The Nature of Pride in Romeo and Juliet

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Though Shakespeare’s play celebrates the beauty of love, it is ultimately about the destructive nature of pride

William Shakespeare’s play Romeo and Juliet focuses on two young lovers, whose love is destined for destruction from the beginning because of the tenacious pride of their families. Although Shakespeare’s play celebrates the beauty of love through Romeo and Juliet, ultimately it is about the destructiveness of pride and honour shown through the both families and the feud between them. Although the audience is aware of the tragic fate of the pair we hope that it will be averted because we wish that the family will change their ways for the sake of their offspring. Throughout the play, Shakespeare demonstrates the beauty of love and how the love between Romeo and Juliet could resolve the feud between the two families. Although the beauty of love is celebrated, it is overshadowed by the destructiveness of pride between the two families and the influence of the feud on the younger members of each family. We are also shown the emotional consequences of family honour through Lord and Lady Capulet’s abandonment of Juliet and the irresponsibility of the Nurse and Friar Lawrence for not speaking up and the consequences of this as well as how both families’ obstinate pride leads to the fall of Romeo and Juliet. In the play, William Shakespeare demonstrates the beauty of love and how said love, could in turn, resolve the bitter rivalry between the two families. The love between Romeo and Juliet is sublimely beautiful. Not only do they feel deeply for each other; ‘Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight! / For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night’ , but they also respect each other. Neither attempts to impose his or her will on the other; neither places his or her welfare above the other. Juliet’s feelings towards Romeo: ‘My bounty is as boundless as the sea, / My love as deep; the more I give to [Romeo], / The more I have, for both are...
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