Monday, March 29, 2010

Act I of THE DAMNABLE DOCTOR FAUSTUS (produced 1998)


adapted by
David M. Nevarrez

from Christopher Marlowe’s
as adapted by Orson Welles

the chap book
translated by H.G. Haile

both parts of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s

including historical references by contemporaries
and fragments from works by Cornelius Agrippa, F. M. Klinger, Chamisso and Euripides

David M. Nevarrez
Magus Productions
210 West 70th Street
Suite 1507
New York, NY 10023
c 1997 David M. Nevarrez

Dramatis Personae:

WAGNER Faustus’ famulus and biographer

FAUSTUS Scholar of Wittenberg

KLINGE A monk, and chronicler

CORNELIUS Sorcerer, teacher of Faustus

MARGUERITE A witch, friend of Cornelius

GRETCHEN A young witch


LILITH Spirit, seducer

THE KNIGHT of the Emperor’s court [Lord of Hardeckh]


HELEN of Sparta

puppets: A CAT familiar to Marguerite
THE POPE [CLEMENT VII] of the Catholic Church
THE EMPEROR [CHARLES VI] of the Holy Roman Empire
THE KNIGHT [LORD OF HARDECKH] of the Emporer's Court

on audio: CHORUS OF WITCHES At the Sabbat on Walpurgis Night
SPIRIT OF THE EARTH The voice of reason
INNER VOICE OF FAUSTUS The voice of restriction

Time: Begins in 1507 and spans thirty-one years
Place: All over Germany, Hell, and the Heavens



Scene 1: (Spot up. Enter Wagner, wearing an old man’s
mask, steps into spot)

Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, we shall now relate the fortunes of Faustus,
good and bad. He was born, his parents of peasant stock, in Germany, within a town
called Roda; in later years he was sent to Wittenberg, where a kinsman brought him
up. Soon he excelled in divinity, and was honoured with doctor’s name. Then, swollen
with pride and glutted with learning, he traveled about the land. He stopped at Heidelberg to study for a time, and became baccalaureate of Philosophy under Magister Laurentius Wolff von Speler with fifteen other candidates, whence first I met him.

(Spot down, lights up, as Wagner crosses, removing the mask, to Faustus at
his desk.)

(Nervous excitement)
I’ve been here just a little while and come in all humility to meet and know a man
whom all name to me, always, reverently.

I am delighted at your courtesy. You see a man like any other.

I come with the best of resolutions. My health’s good, I’ve a little money, my mother
would hardly let me go. I’m here to get a real education.

If that’s so, this is the right place.

But honestly, I wish that I could leave! Inside these halls, there’s not one thing that I enjoy. Everything’s so cramped, so crowded, there’s nothing green, not even a tree, and in the classrooms, on the benches, I can’t think, I can’t hear, I can’t see.


It all depends on what you’re used to. The infant takes it’s mother’s breast in the beginning, all unwillingly. Soon it feeds with appetite. And so you, at the breasts of Wisdom, each day will drink more eagerly.

I’ll hang about her neck with joy. But tell me, how shall I go about it?

Tell me, before you go any further, just what have you selected for your major?

I want to become a very learned man. I want to learn to understand whatever there is
in heaven or on earth. And science, and Nature too.

You’re on the right track there. But you mustn’t let anything distract you.

I’m in this heart and soul! Still, though. I’ve got to admit that I’d enjoy a little freedom, and some recreation on nice days, in the summer vacation.

You must use your time wisely, for it slips away so fast. But System will teach you to gain time. Therefore, my dear boy, I advise you to enroll in logic first of all. There your spirit will be nicely drilled. Through many a long day you’ll be taught that what you did once without thinking, as easy as it it were eating or drinking, must be done in order.

I don’t entirely understand you.

It will all go better by and by when you’ve learned to analyze and classify.

All this makes me feel so stupid, as if there were a mill wheel in my head.


Then, next, you must tackle metaphysics! Make sure you profoundly understand whatever’s too big for the human brain! Whether it will go in, or won’t, some glorious word is at your service.
(Calming down)
But in the meantime, this semester, be absolutely systematic! You’ll have five classes every day. You be there on the stroke of the bell. Be thoroughly prepared beforehand, know all your paragraphs by heart. That way you can check up on him if he says something that’s not in the book. But concentrate on taking notes. Take notes as if the Holy Ghost were doing the dictating.

(Steps closer, hesitantly)
That you don’t have to tell me twice! I realize how much that helps. If you’ve put something down in black and white, you’re certain of it when you get it home.

But what have you selected for your major?

I just can’t mäke myself take law.

And I can’t blame you much for that. I know how things are in that field. The laws and statutes are passed down like some interminable disease. They drag from one generation to the next and slowly shift from land to land. Reason turns to nonsense, blessings into curses. As for the rights that we are born with, alas, there’s always a question.

You’ve made me dislike it more than ever. Fortunate the student whom you teach!
I’d almost like to take theology.

I shouldn’t like to lead you astray, and where that science is concerned, it’s hard to keep on the right track. Inside it there is so much hidden venom you hardly know which is poison, which is cure. But here, too, you had better choose one man, and swear by the master’s word. In general, just stick to words! And you’ll move on, through the Gate of Surety, into the Temple of Security.

But there has to be a thought with the word.


All right! But you needn’t let that worry you. With words you can argue beautifully, with words you can make up a system. You can make believers with words.

Forgive me, I’m keeping you with all these questions, but I must bother you a little
more. Would you be kind enough to give me a few words on medicine? Three years is
such a little while and, lord, the field’s so wide. If one’s given even a hint, it’s easier for him to feel his way.

The soul of medicine is easy to understand! You master the microcosm, and in the end
you let things happen as it pleases God. It’s no good roving through the sciences,
each of us learns only what he can. But he who can seize the instant, there’s your
man! You’re well built, you’ve plenty of sense. If you trust yourself, the others will trust you too.

