Shakespeare Responds to Interpretations

Since the Immortal Writers have trusted me with their story, William Shakespeare has also entrusted me to post his and other writers' responses to adaptations of their work, fan fiction, and other material. Here is Shakespeare's response to many people's interpretation of Romeo & Juliet. -Jill

First, allow me to assure you beyond all doubt that I truly am William Shakespeare. My writing has morphed through the centuries to match the current age. This may not be the Old English you anticipated, but it is truly me. And I am truly, very disturbed at many of this generation's interpretation of one of my great works.

Hark, what light through yonder window breaks? Many people are familiar with this line--as well they should be, it is brilliant--and the same are familiar with the play Romeo & Juliet. Yet, many young readers--and some old!--are under the delusion that this masterpiece is a romance.

I pray that I may be able to impress upon you the import of the following fact: Romeo & Juliet is a tragedy.

How could I make this clearer to my readers? Or, to the play-goers? Romeo and Juliet die at the end of the play! Romeo kills Tybalt, destroying his soul at such a young age! And yes, 'twas a different age, and love and marriage were common in one's youth, but do you not realize that Juliet and Romeo were young? Oh, so young! In this enlightened age, all should recognize the foolishness of young love! Particularly one that leads both lovers to suicide at the end of the play.

I will stay my hand from further argument on the matter. I appreciate the world's love for my work, but please, consider this play a tragedy, and not a romance.

-William Shakespeare

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