Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Dear Sec 3s
Remember the question posed to you in class this week?

Recall the following qualities of a 'tragic hero' as presented in class: 

  • A main character who goes through a series of events that lead to his/her downfall
  • Possesses importance or high rank
  • Exhibits extraordinary talents
  • Displays a tragic flaw  —an error in judgment or defect in character- that leads to downfall
  • Faces downfall with courage and dignity
  • Often a man of high rank, such as a king or prince/noble
  • Creates, or is put into, a difficult situation which he must try to resolve.
  • A combination of bad luck and bad decisions lead to his death.
  • Often a relatively sympathetic figure.  His soliloquies show his feelings and motives, and show the audience how easy it would be to make similar mistakes 
Is Romeo Montague a ‘tragic hero’?

  1. Please use the comments section to send me your response to the question above.
  2. Your response should be about 500 words in length.
  3. Be sure to leave your name and class at the start of your comment.  
  4. Please following this format: Name_Class_(Start comment)



  1. Darren Wee_ 3Grace_ Through out the whole story, he was one of the main protagonist in the whole story. From the begining to the end, he was considered a cross star lover, which means he will die and he is ill-fated. At the first part of the story, he was deeply in love with rosaline, who in the end was just using him and did not care about him. However during the masquerade, he met Juliet, whom he instantly fell in love with. Throught the whole time since he met Juliet, he when through alot of hardships. He 'murdered' Tybalt to avenge Mercutio out of grief and hatred. With that, Romeo was exiled from Verona by Price Escalus. Soon after, Juliet planned to fake death in order to run away from home, by consuming a drug, given by which will put her in a coma like state. A message was to be sent to Romeo, but was not recieved. Thus Romeo heard of Juliet's apparent death. Grief stricken by this, Romeo bought a poison from an apothecary. He went to Juliet's crypt, where he meets Paris, who thought Romeo was a vandal, and both of them sparred. Paris was fatally injured and he soon died. With that, Romeo consumed the poison and thus died. But soon after, Juliet woke up from her coma like state only to find Romeo dead. Hence Romeo died for nothing and is considered to be a "tragic hero", all due to the fact that he is the main protagonist and he faced alot of suffering.

  2. Name: Cassandra Lam (4)
    Class: 3 Courage

    Is Romeo Montague a ‘tragic hero’?

    Romeo Montague is somehow a tragic hero. He is the main character of the play, who came from a very important family in Verona, the Montague family. Romeo is the only son of Montague, and was therefore very precious.

    His downfall, which, ultimately was his death, was partly due to his love for Juliet and the grudge between his family and Juliet's - The Capulets. Because their families were against one another, Romeo and Juliet's love for each other was somewhat forbidden. This lead to the various complications that happened later in the plot. For example, if their love was not forbidden, Friar Lawrence would not have to secretly wed them and go to great lengths to allow Romeo & Juliet to be together.

    Bad luck also contributed to Romeo's downfall. For example, when he was at the scene where Tybalt and Mercutio was about to fight, when Friar John was not able to deliver the letter due to the officials suspecting that the house he was in was hit by a plague, and the time that he found Juliet in her 'grave' - just a short time before Friar Lawrence was about to reach the place, and before Juliet was about to wake up from her 'sleeping potion'.
    Romeo, who was at the scene when Mercutio and Tybalt was about to fight, tried to stop it from happening, however it led Tybalt to kill Mercutio, and afterward, Romeo killing Tybalt, which only left him the only one alive to punish for the start of the fight, when he wasn't actually the one that started it.
    Friar John, who was suspected to be infected by plague, could not deliver the letter from Friar Lawrence to Romeo in time, which led to misunderstanding of Juliet's death, and led to the rash decision made by Romeo of buying poison.
    Because Romeo arrived just a little bit earlier before Friar Lawrence could, he died before he could know the truth behind Juliet's 'death'. However, just because he was there at the wrong time, Friar Lawrence could not deliver the message, Romeo died beside the 'dead' Juliet. And afterward, when Juliet woke up, she stabbed herself, because she found Romeo dead.

    These unlucky situations just lead the deaths of the lovers, and grief to their families. However, some good did come out of Romeo's downfall, which is the feud between the families are resolved in the end.

  3. Chen Yingxuan (7) 3CR

    Is Romeo Montague a ‘tragic hero’?

    With regards to the qualities that determines if one is a ‘tragic hero’, Romeo Montague displays almost all the qualities as a ‘tragic hero’, with the exception of two points, which is the point that says “exhibits extraordinary talents”, which I guess he does not have any. The other one is the point “faces downfall with courage and dignity”, which I totally disagree, as he had attempted suicide when he was exiled from Verona forever. He did not have the courage to face his downfall and cowardly wanted to end his life.

    Other than these few points, he had basically fulfilled all the qualities. He is a main character that faces downfall, especially his death when he thought that his love had departed him, at the end of the story. Romeo Montague, as a son of the Montague family who has a high authority and status, possesses also a high rank in the country. He also displays a tragic flaw by accidentally killing Tybalt out of anger, which causes him to be exiled from Verona and had to leave his love ones forever. Facing such a downfall, and unable to kill himself to escape mentally, he has to try to resolve the problem of living in an unfamiliar country away from him home and families.

