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star-crossed lovers

A phrase from the play Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare; Romeo and Juliet are so described in the prologue to the play.

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Note

“Star-crossed lovers” refers to any lovers whose affection for each other is doomed to end in tragedy.

star-crossed lovers

Lovers whose relationship is doomed to fail are said to be “star-crossed” (frustrated by the stars), because those who believe in astrology claim that the stars control human destiny. William Shakespeare used the phrase to describe the lovers in Romeo and Juliet.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.