Sample Scholarship Essays

Romeo And Juliet

Romeo And Juliet Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, these amazing plays all originated from the single mind of William Shakespeare. The plays in which Shakespeare wrote, he wrote out of a very small educated mind a distinct love for the bible and of course, an imagination. The plays in which Shakespeare wrote were all written as an adult to, leaving his past to be misled into false claims. Shakespeare never wrote and autobiography and much is not known about his childhood sense it was never a real corner stone for people who enjoyed his plays and poems to think about, but as the saying goes, you cant understand your future till you understand your past. This strictly helps us interpret why each and every persons childhood, famous or not, is important. Do you know what kind of childhood Shakespeare had? Do you know where he started from? William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon in the Province of Warwickshire England in 1564 to John Shakespeare and Mary ( Arden ) Shakespeare.

Stratford was a relatively prosperous market town ( Loxton 13 ) in middle England, which had a fairly large population. When William was three months old, the plague raged in Stratford ( Lee 10 ) and took the lives of many, and killed one out of every seven that was living in the town at that time. Lucky William and the Shakespeare family escaped the plague, and as from records, no one in the Shakespeare family had contracted the awful illness. The Shakespeare family was a close-knit one, and they had to be in those days. William Shakespeares family consisted of John, the father, Mary the mother, 3 brothers, Gilbert, Edmund, Richard, 4 sisters, Joan, Ann, another Joan, and Margaret, along with Shakespeares Grandfather and Grandmother( rarely heard of ).

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Although they could escape the plague they could not escape the overwhelming commonness of the death of infants in that time ( Lee 10 ). Mary the mother of William Shakespeare was the daughter of Robert Arden and Had, In all, Eight Children with John Shakespeare ( Gray 3 ). The first daughter of Mary and John was Joan, who died at birth in 1558. The second born to the couple was the daughter Margaret, which was born in 1562 and died a year later in 1563. The third child born to John and Mary, in 1564 finally was William Shakespeare and as we all know lived into adulthood ( Fido 11 ).

April 1564 is the month in which Shakespeare was baptized but no exact birth date was ever given, but since he died close to his birthday which happened to fall on the 23rd of April, the same date as St. Georges birthday, the people recognize this as his official birth date ( Loxton 10 ). The next member of the Shakespeare family was Williams brother was Gilbert and he also lived into adulthood. He was born in 1566 and later died in 1612, a fairly short life but this was common back in his time ( Kay 17 ). The next born, the second Joan in the Shakespeare family also lived to be an adult, as she was born in 1566 and later died in 1612.

The 6th born child, who was Anne, died at age 8, when William was only 15. The death of his sister probably caused great pain to William and the whole family as most deaths do, and was just another loss to add to the family at that time. She was born in 1571 and later died in 1579. Richard Shakespeare, named after his grandfather, was the 7th born and also lived into adulthood, but by no means was it a long adult life. I lived till 1613 and was born in 1574. The last child, Edmund, like Richard was also named after a relative in the family. He was named after his uncle Edmund on his mothers side.

Edmund also like Richard didnt live a very long adult life, living only a mere 28 years. Richard lived from 1580 till 1608. This was the immediate family to William Shakespeare and undoubtedly influenced his life a great deal, as all families do ( Lee 18-19 ).The most important figure in Shakespeares childhood life was, undoubtedly his father, John Shakespeare. In 1551, John Shakespeare left Snitterfield, which was his birthplace, to seek a career in the neighboring town of Stratford-Upon-Avon ( Lee 4 ). At one point John Shakespeare purchased 500 pounds of wool to start his new wool and glove selling business which he brought to the Stratford markets every Thursday to sell ( Lee, 6-7) By this time he had already married his wife Mary whom grew up in a tiny farm village of Wilmcole, ( Wright 13 ) and was moving up the social and economic ladder.

