Monday, August 29, 2016

Part Nine (?) of the Saga: THE LAST TESTAMENT OF DR. FAUSTUS based on Christopher Marlowe

First Draft:


Pan or tracking shot across landscape that has been blighted by catastrophe
(such as nucleur war or environmental collapse). There are some standing
remnants of city structures. The camera stops at what was once an old movie
theatre (well-built, so still somewhat intact).


The interior of the theatre is a shambles. But various survivors have
gathered here for shelter. Some mill about, others try to sleep, or eat
scraps of found food.


The Stage, where FAUSTUS suddenly appears, stepping into Sunlight from the

A good evening, good gentlefolk.

He waits as those in the auditorium turn their attention to him.

We shall now relate the form of Faustus’ fortunes, good or


The "audience" look at him, and each other, obviously confused. A few sit
down to await clarification.



He is born, his parents base of stock, in Germany, within a
town called Roda; of riper years to Wittenberg he went, where
his kinsman brought him up. Soon he profits in divinity, and
was graced with doctor’s name, excelling all those disputes
in matters of theology; till swollen with cunning, of self-
conceit, and glutted with learning’s gifts, he delves into
cursed necromancy,nothing so sweet as magic is to him, which
he prefers to heavenly pursuits.

He steps back, and more light suddenly illumines the stage, from unknown
sources. There is a simple set, depicting Faustus' study. Faustus sits at
his desk.

Settle thy studies, Faustus, and begin to sound the depth of
that thou wilt profess; having commenced, be a divine in show,
yet level and at the end of every art, and live and die in
Aristotle’s works. Sweet Analytics, ‘tis thou hast ravished
(picks up book and opens, reads)
“To argue well is the end of logic.” Is to dispute well
logic’s chiefest end? Affords this art no greater miracle?
Then read no more, thou hast attained the end; a greater
subject fitteth Faustus’ wit. Seeing where the philosopher
leaves off, there the physician begins.” Be a physcian,
Faustus, heap up gold, and be immortalised for some wondrous
cure. “The end of physic is our body’s health. Why, Faustus,
hast thou not attained that end! Yet art thou still Faustus
and a man. Couldst thou make men to live eternally, or, being
dead, raise them to life again, then this profession were to
be esteemed. Physic, farewell, -- where is Justinian?
(takes law book, reads)
“If one and the same thing is bequeathed to two persons one
gets the thing and the other the value of the thing.” A
pretty case of paltry legacies!
“A father cannot disinherit the son except, etc.” Such is the
subject of the Institute and universal Body of the Law, It’s
study fits a mercenary drudge, who aims at nothing but
external trash; too servile and illiberal for me. When all is
done, divinity is best; Jerome’s Bible, Faustus, view it well.
(takes bible, reads)
“The reward of sin is death.” Ha! That’s hard.
“If we say that we have no sin we deceive ourselves, and
there’s no truth in us.” Why then, belike we must sin, and so
consequently die. Ay, we must die an everlasting death. What
doctrine call you this, “Che sera sera?" Divinity, adieu.

He pushes the books off his desk, stands. He ponders the bookcases.

These metaphysics of magicians and necromantic books are

He takes a book from the shelf, looks through it.

Lines, circles, scenes, letters and characters, ay, these are
those that Faustus most desires.
(sits with book)
Oh what a world of profit and delight, of power, of honour,
of omnipotence is promised to the studious artisan! Here,
Faustus, try thy brains to gain a deity.
(reads, beat)

Beat. Enter WAGNER.

Commend me to my dearest friend, Cornelius Agrippa; request
him earnestly to visit me.

I will, sir.

He exits.

His conference will be a greater help to me than all my
labours, plod I never so fast.

He sits again, picks up 2 hand puppets - The GOOD ANGEL and the EVIL ANGEL.

O Faustus, lay that damned book aside, and gaze not on it,
lest it tempt thy soul, and heap Gods heavy wrath upon thy
head. Read, read the scriptures, that is blasphemy.

Go forward, Faustus, in that famous art, wherein all nature's
treasury is contained. Be thou on earth as Jove is in the sky,
lord and commander of these elements.

Puts puppets aside.

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? I'll have them
fly to India for gold, ransack the Ocean for orient pearl,
and search all corners of the new found world for pleasant
fruits and princely delicates; I'll have them read me
strange philosophy, and tell the secrets of all foreign
kings; I'll have them wall all Germany with brass, and
make swift Rhine circle faire Wertenberg; I'll have them
fill the public schools with silk, wherewith the students
shall be bravely clad; I'll levy soldiers with the coin
they bring, and chase the Prince of Parma from our land,
and reign sole king of all our provinces; yea, stranger
engines for the brunt of war then was the fiery keel at
Antwarpe's bridge, I'll make my servile spirits to invent.


Stage set: The same

Faustus reading. Wagner leads in CORNELIUS AGRIPPA and VALDES.
Faustus rises, crosses to greet him. Wagner exits.

Come, Cornelius, and make me blest with your sage conference.
Valdes, sweet Valdes, Cornelius, know that your words have won
me at the last to practise magic and concealed arts: yet not
your words only, but mine own fantasy that will receive no
object, for my head but ruminates on necromantic skill.

Wagner enters with three goblets. Faustus takes them, giving one to
Cornelius, and one to Valdes.

Then tell me, Faustus, what shall you want?

Philosophy is odious and obscure, both law and physic are
for petty wits; divinity is basest of the four, unpleasant,
harsh, contemptible, and vile: ‘tis magic, magic, that
hath ravished me.
Then, gentle friend, aid me in this attempt; and I will be
as cunning as Agrippa is,
(indicates Cornelius)
whose shadows make all Europe honour him.

Faustus, these books, thy wit, and experience shall make
all nations canonise us. The spirits of every element
shall always be serviceable to us; like lions shall they
guard us when we please; sometimes like women or unwedded
maids, shadowing more beauty in their airy brows than have
the white breasts of the queen of love; and fetch the
treasure of all foreign wracks, ay, all the wealth that
our forefathers hid within the massy entrails of the earth,
if learned Faustus will be resolute.

Cornelius, as resolute am I in this as thou to live;
therefore object it not.

The miracles that magic will perform will make thee vow to
study nothing else. He that is grounded in astrology,
enriched of tongues, as well seen in minerals, hath all
the principles magic doth require. Then doubt not, Faustus,
but to be renowned, and more frequented for this mystery
than heretofore the Delphian Oracle.

Oh this cheers my soul! Come show me some demonstrations
magical, that I may conjure in some lusty grove, and have
these joys in full possession.

Then get thee to some solitary grove, and bear wise Bacon’s
and d’Abano’s works, and whatsoever else is requisite I will
inform thee ere our conference cease.

Valdes, first know the words of art; and then, all other
ceremonies learned, Faustus may try his cunning by himself.

First I’ll instruct him in the rudiments, and then wilt he be
perfecter than thou.

Then come and dine with me, and we’ll canvas every aspect
therefore; for I’ll conjure though I die therefore.


Some of the survivors are watching the proceedings from seats. Others have
gone back to whatever they weren't doing before.


Two survivors - 1ST MAN and 2ND MAN - watching with befuddlement.

What the fuck is this?

Hell if I know!

Two looks to one side as Wagner comes and sits by them.

