In Shakespeare's classic play Romeo and Juliet, the two star-crossed lovers get married in secret and tragically commit suicide at the Capulet tomb. In the play, Romeo is portrayed as a passionate, imprudent young man who struggles to control his emotions. After Romeo murders Tybalt, he hides at Friar Laurence's cell, where he receives the news that he has been banished from Verona. Romeo likens banishment to death and displays his impulsive, rash personality by threatening to commit suicide. The reason Romeo threatens suicide stems from his love for Juliet. Romeo tells Friar Laurence,
‘Tis torture and not mercy. Heaven is here, Where Juliet lives, and every cat and dog And little mouse, every unworthy thing, Live here in heaven and may look on her, But Romeo may not (3.3.30–34).
Romeo's feelings for Juliet are so strong that he would rather die than to be separated from her.
Once Romeo is exiled to Mantua, he receives the news that Juliet has passed away. Unfortunately, Romeo is unaware of Friar Laurence's plan to fake Juliet's death and is grief-stricken by the tragic news. Romeo plans on committing suicide by Juliet's grave later that night and says to himself, "Well, Juliet, I will lie with thee tonight" (5.1.35). Romeo then buys poison from a lowly apothecary and travels to Juliet's tomb, where he fights and kills Paris before saying his final goodbyes to Juliet, who he mistakenly believes to be truly dead. Romeo expresses his love for Juliet before drinking the poison and kissing her on the lips. Romeo commits suicide because he would rather die and spend eternity with Juliet than live the remainder of his life without her.