He was later appointed as the towns tester to test the freshness of Ale and Bread ( Fido 12 ), was later placed as alderman, and still moving up the ladder to finally being elected town bailiff (essentially mayor) in 1568 ( Kay 7 ). He Bought 2 houses on Henley Street in Stratford and they still stand to this day and some houses in Stratford with their projecting second stories and small windows are medieval and still look much as they did in Shakespeares time (Wright 11 ). This was undoubtedly the birthplace of William and many believe he was conceived in the upstairs bedroom ( Wright 12 ). William grew up admiring his father and the bible. ( the bible was a large part of life in those days ).The interaction between father and son was evident.

John, Williams father, who could be considered wealthy at the time, brought his son to fairs and together watched many plays (Wright 15 ). This is most likely William got his taste for plays and poetry. The plays consisted of six or seven actors and would be going from town to town to promote their plays ( Wright 14 ). Most of the plays brought to towns and cities in provincial England were full of moral preachments and lessons of richeousness ( Wright 19 ). If the children didnt understand the message or moral, they would be entertained by it nonetheless.

The provincial theater left much imagination to its audience and children were often stirred by its physical action ( Wright 19 ). One example of this physical action, was the involvement of violence in the plays. Violence was an essential ingredient in sixteenth century plays ( Wright 19 ) and it was used to convey messages better to children and to make the moral more believable or realistic. Sometimes an actor would carry a concealed bladder of animal blood and to be used to spurt forth at the critical moment in an axing or stabbing ( Wright 19 ). William no doubt, got the best seat for these events, for his father was the most important official in the town at that time.

Violence and action that portrayed messages in these plays most likely sculpted the mind of the young playwrite. Another interaction between father and son was the sharing of the fathers wool business. William would help out his father as would most men and boys would do, spend most of their time outside and working ( Levi 5 ). Apart from learning skills and gaining recognition from his father Willi …

Romeo and Juliet

Is Shakespeares original description of Romeo and Juliet as being a pair of star crossed lovers an adequate explanation for their final tragedy?
Shakespeares description of Romeo and Juliet as being a pair of star crossed lovers implies that it was pre-determined before their birth that they would fall in love with each other and commit suicide. This idea of fate is not an adequate description of Romeo and Juliets final tragedy. This only partially explains the tragedy; the factors, which adequately describe the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, include the, involvement of the Friar, the volatility of Tybalt and the Montagues and Capulets ancient feud.


Fate played an important role in the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet and there are many events, which highlight this. Throughout the novel Romeo saw himself being manipulated by fate. This is well shown when he was involuntarily pulled into the fight with Tybalt. In rage over Mercutio murder, Romeo killed Tybalt, after he exclaimed to Benvolio Im fortunes fool. This suggests that fate was toying with him and there was nothing he could do about it. The Friar noticed this as well, he showed this by telling Romeo after the fight. Thou art wedded to calamity. Other than that, there were many random events, which were good examples of fate contributing to the tragedy. Like when Friar John was locked inside a sick persons home, this prevented him from delivering the message to Romeo, telling him about Friar Lawrences plans. Or Romeo arriving at the site if the Capulets monument and committing suicide minutes before the Friar arrived and Juliet woke from the Friars sleeping potion. This makes it obvious that fate was involved, but again fate was not the only contributing factor to the tragedy.

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Friar Lawrence was the main reason for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. Friar Lawrence didnt take the best interest of the lovers into consideration, and his involvement at the end, lead to the double suicide of Romeo and Juliet. When Romeo came to the Friar and told him that he suddenly had no feeling for Rosaline, but loved and wanted to marry the daughter of the Capulets, Juliet, the Friar was shocked, Holy Saint Francis. The Friar could see that Romeo was too immature for a commitment like that, so at first he refused. As he thought about it he agreed, not for the good of the lovers, but for Verona, he thought the marriage would stop the feuding between the two families. For this alliance may so happy prove to turn your households rancor, to pure love. After the turning point of the play the Friar wrote a note, telling Romeo what his has done and his plan to get him back together with Juliet. Th mistake he made was giving it to a Friar below him, who was unable to send it. It was actually Friar Lawrences responsibility to make sure that Romeo acquired the message, if he had done this Romeo wouldnt have purchased the Apothecarys Dram of poison to kill himself after hearing that Juliet was dead from Balthasar.


