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The main action of Romeo and Juliet takes place in less than a week: a testament to how ill-advised most of the decisions in the play are made. The five most glaring examples of reckless haste as follow:
1) The secret marriage. Romeo and Juliet meet on a Sunday and are married secretly in less than 24 hours. Friar Lawrence is also to blame. This sets all events in motion.
2) Mercutio's reckless fight with Tybalt. Mercutio's play-fighting ends with his "accidental" stabbing, causes Romeo to take revenge on Tybalt, and ultimately leads Romeo's exile.
3) Juliet's fake death. Friar Lawrence again becomes involved, this time in a "death" elopement. Again, he hopes all will go well, but he doesn't realize he's working with impetuous teenagers. Oh, and Friar John's letter never had a chance, plague or no plague.
4) The suicides at the end. Romeo is quick to buy poison; Juliet quick to pull the dagger. If only they would have waited...it might have turned into a comedy, like Much Ado About Nothing!
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