Hey now, you, what's this all about?
(indicates stage)

God in heaven knows.

(leaning forward and looking at him)
What, don't you know?

Yes, I know, but that follows not.

Stop joking and tell us what's going on.

That follows not necessary by force of argument, that you
being licentiate should stand upon't, therefore acknowledge
your error, and be attentive.

What?! Didn't you just say you knew?

Have you any witness on't?

Yes, sir, I heard you.

Ask my fellow if I be a thief.

So you won't tell us?

Yes sir, I will tell you, yet if you were not dunces you
would never ask me such a question, for are not we corpus
naturale, and is not that mobile, then wherefore should you
ask me such a question? But that I am by nature phlegmatic,
slow to wrath, and prone to lechery (to love, I would say),
it were not for you to come within forty foot of the place of
execution, although I do not doubt to see you both hang'd the
next sessions. Thus having triumphed over you, I will set my
countenance like a precision, and begin to speak thus: truly
my dear brethren, my master is within
(indicates stage)
at dinner with Valdes and Cornelius, as this wine if it could
(holds up empty bottle)
it would inform your worships, and so the Lord bless you,
preserve you, and keep you my dear brethren, my dear brethren.

Wagner rises and crosses back to the aisle. One and Two look at each other

I think we've fallen in with damned actors!

Weird stranger for sure. But we should go tell Rector and see
about getting rid of them.

Oh, I fear nothin' will get rid of them.

Well, we can try.


Stage lights set as a grove at midnight. Enter Faustus.

(as he picks a spot, draws a circle about him,
and symbols upon it)
Faustus, begin thine incantations, and try if devils will
obey thy hest, seeing thou has prayed and sacrificed to them.
Within this circle is Yahweh’s name, forward and backward
anagrammatised, figures of every adjunct to the Heavens, and
characters of signs and erring stars, by which the spirits
are enforced to rise: then fear not, Faustus, but be resolute,
and try the uttermost magic can perform.

He stands in the center of the circle, him arms spread out.

Sint mihi Dei Acherontis propitii! Valeat numen triplex
Jehovae! Ignei airii, aquatani spiritus, terra! Beelzebub,
inferni monarcha, et Demogorgon, proitiamus VOS, Ut appareat
et surgat Mephostophiles.
Why dost thou delay?
Per Jehovam, Gehennam, et consecratum aquam quam nunc spargo,
signumque crucis quod nunc facio, et per vota nostra, ipse
nunc surgat nobis dicatus Mephostophiles!

Enter Mephostophiles in devilish form (shadow projection).

(averting his eyes, on the verge of panic)
I charge thee to return and change thy shape: thou art too
ugly to attend on me. Go, and return an old Franciscan friar;
that holy shape becomes a devil best.

Mephostophiles exits.

Now, Faustus, thou art conjurer laureat, for indeed thou hast
power in the image of thy brother Mephostophiles.

Enter Mephostophiles as a priest [in a mirror].

Now, Faustus, what wouldst thou have me to do?

I charge thee wait upon me whilst I live, to do whatever
Faustus shall command.

I am a servant to great Lucifer, and may not follow thee
without his leave.

Did not he charge thee to appear to me?

No, I came hither of mine own accord.

Did not my conjuring speeches raise thee?

That was the cause, for the shortest cut for conjuring is
stoutly to abjure Christian doctrine, and pray to the Devil.

So Faustus hath already done. Go bear these tidings to great
Lucifer: Say Faustus surrenders up to him his soul, so he
will spare him four and twenty years, letting him live in all
voluptuousness; having thee ever to attend no me; to give me
whatsoever I demand, to slay mine enemies, and aid my friends,
always be obedient to my will. Go and return to mighty
Lucifer, and meet me in my study at midnight, and then
resolve me of thy master’s mind.

I will, Faustus.

Meph. exits.

Had I as many souls as there be stars, I’d give them all for
Mephostophiles. Now that I have obtained what I desire, I’ll
live in speculation of this art till Mephostophiles return


Corner of the balcony, where a WOMAN dressed in myriad of rags, and make-up
very overdone sits organizing more pieces of clothing. Wagner sidles up to

Sirrah, boy, come hither.

How, boy? Damn boy! I hope you have seen many boys with such
pickings as I have. Boy, what?

Tell me, sirrah, hast thou any comings in?

Ha, and goings out too, you may see.

Alas poor slave. See how poverty jesteth in his nakedness.
The villain is bare, and out of service, and so hungry that I
know he would glue his soul to the Devil for a shoulder of
mutton, though it were blood raw.

How my soul to the devil for a shoulder of mutton though
blood raw? Not so. By your Lady, I would need it well roasted,
and good sauce too, if I pay so high.

Well, wilt thou serve me, and I'll make thee go like Qui mihi

How, in verse?

No, sirrah, in beaten silk and stavesacre.

(taken aback)
How, how, stakers? Hey, I thought that was all his father
left him. Do ya hear? I would be sorry to rob you of your

Sirrah, I say in stavesacre.

Ah-ha! Ah-ha! Staves acre! Why, then be like if I were your
man I should be full of vermin.

So thou shalt, whether thou beest with me, or no. But sirrah,
leave your jesting, and bind your self presently unto me for
seven years, or I'll turn all the lice about thee into
familiars, and they shall tear thee in pieces.

Do you hear sir? You may save that labour; they are too
familiar with me already. Damn, they are as easy with my
flesh as if they had paid for it.

Well, do you hear sirrah? Hold, take these guilders.

He holds out his closed hand. She extends her open hand towards him, and he
deposits a number of coins into her palm.

Gridirons? What are they?

Why, french crowns.

Meh, but for the name of french crowns, and what should I do
with these?

Why, now, sirrah, thou art at an hour's warning, whensoever
or wheresoever the devil shall fetch thee.

(handing them back)
No, no. Here, take your gridirons again.

Truly I'll none of them.

Truly but you shall.

Bear witness I gave them him.

Bear witness I give 'em back.

Well, I will cause two devils presently to fetch thee away
Baliol and Belcher.

(getting feisty)
Let your Ballyhoo and your Belcher come here, and I'll knock
'em out, were never so knocked. Say I should kill one of 'em,
what would folks say? Do ya see over there tall fella in the
floppy pants, he has killed the devil, so I should be called
Kill-devil all over.

Wagner, via magic trick, throws up two "devils", and the Woman runs around

Baliol and Belcher, spirits away!

What, are they gone? A vendetta on 'em; they have nasty long
nails. There was a he-devil and a she-devil. I'll tell you
how you shall know them: all he-devils has horns, and all
she-devils has goats feet.

Well, sirrah, follow me.

But do you hear? If I should serve you, would you teach me to
raise up Bollywood and Belvedere?

I will teach thee to turn thy self to anything, to a dog, or
a cat, or a mouse, or a rat, or any thing.

How! A Christian to a dog or a cat, a mouse or a rat? No, no
sir, if you turn me into any thing, let it be in the likeness
of a little pretty flea, that I may be here and there and
every where. Oh, I'll tickle the pretty boys blankets; I'll
be amongst them, I will.

Well, sirrah, come.

But, do you hear?

How! Baliol and Belcher.

Oh Lord, I beg you, let Banio and Bleecher go to sleep.