That’s more like it. Now I see the where and the how.

All theory, my friend, is gray. The golden tree of life is green.

I swear to you, It is all like a dream! May I bother you some other time to get to the very bottom of your wisdom?

(Stifling a laugh)
I’ll be happy to do what I can.

(Faustus rises crosses to Wagner, puts a hand on his shoulder an leads him to
bookcase, where he takes down a book They cross to the desk where Wagner
sits to peruse the book at Faustus‘ guidance. Faustus smooths Wagner’s
hair. Wagner looks up at him with ardour. Faustus leans over for a kiss.
Suddenly there is a persistent knocking at the door. Faustus crosses to the
door, which he opens. Enter Klinge).

My neighbour, Dr. Sabel, I have to desire of you a Christian request, beseeching you
that you will vouchsafe not to be angry with me, but resolve me in my doubt.


I pray you say your mind.

Neighbour, you know in the beginning how that you have defied God, and all heavenly
pursuits, wherewith you have incurred God’s high displeasure, and are become from a
christian as if a heathen person. Consider what you have done, it is not only the pleasure of the body, but the safety of the soul that you must have respect unto, of which if you be careless, then are you cast away, and shall remain in the anger of almighty God.

(Faustus starts to say something, but Klinge is not done with his sermon.
Wagner just continues to watch).

But yet is it time enough, Master Doctor. if you will repent and call unto the lord for mercy, as we have example in the “Acts” of the apostles, the eight chapter of Simon of Samaria, who was led out of the way, affirming that he was Simon homo sanctus. This man...

I pray you, Dr. Klinge, be not afraid for my soul, for what rumours you have heard are greatly exaggerated from the truth.

(Pulls a letter from his sleeve)
I have hear a letter Itom Johannes Trithemius, Abbot of the monastery at Wurzburg, to
Johannes Virdung, dated this past 20th day of August, A.D. 1507.
(Reads -- as he does so both Faustus and Wagner react variously)
“The man, who calls himself Master Georgius Sabellicus, or Doctor Faustus, the chief
of necromancers, astrologer, palmist, diviner with earth and fire and water, is a vagabond, a babbler and a rogue, who deserves to be thrashed so that he may not henceforth rashly venture to profess in public things so execrable and so hostile to the holy church. When I was returning last year from Mark Brandenburg, I happened upon this same man in the town of Gelnhausen, and many silly things were told me about him at the inn. As soon as he heard that I was there, he fled from the inn and could not be persuaded to come into my presence. The description of his folly he also sent to me through a certain citizen. Afterwards, while I was at Speyer, he came to Wurzburg and, impelled by the same vanity, is reported to have said in the presence of many that the miracles of Christ the Saviour were not so wondertul, that he himself could do the same things, as often and whenever he wished. Towards the end of Lent of the


present year he came to Kreuznach and with like folly and boastfulness made great promises, saying that in alchemy he was the most learned man of all times and that by his knowledge and ability, he could do whatever anyone might wish. In the meantime
there was vacant in the same town the position of schoolmaster, to which he was
appointed through the influence of Franz von Sicklngen. the magistrate and a man
very fond of mystical lore. Then he Indulged in the most dastardly kind of lewdness
with the boys and when this was discovered, he avoided by flight the punishment that
awaited him. These are the things which I know through very definite evidence concerning the man who is not a philosopher but a fool.”

I know not what to say to these baseless accusations, except to point out that it is well known that this abbot Trithemius is inclined to the fantastic, and has a considerable reputation as a magician.

Although I do not know this learned abbot, I cannot believe him to be so maligned.

And yet you believe the defamations against me.

(Wagner smiles; Klinge tries to respond, but only stutters).

I think, Dr. Klinge, that you should be certain of your accusations before making them.

(Flustered, but righteous)
I shall be watching you, Doctor.

(Kiinge exits.).

(Coming back to Wagner)
Well, my son, how would you like to move into this my house, and study under my

It is a charming house.


It was left to me by a fatherly kinsman.
(He crosses to the desk)
Why don’t you look about the house on your own, so as to familiarize yourself with it.

I shall, sir.

(Wagner exits. Faustus picks up a book from the desk begins perusing it).

(Struggling with impatience)
Settle your studies, Faustus, and begin to sound the depth of that which I would profess; be divine in show, yet level, and live and die in Aristotle’s works. Sweet Analytics have ravished me, “To argue well is the end of logic.” Is to dispute well logic’s primary end? Then read no more, for I have attained that end: a greater subject is fit for my wit. See “Where the philosopher leaves off, there the physician begins.” Be a physician, then, and be immortalized for some wondrous cure. “The end of physic is our body’s health.” Could I make men live eternally, or, being dead, raise them to life again, then this profession should be revered. 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.” 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, 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, we must sin, and so consequently die. Yes, we must die an everlasting death.
“Che sera sera?” Divinity, adieu.
(He pushes the books off his desk, stands. He ponders the bookcases)
These metaphysical and necromantic ooks are heavenly.
(He takes a book from the shelf, looks through it)
Lines, circles, scenes, letters and characters, yes, these are those that I most desire.
(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 your mind at gaining a deity.
(Reads, beat)
(Beat. Enter Wagner).


Yes, sir?

Go to the great Cornelius Agrippa; request him earnestly to visit me. You will find him at the inn just outside the city gate.

I will, sir.

(He exits).

His conference will be a greater help to me than all my labours.

Faustus, lay that damned book aside, and cease to gaze upon it, lest it tempts you.

No, go forward, Faustus, in that famous art, wherein all nature’s treasure is contained.

