Would you say Tybalt's pride has gotten the best of him in Romeo and Juliet?

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accessteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I would definitely want to argue this. He is a character who seems to be obsessed by the feud and is completely unable to let it go, in spite of the Prince's warning. Note the way that he is defined, to a certain extent, by his words during the brawl that opens the play in Act I scene 1:

What, drawn, and talk of peace? I hate the word

As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee.

Thus he places himself directly in opposition to Benvolio's more moderate and peace-loving approach. Tybalt, throughout the play, is a force of anger and rage, as he shows again during Act I scene 5 when he recognises the presence of a Montague at the Capulet Ball. Note how he reacts, typically violently:

This, by his voice, should be a Montague.

Fetch me my rapier, boy. What! Dares the slave

Come hither, covered with an antic face,

To fleer and scorn at our solemnity?

Now, by the stock and honour of my kin,

To strike him dead I hold it not a sin.

Note the way tha the has to be restrained by Lord Capulet from attacking the Montague intruder. Also pay particular attention to Tybalt's justification for his actions. He quotes the "stock and honour of his kin" as something that justifies violence and murder. He certainly is a character that is totally dominated by the family name and pride of the Capulets and cannot let the feud go, not even for one night of merriment.