Villain, call me Master Wagner, and let thy left eye be
diametrically fixed upon my right heel, with quasi vestigias
nostras insistere.

He walks away.

God forgive me, he speaks such fusty. Well, I'll follow him,
I'll serve him, that's fat.

She follows.


Stage: Faustus’ study. Faustus at his desk, reading.

Now, Faustus, must thou needs be damned, and canst thou not
be saved. What boots it then to think of God or Heaven? Now
go not backward; no, Faustus, be resolute. Why waverest thou?
0, something soundeth in mine ears: “Abjure this magic, turn
to God again!” To God? -- he loves thee not -- the God thou
servest is thine own appetite.

He picks up the Good Angel and Evil Angel puppets.

Sweet Faustus, leave that execrable art.

Contrition, prayer, repentance: what of them?

Oh, they are means to bring thee unto heaven.

Rather illusions, fruits of lunacy, that makes men foolish
that do trust them most.

Sweet Faustus ,think of heaven, and heavenly things.

No, Faustus, think of honor and wealth.

Of wealth.
(puts puppets down, muses)
When Mephostophiles shall stand by me, what God can hurt thee,
Faustus? Thou art safe; cast no more doubts. Come,
Mephostophiles, and bring glad tidings from great Lucifer.
Veni, veni, Mephostophiles!

Meph. enters. Faustus rises.

Now tell me, what says Lucifer thy lord?

That I shall wait on Faustus whilst he lives, so he will buy
my service with his soul.

Ay, Mephostophiles, I give it thee.

But, Faustus, thou must bequeath it solemnly, and write a
deed of gift with thine own blood.

Faustus picks up a knife off the desk, cuts his palm.

Lo, Mephostophiles, for love of thee, I cut mine hand, and
with my proper blood assure my soul to be great Lucifer’s.

But, Faustus, thou must write it in manner of a deed of gift.

Ay, so I will.

He takes a piece of parchment, picks up a pen and writes.

(tries unsuccessfully to use blood as ink)
But, Mephostophiles, my blood congeals, and I can write no
(looking at his hand)
What might the staying of my blood portend? Is it unwilling I
should write this bill? Is not thy soul thine own? Then write
again, Faustus gives to thee his soul.

Faustus tries again to write. Meph. flashes a flame from hand.

Here’s fire.
(presses hand against Faustus’ wound)
Come, Faustus, set it on.

So now the blood begins to clear again; now will I make an
end immediaely.
(reads as writes)
I, Georg von Helmstetter, Doctor Faustus, do publicly declare
with mine own hand in covenant and by power of these presents:
(Meph. circles around as he continues)
Whereas, mine own spiritual faculties having been exhaustively
explored, including the gifts dispensed from above and
graciously imparted to me, I still cannot comprehend. And
whereas, it being my wish to probe further into the matter, I
do propose to speculate upon the Elementa; and whereas
mankind doth not teach such things. Now therefore have I
summoned the spirit who calleth himself Mephostophiles, a
servant of Great Lucifer, charged with informing and
instructing me, and agreeing against a promissory instrument
hereby transferred unto him to be subservient and obedient to
me in all things. I do promise him in return that, when I be
fully sated of that which I desire of him, twenty-four years
also being past, ended and expired, he may at such a time and
in whatever manner or wise pleaseth him order, ordain, reign,
rule and possess all that may be mine: body, property, flesh,
blood, etc., herewith duly bound over in eternity and
surrendered by covenant in mine own hand by authority and
power of these presents, as well as of my mind, brain, intent,
blood and will. I do now defy all human laws, all the
Christian dogma and all restriction, and this must be. In
confirmation and contract whereof I have drawn out mine own
blood for certification in lieu of a seal. Doctor Faustus,
the Adept in Elementa and in Church Doctrine.

Speak, Faustus, dost thou deliver this as thy deed?

Ay, take it, and the Devil give thee good on it.

Now, Faustus, ask what thou wilt.

Let me have a wife. The fairest maid in Germany, for I am
wanton and lascivious, and cannot live without a wife.

How -- a wife? I prithee, Faustus, talk not of a wife.

Nay, sweet Mephistophilis, fetch me one, for I will have one.

Well, thou wilt have one. Sit there, I'll fetch thee a wife
in the devil's name.

Mephistophilis crosses to wings, from which he brings forth a WITCH

Marriage is but a ceremonial toy. I’ll cull thee out the
fairest courtesans, and bring them every morning to thy bed;
she whom thine eye shall like, thy heart shall have.

Faustus glowers lasciviously. Meph. laughs, causing Faustus to look
uncertain. The witch backs into the wings, an evil smirk on her face.
Beat. Meph. pulls out a book.

(handing him the book)
Here, Faustus, take this book, persue it thoroughly: the iterating
of these lines brings gold.

Faustus peruses the book.

(pointing in book)
The framing of this circle on the ground brings whirlwinds,
tempests, thunder and lightning.

Faustus turns more pages. Meph. stops him.

Pronounce this thrice devoutly to thyself, and men in armour shall
appear to thee, ready to execute what thou desirest.

Thanks, Mephostophiles; yet fain would I have a book wherein I might
behold all spells and incantations, that I might raise up spirits
when I please.

(indicates book)
Here they are, in this book.

(nodding, looking though book)
Now would I have a book where I might see all characters and planets
of the heavens, that I might know their motions and dispositions.

(turning pages)
Here they are too.

Nay, let me have one book more -- and then I have done -- wherein I
might see all plants, herbs, and trees that grow upon the earth.

(pressing finger firmly on book)
Here they be.

Faustus looks satisfied.

Now will I question thee about hell. Tell me where is the place that
men call hell?

Under the heavens.

Ay, but whereabouts?

Within the bowels of these elements. Hell hath no limits, nor is
circumscribed in one self place; for where we are is hell, and where
hell is there must we ever be. And, to conclude, when all the world
dissolves, and every creature shall be purified, all places shall be
hell that is not heaven.

Come, I think hell’s a fable.

Ay, think so still, till experience change thy mind.

Why, thinkest thou then that Faustus shall be damned?

Ay, of necessity, for here’s the scroll wherein thou hast given thy
soul to Lucifer.

Ay, and body too; but what of that? Thinkest thou that Faustus is so
foolish to imagine that, after this life, there is any pain? Tush,
these are trifles, and mere old wives’ tales. But, leave these vain
trifles of men’s souls. Tell me, what is that Lucifer, thy lord?

Commander of the lower spirits.

Was not that Lucifer an angel once?

Yes, Faustus... and most dearly loved of God.

How comes it then that he is Prince of devils?

0, by aspiring pride and insolence; for which he fell from the face
of heaven.

And what are you that you live with Lucifer?

Spirits that fell with Lucifer.

Where are you damned?

In hell.

How comes it then that thou art out of hell?

Why this is hell, nor am I out of it. Think’st thou that I who sored
in the heavens, am not tormented with ten thousand hells, in being
chained to this rock? 0 Faustus, leave these frivolous demands, for
thy soul may not withstand such force.

What, is great Mephostophiles so passionate for being deprived of
the joys of heaven?
Tell me who made the world?

I will not.

Sweet Mephostophiles, tell me.

Move me not, for I will not tell thee.

Villain, have I not bound thee to tell me anything?

