Summary 1 @Act 1, scene 1@ @act1scene1@
As a prologue to the play, the chorus enters and introduces Doctor Faustus and his history to the audience. During Marlowe and Shakespeare's time, a chorus was frequently used in a play to act as narrator and interpreter. They explain that Faustus was born into a middle-class family in Rhodes, Germany and later traveled to Wittenberg for higher studies. He became renowned as a brilliant scholar and immersed himself in studying necromancy, the conjuration of the living dead. The chorus alludes to the Greek myth of Icarus and Daedalus, comparing Faustus to the self-conceited Icarus who broke all boundaries only to meet with his demise. Thus, the chorus foreshadows Faustus's eventual hellish fall.
The chorus leaves and the audience finds Faustus in his study, deep in thought. He is not happy with himself, despite the fact that he is an excellent physician and scholar. Faustus wants to make men live eternally, thereby eliminating the problem of death once and for all. His greatest wish is to be the world's first successful necromantic practitioner. Faustus knows that if he can raise the dead, he will have incomparable power over humanity. He asks to see his friends Valdes and Cornelius, who are very interested in his work. While Faustus is waiting for them in his study, good and evil angels talk to him.
The good angel advises Faustus to relinquish this blasphemous profession for fear of God's wrath. The evil angel urges him to continue his work and become the commander of the elements. Faustus daydreams about becoming very rich and powerful and resolves to continue studying and practicing the dark arts. Cornelius and Valdes enter and are pleased to find that Faustus has finally agreed to work with them in necromancy. The three friends and partners retire for the night with the resolve to become expert sorcerers.
Summary 2 @Act 1, scene 2@ @act1scene2@
The second scene opens with two students at Wittenberg, who are Faustus's acquaintances. They are wondering what happened to him and why he is no longer at school. The pair asks Faustus's servant Wagner about his whereabouts. Wagner replies that he is in the company of Valdes and Cornelius. The two students are aghast, for Valdes and Cornelius are infamous for practicing the dark arts. They hurry off to meet the Rector and inform him of the unsettling news.
Summary 3 @Act 1, scene 3@ @act1scene3@
Faustus is busy conjuring devils and showing off his newfound knowledge. He succeeds in conjuring up the devil Mephostophilis. Faustus wants Mephostophilis to be his servant, but the devil replies that he is already Lucifer's servant and cannot enter the service of another without his permission. Faustus tells Mephostophilis that he is willing to surrender his soul to Lucifer if will be granted twenty-four years of life in luxury and power on earth. He boasts that he has no fear of damnation or God, and would gladly give his all in the worship of the devil.
Summary 4 @Act 1, scene 4@ @act1scene4@
Faustus's servant Wagner engages in conversation with an impudent clown and they exchange a comical repartee. The clown refuses to be Wagner's servant until Wagner conjures up two devils to frighten him. The clown is amazed at this display of magic, and agrees to serve Wagner as long as he can learn how to practice the dark arts as well.
Summary 5 @Act 1, scene 5@ @act1scene5@
Faustus is in his study, awaiting Lucifer who will finalize the surrender of his soul. He is having doubts and wonders if it is too late to repent and turn to God. The good and evil angels reenter, both pleading different cases. The good angel tells Faustus that prayer and repentance are the only means of getting to heaven; the evil angel retorts that these practices are sheer lunacy. The evil angel succeeds in being more influential, and leaves Faustus dreaming about riches and power. Mephostophilis enters at the stroke of midnight and tells him that Lucifer has agreed to the deal if Faustus will write the deed with his own blood. Faustus cuts his arm and tries to sign off his soul, but his blood congeals too quickly. He wonders if this is a warning for him to proceed no further. Faustus eventually signs the deed and officially bequeaths his soul to Lucifer, but is horrified to see the inscription Homo fuge (Fly, oh man) immediately appear on his arm.
Mephostophilis quickly conjures up some devils to amuse Faustus and makes him forget his troubles. He is willing to do anything to obtain Faustus's soul. As his first command to Mephostophilis, Faustus questions the reality of hell. Despite the devil's assurances that there is indeed a hell and that he is the living proof, Faustus scoffs at his words and dismisses the idea of damnation as an old wives' tale. He then asks Mephostophilis for a wife, but the request is refused since marriage is considered a holy institution. Instead, the devil promises Faustus a new woman every night and any other girl that pleases his fancy. In addition, Mephostophilis gives him books of spells, astrology and nature, much to Faustus's pleasure.
