Marlowe’s Faustus

Marlowe’s Faustus

Faustus. How pliant is this Mephistophilis,
Full of obedience and humility!
Such is the force of magic and my spells.
[Now,] Faustus, thou art conjuror laureat,
Thou canst command great Mephistophilis:

Pasted from <>
Scene III. Marlowe, Christopher. 1909-14. Doctor Faustus. The Harvard Classics

Marlowe’s Mephistophilis

Meph. I am a servant to great Lucifer,
And may not follow thee without his leave
No more than he commands must we perform.

Pasted from <>
Scene III. Marlowe, Christopher. 1909-14. Doctor Faustus. The Harvard Classics


Chorus. Christopher Marlowe,. 1909-14. Doctor Faustus.

Now is he born, his parents base of stock,
In Germany, within a town call’d Rhodes;
Of riper years to Wittenberg he went,
Whereas his kinsmen chiefly brought him up.
So soon he profits in divinity,
The fruitful plot of scholarism grac’d,
That shortly he was grac’d with doctor’s name,
Excelling all those sweet delight disputes
In heavenly matters of theology;
Till swollen with cunning, of a self-conceit,
His waxen wings did mount above his reach,
And, melting, Heavens conspir’d his overthrow;
For, falling to a devilish exercise,
And glutted [now] with learning’s golden gifts,
He surfeits upon cursed necromancy.

Pasted from <>
Chorus. Marlowe, Christopher. 1909-14. Doctor Faustus. The Harvard Classics

Cut is the branch that might have grown full straight


Cut is the branch that might have grown full straight,
And burned is Apollo’s laurel bough,
That sometime grew within this learned man.

Faustus is gone; regard his hellish fall,
Whose fiendfull fortune may exhort the wise
Only to wonder at unlawful things,
Whose deepness doth entice such forward wits
To practise more than heavenly power permits.  [Exit.]

Pasted from <>
Scene XIV. Marlowe, Christopher. 1909-14. Doctor Faustus. The Harvard Classics

“Is there a God beside Me?

“Is there a God beside Me? Yea, there is no God; I know not any”, God says (Isa. 44: 8);
“The Lord He is God; there is none else beside Him” (Deut. 4:35).
Such verses occur time and again throughout the Bible. Because God is the source of all power and the only God, He is therefore a jealous God, as He often reminds us (e.g. Ex. 20:5; Deut. 4:24).
God gets jealous when His people start believing in other gods, if they say to Him, ‘You are a great God, a powerful God, but actually I believe there are still some other gods beside You, even if they are not as powerful as You’. This is why we cannot believe that there are demons or a Devil in existence as well as the true God. This is just the mistake Israel made. Much of the Old Testament is spent showing how Israel displeased God by believing in other gods as well as in Him. We will see from the Bible that the “demons” people believe in today are just like those false gods Israel believed in.

Pasted from <>

Poor simple but honest Devil….

Poor simple but honest Devil.

“He is always duped and the vilest tricks are resorted to to cheat him. While thus the Devil, having profited by experience, always insists upon having his rights insured by an unequivocal instrument (which in later centuries is signed with blood); he, in his turn, is fearlessly trusted to keep his promise, and this is a fact which must be mentioned to his honor, for although he is said to be a liar from the beginning, not one case is known, in all devil-lore in which the Devil attempts to cheat his stipulators. Thus he appears as the most unfairly maligned person, and as a martyr of simple-minded honesty.” History of the Devil, by Paul Carus, [1900], at

Pasted from <>

Goethe’s Faust makes not a pact with the Devil…

Goethe’s Faust makes not a pact with the Devil, but a wager.

“Only in Faust: Part One (1808) does Goethe commit himself to his second great divergence from the traditional fable: his Faust now makes not a contract with the Devil but a wager. Faust wagers that, however much of human life the Devil shows him, he will find none of it satisfying—and if he is wrong (i.e., if he is satisfied), he is willing to give up living altogether.”

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. (2010). In Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved March 11, 2010, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online

Pasted from <>

Weber maintains that rationalism was prevalent in Confucian as well

German Sociologist Max Weber (1864 – 1920). Only with with Protestant rationalism could come capitalism. Following, Ernest Wolf-Gazo uses Faust to contrast the spirits of civilizations.