Think thou on hell, Faustus, for thou art damned.

Think, Faustus, upon God that made the world.

Faustus crosses to his desk and sits, brooding. Meph. merely looks on.

My heart’s so hardened I cannot repent. Scarce can I name salvation,
faith, or heaven, but fearful echoes thunder in mine ears.
Why should I die? Or basely despair?
Come, Mephostophiles, let us dispute again, and argue of divine
astrology. Tell me, are there many heavens above the moon? Are all
celestial bodies but one globe, as is the substance of this centric

As are the elements, such are the spheres mutually folded in each
other’s orb, whose terminine is termed the Universum.

But tell me, have they all one motion, both in direction and in

All jointly move in circular poles, but differ in their motion of

Tush, these are freshman’s suppositions. But tell me, hath every
sphere a dominion?


How many heavens, or spheres, are there?

Many: the planets round the sun, the sun with other suns and others
like to make up the Universe. And beyond.

(looking puzzled)
Well, resolve me in this question: why have we not conjunctions,
oppositions, aspects, eclipses, all at one time, but in some years
we have more, in some less?

On account of their unequal motion in relation to the whole.

Well, I am answered.

Faustus turns away, brooding.

Remember this...

Ay, go, accursed spirit, to ugly hell. ‘Tis thou has damned
distressed Faustus’ soul.
(to himself)
Is’t not too late?

He picks up the angel puppets by the heads, not being playful this time.

(shaking evil angel)
Too late. If thou repent, devils shall tear thee in pieces.
(shaking good angel)
Never too late, if Faustus can repent.
(holding up evil angel)
If thou repent, devils shall tear thee in pieces.
(holding up good angel)
Repent, and they shall never raze thy skin.
(looking heavenward)
Ah, Christ, my saviour, seek to save distressed Faustus’ soul.

Enter godly beings, LUCIFER (a huge metal head w/fire) and BEELZEBUB (a giant woman of

Christ will not save thy soul, there’s none but I have interest in the

0, who art thou that look'st so terrible?

I am Lucifer, and this is my companion in hell.

O, Faustus! They are come to fetch away thy soul.

We come to tell thee thou dost injure us;
Thou talkst of Christ, contrary to thy promise.
Thou shouldst not think of God: think of the devil,
And of his dame too.

Nor will I henceforth: pardon me in this,
And Faustus vows never to look to heaven,
Never to name God, or to pray to him,
To burn his scriptures, slay his Ministers,
And make my spirits pull his churches down.

Do so, and we will highly gratify thee.
Faustus, we are come from hell to show thee
the delights therein.

Re-enter the witch, dances about Faustus. The devils move into shadow.

What art thou?

I am Pride.

She prances as if on parade. Faustus looks bewildered.

(grabbing at his book)
I am Covetousness, begotten of an old churl.

Faustus pulls away, protecting his book.

I am Wrath. I was born in hell; and look to it, for some of you
shall be my father.

Away to hell, to hell!

The Witch crosses to him.

(pulling and sniffing at his clothes)
I am Envy. I cannot read, and therefore wish all books were burnt. I
am lean with seeing others eat.

She turns away, hugging her stomach.

I am Gluttony.
(imploring sweetness)
Faustus, wilt thou bid me to supper?

No, I’ll see thee hanged: thou wilt eat up all my victuals.

Then the Devil choke thee!

Choke thyself, glutton!

The Witch languors.

I am Sloth.
(as she lays upon the floor)
I was begotten on a sunny bank, where I have lain ever since.

She falls asleep. Faustus leans over her. She reaches an arm up around his
neck, lasciviously.

What are you now, Mistress Minx?

Who, I, sir? The first letter of my name begins with L.

She licks his face, he jumps back, she laughs, looking seductive. Meph.
steps forward.

Tell me, Faustus, how dost thou like thy wife?

A plague on her for a hot whore!

The Witch rises, crosses to Faustus, caressing him; he succumbs, they kiss
passionately. Wagner pulls a curtain across, giving the audience a knowing
look. He then looks behind it, enjoying the show. Pause. When he drops the
curtain, Faustus is alone, lying on his back, dishevelled. Wagner exits.

FAUSTUS When I behold the heavens, then I repent, and curse thee, wicked
Mephostophiles, because thou hast deprived me of those joys.

Why, Faustus, thinkest thou heaven is such a glorious thing?

If it were made for man, ‘twas made for me.
I will renounce this magic, and repent.

The puppets of GA & EA rise on their own.

Faustus, repent; Yet God will pity thee.

Thou art a spirit; God cannot pity thee.

Who buzzeth in mine ears I am a spirit? Be I a devil, yet God may
pity me; Ay, God will pity me, if I repent.

Ay, but Faustus never shall repent.

The puppets drop.

My heart's so hardened I cannot repent.
Scarce can I name salvation, faith, or heaven,
But fearful echoes thunder in mine ears
Faustus, thou art damned. Then swords and knives,
Poison, guns, halters, and envenomed steel
Are laid before me to dispatch my self,
And long ere this I should have slain my self,
Had not sweet pleasure conquered deep despair.
Have not I made blind Homer sing to me,
Of Alexander's love, and Oenon's death,
And hath not he that built the walls of Thebes,
With ravishing sound of his melodious harp,
Made music with my Mephistophilis?
Why should I die then, or basely despair?
I am resolved: Faustus shall never repent,


CU of Faustus.

Learned Faustus, to know the secrets of astronomy, graven in the
book of Jove’s high firmament, did mount himself to scale Olympus’
top, being seated in a chariot burning bright, drawn by the
strength of yoky dragons’ necks. He now is gone to prove
cosmography, and will first arrive at Rome, to see the Pope and
manner of his court, and take some part of holy Peter’s feast,
that to this day is highly solemnised.


Stage set: The Pope’s privy-chamber. Enter Faustus and Meph.

Having now, my good Mephostophiles, passed the stately town of
Treves, environed round with airy mountain-tops. From Paris next,
coasting the realm of France; we saw the river Maine fall into the
Rhine, then up to Naples, rich Campania, where saw we learned
Virgil’s golden tomb. From thence to Venice, Padua, and the rest.
Thus hitherto has Faustus spent his time. But tell me, now, what
resting-place is this? Hast thou, as erst I did command, conducted
me within the walls of Rome?

Faustus, I have; and because we will not be unprovided, I have taken
up his holiness’ privy-chamber for our use.

I hope his holiness will bid us welcome.

Tut, ‘tis no matter, man, we’ll be bold with his good cheer.

I do long to see the monuments and situation of bright-splendent
Rome. Come therefore, let’s away.

Nay, Faustus, stay; I know you’d see the Pope, and take some part
of holy Peter’s feast, where thou shalt see a troop of bald-pate
friars, whose summum bonum is in belly-cheer.

Well, I’m content to compass then some sport, and by their folly
make us merriment. Then charm me, Mephistophiles, that I may be
invisible, to do what I please unseen of any whilst I stay in Rome.

Meph. waves his arms towards Faustus, bringing them down from head to foot.

So, Faustus, now do what thou wilt, thou shalt not be discerned.

