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Goethe POV[edit]

"... Goethe's later Faust, which may be considered the more definitive classic work" - why definitive? Definitive of what? Why is it more of a classic than Marlowe? — Preceding unsigned comment added by [[User:{{{1}}}|{{{1}}}]] ([[User talk:{{{1}}}#top|talk]] • [[Special:Contributions/{{{1}}}|contribs]])

The trick is to consult literature on the question, and then cite what you found. It's easy.[1] --dab (𒁳) 07:42, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

Gretchen in Goethe's Faust[edit]

The name of Faust's first love in the play is Margarethe wich is commonly nicknamed Gretchen. Like Bob for Robert. I think it would be more appropriate to use her christian name. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:49, 19 March 2008 (UTC)


What is the story behind the anonymous account in the form of a chapbook? There aren't any fragments anymore, or can they still be digitized and uploaded to WikiSource? As for the translation, if P.F. Gentleman's work doesn't exist anymore, what year was it most probably destroyed? During Allied bombing in WWII? Or earlier, during one of the Napoleonic Wars? Depending on where the fragments were discovered, might make it less probable that either Marlowe or Goethe got his hands on it. So long as we are talking about unpreserved works, it makes just as much sense to say that separate versions of the legend of the Doctor of Paris existed, alternately supplying inspiration to Jacob Bidermann to refine his Cenodoxus as it did for Goethe to come along and draft his Faust.


Okay my ex believes himself to be Mephestophilos or however ya'll spell that....what the crap? What is the story behind mephesto. He think's he's some kind of demon here to bring the world back to which it came from. --K-os

You just cannot seriously say that a tale of selling one's soul to the devil 'has some base in history' any more than 'ascending to heaven on the back of an eagle' has some basis in aerodynamics. User:Wetman

I don't the article means to suggest that the bit about diabolic soul commerce actually happened to an historical figure - it's just that Faust-the-character's roots do seem to lie in a real person, so in that sense the tale does indeed have some basis in history. --Camembert

You have to take in to consideration the time period. Nearly everything was related to heaven or hell in some way. So when you come across a man who, in societies eyes, have pledged their lives to sin and almost pride themselves in it, they would think you were in league with the devil. User:NexNecis

Actually I think the most obvious source of the "Faustus" story is in St. Augustine's Confessions, in which Augustine flirts with the religion of Manichaeism before becoming a Catholic Christian. Manichaeism is remembered most often for its belief in a "good" spiritual world at odds with an "evil" material world, a view which Christianity has both been influenced by and supposedly officially rejects as a pernicious heresy. Augustine ultimately decided that good has substance but evil has no substance of its own, and is only void. Faustus was a Manichaean bishop with whom Augustine was acquainted and ultimately disappointed. It would be difficult to overstate the influence of Augustine on Christian thought and European intellectual history in general, so "Confessions" is not some arcane piece of writing. Augustine's Faustus fits the mold of someone whom many Christians would say had been tempted and misled by a competing/corrupting body of occult knowledge; the German Faustus story obviously translated this to contemporary kinds of occult knowledge like astrology and alchemy. This casts doubt on criticisms such as that of atheist thinker Bertrand Russell (in his essay "A Free Man's Worship") that the Faustus story is specifically an attack on science and freedom of mind; certainly in Augustine's Confessions it's a matter of one religion versus another and not an attack on rationality or intellectualism in and of itself. --Elizdelphi 19:18, 19 September 2005 (UTC)

Star Wars Ep. III[edit]

[2] I think more than a few people have seen clear influence of the Faust tale on Anakin Skywalker's evolution into Darth Vader, and George Lucas is on record in an interview admitting as such. - knoodelhed 04:38, 29 May 2005 (UTC)

