What are some decisions that Friar Laurence makes in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet?

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Friar Laurence makes two of the most important decisions in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. First, he fatefully decides that it might prove beneficial to everyone involved if he married Romeo and Juliet. In Act II, Scene 3 Romeo, who has just left Juliet after professing his love for...

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Friar Laurence makes two of the most important decisions in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. First, he fatefully decides that it might prove beneficial to everyone involved if he married Romeo and Juliet. In Act II, Scene 3 Romeo, who has just left Juliet after professing his love for the girl, goes to the Friar requesting that the Friar marry them. The Friar is initially taken aback as just the day before, Romeo was in love with another woman. After chiding Romeo about his promiscuity, he comes to the conclusion that this is just what is needed to end the bitter feud between the Montagues and Capulets. He tells Romeo,

But come, young waverer, come, go with me.
In one respect I’ll thy assistant be,
For this alliance may so happy prove
To turn your households’ rancor to pure love.
The second important decision comes when he devises the plot for Juliet to fake her death. Juliet is desperately searching for a way out of the arranged marriage to Count Paris and, after seeking advice from the Nurse who lets her down, comes to Friar Laurence's cell. She suggests that she would rather die than go through with the marriage and is carrying a dagger, presumably to kill herself with. After hearing of Juliet's resolve to avoid marrying Paris, the Friar comes up with what he feels is the perfect solution. The audience knows from earlier in the play that he is somewhat of a chemist, so it comes as no surprise that he would be able to concoct a potion which would render Juliet in a deathlike state. He says,
Take thou this vial, being then in bed,
And this distilling liquor drink thou off;
When presently through all thy veins shall run
A cold and drowsy humor; for no pulse
Shall keep his native progress, but surcease.
No warmth, no breath shall testify thou livest.
He also plans to send a message to Romeo in Mantua informing him of this plan and urging him to come to Capulet's tomb to retrieve Juliet so they may once again be together. Unfortunately, miscommunications and simple bad luck thwart the Friar's plan as Romeo never receives the message and ultimately poisons himself in the tomb next to the sleeping Juliet. When she awakens, she too claims her life as she stabs herself with Romeo's dagger.
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Four decisions that the Friar makes in Romeo and Juliet have disastrous impact on the outcome of the play.

First, by agreeing to marry Romeo and Juliet in secret, he is essentially defying the wills of two families in order to heal the rift between them.

Second, after Romeo is banished by the Prince, he sends Romeo to Juliet's to say goodbye before his banishment. 

Third, he agrees to give Juliet a poison that would make her appear as if she is dead, so that she can be taken to the tomb and then reunited with Romeo in Mantua. 

And fourth, he decides to send a note telling Romeo of his plan to reunite them, but unfortunately the note never gets delivered due to a quarantined village.

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Friar Laurence makes several important decisions during the course of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. First, he decides to marry Romeo and Juliet because he believes it will end the often violent feud between the Montagues and Capulets. Second, he makes a conscious decision to advise Romeo to slow down in his love for Juliet. He tells Romeo, "Wisely and slow. They stumble that run fast." Third, in Act III, Scene 3, he decides that once Romeo has spent some time in Mantua he will announce that Romeo and Juliet are married, attempt to reconcile the families and beg the Prince's pardon so Romeo may return to Verona.

Fourth, he makes the unfortunate decision that Juliet should take a potion and fake her death. His plan is for the girl to appear dead so the family will take her to the Capulet tomb where Romeo will retrieve her when she awakens. Fifth, he decides to give the message informing Romeo of his plot to Friar John to carry to Mantua. Friar John is delayed in Verona by a plague threat and Romeo never receives the message. Sixth, he decides to leave the tomb just after Juliet wakes up because he is afraid for his reputation and his life if he is caught in the tomb with Juliet and the dead bodies of Romeo and Paris. Seventh, he decides that he needs to tell the truth to the Prince and so recounts the entire story of Romeo and Juliet's love and eventual suicides. 

 

  

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