Faust - Wikipedia
The character of Mephastophilis (spelled Mephistophilis or Mephistopheles by other authors) is one of the first in a long tradition of sympathetic literary devils. May 11, In the classic Marlowe play, Dr. Faustus makes a bargain with Mephistopheles: for twenty-four years of unlimited power he trades his soul. Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of Doctor Faustus and what it means. Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for.
They are, in truth, a little bit proud of Mephisto, because he makes them famous, but at the same time they are dismissive of him, because he is only a product of the Renaissance, and for a purported demon, is very young, whilst real demons are very old. And of course, it is Mephistopheles whom Faust meets. It is Mephistopheles to whom Faust barters his soul.
It is Mephistopheles who gets famous. Even his name is suspect: It means Bringer of Light, or the Morning Star. That suggests Faust is at a level equivalent to Satanic royalty. Against evil we all flock to God. For a real demon, any publicity is bad publicity. Faust was written as a morality play — written by a good Christian with the calculated effect of scaring people away from the Devil and his minions shout out to my demons!
The danger of straying from God is shown. The early Fausts show the simple consequences of pride, ambition, God-less arrogance, and dallying with demons. Clearly Mephistopheles was invented by a good Christian to divert people away from the Devil, so Mephisto is really no friend of Satan.
Satan comes from old stock — religions far older than Christianity and even Judaism. Then swords and knives, Poison, guns, halters and envenomed steel Are laid before me to dispatch myself. And long ere this I should have done the deed, Had not sweet pleasure conquered deep despair.
Not only does he reject God, he also believes that God cannot and will not save him. In his paranoid, depressed state, he hears God telling him that he is damned. Perhaps because of his prideful and self-important attitude, he believes he is being unjustly persecuted.
Mephistopheles – Faust
Faustus uses these feelings to justify his dangerous actions. If he believes God has rejected him, Faustus can in turn reject God. Source Because Faustus is so blinded by pride and so vulnerable because of his unhappiness, Mephistopheles has an easy time deceiving him. He appears to warn Faustus not to make the deal: However, Mephistopheles is thinking of his own torment by being in a constant state of hell.
The concept of hell in Dr. Faustus is not a physical location, but instead the absence of God. Mephistopheles chides Faustus, saying: For Mephistopheles, who used to be a spirit with God until he was thrown out of heaven with Lucifer, poena damni—the punishment of separation from God—is a real torment.
Faustus is slow to realize that he is not the one in control, that Lucifer has all the power and that Mephistopheles is merely humoring him. Indeed, Mephistopheles, Lucifer, and Belzebub reveal their true colors when they begin taunting Faustus in Act 2. Faustus is having some emotional distress, calling on Christ to save him. The demons appear almost instantly and scold Faustus for calling out to God. Chastened, Faustus apologizes and makes some extreme promises to make up for his transgression: It is enough that Faustus realizes who is truly in control.
To further distract Faustus from the severity of his situation, they put on a show for him, showing him the Seven Deadly Sins.
Doctor Faustus vs. Mephistopheles, or The Unfair Bargain
From then on, Faustus has lost any true authority he once possessed. Faustus no longer asks for Mephistopheles to perform incredible feats, seeming to forget his desire to be emperor over the world, move continents, and other such deeds. Instead, he is busy playing pranks and silly magic tricks on people of the court. His goals seem more frivolous: He seeks fame and attention, content with mediocrity and pettiness, not the majesty he once imagined. It seems that part of the bargain says that Faustus will get what he wants, but what he desires will change.
From the beginning, Mephistopheles does not grant his first request, that he supply Faustus a wife. The demon placates Faustus with some seemingly friendly advice, telling Faustus that he does not know what he wants. He cuts himself off from God, losing the divine blessing to achieve great things. He asks Mephistopheles for things that demons cannot grant him, such as a holy matrimony, or knowledge of the secrets of the universe.
The cruel joke is that Faustus at first does not know the severity of his damnation. He jests when Mephistopheles tells him that he is already in hell: Sleeping, eating, walking and disputing?