And heap God’s heavy wrath upon your head? Read the scriptures. Turn away from

I am glutted with curiosity. Shall I not make spirits fetch me what I please? Resolve me of all ambiguities? Perform what desperate enterprise I will?
(Rises enthusiastically)
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!
(Crosses right, becoming feverish)
I’ll have them read strange philosophy, and tell the secrets of all foreign kings!
(Crosses left)
I’ll have them wall all Germany with brass, and make swift Rhine circle fair Wittenberg!
(Stops at desk, laughs)
I’ll have them fill the public schools with silk, wherewith the students shall be bravely clad.
(Becoming dark)
I’ll levy soldiers with the coin they bring, and reign as sole king of all the provinces. Yes, strange engines for the brunt of war, I’ll make my servile spirits to invent.


(He sits, as it exhausted by the outburst. Wipes his face with his sleeve.
When he is steady again, he pulls the book back to himself and reads.
[2] Pause. A knock at the door)

(Looking up and calling out)

(Wagner enters leadin in Cornelius Agrippa. Faustus rises, crosses to greet
Cornelius. Wagner exits).

Welcome, Master Agnppa.

A good evening to you, Master Sabel. Or, as I hear, should I say, Doctor Faustus?

My christian name of Georg shall do.

And you must call me Cornelius.

Very well. But come, Cornelius, and give me your sage advise. Know that your words
have won me at last to the practice of magic and the concealed arts: yet not your words only, but mine own fantasy, tar my head but ruminates on necromantic skill.

(wagner enters with two goblets and a pitcher, gives one goblet to Cornelius,
one to Faustus, and places the pitcher on the desk, then exits).

Then tell me, Georg. 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 has ravished me.
(Beat, Cornelius smiling and nodding his head)
Then, friend, aid me in this attempt; and I will be as cunning as Capnio, whose shadows make all Europe honour him.


Georg, these books, your wit, and experience shall make all nations worship us. The
spirits of every element shall always be serviceable to us, if learned Faustus will be resolute.

Cornelius. I am as resolute In this as you are to live; therefore doubt it not.

The miracles that magic will perform will make you vow to study nothing else. He that
is grounded in astrology, enriched of tongues, as well seen in minerals, has all the
principles that magic requires.

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

Then get and bear wise Bacon’s and d’Abano’s works, and whatsoever else is requisite I will inform you before our conference ends. First you must know the words of art;
and then, all other ceremonies learned, you may try your cunning by yourself.

Then come and dine with me. and we’ll cover every aspect thereof; for I’ll conjure
though I die for it.
(Calling out)
(Enter Wagner).

Yes sir?

Please go and fetch my supper here, and enough for my learned friend.

Very well, sir.

(Wagner exits).


Filend Cornelius, Instruct me further on your sage studies. What have you to say on

(Collecting his thoughts)
With regards to divination, it happens, sometimes, that with a kind of instigation of the mind, comes divine insight. Aristotle calls this ravishment, or a kind of madness, and teaches that it proceeds from a melancholy humour. Democritus and Plato attest the same, saying that there were some melancholy men that had such excellent wits that they were thought and seemed to be more divine than human.

(Drinks. Faustus crosses with pitcher, refills his goblet).

I must learn this state of mind! How must I go about It?

I shall not merely tell you. I shall show you!

(Faustus looks exited. Cornelius lifts his goblet. Faustus does likewise, and
they toast each other. Wagner enters with a tray of food, which he places on
the desk with some difficulty -- because of the mess -- while Faustus shows
Cornelius his books. When Wagner is finished setting up, he exits.
Cornelius takes a book from a shelf, and Faustus leads him to the desk,
[3] where they eat, drink and peruse the book. Beat. The sun begins to rise).

(Turning to take in the morning)
See how the sun brings the earth to life with colour.
(Rises and crosses to window)
Come here. From here look at the city.
(Faustus crosses to him)
See, from the gateway’s cavernous gloom surges a throng. From the mean houses’ dingy rooms, to the manacles of craft and trade, from the burden of roof and gable, to the streets’ suffocating narrowness, they are all brought forth into the light. The crowd
spreads through the fields and gardens. many a boat is dancing on the stream. The first
barge sets off down the river. Already I hear the uproar of the village.

To talk like this with you is an honour, Cornelius. And a profit, too. Still, though, I’d never go out there alone. I’m the enemy of everything that’s coarse. It seems to me that is an absolutely detestable hubbub. As if the Devil drove them, they run riot.


Happy the man who from the talents God gave him, can reap a reward.

(Turns from the window, steps back into the room)
My teacher was a good man lost in the dark. With what enthusiasm, what extravagance, yet in his own odd way, in all sincerity, he brooded on Nature and her sacred spheres. He locked himself in the black kitchen with the other adepts. Then with interminable recipes, compounded incompatibles. These mixed in a lukewarm bath, and over an open flame the elixir was tortured from one chamber to the next. When, afterwards, bright as a rainbow shining up from the beaker, there was the medicine. The patients died and no one asked, “But who’s recovered?”

(Turns to Cornelius)
But how can you let that upset you? An honest man who practices his trade punctiliously, conscientiously, as it’s handed down to him -- surely he’s done enough. If in your youth you honour your teacher. you gladly let him instruct you, then, when a man, you’ve added to man’s knowledge, your student in his turn can reach a higher goal.

Oh, he is happy who has any hope of rising, ever, from this sea of error. What we don’t know is just what we could use, and what we do know is no use to us.
(Indicates books)
But let’s not spoil with melancholy thoughts the gift of this sweet hour. See how the huts there lie shimmering in the sun’s first light. He rises, and the day lives; he hurries on to nourish life. Alas, that no wing lifts me from the earth that I might strive on after him forever!

I’ve often had my feverish hours, but such a longing I have never felt. I envy no bird its pinions. How differently the pleasures of the spirit bear us from book to book, from page to page, and as you unroll some precious parchment the heavens themselves descend upon you.