Faustus pulls out a pope marionette, dances about with him, waving his hands
in front of his face, gleefully enjoying his invisibility. The Pope looks
around him in confusion. Faustus kicks the Pope, who cries out, and starts
running around the room, with Faustus in hot pursuit. The Pope runs out.
Faustus stops, laughing.

Come, Mephistophiles, what shall we do?

Nay, I know not. We shall be cursed with bell, book, and candle.

How! Bell, book, and candle -- candle, book, and bell, forward and
backward to curse Faustus to hell! Anon you shall hear a hog grunt,
a calf bleat, and an ass bray, because it is St. Peter’s holiday.

Faustus laughs, as Meph. leads him out.


CU of Faustus.

When Faustus had with pleasure taken the view of rarest things, and
royal courts of kings, he stayed his course, and so returned home;
where his friends, and nearest companions, did gratulate his safety
with kind words, and in their conference of what befell, touching
his journey through the world and air, they put forth questions of
Astrology, which Faustus answered with such learned skill, as they
admired and wondered at his wit. Now is his fame spread forth in
every land; amongst the rest the Emperor is one, Charles the Fifth,
at whose palace now Faustus is feasted ‘mongst his noblemen. What
there he did in trial of his art, I leave untold -- your eyes shall
see performed.


ROBIN, another survivor in tattered service uniform, enters alcove with
portable TV set under her arm.

ROBIN Oh, this is great! I've stolen one of doctor
Faustus' magic boxes, and I mean to search
for my own use. Now will I make all in our parish
dance at my pleasure, and so by that means I shall
see more yet.

Enter RALPH calling Robin.

Robin, come away; there's a generous man
[tarries] to have his whores, and he would have his
thing rubbed and made clean. He keeps such a buggin' with
my mistress about it, and has sent me to look for you.
Please come.

Keep out, keep out, or else you are blown up; you
are dismembered Ralph, keep out, for I am about a roaring
piece of work.

Come, what do you with that? You can't work it.

Yes, my master and mistress shall find that I can work it,
he for his forehead, she for her private study; she's
born to bear with me, or else my art fails.

Why , Robin, what boX is that?

ROBIN What box? Why, the most intolerable box for
magic that ever was invented by any devil.

Can ya magic with it?

I can do all these things easily with it.

Robin gets the TV to turn on. They both watch the following:

Scene: a palatial court. Enter THE EMPEROR, FAUSTUS, a KNIGHT [and

Master Doctor Faustus, I have heard strange report of
thy knowledge in the blacke art.
They say you have a familiar spirit, by whom you can
accomplish what you want. This, therefore, is my request,
that you let me see some proof of your skill, that my eyes
may see what my ears have heard, and here I swear by my imperial
crown, that whatever you do, you shall be no ways endangered.

(sneering to camera)
He looks much like a conjuror.

Laugh track.

My gracious sovereign, though I must confess
myself far inferior to the report men have published,
yet for that duty binds me unto your imperial majesty,
I am content to do whatsoever your majesty shall command me.

Then, Doctor Faustus, as I was sometime solitary,
thoughts arose about the honour of my ancestors, how
they had won by prowess such exploits, got such riches,
subdued so many kingdoms, as we that do succeed, or they
that shall hereafter possess our throne, shall, I fear, never
attain to that degree of high renown and great authority,
amongst which kings is Alexander the great, chief
spectacle of the world's preeminence.
It grieves my soul I never saw the man.
If, therefore, you, by cunning of your art,
Can raise this man from hollow vaults below,
And bring with him his beautiful paramour,
You shall both satisfy my just desire,
And give me cause to praise you while I live.

My gracious Lord, I am ready to accomplish your
request, so far forth as by art and power of my spirit I am
able to perform.

(to camera)
In faith that's just nothing at all.

Laugh track.

But if your Grace allows, it is not in my ability to
present before your eyes the true substantial bodies of those
two deceased princes, which long since are consumed to dust.

(to camera)
Well, Master Doctor, now there's a sign of grace
in you, when you will confess the truth.

Laugh track.

But such spirits as can lively resemble Alexander
and his Paramour, shall appear before your Grace, in that
manner that they best lived in,
which I doubt not shall sufficiently content your imperial

Go to, Master Doctor, let me see them presently.

Do you hear, Master Doctor? You bring Alexander and his
paramour before the Emperor?

Laugh track.

How's that, sir?

In faith, that's as true as Diana turned me to a stage.

Laugh track.

No, sir, but when Acteon died, he left the horns for
(under his breath)
Mephistophilis, be gone.

Exit Mephistophilis.

No, as you go to conjuring, I'll be gone.

Exit Knight.

I'll meet with you soon for interrupting me so.
Here they are my gracious Lord.

Enter Mephistophilis with Alexander and his paramour. The Emperor goes as if
to embrace them. Faustus stops him.

My gracious lord, you do forget yourself. These are but
shadows, not substantial.

Pardon me, my mind was so ravished with this sight of renown.
(Laugh track)
But, Faustus, since I may not speak to them
I heard this Lady while she lived
had a wart or mole in her neck. How shall I know whether
it be so or no?

Your highness may boldly go and see.

The Emperor approaches cautiously and looks at her neck.

Faustus, I see it plain, and this sight greatly pleases me.

(under his breath)
Away, be gone.

Exit Alexander and his lady.

If it please your highness now to send for the knight
that was so pleasant with me here of late?

(to off camera)
One of you call him forth.

Enter the Knight with a pair of horns on his head.

How now, sir knight? Why I thought you were
a bachelor, but now I see you have a wife, that
not only gives you horns, but makes you wear them.

(feeling his head)
You damned wretch, and execrable dog!
How dare you thus abuse a gentleman?
Villain, I say, undo what you have done.

Laugh track.

Oh, not so fast sir; there's no haste; but, you
remember how you crossed me in my conference with the
Emperor? I think I have met with you for it.

Laugh track.

Good Master Doctor, at my entreaty release him;
he has done sufficient penance.

My Gracious Lord, not so much for the injury he
offered me here in your presence, as to delight you with some
mirth, hath Faustus worthily requited this injurious knight,
which being all I desire, I am content to release him of his
(to the Knight)
And, sir knight, hereafter speak well of scholars.
(under his breath)
Mephistophilis, transform him straight.

Mephistophilis removes the horns.

Now my good Lord
having done my duty, I humbly take my leave.

Farewell, Master Doctor, yet before you go, expect
from me a bountiful reward.

Exit Faustus.


Faustus musing. Wagner enters, runs up to Faustus.

How now, Wagner, what’s the news with thee?

Sir, the Count of Anhalt doth earnestly entreat your company.

The Count of Anhalt! An honourable gentleman, to whom I must be no
niggard of my cunning. Come, let’s away to him.

Faustus crosses back to desk, where toy theatre of court hall is peopled by
figures the COUNT and COUNTESS OF ANHALT center. Faustus moves the figure of
himself to them and greets them. The Count raises his goblet to Faustus.
Faustus bows, then raises his arms, making gestures. Above the theatre
appears the image of a grand castle. The Count and Countess marvel at it.


Enter Wagner dragging along a dazed 4th SURVIVOR.

Master Doctor Faustus, since our conference about fair ladies, we
have determined with ourselves that Helen of Greece was the
admirablest lady that ever lived; therefore, Master Doctor, if you
will do us that favour, as to let us see that peerless dame of Greece,
whom all the world admires for majesty, we should think ourselves
beholding unto you.