“Weber maintains that rationalism was prevalent in Confucian as well as Islamic civilization, but it was of a different kind or type of rationality than the one emerging out of the puritan ascetic Christian lifestyle (the German lebenfuehrung is more descriptive and apt at this point). It was the type of rationality that confronted the cosmos and transformed it into the laws of nature by the transcendental subject as scientific researcher. Hindu and Islamic civilizations found deistic powers in form of monotheism and godly spirits, but left nature to its natural processes and works. There was not an attempt at usurping a higher power in the figure of Dr. Faustus. Could we imagine an Islamic Faust? No, it was a specific puritan ethos of Calvinist Christian denomination that laid the foundation for a systematic rationalist approach to social, political, economic, and religious life emerging from western Europe. In that sense we can say, it was not a better rationality, but very different in intention and nature from the rest of emerging civilizations.”
“Weber and Islam” by Ernest Wolf-Gazo
ISIM REVIEW 16 / AUTUMN 2005. The International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World (ISIM)

Wikipedia elaborates:

In The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, Weber put forward the thesis that Calvinist ethic and ideas influenced the development of capitalism. He noted the post-Reformation shift of Europe’s economic centre away from Catholic countries such as France, Spain and Italy, and toward Protestant countries such as the Netherlands, England, Scotland and Germany. Weber also noted that societies having more Protestants were those with a more highly developed capitalist economy. Similarly, in societies with different religions, most successful business leaders were Protestant. Weber thus argued that Roman Catholicism impeded the development of the capitalist economy in the West, as did other religions such as Confucianism and Buddhism elsewhere in the world.

“The development of the concept of the calling quickly gave to the modern entrepreneur a fabulously clear conscience – and also industrious workers; he gave to his employees as the wages of their ascetic devotion to the calling and of co-operation in his ruthless exploitation of them through capitalism the prospect of eternal salvation.” —Max Weber

Christian religious devotion had historically been accompanied by rejection of mundane affairs, including economic pursuit. Weber showed that certain types of Protestantism – notably Calvinism – were supportive of rational pursuit of economic gain and worldly activities dedicated to it, seeing them as endowed with moral and spiritual significance. Weber argued that there were many reasons to look for the origins of modern capitalism in the religious ideas of the Reformation. In particular, the Protestant ethic (or more specifically, Calvinist ethic) motivated the believers to work hard, be successful in business and reinvest their profits in further development rather than frivolous pleasures. The notion of calling meant that each individual had to take action as an indication of their salvation; just being a member of the Church was not enough. Predestination also reduced agonising over economic inequality and further, it meant that a material wealth could be taken as a sign of salvation in the afterlife. The believers thus justified pursuit of profit with religion, as instead of being fuelled by morally suspect greed or ambition, their actions were motivated by a highly moral and respected philosophy. This Weber called the “spirit of capitalism”: it was the Protestant religious ideology that was behind – and inevitably led to – the capitalist economic system. This theory is often viewed as a reversal of Marx’s thesis that the economic “base” of society determines all other aspects of it.

“The authority for such pacts is *Isaias*

“The authority for such pacts is *Isaias*

(*Isaiah*) xxviii which in the Vulgate translation reads: “For
you have said we have entered into a league with death, and we
have made a covenant with hell.” Both Origen and Augustine
mention these pacts and the scholastic philosophers distinguish
between express and implied pacts. The former consists in
actually evoking the demon, the latter in merely expecting help
from him. The demon here refers to any evil spirit, and there
were vast numbers of such.”

A History of Witchcraft, Magic and Occultism, by W.B. Crow,
Wilshire Book Company, 1968; pp. 228-30.

Pasted from <>

A collection of things Faust

Image of crying cherubThe legend, books, music, and art generally preferring the years 1400-1800. Links to on-line books, plays, and musical scores.


Dec 2010: There are new pages on cartomancy and tarot, including an interactive cartomancy and tarot timeline. The general de-Wikipedia-tion of Faust continues, and our wealth and power grows….

“Ye Spirits of Inferno, …tremble before Faustus, for now will he force you to declare your deepest mysteries, and to yield up those hidden treasures that have too long mouldered in the bowels of the earth!” (From Dr. Johannes Faustus, puppet play)

“Now let this my hideous end be an example unto you so long as ye may live, and a remembrance to love God and to entreat Him to protect you from the guile and the deceit of the Devil, praying that the Dear Lord will not lead you into temptation.

Cling ye unto Him, falling not away from Him as I damned godless mortal have done, despising and denying Baptism (Christ’s own Sacrament), God, all the Heavenly Host and mankind–such a sweet God, who desireth not that one shall be lost.

Shun bad company, which would lead you astray as it hath me, go earnestly and often to church, war and strive constantly against the Devil with a steadfast faith in Christ and always walking a godly path.”(From the Faustbuch)