You know only the one longing. Never learn to know the other! Two souls dwell in my
breast, each struggling to get tree of the other. The one, in gross and passionate desire, clutches at the world with greedy limbs; the other soars, imperious, from the dust into the realms of the first lofty fathers.
(To the heavens)
You spirits! If there are spirits in the air who rule and hover between heaven and earth, come down to me from out of your golden mists, carry me oil to some new rainbow life!


Oh, do not summon them, the famous throng, the demons who stream through the sky
preparing from every quarter of the earth a thousand evils for mankind. They gladly
eavesdrop, they love mischief so -- gladly obey, they love so to betray us. They act as if they were sent from Heaven, and lisp like angels as they lie.
(Looking out the window)
The world’s grown gray already. The air is chill, the mist is rising.

(A knock at the door. Wagner enters, hesitates on the threshold).

Excuse me! I heard you discoursing. Were you reading Greek tragedy? Could learning
Greek help my advancement? Would you give me lessons? There’s an old saying that
a even a priest can learn from an actor.

In most cases a priest is an actor. Preaching is a theatrical performance.

When one is shut up in one’s study all day, only coming out to do daily chores, the
world seems so far away.

Approach, my friend. Your name is Wagner?

(Taking a few steps into the room)
Illustrious sir, that is my name. I’m glad you know it.

I know you, student. Thus many a learned man, like you, goes studying on. That’s all
that he can do. A middling house of cards is all you build. The greatest mind sees not his task fulfilled.
(Waving towards Faustus)
Yet your prodigious master holds his ground.

Pray pardon, honoured sir, my bold suggestion, but this discourse, given due conside
ration, appears to have no bearing on the question.


(Turning to wink at Faustus)
I’m glad you’ve come. A look of bold resolution you show, but, be not absolute in the
end. If to the young we speak the simple twth, it offends the fledgling’s yellow beak. But let them have a run of years wherein they learn it shrewdly on their precious skin, they think by their own sweet will begot it, and then declare ‘The master was a clot.”

(Confused, but incited)
A knave, perhaps! For, what guide of youth will really tell us, face to face, the truth? Each will enlarge or trim with prejudice, now grave, now gay, to keep the children good.

Indeed there is a proper time for learning. But now, I see, you lean towards teaching. Through many moons, and returns of sun, a wealth of experience you’ll win.

Experience you must own. But compared with mind it makes a wretched showing. Are
the things known through many ages worth the knowing?

(Partly bitter, part smirk)
I’ve thought as much. For I was stupid once. And now I feel a superficial fool.

Hear, hear, good sir, why talk such sense?

I thought to light on wealth of hidden gold, but wretched charcoal lumps were all I
(Waving his arms)
Here they rob me of my light and air.

But I, a soul inspired by freedom’s strength, pursue with joy my inner light, and swiftly, in rapture of my mind, I speed to glory, with darkness left behind.

(wagner clears the dishef and exits. Cornelius and Faustus laugh).

Come, Georg. We have much to do.


Where to?

You shall see. You shall see.

(Faustus crosses to Cornelius, and follows him out. Beat. Enter Wagner who
crosses to the desk, where he picks up one of the tomes, opens it, looks
through it excitedly).

Oh, this is admirable! Here I have one of Dr. Faustus’ conjuring books, and in faith I mean to draw some circles for my own use.
(Flips through the pages)
Now will I make all the maidens in our parish dance at my pleasure, stark naked
before me; and so by that means I shall see more than ever I felt or saw yet.
(Stops on a page, reads it voraciously, then aloud)
“Sanctobulorum, Periphras icon.”
(Rubs his hands together)
“Polypragmos Belseborams framanto pacostiphos tostu, Astaroth...”

(The fireplace flares up with a bang. Wagner screams and drops the book,
crosses himself repeatedly as he scurries out of the room. B.O.).

Scene 2 [or 4]: The Witch’s hut, dilapidated; no back wall or
roof. Cluttered, but organized. A cat sleeps
by the fire. Enter Cornelius and Faustus).

(Looking around disdainfully)
I must ask for help from this old hag? This filthy cookery will help me in my search?
Has neither Nature nor some noble mind discovered some safer route?

My friend, there is a safer way, but that is in a different book, and it’s a lengthy chapter.

I want to know it.


Fine! It’s a way that doesn’t take money or magic or medicine. Go to a cave or mountaintop, and start right in to work; pray, meditate, contemplate, keep your thoughts on the light of God, and that’s the best way to seek the Truth.

Oh, but to live like a hermit. I’m not used to it, I couldn’t stand it. So narrow a life would never suit me.

Well then, we still must have the witch.

But why do we need just this old woman? Why can’t you brew the stuff yourself?

Now that would be a pretty pastime. In that long I could travel to the New World and
back. A job like this takes more than skill, and more than science, it takes patience.
Year after year a quiet spirit keeps working on It. It is only time that makes the subtle ferment strong. Everything about it is wonderful!
(Looks around)
It seems the lady’s not at home.

(Lifting it’s head)
Out for supper! Up the chimney, out of the house!

(Addressing the cat)
How long does she stay out?

As long as it takes.

(To Faustus)
And how do you like this tender creature?

The most idiotic thing i ever saw!

(The cat hisses and withdraws)

Oh no, a little chat like this is just what I am fondest of.


(Faustus notices a mirror in which the image of a young girl appears. He crosses to it, becoming totally fascinated).

(To himself)
What do I see? What heavenly shape appears to me within this magic glass? I see her
as it in a mist. The loveliest image of a woman! Can it be possible, is woman so fair? Is there such a creature upon this earth?

(Having watched him with amusement)
Well, naturally, when God has slaved for six whole days and at the end says "Bravo!”
the result is something pretty clever. And happy the man who has the luck to lead her
home with him, his bride.
(Sits on a stool)

My God. I think I’m going mad!