Sir, you shall behold that peerless dame of Greece, as when Paris
crossed the seas with her, and brought the spoils to rich Troy. Be
silent, then, for danger is in words.

Faustus crosses to a draped mirror. He undrapes it, waves his hands in front
of it, as the Survivor and Wagner watch. Smoke fills the mirror, then an image
forms, Helen of Greece, in the distance. She slowly appoaches the mirror. She
smiles at the three men. Then the image fades. The three men stand enraptured.

Too simple is my wit to tell her praise, whom all the world admires
for majesty.
(to the survivor)
Since we have seen the pride of Nature’s works and only paragon of
excellence, we’ll take our leave, and for this blessed sight happy
and blest be Faustus evermore.

Sirs, farewell -- the same I wish to you.

Wagner pushes survivor to exit. Faustus muses at the mirror. Beat. Wagner
returns, putting on costume of a scholar, and holding mask.

An elderly gentleman wishes your attendance, sir.

Faustus breaks from his reverie.

(dons mask)
O gentle Faustus, leave this damned art, this magic that will charm
thy soul to hell, and quite bereave thee of salvation. Though thou
hast now offended like a man, do not persevere in it like a devil.
Yet, thou hast an amiable soul, if sin by custom grow not in nature.
Then, Faustus, will repentance come too late; then thou art banished
from the sight of heaven. No mortal can express the pains of hell.
May be this my exhortation seems harsh and all unpleasant; let it not,
for, gentle son, I speak it not in wrath or envy of thee, but in
tender love and pity of thy future misery. And so have hope that this
my kind rebuke, checking thy body, may amend thy soul.

Where art thou, Faustus? Wretch, what has thou done? Damned art thou,
Faustus, damned; despair and die!

Ah stay, good Faustus, stay thy desperate steps.
I see an angel hovers ore thy head,
And, with a vial full of precious grace,
Offers to pour the same into thy soul.
Then call for mercy and avoid despair.

(recovers himself)
Ah, my sweet friend, I feel thy words to comfort my distressed
soul. Leave me a while to ponder on my sins.

I go, sweet Faustus, but with heavy cheer, fearing the ruin of thy
hopeless soul.

He exits.

Accursed Faustus, where is mercy now? 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?

Meph. enters.

Thou traitor, Faustus, I arrest thy soul
For disobedience to my sovereign lord.
Revolt, or I'll in piece-meal tear thy flesh.

Sweet Mephostophiles, entreat thy lord to pardon my unjust
presumption. And with my blood again I will confirm my former vow
I made to Lucifer.

Do it then quickly, with unfeigned heart, lest greater danger do
attend thy drift.

Faustus sits at the desk, picks up a dagger, cuts his hand, and writes upon

(reading what he writes)
I, Doctor Georg Faustus, do declare in this mine own hand and blood:
whereas I have truly and strictly observed my first instrumentum
and pact for these nineteen years, in defiance of God and all
mankind; and whereas, pledging body and soul, I therein did empower
the mighty God Lucifer with full authority over me so soon as five
more years be past; and whereas he hath further promised me to
increase my days in death, thereby shortening my days in Hell, also
not to allow me to suffer any pain; now therefore do I further
promise him that I will never more heed the admonitions, teachings,
scoldings, instructions or threats of fearful mankind; but
particularly do I promise to heed no propagandist of religious dogma.
In good faith and resolve contracted by these presents and in mine
own blood, etc.

He hands the paper to Meph.

Torment, sweet friend, that base and aged monk that durst dissuade
me from thy Lucifer, with greatest torment that hell affords.

His faith is great, I cannot touch his soul,
But what I may afflict his body with,
I will attempt, which is but little worth.

Faustus sits musing on the covered mirror.

What mayest I bring thee, Faustus?

One thing, good servant, let me crave of thee, to glut the longing
of my heart’s desire, — that I might have unto my paramour that
heavenly Helen, which I saw of late. Whose sweet embracings may
extinguish clean these thoughts that do dissuade me from my vow,
And keep mine oath I made to Lucifer.

Faustus, this or what else thou shalt desire shall be performed in
twinkling of an eye.

Meph. crosses to the mirror, removes the cover. Faustus looks. Helen stands
in the mirror, with open arms.

(crossing to the mirror)
Was this the face that launched a thousand ships and burnt the
topless towers of Ilium?
(pressing his face to the glass)
Sweet Helen, make me immortal with a kiss.
(kisses her)
Her lips suck forth my soul. See where it flies! Come, Helen, come,
give me my soul again. Here will I dwell, for heaven is in these
lips, and all is dross that is not Helena. None but thou shalt be
my paramour.

He embraces the mirror as if a person.


CU of Wagner, with ventriloquist dummy.

(to camera)
I think my master shortly means to die, for he hath given to me all
his goods; and yet, methinks, if that death were so near, he would
not banquet and carouse and swill amongst the students, as even now
he doth, who are at supper with such belly-cheer as Wagner never
beheld in all his life. See where they come! Belike the feast is


MS of Wagner. Faustus crosses to him.

Ah, gentle friend!

What ails Faustus?

Ah, my sweet chamber-fellow! Had I lived with
thee, then had I lived still, but now I die eternally. Look,
comes he not? Comes he not?

What means Faustus?
(to dummy)
Belike he is grown into some sickness by being over solitary.
If it be so, we'll have physicians to cure him; 'tis but a surfeit.
(back to Faustus)
Never fear man.

A surfeit of deadly sin that hath damned both body and soul.

Yet, Faustus, look up to heaven; remember God's mercies are

But Faustus' offense can never be pardoned:
the serpent that tempted Eve may be saved,
but not Faustus. Ah, gentlemen, hear me with patience,
and tremble not at my speeches, though my heart pants and
quivers to remember that I have been a student here these
thirty years. O, would I had never seen Wertenberg, never
read book. And what wonders I have done, all Germany
can witness, yea all the world, for which Faustus hath lost
both Germany, and the world, yea heaven itself, heaven the
seat of God, the throne of the blessed, the kingdom of joy,
and must remain in hell for ever, hell, ah, hell for ever! Sweet
friends, what shall become of Faustus, being in hell for ever?

(working the dummy)
Yet, Faustus, call on God.

On God, whom Faustus hath abjured, on God,
whom Faustus hath blasphemed. Ah, my God, I would
weep, but the devil draws in my tears. Gush forth blood
instead of tears. Yea, life and soul. Oh, he stays my tongue.
I would lift up my hands, but, see, they hold them, they hold

Who Faustus?

Lucifer and Mephistophiles. Ah friend! I gave them my soul for my

(working the dummy)
God forbid.

God forbade it indeed, but Faustus hath done it.
For vain pleasure of four and twenty years, hath Faustus lost
eternal joy and felicity. I writ them a bill with mine one blood;
the date is expired, the time will come, and he will fetch Faustus.

Why did not Faustus tell us of this before, that
divines might have prayed for thee?

Oft have I thought to have done so, but the devil
threatened to tear me in pieces if I named God, to fetch
both body and soul, if I once gave ear to divinity. And
now 'tis too late. Gentlemen, away, lest you perish with me.

(working dummy)
O, what shall we do to Faustus?