Discerning some Faustian element in the film is quite something else from claiming that the film interprets the Faust legend or alludes to it. What I find through Google is a handful of people who say that Palpatine plays Mephisto to Anakin's Faust (no one seems to develop this so far as to ask whether Padme is Gretchen, which speaks to a degree of superficiality in exploring or developing this thought). I went through a number of these links, and although a handful are relatively analytic, the references to Faust are themselves passing allusions. Lucas may claim inspiration from the Faust legend, but it's rather more difficult toI a say that Lucas actually develops or even substantiates this in the film as an allusion. Perhaps the epigraph of the film might be Mark 8:36, but the allusion to Faust seems an inference at best vis-a-vis the film. Returning to Gretchen, perhaps the allusion to Faust might be plausible if Anakin's emotional tie to Padme was written with genuine facility or if we had reason to suspect that it the means of a manipulation arcing further across the prequels. Buffyg 17:55, 29 May 2005 (UTC)
It seems to me that Star Wars Ep. III is at least more acceptable than Oscar Wilde's "The Picture of Dorian Grey." As far as I can remember, there are no specifically Faustian references in that work either. He also doesn't even exchange his soul for knowledge, like Anakin. He exchanges it for eternal beauty. We should either include both or exclude both, but to prefer the Wilde over Ep. III seems like mere literary snobbery. - mrchops10 23:59, 3 Oct 2005
I vote for excluding both and then some. We need to discern what was merely influenced by Faust and the Faust tales/legends from what is actually an interpretation of the Faust tale. For instance, what does Lost Highway have to do with Faust? Certainly there's no real soul selling with the main characters in Master and Margarita, but there are bargains made with the devil, and I feel that's wholly absent in Lost Highway, and quite tenuous in Heart of Darkness. [User:The Edit Competitor|The Edit Competitor] 24 Jun 2006
I would side more with explaining the reference rather than excluding particular works since I don't see an objective criteria for inclusion. — goethean 14:36, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
Lucas said in the Ep. III DVD commentary that Anakin "makes a deal with the Devil." That's pretty much it. If people see that as a reference to Faust then, sure, include it.
I don't think either should be included. They both use only the basic premise of someone selling their soul and don't refer directly to the Faust myth. This is an often-used narrative structure, there's no need to list every single text that uses it. I've added John Banville to the list as his novel Mefisto is based on Faust. If a citation is needed, it is described as a reworking of Faust on the back cover of the book. davekeeling 11:20, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Reference in V for Vendetta[edit]

The comic book V for Vendetta, by Alan Moore and David Lloyd, makes reference to Faust and the "deal" he made.


What the hell is the "deal" that is being referred to? ...... smart ass — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:06, 16 October 2012 (UTC)


Wtf? Myths as memes? What is that comment doing in this piece?


The name is probably unrelated to the German for "fist". It is rather, a Latin name, faustus "auspicious". Therefore, Faust is "Germanized" from Faustus, not Faustus "Latinized" from Faust. At least, to claim either is not trivial and would need some sort of reference. dab () 17:14, 13 January 2006 (UTC)

Since the Faustian legend probably descended to us from an earlier, unpreserved Latin document predating the anonymously written Historia von D. Iohann Fausten (1587) you may be right. That would certainly tend to connect the Faustian legend very closely to that of the legend of Cenodoxus, and the story's divergence would naturally follow the division in Germany between the Catholics and the Protestants.

Drum Corps inclusion (Music)[edit]

As part of the 2006 DCI Season, Phantom Regiment's show is entitled "Faust" and consists of Scythian Suite by Sergei Prokofiev, Ave Maria by Franz Biebl, Piano Concerto by John Corigliano, and Gustav Mahler's Symphony No. 2 ("Resurrection"). Should this be included in the music section as reference to Faust?

It has been included but someone was under the impression that it was original music. I have corrected that error.

Simply performing the music of another composer adds nothing to the historical understanding of Faust. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:25, 10 November 2009 (UTC)

Another band[edit]

Portuguese metal band Moonspell has a song called "Mephisto". "I can teach you wonders if you give me your soul."