My own head’s starting to go round.

(Enter Marguerite, the Witch -- not the old hag expected -- who is startled to see the two men).

What’s this here? Who're these here? What do want here? How’d you sneak in here?

Marguerite, don’t you recognize me, you bag of bones?

(She looks at him closer, recognizes him, bursts out laughing. Cornelius also
laughs. Faustus just looks at the two of them).

Excuse the rude reception, but I didn’t see the horses.

Well, forget about it. It’s a long time since we saw each other last.

Ha, you’re the same rascal you always were! Well, gentlemen, what can I do for you?


A good glass of that famous juice. And make it the oldest that you’ve got.
(To Faustus)
A year or two, and it has twice the power.

(Picks up a bottle, crosses to Cornelius)
Most willingly! Now, ere’s a bottle that I myself have sometimes sampled. It’s so old it doesn’t even stink. I’ll gladly otter you a glassful.
(Whispers to Cornelius)
But if this man drinks it unprepared, as you know, he’ll not live an hour.

He’s an old friend, it will do him good. Give him the best that you can brew. Now, draw your circle, speak your spells, and let him have a fine big cupful.

(Marguerite, with curious gestures, draws a circle, and enters it with a big book

(Becoming agitated)
Now, tell me, what’s the good of It? This idiotic stuff, these crazy gestures. the whole nauseating humbug. I know it only too well, I detest it.

(Amused, watching with interest)
Nonsense, nonsense! Come on, don’t be so finicky. She has to have her hocus-pocus.
She’s a doctor, isn’t she? The dose won’t work without it.

(Reciting from the book)
“Emen Hetan! Emen Hetan!
I am of thee and thou art mine,
I have nothing which is not thine
In thy name Hecate
Behold thy servant Faustus anointing himself:
I should some day be great like thee’
Pray to the Moon when she is round
Luck with you shall then abound
What you seek for shall be found
In sea or sky or solid ground
As my word, so mote it be!”
(Continues under her breath through the following:)


I think she’s having a fit.

She’s near the end of it. This is an old game, and a new one too. In every epoch it has been the same.

(Grabbing his head)
My head’s about to split in two.

(To Marguerite)
Enough, enough, worthy Sibyl, bring your potion!

(Marguerite pours the potion into a bowl and hands it to Faustus, who takes
it cautiously).

All the way now! Fast as you can swallow!

(Faustus drinks it down).

May the little swallow do you lots of good!

(Taking Faustus by the arm)
Ouick now, stick as close as you can! You must get yourself into a sweat. It has to work inside and out. Soon you’ll feel with deep delight.

But let me take one last look in that glass. That woman’s image was too beautiful!

(Pulling him along)
No, no! Soon you’ll see her in the flesh.

(Cornelius leads Faustus in a quick walk around, as Marguerite laughs. The potion visibly begins to have it’s effect on Faustus. He becomes dizzy, staggering around. Cornelius helps him to the stool and to sit down.
Marguerite grabs a basket of her wares and exits. Faustus puts his head in
his hands and moans. Cornelius watches him carefully.
[5] Light rises in the distance. [Upstage]. We see shadow-puppets perform a


Witches’ Sabbat. Cornelius turns to watch. Faustus begins to recover. Cornelius helps him stand, indicates the festivities).

(Tongue in cheek)
My friend, don’t you long for a broomstick? I’d like a good stout billy goat myself.

As long as I feel fresh, this stick is plenty.
(Lifts his walking staff)

(They watch the festivities during following:)

The witches sail to Blocksberg’s peak
where corn is green and stubble yellow.
They gather on the mountaintop
while Sir Urian starts the show,
and fly up over stones and stumps
as witches fart and billy goats reek.
So honour to her who merits honour!
Forward, Dame Baubo, to lead the throng!
A capable sow, and Mother upon her,
and the rest of the witches to follow along.
The stars are sunl, the wind is still,
the sad moon sets behind the hill.
As it roars along, the magic choir
spits out a thousand jets of fire.
And when we sail around the top,
First swoop aloft, then skim the ground
and cover up the mountain heights
with miles and miles of witches!

(Indicating the Sabbat)
These are the pleasures that give spice to the way.

What luck for you to see such a sight! Do you hear those voices high in the air? Yes,


the whole of the mountainside roars with witch-song in furious choir!

In the briers, in the rushes,
through the rocks and on the ponds.
now here, now there, piercing the dark,
glowing, then fading, will-o’-the-wisps.
Careful, be careful. From far, from near.
in the rustling grasses, under the cypress,
flickering flames, frozen firelight,
these are the souls of the departed.
This is Walpurgis Night.
Whoo, whoo. Whoo, whoo.
How the cups seem to fill
at the name of the ancient gods.
How the air resounds
with our shrill harmonies.

(Starts in during above -- with enthusiasm)
They’re pushing and shoving, rattling and rustling! They’re swishing and swirling,
heaving and bustling! They’re shining and sparking, stinking and blazing! They’re in
their element today. Stick close to me, they’ll split us up.
(Looks for Faustus, who has wandered oil)
Where are you?


What, so far away, already? Here, Doctor, hold on tight!

The fire flames out, the smoke whirls up, the crowd is streaming to the Horned One.
Many a riddle soon will be undone!

And many a riddle tied a little tighter. Let the great world tear along as it pleases, we two will settle here in peace.


(Having crossed to Faustus, puts his hand on his shoulder)
We do as men have always done, from the great world we make our little one.
(Looking at the Sabbat)
I see young witches here stark naked. The old are shrewd, and cover what they can.
Be nice to them, my friend, for my sake. It’s a little trouble and a lot of fun. Come on, I’ll introduce you.
(They cross closer)
Well, what do you say to this, my friend? Just look out there. You can hardly see the
end. A hundred fires are burning In a row. They’re dancing, drinking, cooking, making
love. Now tell me, where’s there anything better?