Talk not of me, but save yourselves, and depart.

(working dummy)
God will strengthen me; I will stay with Faustus.

Tempt not God, sweet friend, but let us into the
next room, and there pray for him.

Ay, pray for me, pray for me, and what noise soever
ye hear, come not unto me, for nothing can rescue me.

Pray thou, and we will pray that God may have
mercy upon thee.

Gentlemen, farewell. If I live 'til morning, I'll visit
you, if not, Faustus is gone to hell.

(and dummy)
Faustus, farewell.

Exeunt Wagner. The clock strikes eleven.

Ah Faustus,
Now hast thou but one bare hour to live,
And then thou must be damned perpetually.
Stand still you ever moving spheres of heaven,
That time may cease, and midnight never come;
Fair Nature's eye, rise, rise again, and make
Perpetual day, or let this hour be but a year,
A month, a week, a natural day,
That Faustus may repent, and save his soul.
O lente, lente, currite noctis equi.
The stars move still, time runs, the clock will strike.
The devil will come, and Faustus must be damned.
O, I'll leap up to my God who pulls me down?
See, see where Christ's blood streams in the firmament;
One drop would save my soul, half a drop, ah, my Christ!
Ah, rend not my heart for naming of my Christ,
Yet will I call on him. Oh spare me, Lucifer!
Where is it now? 'Tis gone,
And see where God stretcheth out his arm,
And bends his ireful brows.
Mountains and hills, come, come and fall on me,
And hide me from the heavy wrath of God.
No no, then will I headlong run into the earth;
Earth gape! O no, it will not harbour me.
You stars that reigned at my nativity,
Whose influence hath allotted death and hell,
Now draw up Faustus like a foggy mist,
Into the entrails of yon laboring cloud,
That when you vomit forth into the air,
My limbs may issue from your smoky mouths,
So that my soul may but ascend to heaven.
Ah, half the hour is past:
(The clock strikes the half hour)
'Twill all be past anon.
Oh God, if thou wilt not have mercy on my soul,
Yet for Christ's sake, whose blood hath ransomed me,
Impose some end to my incessant pain;
Let Faustus live in hell a thousand years,
A hundred thousand, and at last be saved.
O, no end is limited to damned souls.
Why wert thou not a creature wanting soul?
Or why is this immortal that thou hast?
Ah, Pythagoras' metempsychosis, were that true,
This soul should fly from me, and I be changed
Unto some brutish beast. All beasts are happy, for when they die,
Their souls are soon dissolved in elements,
But mine must live still to be plagued in hell.
Curst be the parents that engendered me.
No, Faustus, curse thyself, curse Lucifer,
That hath deprived thee of the joys of heaven.
(The clock striketh twelve)
O, it strikes, it strikes! Now, body, turn to air,
Or Lucifer will bear thee quick to hell.
(Thunder and lightning)
O 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;

A strange light comes from below. Some THING rises from the floor.

Adders, and serpents, let me breathe a while;
Ugly hell gape not, come not Lucifer;
I'll burn my books!
(screams as he turns from what grabs him)
Ah, Mephistophiles!

As he cannot escape he turns to the substance that holds him, roars with
defiance, and sinks into the floor.

LIGHTS UP on Wagner.

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 fiendful fortune may exhort the wise,
Only to wonder at unlawful things,
Whose deepness doth entice such forward wits
To practice more than heavenly power permits.

Friday, August 26, 2016


As our hero was christened,
Was born on a farm
Outside a small German town
In the year of our Lord 1466.
In other words,
If you had any wit about you,
You were bored out of your mind.
Georg learned to read early,
And loved it,
Tho' books were scarce,
As the printing press,
And especially movable type,
Had only recently been invented
European style
-Many said by the Devil-
(The Chinese had had it for 400 years)
And were mostly of a religious nature.
For his 13th birthday
A wealthy kinsman gifted him a
Gutenberg Bible
Which he read thoroughly
For all it's drama, sex, and violence.
As he got older,
And less inclined to farm life,
His wealthy kinsman,
Being without issue,
Sent him to the University at
Under the name Georgius Helmstetter,
Where he excelled in Philosophy,
So much so that he had to
Wait a year for his degree.
He fulfilled his two year teaching duty,
Afterwhich, bored with stuffy academia,
Coupled with an outbreak of plague,
He took to the road
As a wandering scholar.

He spent a great deal of time
In various taverns
Having discovered his facility for
(He could really make shit up
Which got him free drinks
From his rapt listeners)
Along his aimless trail,
Mostly determined by that of
The Black Death,
He landed in Krakow,
Where he studied Astrology
At the Jagiellonian University,
In order to expand his financial gain.
(A common practice among scholars).
Krakow was a new experience,
One of Europe's most important cities,
Capital of the Kingdom of Poland,
Which had formed a commonwealth with
A very capitalist society,
Powered by "landed aristocracy",
Supplying most of Europe with grain,
And a flourishing center of the
Sciences and Arts.
Well placed on the
Vistula River,
At the foot of
Wawel Hill.
Here he also met one
Laurentius Dhur [or Durus]
[(Known to legend as Pan Twardowski)]
Seven years his junior,
But well versed in various
And so Georg learned these
As well.

Passing thro' Koln
He garnered some lectures
At the university.
Here he met a bright young student,
Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa von Nettesheim
(Later author of
As well as being a physician,
Legal scholar, soldier, spy, and theologian),
Whom he befriended.
Next he stopped in Gelnhausen
Where the Abbot Johannes Trithemius,
Whom Georg had heard about from
Was also passing through.
The Abbot was given one
Of Georg's calling cards,
Listing his abilities,
Along with his newly adopted magician's name,
Magister Georgius Sabellicus Faustus junior,
A mouthful to be sure.
Trithemius sent word that
He desired to meet this magician,
But Faustus did not share the
And so travelled on to Wurzburg,
Leaving Trithemius to return to
His abbey in Speyer emptyhanded.

Georg managed to acquire the post of
Schoolmaster at Bad Kreuznach,
After befriending the humanist knight
Franz von Sickingen
(A rather energetic fellow
Who later joined with Ulrich von Hutten
To use military might to bring on the
Life there was rather boring, however,
The locals too dull witted for stories.
On occasion he was invited to dine
At von Sickingen's castle,
Which was usually a convivial affair,
With good food, good wine, and good conversation.
(Von Sickingen had studied under
The great philosopher-teacher
Johannes Reuchlin
So while being typical of knighthood
In many ways
Was not a complete dolt
And even with some other guests of the
"Righteous" variety
There were plenty of topics discussed).
He also became a mentor,
In the old Greek tradition
(In ancient Greece a promising youth
Was mentored by an older,
More experienced man,
Which included sex),
To one of his students,
Kristoff Wagner,
A clever and pretty lad,
But this lead to trouble
From a jealous priest,
Who spread the accusation of
Though the "good" father himself
Was far more guilty of,
As Wagner was the only one
Georg had relations with,
But the local authorities,
Being dullards quick to jump to,
Our hero fled,
Though his friend von Sickingen
Sent a good word ahead to
Johannes Virdung, in Heidelberg,
Who then awaited the scholar,
Which he wrote about to
The latter's response being vitriolic
Towards Faustus.
However, Virdung paid no heed.