Tybalt was also a major contributor to the tragedy, he always had a score to settle with the Montagues and his volatility caused the banishment of Romeo. Tybalt loathed the Montagues, this is well highlighted at the beginning of the play, he told Benvolio how much he hated the Montagues. Talk of peace? I hate the word, as I hate hell, all Montagues and thee. Tybalt was always willing to pick a fight when a Montague was involved he saw them as villains and the only way he saw to solve the problem, was to kill. A good example of this was at the Capulets Party, Romeo came uninvited, Tybalt saw him and exclaimed, To strike him dead. I hold it not a sin. Capulet tried to control him, the only way he knew to control Tybalt was to threaten Tybalt with death, this enraged Tybalt and he swore revenge upon Romeos unauthorized intrusion. I will withdraw; but this intrusion shall convert to bitterest gall. After Tybalt killed Romeos best friend Mercutio and flied, Romeo was grief-stricken. As Romeo saw Tybalt returning, furious and triumphant, he came to boiling point fire-eyed fury be my conduct now! he shouted. After he unleashed his wrath, Tybalt was dead and he flied. After the bitter fight, the Prince arrived, he was furious he declared that for the offence we do exile him. If Tybalt werent as volatile and vengeful as he was, Romeo would not have been banished.


The Ancient feud that was going on between the two families contributed to the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. This feud influenced the decision and actions taken by both Romeo and Juliet. One decision they both made was, not to let their families know about their love. If they told their parents, they would first of all, give their disapproval, and then forbid their love and the Capulets would force Juliet to marry Paris he suitor. Because they were so close to their families they did not want to run the risk of being disowned by their families for a Capulet loving a Montague or vice-versa, for instance when Juliet refused to marry Paris her father told her sternly, Hang, beg, starve, die in the streets Ill neer acknowledge thee. The families being foes made it very risky for Romeo and Juliet to see each other, this is best shown by the warning Juliet gave about the guards. If they do see thee, they will murder thee. The Capulets and the Montagues were very narrow minded, they were never prepare to apologize and make up, the only thing that changed this was the suicide of both the families only offsprings (Romeo and Juliet). After the first fight in the play, the opportunity could have been taken to apologize, but neither of them took it. At the end of the novel when Romeo and Juliet were dead they immediately forgave and forgot, this didnt have to happen, because a feud that was going on for that long should have been stopped before it went that far.


The Tragedy Romeo and Juliet was largely the Friars involvement and not thinking in the best interest of Romeo and Juliet. The families feud affected the decisions of Romeo and Juliet , and Tybalt volatility and vengefulness towards the Montagues. Fate could not be the description of their final tragedy, because of all the other factors which had a greater contribution to the tragedy.

Romeo And Juliet

Romeo And Juliet “Romeo and Juliet is a play about two silly, immature teenagers who lack common sense. Therefore, the play expresses the danger of a love in which two people become the whole world to one another.” To what extent do you agree or disagree? The story of Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy. The two lovers go against their families and against their hate to be together but they dont think about the consequences, which in the end are devastating. Romeo and Juliet engage in a love that they believe is the one true love. They dont even know each other and dont know each others personality so they can only be attracted sexually.

Instead of taking things slowly and getting to know each other or on the other hand engage in a type of relationship just to satisfy each others desires they act like they have known each other for a long time and that they cant live one without the other. At the start of the play we see that Romeo is in love with Roseline and that he only talks about her but when he meets Juliet at the party he totally forgets Roseline and falls in love with Juliet. Friar Laurence clearly states this to Romeo: “Is Rosaline, whom thou didst love so dear, so soon forsaken? Young mens love then lies not truly in their hearts, but in their eyes”. This is exactly how Romeo behaves. Juliet on the other hand had to marry Count Paris so her love with Romeo is simply a way to get out of it. She never had a relationship with a man and she didnt like to have her first and only relationship with a man her parents arranged for her.

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She wanted freedom and Romeo was her ticket to it. During the story Romeo and Juliet convince them selves to be in love with each other and they become obsessed, not with the love for each other, but with the fact of being in love with each other. Young people like to do forbidden things it gives them a feeling of exhilaration and freedom and thats exactly what Romeo and Juliet were doing. They did what they were not supposed to be doing without thinking about the consequences and simply hoping for the best. In the end their acts concluded to their own deaths.