Summary 6 @Act 2, scene 1@ @act2scene1@
Faustus complains to Mephostophilis that he has been deceived into selling his soul when he could have enjoyed the wonders of heaven. He then decides to renounce the dark arts. Again, the good and evil angels enter. The good angel assures him that if he repents now, God will still accept him, whereas the evil angel tells him that it is impossible for him to repent-it is too late. Faustus despairs and does not atone for his sins under the mistaken assumption that he is too evil for God and heaven.
He and Mephostophilis then engage in a conversation about the celestial planets. He tries to coerce Mephostophilis into saying God's name, but the devil angrily refuses, for it is forbidden among the devils to do so. The good and evil angels reenter, respectively urging Faustus to save and surrender his soul. Lucifer and Beelzebub arrive from hell and command Faustus to never think on God again. He agrees to burn the scriptures and publicly blaspheme Christ. Then, to amuse Faustus, Lucifer and Beelzebub show him the seven deadly sins in person. Faustus is entertained by the display and wishes to visit hell with Lucifer and then come back. Lucifer agrees to take Faustus with him at midnight and departs.
Summary 7 @Act 2, scene 2@ @act2scene2@
The clown enters the horses' stables with one of Faustus's books and promises the stableboy Dick to conjure up some spirits when he returns. Once the clown leaves, another hired hand named Robin engages in conversation with Dick. Robin has stolen one of Faustus's incantation books and urges Dick to come with him and stir up some mischief with it.
Summary 8 @Act 3, scene 1@ @act3scene1@
The chorus introduces the scene and explains to the audience what Faustus has been doing with his time. He has traveled through all the heavens on the backs of dragons and explored all corners of the earth. Now, Faustus is in Rome to observe the Pope and holy Peter's feast.
Summary 9 @Act 3, scene 2@ @act3scene2@
Mephostophilis has transported Faustus to Rome and taken him into the private chambers of the Pope. Faustus, who is well traveled by this time, seeks some amusement in his new destination. He wants to embarrass the proud Pope and "make his monks and abbots stand like apes." (Act 3, scene 2, line 83) Mephostophilis and Faustus drug the Pope's ministers with a sleeping potion so that they can safely assume their forms and talk with the Pope. Faustus wants to convince the Pope, in the form of his ministers, to condemn a man named Bruno (who wanted to ascend to the papacy).
Summary 10 @Act 3, scene 3@ @act3scene3@
Faustus and Mephostophilis release Bruno and send him back to Germany during the dead of the night, much to the Pope and his newly awoken ministers' consternation and confusion in the morning. Mephostophilis grants Faustus a cloak of invisibility and he plays tricks on the Pope during holy Peter's feast. The Pope and his ministers curse Faustus to the high heavens for his devilry, but the magician returns home safely. His friends ask him about his travels and are amazed by his wit and knowledge. The chorus explains that Faustus is famous throughout the land and even the Emperor Carolus the Fifth desired to meet the master magician.
Summary 11 @Act 3, scene 4@ @act3scene4@
Robin the stableboy is still in possession of Faustus's book and is planning some mischief with it. His friend Rafe, enticed by the idea of mortal pleasures, agrees to help Robin in conjuring spirits. They are accosted by the Vintner, who wants a goblet from Robin, but is promptly refused the request. Robin tries to summon up devils to plague the Vintner, but Mephostophilis appears instead and is enraged to find someone other than Faustus with a book of magic. He turns Robin and Rafe into an ape and a dog, respectively, much to the Vintner's horror.
Summary 12 @Act 4, scene 1@ @act4scene1@
Several of the officers at the Emperor's court plan for Faustus's arrival. Martino and Frederick explain to the drowsy Benvolio that the Pope Bruno, (whom Faustus magically transported to Germany), will also be in attendance that night. Benvolio is not amazed at tales of Faustus's skills in magic. He refuses to watch Faustus perform his tricks, despite Frederick and Martino's warnings that this may anger him.