(In the spirit of the festivities)
Well, introduce us. But how’II you present yourself, I’d like to know? As a sorcerer, or as the Devil himself?

(They both laugh heartily. Enter Marguerite, still hawking her wares).

No, gentlemen, don’t pass this up! This is your chance, don’t miss it! Here is my merchandise, examine it.
(Crosses to them, proffers her goods. obviously high)
Have you ever dreamed of such variety? And yet there isn’t one thing in my shop, on
all this earth there’s not equal, that’s not done wonders for mankind.

Marguerite, you don’t understand the times. What’s done is past! What’s past is done!
You’ve got to concentrate on novelty. All that appeals to us is novelty.

(Marguerite crosses to the stool and sits).

I’ll lose track of myself if I’m not careful. Now, this is what I call a real fair.

(A young witch -- Gretchen, whom Faustus saw in the mirror -- enters,
wearily, and crosses to Marguerite).

(Watching Gretchen keenly)
Cornelius, do you see a pale sweet girl there? She drags herself across the ground so


slowly that her feet seem fettered. I must admit she’s very like the visage from the
magic glass.

Ah, Gretchen.
(Indicating the two women)
They’re two, as are we.
(Smiles suggestively)

Believe me, they’ve already danced their share.

No one can get enough, tonight. Come on, let’s dance!

(Cornelius pulls Faustus over to the two women. Cornelius takes Marguerite
by the hand, pulls her to her feet, and they begin dancing. Faustus stands unsurely. Gretchen stands, takes his hand, and they begin to dance).

(To Gretchen)
One night I had a lovely dream. I dreamt I saw an apple tree. On it there were two
lovely apples. I climbed it, for they tempted me.

(To Faustus)
The little apples, how you love them! Ever since Eden it’s been so. I know I’m shaking with delight that such apples in my garden grow.

(To Marguerite)
One night I had a nasty dream. I dreamt I saw a blasted tree. In it there was a great big hole. Big as it was, it tempted me.

(To Cornelius, laughing lasciviously)
From the cavalier with the horse’s hoof I simply cannot stand aloof. Let him prepare
a sturdy pole if he’s not frightened of the hole.

(Faustus, out of breath, stops dancing. Gretchen continues, dancing away.

(Cornelius sees Faustus, stops dancing, and crosses to him).

But why let go of that lovely girl who sang to you so sweetly as she danced?

Right in the middle of the song a little red mouse jumped out of her mouth.

And what’s wrong with that? Don’t be so finicky! You ought to be glad it wasn’t gray.
Who minds such things in hours of ecstasy?

And then Isaw...
(He can’t find the words)

It’s witchcraft, you fool! When I see her sort here on the Blocksberg, I’m overjoyed, It’s just where you belong.

(Cornelius returns to dancing with Marguerite. Faustus hesitates, looking at
Gretchen, then at Cornelius and Marguerite, then back at Gretchen. Finally,
he crosses to Gretchen and resumes dancing with her. They dance round and
round. Cornelius and Marguerite dance off. Faustus looses his equilibrium,
[7] stumbles around, as Gretchen helps him to keep his feet. The Sun begins to
rise. Gretchen leads Faustus around in a slow walk. He seems to regain his
senses, focusing more and more on Gretchen. She sits him down. He whispers
in her ear. Cornelius and Marguerite re-enter, arm in arm, circling the stage, clockwise).

I know that you’re just being consider- And you, sir, you are always on the go?
ate. I know only too well that my poor
talk can never entertain a man of CORNELIUS
your experience. Alas, that duty should drive us so! With what a pang one leaves so many
FAUSTUS places,and yet one simply cannot stay.
One look from you, one word, is more
entertaining than all the wisdom of MARGUERITE
this world. In your youthful days that all does (Kisses her hand) well enough, to go wandering through the world


Pray, don’t bother! How can you kiss without a care. But when the days draw
it? It’s so disgusting, so raw! What nigh, and you must drag on to the grave
sort of things haven’t I had to do. My alone, that’s no good to anybody.
Mother’s entirely too particular.
(Faustus laughs, hugs her). (Facetiously)
I shudder even to see it from afar.
(Mock pouting) MARGUERITE
Yes, out of sight is out of mind. Oh, (Leeringly)
naturally you’re polite. But you have So while there’s time, my dear,
lots of friends of your own that’re think it over.
more intelligent than I.
(Cornelius laughs, hugs her).
Believe me, dearest, what men call in- MARGUERITE
telligent often is pedantry and self- (Pushing him away)
conceit. We’re really up against it, we poor
women. A bachelor’s a hard thing to
GRETCHEN convert.
What do you mean?
FAUSTUS Just one of your sort would be quite
(Smiles at her) enough to make me see the error of
Alas, that simplicity, that innocence my ways.
should not recognize their sacred
But tell me right out, have you found no
GRETCHEN one? Your heart’s not found a haven If only you will think of me one instant, anywhere?
I shall have time enough to think of
The proverb tells us, one’s own hearth
FAUSTUS and a good wife beat rubies and fine
You mean that you are often alone? gold.

Our household’s just a little one. Still, I mean, you haven’t ever felt the urge?
someone must look after it. I cook and
sweep, knit, sew, early and late I’m CORNELIUS
CONTINUED: I've always been treated with courtesy.


on my feet. And Mother is so strict. My What I meant was, weren’t you
brother’s a soldier. ever in earnest?
My father is dead. CORNELIUS
(Beat) With women one should never risk a joke.
We gave my Mother up for lost, she
was so badly off, those days. But little MARGUERITE
by little she got better. (Flabbergasted, turning away)
Oh. you don’t understand!
(Faustus holds her close.
Gretchen looks at him CORNELIUS
mischievously, frees herself (Laughing, taking her in arms)
from his arms, and runs off. But I do understand--that you are
He stands looking alter her a very kind.
moment, then follows).


