Act V – Scene.i
Romeo is in Mantua where he advises the audience that he had a wonderful
dream the night before concerning Juliet finding him lying dead, but she kissed him and breathed new life into his body.
He meets Balthasar who has news from Verona concerning Juliet.
He advises Romeo that Juliet has died; found dead that morning in her home. Romeo cries out, defying the stars. He writes a letter which he asks Balthasar to deliver to Montague and that he will return to Verona that night.
Romeo intends to lie with Juliet in her tomb. He goes to find a seller
of drugs and eventually persuades him to give him a vial of poison, despite this being illegal.
Balthasar has sought out Romeo to give him the news of Juliet’s death.
Shakespeare cleverly shows the audience how Romeo is being trapped by fate
and they too sense the inevitability of the situation.
When Romeo shouts ‘Then I defy you stars’ he is shouting against the fate
that is stealing away from him his heart of desires. He resigns himself to these forces and pledges to take his life at Juliet’s side.