Summary 13 @Act 4, scene 2@ @act4scene2@
The Emperor warmly welcomes Faustus to his palace. In return, Faustus promises to conjure for him whatever his heart desires. Benvolio lazily watches from a window in disbelief and contempt. The Emperor asks to see Alexander the Great and his troops, which Faustus promptly produces. He is angered, however, by Benvolio's mockery of the dark arts. As a form of revenge, the Doctor magically attaches antlers on top of Benvolio's head. Benvolio awakens and is embarrassed and enraged by his predicament. The Emperor finds all of this amusing, but asks Faustus to remove the horns. Benvolio mutters in rage afterwards that he will get his revenge and never trust smooth-talking scholars again.
Summary 14 @Act 4, scene 3@ @act4scene3@
Martino and Frederick try to discourage Benvolio in his plans of attacking Faustus for his revenge. Benvolio, however, cannot rest until he kills Faustus. The soldiers attack Faustus as he leaves the palace on a deserted road and cut off his head. To their amazement, Faustus rises again with a new head and scorns the officers' attempt to kill him. He cannot be killed because Lucifer has granted him twenty-four years of life on earth, come what may. Faustus summons Mephostophilis and pronounces horrible tortures for all three soldiers at the hands of the devils. Other soldiers attack Faustus after this, but to no avail. He is all-powerful with the help of the devil.
Summary 15 @Act 4, scene 4@ @act4scene4@
Benvolio, Martino and Frederick meet up again, all of them dispirited, muddy and severely frightened and injured. They also have horns coming out of their heads. The three decide to hide in the forest instead of facing ridicule from society for their appearances.
Summary 16 @Act 4, scene 5@ @act4scene5@
Since his time on earth is running out, Faustus and Mephostophilis make their way home on foot. They meet up with a horse-courser who wishes to buy Faustus's horse. Faustus reluctantly agrees, but makes the condition upon the man that the horse should not be ridden into water. After Faustus returns home and sleeps in his study, the horse-courser rushes in, sobbing hysterically. He foolishly tried to ride the bewitched horse into water and found that the horse disappeared and turned into a stack of hay. The horse-courser tries to wake Faustus up and instead manages to pull off his leg. He runs off in fright, to the amusement of Faustus (who has regained his leg again). Wagner then enters and informs Faustus that the Duke of Vanholt requests his company.
Summary 17 @Act 4, scene 6@ @act4scene6@
The clown, Dick, a carter and the horse-courser enter a bar and engage in conversation with each other and the hostess. The carter tells the other men how Faustus asked him how much money he should give him for all the hay he could eat. The carter asked for three farthings and Faustus promptly ate the whole load of hay, much to his dismay. The horse-courser in turn tells the other men how he was tricked into buying a bewitched horse and then tore off Faustus's leg. The clown, carter and horse-courser agree to confront the Doctor after a round of drinks.
Summary 18 @Act 4, scene 7@ @act4scene7@
Faustus and Mephostophilis entertain the Duke of Vanholt and the duchess by erecting enchanted castles out of thin air. Faustus asks the Duke to tell him what he most desires and he will be able to produce it. The duchess asks for grapes, which she quickly receives. At this time, the clown and his angry friends demand to see Faustus. They want to be compensated for all of their miseries. The group is amazed to learn that the Doctor has another leg in place of the one that was torn off. Faustus then enchants each person mute so that they cannot voice their complaints and trouble him. The Duke and duchess are astounded and agree that they must reward Faustus handsomely for this entertainment.
Summary 19 @Act 5, scene 1@ @act5scene1@
In a speech that is half-addressed to the audience and himself, Wagner thinks that Faustus means to die shortly, since he has given him all of his wealth. At the same time, Wagner cannot understand how Faustus can carouse and carry on if he is close to his deathbed. In the meantime, Faustus is at dinner with several scholars. The scholars ask Faustus to conjure Helen of Troy so that they can admire her legendary beauty. An old man suddenly enters the room and begs Faustus to repent while it is not too late, for fear of the miseries of hell.
