Act 3 Scene 1
The scene begins with Benvolio and Mercutio, who are on the streets of Verona, when Tybalt arrives still angrily searching for Romeo. Benvolio wishes to avoid a confrontation; however, Mercutio is deliberately provocative and tries to draw Tybalt into an argument so that they can have a duel.
Romeo enters and Tybalt calls him a villain, hoping he will respond to the duel, but Romeo refuses because he is now related to Tybalt through his marriage to Juliet (Juliet’s cousin) . Mercutio, disgusted by Romeo’s reluctance to fight, answers Tybalt’s insults on Romeo’s behalf and draws his sword. Tybalt and Mercutio draw their swords and fight. Romeo tries to break it up, but Tybalt reaches under Romeo’s arm and fatally stabs Mercutio, who curses the Montagues and the Capulets for their continuing feud. A grieving Romeo fights Tybalt and kills him.
Romeo is forced to flee a mob of citizens as the Prince, the heads of the two households, and their wives appear at the scene. After Benvolio gives an account of what has happened, the Prince banishes Romeo from Verona under the penalty of death and orders Lords Montague and Capulet to pay a heavy fine.
Knowing that he’ll face death if he stays in Verona, Romeo immediately flees. The Prince, the Capulets, and the Montagues arrive. Benvolio explains what happened, and Lady Capulet calls for Romeo’s death. The Montagues argue their son was merely defending himself against an instigating Tybalt. The Prince strikes a compromise, saying that he’ll spare Romeo’s life, but that he must leave Verona forever.
Romeo and Juliet is a multi-award winning play written by William Shakespeare. It is a tragic love story where the two main characters are from rival families, the Montagues and the Capulets. Therefore, Romeo and Juliet are supposed to be sworn enemies but fall deeply in love. Due to their families’ ongoing conflict and inability to solve their differences, they cannot be together. The tragedy results in both killing themselves because they cannot cope with being separated from one another.