Me Phisto philos[edit]

Are there any sources for the suggestion that Mephisto comes from "me Phisto philos", or is this original research on the part of whoever added it? —Angr 11:15, 30 October 2006 (UTC)


Kamelot currently shows up twice in the 'popular music' section. Is there any valid reason why it's listed twice? I don't konw which one should stay, but at least I fixed the formatting on the links in both of them. --Googleaseerch 04:47, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Works which retell or allude to the Faust tale[edit]

I have tagged this section with {{toomuchtrivia}}, for it just about lists every reference to Faust under the sun. The title, I think, is a signpost for drive-by editors to leave their mark on wikipedia by adding pointless references. It should perhaps be retitled to emphasise stricter criteria. All other references can be moved to Crap with some reference, however important, to Faust and we can assign it to Fancruft and Drive-by-editing Wikiproject. Thoughts? Brainmuncher 08:34, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Faust play[edit]

Steveynclan 21:06, 23 February 2007 (UTC) to whom this may concern: salutations, i am interested in the works of anna bijns; to be specific, her dutch faust play. can anyone tell me how and where i might find this script work?? sincerely, steve

I don't know, but the play is entitled Mary of Nijmeghen. Brainmuncher 04:08, 24 February 2007 (UTC)
I would suggest adding a novel to the list of works based on the Faust legend: Loving Mephistopheles by Miranda Miller( Peter Owen 2007).Optimist2008 (talk) 09:26, 9 May 2008 (UTC)


Well? Where are they? I can only find one at the bottom. Conjure up some more; use whatever spells and potions necessary. If this fails, well, there is always a friend standing by who might help, in exchange for your soul. The fruit will taste just as sweet with or without this trifle. Brainmuncher 09:02, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

why the writers?[edit]

why does it list Oscar Wilde, Klaus Mann, etc... and not The Picture of Dorian Grey, etc... Even though (in Oscar Wilde's case) it is his only work, it still should not be a link to the author, Oscar Wilde did not make a deal with the devil... Dorian Grey did... not that it's confusing or anything. Is there a reason the books aren't listed there? (this is all in reference to the end of the first paragraph). -- 05:11, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

that was me that said that... Sorry, forgot to sign in before. --illumi 05:14, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

Another source[edit]

Chaucer's FRIAR'S TALE from CANTERBURY TALES might be considered another source for the "deal with the devil" idea. A con man befriends a demon and advises him to seize any object that has been cursed by taking "damn it" or "to hell with it" literally. Later, when the con man tries to extort money from an innocent woman, she curses him, and the demon seizes the con man's soul, following the man's own advice.

I would also like to point out that the whole Faust concept depends on the notion of a demon's having power independent of God. In Dante's theology as expressed in THE DIVINE COMEDY, for example, Satan is helpless and the demons serve God by punishing sinners; under this theology the Faust story could never have occurred. Evidentally new ideas arose between Dante's time and Chaucer's. CharlesTheBold 22:13, 23 June 2007 (UTC)

Well said SamanthaG 20:55, 23 July 2007 (UTC)


Maybe it would be worth it to note the similarities between the Book of Job and the story of Faust? They both begin with God and the devil basically making a bet concerning whether a person will have faith in God, more or less. Maybe it's a bit far-fetched. Any thoughts? (talk) 21:03, 22 February 2008 (UTC)

If you have a 3rd-party source that compares the two, it would be a candidate to add to the article. Otherwise, it is original research and cannot be added, no matter how interesting or insightful it might be :) --Jaysweet (talk) 21:07, 22 February 2008 (UTC)
Such may be seen as original research and not fit for this venue. Unless there are notable verifiable sources which make this comparison, and such a viewpoint accepted by a majority or significant minority. See if you can find anything. - CobaltBlueTony™ talk 21:08, 22 February 2008 (UTC)

Here are some links:

[3] --a sentence in this says "Mephisto and God collaborate in exactly the same way that Jahvé and Satan do at the beginning of the Book of Job."

[4] --has a section entitled "Influence of the Book of Job"

[5] --mentions a German play in which similarities between Faust and Job are emphasized

[6] --according to this, the Prologue in Heaven is "modeled on the Book of Job"

I hope these are any good (talk) 22:13, 22 February 2008 (UTC)

Johann Fust[edit]

While I'm not sure if Fust is indeed a source of the Faust legend, I am very sure that I can find multiple reliable sources claiming that, so I added it. If you're sure that I'm wrong and have sources to back it up, feel free to change it. superlusertc 2008 July 19, 07:48 (UTC)


The Peter Cook and Dudley moore film "Bedazzled" (1968) was essentially a comic retelling of the faust legend. is this worth inclusion? i find it more noteworthy than the fact in Ghostrider nicholas cage briefly reads the book (talk) 17:47, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