(Looking at the sky)
It’s past dawn.

Yes, we must go.

I’d ask you to stay a little longer, but this town’s such a wicked place. No matter what you do, they talk about you.

(They both laugh).

(Looking around)
And our little pair?

Mischievous butterflies!

It looks as if he’s fond of her.

And she of him.
(Rises, helps her up)
At’s the way of the world.


(They cross off. Beat. Gretchen runs back in, hides behind a bush Faustus enters, looking around for her. e sees her, runs over to her, she pretends
to try to get away, he pulls her into his arms).

Ha, so that’s the way you play I’ve got you now!

(She mock struggles as he tries to kiss her. They fall to the ground, where
they roll around kissing passionately. They fall asleep. Light changes.
[8] Enter Cornelius, carrying a bottle of wine. He-looks on them amused).

Lie there, poor wretches. Seduced, you come to the bonds of love that allow no resistance. The man or woman whom Eros has struck dumb, gropes long before they regain their reason.

(Cornelius shakes Gretchen awake. She sees the hour of day, grabs her
clothing, starts towards Faustus, Cornelius stops her, assures her he will
take care of Faustus, and she runs off. Faustus awakes suddenly, startled).

The solemn bell shakes with its boom the sooty walls in dread vibration.

What, pray?

(Standing unsteadily)
A human being in the making.

A human being? Have you a loving pair locked in your chimney, in tender passion?

God forbid! That old style we declare a poor begetting in a foolish fashion.
(Growing feverish)
Blending near traits with far in new mutation. Now hope may be fulfilled. That hund
reds of ingredients, mixed, distilled -- and mixing is the secret -- give us the power to compound.


(Sits on a rock,takes up a stick and writes in the dirt)
The truth of my conviction ses nearer. A mighty project may at first seem mad. A
thinker then, in mind’s deep wonder, may give, at last, a thinking brain its being. How can the world ask more? The mystery is brought to light of day.

Then forth! Your journey’s path is clear.

(Faustus rises, Cornelius hands him a hefty tome, and Faustus heads across

(Turning back to Cornelius)
Farewell! I speak it heavyhearted, for fear we may never meet again.
(Crosses stage)

Now the hard course you run. When all is said and done, we depend on the actions
we have made.

[9] (Cornelius exits. Lights shift. Faustus stops and looks at the moon).

Light of the full moon, sad friend, I’ve watched for you so many midnights. It only I
might walk upon the mountaintops in your beloved light, soar with spirits through the
mountain caverns.
(Lifts up the tome)
And this mysterious book from Bacon’s own hand.
(He opens it and scans the page)
The instant that I see this sign what rapture runs through all my senses!
The spirit world is open to thee: thou merely hast to open thy mind and bathe in it’s
(He reads more, then turns the page)
How differently this symbol moves me.
(He runs his hand over the page)
You are nearer to me, Spirit of the Earth. Already I can feel my strength increasing.

(He reads to himself, mouthing the words. After he stops he looks about him).


Spirit whom I have summoned, I feel you hovering over me. Show yourself.

(A glow comes from below)

(Drawn out)
Who calls?

(Faustus gasps, and recoils).

You, human, called me here?


I am here.
Why do you pull back?

I am overwhelmed!

Where is your strength?

(Standing tall)
I’ll not cower.
I am Faustus! I seek your counsel, spirit.

Then come, Faustus. Come to the mountain.
(Begins to fade away)
I shall lead you.

I come.


(Lights fade to black. Then up, as the break of dawn. Faustus stands with his
[10] eyes closed, his face lifted to the horizon).

(Opening his eyes)
I have, so far, gained all that I asked. Not in vain did I leap into the fire.
(Looking “out”)
You gave me glorious Nature for a kingdom, the power to feel and enjoy her. I have
been permitted more than wandering visits, looking into her heart as into a friend’s. I was led before the interminable line of living things, and taught to know my brothers in the silent earth, in the air, the water.
(Beat. Calmer)
My heart’s last secret wonders are laid bare.
(Looking up again)
Softly now, the sun rises. From cliff and thicket the past’s silvery forms drift by me, soothing the bitter Joys of thought.
(Crosses to other side of stage)
And yet, alas, for mankind nothing is perfect. I feel that now. I’ve gained this rapture that brings me nearer and nearer the gods. Within my breast burns a savage tire for that bewitching image of a woman. From desire I stagger to enjoyment, and then, enjoying, languish for desire.

Haven’t you gone on this way long enough? How can you keep on liking such a life?
It’s fine to take a taste of it, once, but now it’s time to try out something new.

I wish you had something more to do than bother me on one of my good days.

Leave you in peace? Do not say so in earnest. Such a surly and ill-natured lunatic is
very little loss.

That is exactly the right tone! I thank you for having bored me.

Miserable son of earth, what kind of life would you have led without me? Why, except
for me, you’d long ago have walked right off the globe! Why squat in holes or caverns
like a hoot owl? Why suck strength like a toad from sodden moss and dripping stone?
A sweet and lovely avocation. You still can’t get the Doctor out of the system.


Do you understand the life, the energy, this roaming in the wilds has given me? Oh,
but if you’d the least suspicion, you’d be devil enough to begrudge me my joy!

A joy right out of this world! To lie in dew and darkness on some mountain, to hug
yourself, in rapture, in earth and sky. To blow yourself up till you’re the size of a god. To grope, clairvoyant, deep within the marrow of the earth itself. To enjoy in your proud strength, till you’ve overflowed Into the universe in bliss, the son of earth left far behind. And then to crown this lofty intuition...

Shame on you!

