Some people think that John Dee was an inspiration for Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus

[Some people think that John Dee was an inspiration for – at least – Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus. Here, Charlotte Fell Smith copies from Dee’s journal a conversation with the (supposed) Archangel Michael that echoes Faustus’s conversation with Mephisto.

From Charlotte Fell Smith’s biography of John Dee:]

“The sole object of his ambition was the attainment of legitimate wisdom.

When conversing with the angels, how near within his grasp it seemed! Michael’s exposition seemed almost to promise it to him: —

`Wilt thou have witt and wisdom? Here it is.’

Michael points each time to a figure of seven squares shown within a circle of light.

`The exaltation and government of princes is in my hand.
In counsayle and Nobilitie, I prevayle.
The Gayne and Trade of Merchandise is in my hand. Lo! here it is.
The Qualitie of the Earth and Waters is my knowledge, and I know them.
And here it is.
The motion of the Ayre and those that move in it, are all known to me. Lo! here they are.
I signifie wisdom. In fire is my government. I was in the beginning and shall be to the end.
Mark these mysteries. For this knowne, the state of the whole earth is knowne, and all that is thereon. Mighty is God, yea, mighty is he who hath composed for ever. Give diligent eye. Be wise, merry and pleasant in the Lord.’“

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