in her tomb and then ingest the poison...

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jess1999 | Student

First Juliet drinks a potion that makes her seem dead for two days . Romeo though hears that she's actually dead which makes him decide to suicide by drinking a potion . Romeo brings the poison to the Capulet's morgue where he drinks it and dies next to Juliet . Right after , Juliet wakes up and sees Romeo dead right next to her so she takes Romeo's dagger and stabs herself . 

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