    He is also very unlucky, as if, the message that Juliet was not dead and it was all an act, reaches Romeo successfully, he would not have killed himself. Thus it was all fate and bad luck that causes his tragic end. Also if he had not killed himself before finding out the truth, they might not have such a sad ending as well. It was partly, other than bad luck, because of Romeo’s bad decisions, leading to his own death.

    Romeo, also can be seen as a relatively sympathetic person, as he always tend to show his feelings very directly and open to all. An example is when he failed to win Rosaline’s love, and is out of love, he showed his sorrrowness very openly on his face. He also very often let readers have the feeling that of how easy it would be to make similar mistake

    The End:)

  4. Ashley Toh- 3CR

    Yes, Romeo Montague is a tragic hero as he fulfilled most of the characteristics of what a tragic hero is like.
    He is the main character of the story and the whole book revolves around the events that him and Juliet went through, from the their meeting to their secret marriage, and the murder to Romeo’s banishment to Juliet playing dead, the message not being relayed and both of them really dying in the end. In the story, death was their ultimate downfall.
    Romeo possesses importance as he comes from an affluent family, which is one of the highest ranking in Verona, where the story takes place.
    The tragic flaw that Romeo has is that he is somewhat rash and reckless, perhaps a little emotionally unstable as his mood swings and feelings are always at the extremes, like when he was so infatuated with Rosaline, then so deeply in love with Juliet. This flaw was made tragic when he was so grieved by Juliet’s death that he immediately killed himself. Had he waited a little longer, Juliet would have woken up and they would have lived happily ever after. Then again, maybe not, as their families may not have reconciled. One might say that they probably would after they found out what their beloved children did for love, but if so, Romeo would not qualify as a tragic hero, as he did not exactly die for a cause that he believed in.
    Romeo sort of faced his downfall with courage and dignity as he chose to “die” with Juliet rather than live without her, and hopefully with his display of love put an end to the feud of the two families.
    He can also be considered a hero as he was banished when Juliet “killed” herself, and was therefore risking his life when he went back to Verona to see if she was really dead. This is sadly heroic as he could have just accepted the news with sadness and stay safe out of town and live alone forever, instead of “breaking into” the town to see her and risk his life in the process.
    The bad luck on Romeo’s part was that the message of Juliet fake dying was not relayed clearly and thus he naturally assumed the most obvious and was so grieved by it. Had he received the message, everything would have gone smoothly and there would have been no need for both of them to lose their lives in the end. A bad decision is one that is mentioned earlier, on the fact that he should not have been so rushed in committing suicide after he found Juliet’s seemingly lifeless body. Though it is probably very hard to guess what Juliet without knowing anything beforehand, it would have been much better if he’d waited a while longer before killing himself.
    All these things go to show that Romeo is a total tragic hero, as he had no personal gain but instead demise, but the heroic part comes in the fact that his and Juliet’s death resolved the feud of the two families.

    Word count: 555words.

  5. Lee Tzeng Suan_3Courage_ I do think that Romeo is a tragic hero. He has the qualities of one. He is the protagonist of the play and the series of events that happened lead to his downfall, which is in this case, his death. He is also from a reputable family, the Montagues. Romeo, in one way or another, possesses a rather high rank for a man in Verona. He also displays a tragic flaw – immaturity. He and Juliet “fell in love” before they even knew each other or see each other’s face. It was because of his immaturity that led to the series of events - he did not want to fight with Tybalt because he was married to Juliet, causing Mercutio to die. If he had thought about the situation of the fight instead of the situation between him and Juliet, I guess that he would not have killed Tybalt out of regret in unable to protect his friend because of his foolishness in handling situations and he would not have been banished.
    Also, a combination of bad luck and bad decisions led to Romeo’s death. It was bad luck that he could not receive the letter from Friar Lawrence because Friar John was quarantined. The letter determined his life and death, because it would have clarified matters to Romeo and let him have a better understanding of the situation. However, it was because he did not receive the letter that he bought the poison to die with Juliet, which he assumed was dead. Romeo also made a bad decision by trying to stop the fight between Mercutio and Tybalt. He wanted to act as the peacemaker, but ended up killing Tybalt instead, making more troubles for himself. When Mercutio was killed, Romeo blamed himself for being unable to protect his friend. This built up the anger and thirst for revenge in him, thus leading him to make another bad decision – to revenge for his good friend. He was later exiled to Mantua which led to a series of events leading to his downfall.
    Romeo is a relatively sympathetic figure. His lines always sound tragic, sad and depressed. In the play, his feelings are mostly unhappy. He would gain sympathy when he makes a bad decision which eventually leads to his downfall. He is also always put into difficult situations whereby he must resolve. He must resolve the fight between Mercutio and Tybalt; He must, in order to officially let others recognize Juliet as his wife, end the feud between his family and the Capulets.
    Even though Romeo does not have any extraordinary talent stated in the book, I think that he is still a tragic hero as he processes the most of the qualities of a tragic hero.


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