Faustus realizes that he is truly damned and that hell will shortly claim his soul. Mephostophilis threatens to kill Faustus if he dares repent. Faustus gives up all hope and apologizes for his momentary transgression. He orders Mephostophilis to torture the old man for trying to dissuade him from Lucifer. He also commands the devil to again summon Helen of Troy so that she can be his paramour. The old man desperately reenters and tells Faustus that he is doomed. Although the devils try to torture him, the old man clings to his faith and scorns hell and all of its temptations.
Summary 20 @Act 5, scene 2@ @act5scene2@
Lucifer, Mephostophilis and Beelzebub ascend from hell to claim Faustus's soul, now that twenty-four years are up. After finalizing his will with Wagner, Faustus greets the three scholars who have entered the house again. They notice that Faustus is melancholy and ask him if he is sick. Faustus replies that he is sick of damnation and trembles at the thought of the wrath of the afterlife. Although the scholars urge him to pray to God for salvation, he replies that it is too late for repentance. The scholars mourn Faustus's demise, as they were unaware of his pact with the devil. They retire to the adjoining room to pray for his soul and God's compassion.
Faustus angrily blames Mephostophilis for robbing him of eternal happiness. The devil replies in the affirmative, saying that he prevented Faustus from ever having second doubts or praying to God. The good and evil angels reappear and agonize over his impending doom. The good angel reprimands him for never listening to good advice; the evil angel shows him hell and the tortures that await him.
The clock strikes eleven and Faustus realizes that he has only one hour left to live. He begs God to have pity on him and save him from eternal misery. In the end, Faustus curses himself for his foolishness in placing value on earthly pleasures and not immortal joys. The clock strikes midnight and the devils drag him screaming to hell.
Summary 21 @Act 5, scene 3@ @act5scene3@
The three scholars cautiously enter Faustus's room after he is dragged to hell and are horrified to see his limbs strewn about. They shudder in fear as they remember how he screamed for mercy and help at midnight. They agree, however, to give his remains a proper burial, although his soul was decidedly unholy. The chorus enters and laments Faustus's wayward soul and hellish fall. They also warn the audience to take heed from Faustus's lesson and only wonder at unlawful things and never practice anything that heaven forbids.
Christopher Marlowe was an innovative writer who was alternately considered an atheist and a devout Christian. His plays reflect this extraordinary diversity in his beliefs and morals and his inquisitive mind. Marlowe introduced moral thinking in his plays and was considered to be a man deeply concerned with religion, suffering and evil. He was born in 1564 in Canterbury, the same year as Shakespeare. Although he was the son of a shoemaker, Marlowe was a brilliant scholar. He attended King's School in Canterbury and later Corpus Christi College in Cambridge.
He was awarded a scholarship during his college years, but the grant was meant for men interested in priesthood. Quite apparently, Marlowe must have drastically changed his career plans after college. After earning his B.A. and M.A degrees he became a spy for Queen Elizabeth's government. At twenty-three Marlowe came to London and associated with other recent university graduates who survived by writing plays and pamphlets.
Marlowe had several brushes with the law and was accused of making scandalous and seditious speeches. He got into a street fight and landed in jail. A few days before the case was to be heard, Marlowe spent the day with some shady acquaintances. Many scholars believe that he died instantly at the age of twenty-nine from a two-inch dagger wound inflicted above the eye during a fight about the bill at a tavern on that day. Theories about his death are still circulated.
Although his life was short, Marlowe did succeed in publishing seven dramatic poems that were tragedies, including Doctor Faustus. His heroes are usually "overreachers," men who are self-driven by greed and ambition. They fail to recognize their responsibility to God and their fellow creatures. Many scholars believe that Marlowe's dramatic style showed Shakespeare what was possible in dramatic poetry and greatly influenced him.
Doctor Faustus is based on an old German folktale. The real John Faust, or Faustus, was a travelling magician who died about 1540. After death, he became a legendary figure. People attributed his skills as a magician to a pact that he had made with the devil. Marlowe transformed this tale into an ambitious scholar at Wittenberg who sells his soul to the devil to satiate his thirst for power and knowledge. Marlowe's audiences firmly believed in the existence of the devil, which made the play all the more tragic and horrific.