So, that doesn’t suit you! One mustn’t whisper in the ear what the heart can’t do without. You’re already worn out. If this keeps up, in your gloom and anguish you’ll drive yourself crazy.


(Changes into Gretchen’s voice)
Your sweetheart sits at home dreary, heartsick. She is mad about you, you’re never
out of her thoughts for an Instant. At first, like some stream the melting snow has flooded, your love drowned her in its frenzy. You poured it all into her heart, but now your stream’s run dry. Instead of sitting here, King of the Woods, your lordship should reward her for her love. Time is unbearably long for her. She stares out of the window, and watches the clouds float above the old wall of the city. Her song runs “If I were a bird!” all through the day, and half of the night. Sometimes she’s happy, sometimes she’s sad. Other times she’s cried herself dry. And then she gets quiet, or so she seems. And, always, she is sick with love.

(Clamping his hands over his ears)
Snake! Snake! Get away from me! Don’t even name that glorious creature! Don’t call
up in my half-crazed senses the craving of that lovely body.

She thinks you’ve run away. More or less, It’s what you’ve done.


Even when I’m far away. I’m near her. I can never forget her, never lose her.

We want you in her bedroom, not your grave.

What good’s the ecstasy within her arms? What if I warm myself against her breast?
Shall I not, always, feel her misery? Am I not without peace? The fugitive, aimless, that like a cataract plunges from rock to rock, in greedy rage, down into the Abyss? And there, with her childlike dreaming, in her little hut, with all her homely doings, she stands within her little world.

How It does blaze, how it does boil! When such a blockhead gets to his wits’ end, right away he thinks it’s the end of the world. There’s nothing in this world as idiotic as a devil who despairs!

(Faustus stands bewilderment. Beat).

(Dropping to his knees)

(Spot up on Gretchen).

My peace is gone. My heart is sore. Where I don’t have him, is the grave. The whole
world Is sour. My poor mind goes round and round.
(She looks out the window)
When I look out through my window, I look for him. When I leave the house. I go on
looking. His noble bearing, his gallant walk. The strength of his hand, his smiling
mouth. The power of his eyes. His talk flows from magic to magic.
(Putting her hand to her head)
And, oh, his kiss!
(Begins to cry)
My bosom yearns for him. If only I could catch him and hold him. And then kiss him as
long as I would. His mouth. Gone.

(She buries her head in her arms and cries. Spot out. The sun rises. Faustus
crosses down. Stops to survey the sunrise).


(Breathing in deeply)
The throb of life returns. My pulse beats soft to ethereal dawn.
(Slightly giddy)
Oh steadfast earth, breathing beneath my feet, and bathing me in fresh joy of living in high resolve that banishes misgiving. You stir my soul to prove life’s true worth. In the gold of dawn the forest is alive with myriad voices.
(Looks up the mountain)
The dazzling sun strides forth, and fills the air.
(Bringing his head back down, calming down)
And so it is, when hope’s earnest striving has toiled in aims as high as man may dare, fulfilment’s fair promise, but from those depths comes a driving, fiery blast, that takes us unaware. Thinking to light life’s torch I find my highest hope In a sea of fire. And such fire! Of love? Or the fierce glow of hate? This blend of joy and sorrow confounds me, sending me to earth.
(Spirits rising again, looking ahead)
Gazing down I view the deepest solitude.

(He climbs off the stage, crosses to the side of the audience).

The earliest treasures of the heart come welling up. The first, swiftly felt, scarce comprehended glance, which, claimed and held, all other jewels could outshine, now like the soul’s pure beauty mounts the ether on high, and all that’s best within my soul It bears beyond.
The nobly silent hills loom in peace that stills my question whereor why.

(He slowly crosses to the exit during following: spot up, Klinge steps into

(Consulting notes)
When he was a student at Cracow he studied magic, for there was formerly much pract
ice of the art in that city and in that place too there were public lectures on this art. He wandered about everywhere and talk9d of many mysterious things.
(Pullin a letter from his stack)
A letter rom Conrad Mutianus Rufus, Canon of St. Mary’s Church at Gotha, to Heinrich
Urbanus. October 3, 1513.
“Eight days ago there came to Erfurt a certain soothsayer by the name of Georg


Faustus, the demigod of Heidelberg, a mere braggart and fool. His claims, like those of all diviners, are idle and such physiognomy has no more weight than a water spider. The ignorant marvel at him. Let the theologians rise against him and not try to destroy the philosopher Reuchlln. I heard him babblIng at an Inn, but did not reprove his boastfulness. What is the foolishness of others to me?”
(Shuffling notes)
While at Erfurt he rented quarters near the large Collegium, and through his boastfulness brought it to pass that he was allowed to lecture publicly and to explain the Greek poet Homer to the students. When, in this connection, he had occasion to mention the king of Troy, Priam, and the heroes of the Trojan war, Hector, Ajax, Ulysses, Agamemnon, and others, he described them each as they had appeared. He was asked, for there are always inquisitive fellows and there was no question as to what Faustus was, to bring it to pass through his art, that these heroes should appear and show themselves as he had described them. He consented to this and appointed the time when they should next come to the auditorium. And when the hour had come and more students than before had appeared before him, he said in the midst of his lecture that they should now get to see the ancient Greek heroes. And immediately he called in one after the other and as soon as one was gone another came in to them, looked at them and shook his head as though he were still in action on the field before Troy. The last of them all was the giant Polyphemus, who had only a single terrible big eye in the middle of his forehead. He was devouring a fellow, one of whose legs was dangling out of his mouth. The sight of him scared them so that their hair stood on end and when Doctor Faustus motioned him to go out, he acted as though he did not understand but wanted to grasp a couple of them too with his teeth. And he hammered the floor with his great iron spear so that the whole Coliegium shook, and then he went away.

(Spot down as Klinge exits. Fade to black as Faustus exits).


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