Governmental control surrounds society daily and has been around for centuries. Governments came around so that they could control others. It recurs throughout The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, as well as in The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. Even in modern day, government control remains a significant part of life. For example, the SOPA bill arose in Congress when the need for anti-piracy protection became urgent or the USA admitting the Yemeni dictator into one of its medical centers. It occurs from the 1500s in The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet to the 1800s in The Count of Monte Cristo and even modern day. Each government designs itself in a way so that it functions with a united purpose to keep the human population together, alive, and running.
In the 1500s, governmental control was limited but powerful as seen in The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. The Prince chooses not to act upon his initial threat of death to anyone who feuds with one of the opposite family: “Go hence, to have more talk of these sad things/some shall be pardoned and some punished” (5.3.306-307). He shows that all governmental control does not have to be oppressive and the government will pardon people who truly deserve it. As the governmental figure of Verona, the Prince has to be harsh when issuing reprimands; however, he chooses to follow his judgment and pardon those he feels were not involved enough to be punished. The Prince’s decisions show how governmental control does not have to be terrible and restricting. The Prince clearly states how all the feuding members of the Capulet and the Montague families will be killed if they have any more public clashes.
By thee, old Capulet, and Montague
Have thrice disturbed the quiet of our streets... Cank’red with peace, to part your cank’red hate If ever you disturb our streets again
Cited: Dumas, Alexandre. The Count of Monte Cristo. Mineola, NY: Dover, 2007. Print.
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