One of the most important and prominent themes in Doctor Faustus is by far the conflict between good and evil in the world and the human soul. Marlowe's play set the precedent for religious works that were concerned with morals and suffering. In the play, Doctor Faustus is frequently accompanied by two angels, one good and one evil. Both spirits try to advise him on a course of action, with the evil one usually being more influential over his mind. These two angels embody the internal battle that is raging inside of Faustus. On one hand, he has an insatiable thirst for knowledge and supreme power; on the other hand, Faustus realizes that it is folly to relinquish heavenly pleasures for fleeting mortal happiness.
Although society is accustomed to believing that good will always prevail, evil gains the upper hand in Marlowe's play. Innocent and often devout men are tortured at Faustus's delight and command. He partakes in many pleasures with devils and is even shown the seven deadly sins in person. Thus, Faustus is depicted as doomed from the very beginning. Although he has moments of contrition, he quickly shoves aside thoughts of God and turns to evil. Marlowe attempted to express to his audience that while prayer and repentance are the paths to heaven, sin and mortal pleasure are very hard temptations to pass over.
Lucifer's acquisition of Faustus's soul is especially delightful for him because Faustus was once a good and devout soul. Even during his last moments on earth, Faustus curses himself for willingly burning the scriptures and denouncing God. In Doctor Faustus, Marlowe shows the reader that everything in the mortal world is a double-edged sword. In his never-ending quest for knowledge, Faustus exemplifies how even scholarly life can have evil undertones when studies are used for unholy purposes. Doctor Faustus's miserable defeat against the forces of evil within and without enlighten the reader to beware a surfeit of anything.
A second theme in Doctor Faustus is that of greed. Like many of Marlowe's heroes, Faustus was self-driven by greed and ambition. In this case, the Doctor tries to satiate his appetite for knowledge and power. These heroes forget their responsibilities to God and their fellow creatures. Instead, they attempt to hide their weak characters with a megalomaniacal insanity. While Faustus is amused by the seven deadly sins, he does not realize that he is guilty of every single one, namely avarice and jealousy. In effect, Marlowe presents to the reader a good soul gone bad-a brilliant scholar who squanders his time with necromancy and is later courted by the devil himself. Although he is frequently surrounded by powerful heads of state, beautiful women and servile devils, Faustus is never truly happy. He tries to bury his unrest with luxury and debauchery, to no avail. What Faustus does not realize is that he craves happiness and salvation, not wealth and damnation. Instead, in a tragic cycle of greed and despair, Faustus sadly wallows in riches up to the time of his miserable death.
A third important motif in the play is that of salvation through prayer. While Doctor Faustus is an example of what happens to a wayward soul, the old man represents the devout Christian soul. The old man begs Faustus to repent, regardless of the tortures that the devils inflict on him for this. He clings to his faith to the very end and even Mephostophilis is wary of harming him because of his good soul. Thus, the old man serves as a foil to Faustus's misery and damnation.
A fourth theme in Doctor Faustus is that of the tragic hero. Despite his unholy soul, Faustus is often viewed by audiences with pity and compassion. A tragic hero is a character that the audience sympathizes with despite his/her actions that would indicate the contrary. Faustus is not the mere shell of a man in the play, existing only to represent the evil in the world. He is a veritable human being with a range of emotions and thoughts. He displays pride, joy, contrition and self-doubt quite frequently. At many times, Faustus alternately displays his cowardice and foolish strength against the devils. Thus, Faustus's one saving grace with the audience is his identifiable character. Although the Doctor himself does not care for humanity, many find themselves identifying with his all too human dreams of power, knowledge and lechery. Unfortunately, Faustus's humanity was not enough in the play to make him repent and save him from the depths of hell.
"Till swol'n with cunning of a self-conceit,
His waxen wings did mount above his reach,
And melting, heavens conspired his overthrow."
--Act 1, Scene 1, Lines 20-22: Chorus to audience
The chorus indirectly alludes to the myth of Icarus and Daedalus and compares Faustus to the foolish Icarus. Daedalus and Icarus were father and son, respectively, and were trapped in the famed labyrinth of Crete. To escape, Daedalus fashioned wings made of wax and feathers so that they could fly off the island. He warned his son to stay safely between the ocean and the sun, as the water would weigh down the feathers and drown him while the sun would melt the wax. Icarus did not heed his father's advice, strayed close to the sun and plummeted to his death. The chorus compares Faustus to Icarus because he too foolishly rejects the safe middle ground. Instead, he aspires for things that are not meant for mortals, and is thus predestined to be doomed.
