Why has Tybalt sent Romeo a letter?

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Susan Woodward | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

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Tybalt was angry that Romeo and his friends crashed the Capulet party.  He originally wanted to confront Romeo at the party, but Lord Capulet told Tybalt to leave Romeo be because he'd just told the Prince that there would be no more fighting between the Capulets and the Montagues.  He'd also heard that Romeo was a good guy, so Tybalt would be better off just holding his temper and not start any trouble.  Tybalt was seething at being shut down by his uncle, and he took matters into his own hands.  The next morning he sent a letter to the Montague house to challenge Romeo to a fight.  Benvolio heard about the letter, but Romeo never got it because he never went home after the party.  He spent a good part of the night in Juliet's back yard talking to her, and then he went immediately to Friar Lawrence to set up the wedding.  By the time he heard that Tybalt wanted to challenge him, Romeo and Juliet were just married.  When Romeo refused to fight him, Mercutio (being the hot head he is and always ready to fight) taunted Tybalt until the two of them got into it.  Tybalt's challenge left both him and Mercutio dead.

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