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50 Essay Topics for the Most SparkNoted Books

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

16. Is any one person to blame for the carnage that occurs? In Act V, Scene III, the Prince says that “some shall be pardon'd, and some punished.” Who is responsible for Romeo and Juliet’s deaths? Is it the Capulet and Montague families as a whole? Romeo and Juliet themselves? Friar Laurence? Mercutio? Tybalt? Someone else?

17. What is the significance of Mercutio’s character? Does he exist solely for the purpose of comic relief? How does his death affect the overarching plot?

18. In Act III, Romeo considers suicide to be preferable to banishment. Juxtapose this scene with his actual suicide in Act V. How do these scenes differ? What do they reveal about his character development and his relationship with mortality?

19. Does Romeo’s professed love for Rosaline at the beginning of the play cheapen or delegitimize his later love for Juliet? Why or why not?

20. Time is a recurring motif. Examine the passage of time throughout the play, its impact on the play’s development, and how it relates to the romance between Romeo and Juliet. 

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