"Oh, what a world of profit and delight,
Of power, of honour, of omnipotence,
Is promised to the studious artizan!"
--Act 1, Scene 1, Lines 52-54: Faustus to himself
By comparing himself with a "studious artizan," Faustus hopes to gain all worldly pleasures and goods as the fruits of scholarly work. He does not understand, however, that scholars study for personal enlightenment, not material gain.
"A sound magician is a demi-god.
Here, tire my brains to get a deity."
--Act 1, Scene 1, Lines 61-62: Faustus to himself
Faustus realizes that by practicing the dark arts, he will have supreme power in the world. This is the turning point in his transition from scholar to sorcerer.
"Monarch of hell, under whose black survey
Great potentates do kneel with awful fear,
Upon whose altars thousand souls do lie,
How am I vexed with these villains' charms?"
--Act 3, Scene 4, Lines 75-78: Mephostophilis to Robin and Rafe
Mephostophilis addresses Lucifer as the "monarch of hell" in his rage against the mischievous stableboys. At the same time, this quote could also aptly describe Faustus, as he is quite immersed in hell and all of its devilish wonders by now.
"Though thou hast now offended like a man,
Do not persever in it like a devil."
--Act 5, Scene 1, Lines 38-39: Old man to Faustus
The old man begged Faustus to repent before it was too late, but he was not contrite. The old man realized that although Faustus seemed superficially to be enjoying his damned wealth and power, he was actually struggling between repentance and surrendering his soul to Lucifer. Thus, while error may be only human, persevering in what is wrong is considered wayward from the righteous path.
"Oh, thou art fairer than the evening's air,
Clad in the beauty of a thousand stars."
--Act 5, Scene 2, Lines 110-111: Faustus to Helen of Troy
In one of Faustus's more beautiful soliloquies, he compares the phantasmal Helen of Troy to all things heavenly. This is ironic because at the same time he says, "her lips suck forth my soul." (Act 5, Scene 2, Line 100) Faustus tried to forget the old man's warnings by using Helen as his paramour. Despite her astounding physical beauty, she represents Faustus's hellish final fall into sin. Heaven cannot forgive him now that he has so openly embraced mortal pleasures and spurned heavenly prayer.
"Cut is the branch that might have grown full
And burned is Apollo's laurel bough,
That sometime grew within this learned man."
--Act 5, Scene 3, Lines 20-22: Chorus to audience
The chorus compares the laurel bough to classical wisdom and intellectual/artistic accomplishment. They lament Faustus's once great potential that is now lost forever.
Faustus- The main character of the story. Once a brilliant scholar and professor at Wittenberg, his interest in the dark arts and necromancy lead him to a deal with Lucifer. In this pact, he surrenders his soul for twenty-four years of luxury and power on earth. Self-doubt, repentance and fear gnaw his soul frequently throughout the play, but it is not until the very end that he realizes the folly of his actions.
Valdes & Cornelius- Friends of Faustus. Infamous for practicing magic and sorcery, they persuade him to join them in studying necromancy.
Wagner- Servant to Faustus. He is faithful to Faustus till the end and receives all of his money and property.
Mephostophilis- The principal devil that lured Faustus into selling his soul. As part of the deal between Lucifer and Faustus, Mephostophilis acted as Faustus's servant for twenty-four years, granting his every wish.
Lucifer- Monarch of hell. He is delighted to receive Faustus's once devout soul into his dominions in exchange for twenty-four years of luxurious life.
Beelzebub- Assistant devil to Lucifer.
Good Angel & Evil Angel- They frequently accompany Faustus and advise him on a course of action. They represent the struggle between good and evil in his soul.
The Seven Deadly Sins- Appear at Lucifer's command before Faustus for his entertainment.
Clown/Robin- Acts as a servant for Wagner, interested in the dark arts; Mephostophilis punishes him by giving him an ape's face.
Dick- Stableboy that Mephostophilis turns into a dog because he stole Faustus's magic book.