Romeo And Juliet

Do you believe in fate? To answer the question, you must first have a correct
idea of what fate is. A definition of fate would be the power that is supposed
to settle ahead of time how things will happen. Could there be such a power that
rules our lives, and if so, why? Romeo and Juliet, the two young lovers in
William Shakespeare’ s Romeo and Juliet, ended up becoming a large part of what
could be called “fate”. Fate seemed to control their lives and force
them together, becoming a large part of their love, and the ending of their
parent’s hatred. Fate became the ultimate control power in this play, and plays
a large part in modern everyday life, even if we don’t recognize it. Maybe we
don’t recognize it because we choose not to, or don’t have faith like we used
to, but the fact remains that fate controls what we do throughout all of our
lives. A large part of the beliefs for both Romeo and Juliet involve fate. They
believed in the stars, and that their actions weren’t always their own. Romeo,
for example, 1.4.115-120, he says, “Some consequence yet hanging in the
stars…by some vile forfeit of untimely death. But he that hath the steerage
over my course Direct my sail.” He’s basically saying to his friends that
he had a dream which leads him to believe that he will die young because of
something in the stars, something that will happen. He ends with “…he
that hath steerage over my course…” which implies that he does not have
control over his life if he looks to another power above himself to direct him.

He does not feel that he is the one who makes decisions, it is all a higher
purpose, a different power. We’re all sort of like the puppets below the
puppeteer. He’s asking for that puppeteer to direct his “sail,” or his
life, in the right direction. Fate directs us all like the puppets on the end of
it’s string, and I believe strongly in it. It is, in many ways, the mystical
power that controls who and what we become, and it explains that which can not
be explained. Romeo was looking to this power, asking of this power to direct
him, not to an untimely death as he foresaw in his dream, but to just steer him,
because that is the control which he knows he does not have over himself.

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Nonetheless, fate still managed to weave Romeo into a twisted web of it’s
power’s and plan’s. It did this by starting with a few simple emotions and
actions. Romeo had a crush on Rosaline, who did not return these feelings. Next,
an illiterate servant of the Capulet’s was sent to invite people on a list to a
party that the Capulet’s were throwing. While Romeo babbled on about his life
with Benvolio, his cousin and kinsmen, Romeo bumped into this servant who asked
him to read the list, with Rosaline’s name, which got Romeo to agree to go after
the servant invited them. This sets everything up for the two lovers. They meet
at the party, Romeo memorized by her beauty, and her simply memorized by him.

They realize later their identity, but they are in love and won’t let their
names get in the way of that strong emotional bind. If fate didn’t put all this
together, then what or who did? What were the chances of all of this happening
to two loathed enemies? It would probably be a million to one. Fate set up their
love, their love already predestined, as well as their suicides, which they both
foresaw. Romeo and Juliet throughout the play have dreams or visions of their
deaths. Juliet for example in 3.5.55, she says, “Methinks I see thee, now
thou art so low, as one dead in the bottom of a tomb.” She sees Romeo dead
in a tomb, which is where he eventually ends up in the end of the play, beside
her. This why she talks about Romeo being so low in a tomb, he’s dead, and she
has foreseen it, before it has even happened. How could she have seen the future
if it wasn’t already decided for her? The answer is, she probably couldn’t have.

I’m very superstitious and believe in dreams and powers beyond us, that in the
end everything can amount to some good, and some bad. It’s a constant balance
that keeps working throughout life and nature which we can’t stop. Dreams or
experiences often hint to things or have a meaning. In the case of Romeo and
Juliet, it showed them what was going to happen, not exactly what would take
place on that night, but it did show them both that Romeo would die. Believing
in fate and trusting dreams such as these is believing in the idea that a
stronger power and force controls us, and in the case of such a strong love as
the love between Romeo and Juliet, that there is one person out there destined
for everyone. It’s romantic, and Romeo and Juliet were lucky enough to find each
other, even if their love eventually led them to their deaths. In this case,
however, fate may have been trying to do more than bring the two together. On
5.3.317, The Prince says, “A gloomy peace with it brings…” after
they two are discovered dead and their marriage revealed by the Friar. The
hatred and feud between the two houses was causing so many to loose their lives.