Back in his old alma mater
Dr. Faustus,
As he was now known,
Spent many hours
With his new friend,
In the University's library,
Diligently studying works on
Faustus also met,
And had an affair with,
One of the students of theology
And philosophy,
A very bright boy of 20 years,
Named Johann Faust.
However, things were thrown
Into turmoil
Early in the year,
With the death of Virdung's patron,
Philipp "The Upright" von Wittelsbach,
Elector of the Palatinate,
Being succeeded by his son,
Ludwig V, "The Pacific",
Prompting Faustus to move on,
Rather than risk expulsion.
This time he traveled far,
All the way to Paris,
Writing a conjuring book
Along the way.
In Paris he had the book published
With the help of his friend
Cornelius Agrippa,
With whom he discussed magic at length,
Becoming, thro' him, involved with
The court intrigues of
The Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I,
And joining up in an adventure,
Wherein a small band seized
The Fuerto Negro fortress
At Catalonian Tarragon,
To benefit Juanetin de Gerona,
Who'd been ousted by a
Peasant revolt,
But also for de Gerona's loyalty
To Maximilian.
The band moved to Gerona's house at Villarodona,
As the man himself headed to Barcelona
For assistance,
Only to be captured by rebels.
Agrippa led his band to a more
Secure tower,
Just before a peasant force
Lay siege.
To get a message out for escape
Cornelius had the tower keeper's
Son dress as a leper,
And he left and returned
Unmolested, with an answer
From the Archbishop of Tarragon,
Who opposed the rebellion.
So two fishing boats awaited
The besieged,
Carrying them away,
After they snuck out the back way.

Faustus headed off to join up
With Sickingen,
Who was joining Maximilian's faction
Of the League of Cambrai,
Which also included Papal forces,
(Under Pope Julius II),
Along with Louis XII of France,
Ferdinand II of Aragon,
And later other European powers,
Against the Republic of Venice,
Whom all felt had grown too powerful.
This was Faustus' first sojourn
Into warfare,
And tho' he stayed out of the
He did observe the brutality,
Bad strategies,
And multiple side effects,
Of this wasteful greed
For power.
He also wondered
At the ill-thought out
Warring amongst Christians
While the Muhammadans
Posed a constant threat
In the East.
Faustus had long been
Skeptical of the Church
With all it's machinations,
Becoming even more so
As the Pope engaged in
Bloody conquest.
Maximilian's force lay siege on
Bombarding the walls
With canon fire,
From the 15th of September,
Until the 30th, 1509,
Never able to press any breach,
Emptying his coffers in the balance.
The Emperor withdrew to Tyrol
With most of his forces,
Leaving a small contingent
Under the Duke of Anhalt,
Faustus among the latter.
This small Imperial force
Was easily run off
Two months later
By Venetian troops.
(Erasmus wrote his
"Moriae Encomium"
["The Praise of Folly"]
That year, being inspired by all the

Faustus was not ready to
Leave Italy just yet,
As much of the social changes,
And re-acquired knowledge,
The Renaissance in fact,
Came out of there.
With a small eclectic band of
Fellow disillusioned wanderers
He headed South
All roads leading towards
Plus being far away from the
Continuing warring.
Passing thro' Florence
He acquired a copy of
Agrippa's as yet unpublished
Which he read voraciously.
In Rome, Faustus spent his time
Regaling taveners with tales of
For wine and food,
Drew horoscopes,
Performed divinations,
As well as saw all there was to
See in the great city.
Michelangelo's ceiling in the
Sistine Chapel
Was certainly a highlight,
But he was also fascinated
By the remnants of
Ancient Rome.
Tho' his minor Latin
Helped understand some
He had to rely heavily on other
German pilgrims.
When he learned that one,
An Augustinian monk named
Martin Luther,
Was heading back to Wittenberg,
Faustus begged along.

A long journey,
With stops in monasteries
Along the way
Made longer still by
Luther's sullen silence
Brother Martin having been
Greatly dismayed
By the debauchery
And corruption of
Holy Rome
Only speaking briefly
Now and then
On how could this be
The other brother
Tried lamely
To point out the wonders
But Martin would none of it.

As they were reaching the
Northern part of the Romagna
They passed the retreating
Papal forces
Headed by the warmongering
Pope Julius II
Lately routed from Bologna
By the French,
In league with Ferrara,
And heading to Ravenna.
Faustus decided on a detour,
Weary of his travelling companions,
Traversing to the city of
To try his luck in a new locale.

In the grand city
He found the French generals
Being feted by the Duchess,
Who was none other than
Lucrezia of the infamous
But retired for some years now
To the side of her third husband
Duke of Ferrara.
Faustus found her a charming
And gracious lady,
Hardly the murderous wanton
Of her legend.

He spent some time there
Pedalling his talents
Before moving on,
Wishing to return to German lands
He passed through Venice
Thro' subterfuge,
As they were now in league with
The Pope
Against Ferrara
And so the borderlands
Were fraught with danger
But as luck would have it
The Battle of Ravenna
Was building up
Making individual passage
Easily overlooked.
In the great city of canals
He gathered a large crowd
With his promise of a
Demonstration of flight.
From the clock tower
In the Piazza San Marco
Built at the turn of the century.
Faustus waved to his audience
Prepared for his flight,
Which consisted of projecting his image
Via a "Fontana's Lantern"
(Invented nearly a century before
By Giovanni Fontana),
Which worked fine,
Except for a slight mishap,
Which ended with Faustus
Falling from his perch.
However, the throngs believed
That he had flown,
Before falling back to Earth
- Dashed down by the Devil,
As was later told,
And surviving with little injury
Made the people marvel all the more.

Faustus continued his Northerly
Maintaining his food and
Alcohol intake
With his various skills
And tales of warfare.
In the Autumn of
He landed in Erfurt
And set up shop.
There were fellow malcontents
Such as the Humanists
Crotus Rubeanus
And Eobanus Hessus
As well as visiting Swiss physician
Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus
Von Hohenheim
Come to be known simply as
Just 20 at the time
But would be a leader in the
Medicinal revolution.
Faustus also soon was
Making enemies
Such as Conrad Mutianus Rufus,
Canon of the Church of St. Mary's
At Gotha,
And friend of Trithemius,
And who denounced Faustus
In letters
Calling for the theologians
To rise against him
As opposed to their attacks on
The Humanist philosopher
Johannes Reuchlin.
(Luther had left for
By this time,
So he was no worry).
Faustus secured permission
To lecture publicly on
At the University
For which he became so
The students called upon him
To use his well-known art
To conjure up the heroes of the
Trojan War,
To which the Doctor agreed.
Acquiring some covert help
And employing the "Fontana's lantern"
Which he'd brought from Venice.
The show was a resounding success
Especially the appearance of
Polyphemus the cyclops.
With human legs dangling from
His mouth,
And well timed banging
Simulating the giant's spear
Being hammered on the floor,
Scaring may of the spectators.
At a subsequent banquet
Held for the commencement of masters,
During a discussion on the lost
Comedies of Plautus and Terence,
Faustus feigned quotations from
The same and
Offered, if not held against him,
To bring them to light again,
Just long enough to be copied quickly.
But the theologians, and councillors too,
Rejected the offer
For fear the Devil
Would interject
Offensive things.