Rafe- Dick's partner in crime; similarly punished by Mephostophilis.
Vintner- Innocent witness to Dick, Rafe & Robin's devilish mischief.
Carter- Faustus tricks this man by eating all of his hay for only three farthings.
Chorus- Acts as narrator and interpreter of the story for the audience.
The Pope- Faustus plays tricks on this "proud" Pope by releasing a political prisoner right under his nose.
Bruno- Political/religious prisoner that Faustus releases to cause mischief in Rome; later becomes Pope in Germany.
Raymond, King of Hungary- Assistant to the Pope; fooled by Faustus and Mephostophilis.
Charles, the German Emperor- Greatly entertained by Faustus; commands to see various spirits.
Martino, Frederick & Benvolio- Officers at the Emperor's court; they are severely punished by the devils for scoffing at Faustus's magical powers and attempting to kill him.
Duke & Duchess of Vanholt- Guests entertained by Faustus.
Old Man- Devout Christian who pleads with Faustus to save his soul; serves as a foil against Faustus's sin-loving ways.
Spirits in the shapes of Alexander the Great, Darius, Paramour and Helen of Troy- Summoned by Faustus to entertain his guests.
Scholars, soldiers, devils, courtiers, cardinals, monks, cupids, saxony
1) "If we say that we have no sin
We deceive ourselves, and there is no truth in us.
Why then, belike, we must sin,
And consequently die.
Ay, we must die an everlasting death."
--Act 1, Scene 1, Lines 41-46: Faustus to himself
2) "Oh Faustus, lay that damned book aside,
And gaze not on it lest it tempt thy soul
And heap God's heavy wrath upon thy head."
--Act 1, Scene 1, Lines 69-71: Good angel to Faustus
3) "How am I glutted with conceit of this!
Shall I make spirits fetch me what I please,
Resolve me of all ambiguities,
Perform what desperate enterprise I will?"
--Act 1, Scene 1, Lines 77-80: Faustus to himself
4) "Why, this is hell, nor am I out of it.
Think'st thou that I saw the face of God
And tasted the eternal joys of heaven,
Am not tormented with ten thousand hells
In being deprived of everlasting bliss?"
--Act 1, Scene 3, Lines 76-80: Mephostophilis to Faustus
5) "Now, Faustus, must thou needs be damned?
And canst thou not be saved?
What boots it then to think on God or heaven?
Away with such vain fancies and despair,
Despair in God and trust in Beelzebub.
Now go not backward. No, Faustus, be resolute.
Why waverest thou? Oh, something soundeth in mine
Abjure this magic, turn to God again."
--Act 1, Scene 5, Lines 1-8: Faustus to himself
6) "Oh gentle Faustus, leave this damned art,
This magic, that will charm they soul to hell,
And quite bereave thee of salvation.
Though thou hast now offended like a man,
Do not persever in it like a devil."
--Act 5, Scene 1, Lines 35-39: Old man to Faustus
7) "Accursed Faustus, wretch, what hast thou
I do repent, and yet I do despair.
Hell strives with grace for conquest in my breast.
What shall I do to shun the snares of death?"
--Act 5, Scene 1, Lines 68-71: Faustus to himself
8) "Sweet Helen, make me immortal with a kiss.
Her lips suck forth my soul: see where it flies.
Come, Helen, come, give me my soul again."
--Act 5, Scene 2, Lines 99-101: Faustus to Helen of Troy
9) "No, Faustus, curse thyself, curse Lucifer,
That hath deprived thee of the joys of heaven.
The clock strikes twelve.
Oh, it strikes, it strikes! Now body turn to air,
Or Lucifer will bear thee quick to hell.
Oh soul, be changed into little water drops
And fall into the ocean, ne'er be found.
My God, my God, look not so fierce on me.
Adders and serpents, let me breathe awhile.
Ugly hell, gape not, come not, Lucifer!"
--Act 5, Scene 2, Lines 191-199: Faustus to himself
10) "Cut is the branch that might have grown full
And burned is Apollo's laurel bough,
That sometime grew within this learned man.
Faustus is gone. Regard his hellish fall,
Whose fiendful 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."
--Act 5, Scene 3, Lines 20-28: Chorus to audience