The Prince was fed up with them and their brawls, such as on 1.1.90-100,
“…By thee, old Capulet, and Montague, have thrice disturbed the quiet of
our streets…If ever you disturb our streets again, Your lives shall pay the
forfeit of the peace.” He’s saying that the feud is causing many problems
on his streets, and the next time he needs to break them up or people get
involved in a rumble, he will kill them to end the chaos that is sweeping
through Verona. The peace may have been the final part in this grand scheme
which seems so perfectly plotted, bringing together two lovers and two families
full of hate. The Friar so predicted the marriage might do, 2.3.98, “For
this alliance may so happy prove To turn your households’ rancor to pure
love.” He agreed to marry them, seeing such a noble event bringing the two
families together and ending the hatred, and then turning it to true love. In
the end, the hatred was ended, and their love was as true as it could have been.

Even if their lives were ended by it, like Romeo says 2.2.83, “And, But
thou love me, let them find me here. My life is better ended by their hate Than
death prorogued, wanted of thy love.” He would have preferred to die then
to have lived without Juliet, or not to have Juliet’s love and be left only with
hate. He so proves the strength of such a conviction when he kills himself, and,
in turn, Juliet kills herself. During this part of the play, after Romeo has
killed Paris and himself but before Juliet has done the same, the Friar comes
rushing in, trying to persuade Juliet out of the tomb before more arrive. He
says to Juliet 5.3.159, “A greater power than we can contradict hath
thwarted our intents.” It can be interpreted that he is talking of fate,
telling Juliet that a power beyond their control has spoiled their plans. This
power must be fate. They couldn’t contradict it, how would you? How do you beat
the power that spins out lives and creates our futures in the same manner that
it is has created our past and present. You can’t. Their story, as sad as it may
be, was meant to happen. The good and the bad are a balance that even fate must
recognize and accept. Some people say that the lord works in mysterious ways,
which I think is a way of saying that sometimes the bad things are blessings,
and they may just work to the greater good. The same could be said about fate,
and it’s role in this play. Yes, two people died. Is this a worthy cause and a
lesser number than those who may have died if their hatred had not been
resolved? I would have to say yes, their deaths may have been to the greater
good, as tragic as it was. It turned hate to love. This play, as well as fate
works in it, isn’t the only thing fate plays a role in. Fate affects everything
and decided much of the world and it’s destiny. What happens happens, why fight
it? We all end up were ever fate wants us, one way or another. Everybody we
meet, everything that affects us and makes us see things from different views
and other sides, they all affect who we become and develop into, which,
ultimately, is fate. As much as we would like to deny it. Some things just can’t
be explained unless you look to the higher reasoning and to the higher cause,
and sometimes the good out of the bad is visible. I heard a quote from a movie
that is coming out in awhile that struck me and stuck with me. It goes,
“…fate can only take you so far, the rest is up to you.” Fate got
Romeo and Juliet together, and it set everything up, but in the end, I do
believe we have some say in how we turn out. Fate can make things happen, such
as the case in Romeo and Juliet, but it was also the love between them, the deep
emotions that ran through their hearts mixed with the scorn and hatred driven in
by their parents. Their actions may have been predestined, but they were their
own. They may not have realized the consequence of their love, but even if they
did, they didn’t care. Things happen because of fate, and actions happen because
of things. It’s a never ending circle of power and feeling, destiny and actions.

Each depends on the other, yet each has the power to affect everything on it’s
own. Fate needs the action of it’s “puppet” just like the puppet needs
the puppeteer. One can’t exist without the other. People’s hearts will run
freely, and fate simply will lead them, but the rest is up to them to achieve,
even if fate is guiding them, the power to stop fate lies simply in a strong
gesture where the “puppet” has the power to become the
“puppeteer.”
Shakespeare

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