The many underlying themes in Shakespearean literature give his writing depth and meaning. The most significant theme in Romeo and Juliet is the affect love has on peoples lives in ways that they did not think that it could affect them. Love affects Romeo, Juliet, and the rest of the characters in many ways and drastically affects the outcome of the play, which is why it is the most significant theme. One of the characters that love greatly affects is Romeo. When we first meet Romeo at the beginning of the story his family friends are very concerned bout him.
He is in love with a girl named Rosalie. He is upset about the relationship and it is affecting him negatively. His family and friends notice a change in him and try to figure out what is wrong. As Bernard explains, “When Benevolent appoints himself to determine and report the cause of Romeos deep sighs and general sadness to old Montague, he does this in a curious manner. Having gotten Romeo to admit that love is the underlying cause… ” (3). Romeos father and best friend noticed a significant change due to love. Shakespeare starts the play out with this theme and he continues it wrought the play.
Love also greatly affects Romeo in other ways. Many characters in the story talk about how Romeos love for Juliet makes him effeminate. When Romeo finds out that he is going to be 2 separated from Juliet and banished from Verona he starts bawling and even tries to kill himself. Friar then says to him, “Hold thy desperate hand! Art thou a man? Thy form cries out thou art. Thy tears are womanish; Thy wild acts denote unreasonable fury of a beast. ” (Romeo and Juliet. 3. 3. 1 17-130). Friar is saying that he is acting like a woman and telling IM to man up and think rationally.
His love for Juliet and the idea of staying away from her causes Romeo to act womanish and instinctively. His first thought is to kill himself instead of thinking things through and trying to figure out a way to get him out of the mess he is in. The fact that love makes him effeminate also gets in between his relationships with his friends. At the end of Act 2 Mercuric is talking to Benevolent about Romeo and making fun of Romeos love. Romeo overhears and is hurt by this and says “He jests at scars that never felt a wound. (Romeo and Juliet. 2. 2. 1).
He is hurt by what Mercuric said because Mercuric was never in love so he feels that he doesn’t have room to judge. Romeos love affects him by making him effeminate and that makes him act impulsive, womanish, and gets in between his relationships with his friends. However, the love between Romeo and Juliet does not only affect them, it also affects their loved ones. When Romeo stabs Table and is banished, Friar Lawrence comes up with a plan so that Romeo and Juliet can be together and so Juliet does not have to marry Paris. As part of this plan, Juliet has to take a potion to fake her own death.
When Friar Lawrence thinks of this plan he does not think of Gullet’s family and friends. The loss of a child is unbearable and Friar Lawrence and Juliet are willing to do this to Gullet’s parents just so Romeo and Juliet can be together. When Juliet agrees to this plan she also does not think about the affect this would have on her family. Also, when Romeo and Juliet kill themselves they do not think about the affects it 3 would have on both their families. Lady Montague actually dies of the grief he is overcome with after the death of her only son.
However, their love also positively affects the two families after their deaths because there is a feeling of reconciliation. Their deaths stopped a feud that was the cause of many deaths and it possibly prevented more deaths. Therefore, Romeo and Gullet’s love directly affects their loved ones as they were overcome with grief and sadness after the deaths of Romeo and Juliet, however, their love also taught the families to put aside their differences. All in all, the theme of how much love can affect people is the most significant hem in Romeo in Juliet.
Love can change a person as it did Romeo, Juliet and their loved ones. Love made Romeo effeminate, impulsive, and at times very melancholy. At the end of the story the love between Romeo and Juliet affects the entire outcome of the story by solving the greatest conflict which is the feud between the Montague and the Capsules and affects the families because they are overcome with grief. This is the most significant theme because love affects all the characters and in the end affects the lives of everyone in Verona and the outcome of the play.