Do you think it was fate or human responsibility that caused the deaths of Romeo and Juliet?

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To provide a different perspective, I'll play devil's advocate. The Chorus tells the audience in the Prologue that Romeo and Juliet are "star-crossed lovers" (line 6). This means that they are ill-fated, frustrated in their desires by the stars, which were believed by some to control our destiny. Then, on the night of Lord Capulet's ball, Romeo's friends try to convince him to go with them. He resists at first but ultimately gives in, saying,

[...] my mind misgives
Some consequence yet hanging in the stars
Shall bitterly begin his fearful date
With this night's revels, and expire the term
Of a despised life closed in my breast
By some vile forfeit of untimely death.
But he that hath the steerage of my course
Direct my sail. (1.4.113-120)

Romeo has this prophetic moment, glimpsing the future, and it is not good. He has a premonition that attending the party tonight will set into motion a fated chain of events that ends in his death as a young man. However, he feels himself to be relatively powerless to thwart this destiny, as he seems to be compelled by fate or destiny, who he feels determines his path. He is "direct[ed]" to go to the party, even with any reservations this premonition has caused him. The fact that everything he says actually does come to pass makes it seem as though fate could be at fault for the lovers' deaths.

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Ultimately, human responsibility played a greater role in the two lover's deaths. Both chose to disobey their parents and become involved with each other. And both eventually choose death over living without the other. However, there is plenty of blame to go around. Friar Lawrence certainly played a large role when he married the two and when he gave the "temporary" poison to Juliet. In addition, the feuding families bear some of the guilt for continuing a feud that seemed rather meaningless. So meaningless that the deaths of the two lovers forced them to end the feud.

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