Faust in episode of Wishbone[edit]

The PBS kids show Wishbone displays the story of Faust in one episode "Fleabitten Bargain", please add it if you like... Dragonblades (talk)

The Apple[edit]

Starring Catherine Mary Stewart and George Gilmour. Director: Menahem Golan. Faust story. German production by Golan/Globus. Distributed by MGM Home Entertainment as DVD with PG Rating and released 2004.08.24 Old Testament movie in a disco-musical format. --Sponsion (talk) 19:22, 9 January 2010 (UTC)


Shouldn't this page include a summary of the legend or of its main varients? If anyone knows the story could they please add it? IndridCold13 (talk) 08:37, 4 August 2009 (UTC)

This isn't a bad idea, though I'm only familiar with Marlowe's version, so I really can't do this. Perhaps we should plan such a section before adding it. superlusertc 2009 August 07, 06:20 (UTC)

Paracelsus notes dubious[edit]

"Sources of the legend" sections notes an edition of Goethe's version claims Paracelsus was used as a model for the character. This may be true, but we go on to say that "Parcelsus' works were copied by his fellow Rosicrucians and became the foundation of much scientific investigation. The Dictionary of Scientific Biography calls him 'a great doctor, whose influence has been enormous.' "

Paracelsus was an occult alchemist. His claims were generally fantastical and based more on philosophy and superstition than science, not unlike the Daoist "alchemists." He is especially notable for claiming spirits and artificial humans could be created by putting horse shit in jars.

I recommend deleting this sentence. (talk) 00:24, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

In Our Time[edit]

The BBC programme In Our Time presented by Melvyn Bragg has an episode which may be about this subject (if not moving this note to the appropriate talk page earns cookies). You can add it to "External links" by pasting {{In Our Time|Faust|p004y2bt}}. Rich Farmbrough, 03:14, 16 September 2010 (UTC).

Death Note[edit]

Death Note seems to borrow heavily from the plot, and imagery.

-G — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:34, 11 September 2011 (UTC)

I can confirm that the plot contains many similarities to that of Faust's, mainly the protagonist sacrificing his humanity to achieve happiness. Indydegrees1 (talk) 11:35, 12 February 2013 (UTC)
The film Bad Influence clearly borrowed from the Faust/Mephisto motive as well. Rob Lowe's sneaky, charming character Alex invites the young, diffident white-collar manager Michael (James Spader), who has a well-paid junior exec job but barely exists outside of it, to take a tour of the flashy nightlife of late '80s yuppie/underground New York and get what he dreams of, go get it - then he traps him. seeing to that the newcomer wakes up next to a woman (a high-class escort, I think) who's just been killed hours after the two made love. Over the course of the film, Alex becomes more and more of a dark mirror of the white-collar man's suppressed or dirty desires, and at the same time his forceful master. (talk) 11:52, 23 February 2014 (UTC)

Attention Wikipedia Editor(s)[edit]

This article is the weirdest page I've ever seen on Wikipedia. Every link on the page is an external link, and apparently Wikipedia cannot inform me on the term Faust or Faustian. At first I thought it was a disambiguation page, but it is not. I question the validity of why this page exists and think it should be deleted.Bcwilmot (talk) 23:20, 8 December 2012 (UTC)

Amazing, ended up here on the same day with the same thought. Reformatting to a disambig. page would probably be the easiest way to clean this up, assuming it isn't deleted. (talk) 23:28, 8 December 2012 (UTC)

Nope. Someone vandalized it a few minutes ago. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 00:18, 9 December 2012 (UTC)

Overhaul needed[edit]

Faust merits a better entry! I do not have time to make edits at the moment, but this is fair warning: by any scholarly standard, this article in its present state is unacceptable. The lack of historical data, literary research, and overall presentation qualify this entry as one in sore need of development and rewriting. Anyone care to step up? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Skelbe-stin (talkcontribs) 00:26, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

Soul Cartel[edit]

Soul Cartel is a manwha highly and obviously influenced by Faustian stories two of the main characters are none other than a reborn Faust and Mephistopheles.


"Faustian" (or "Faustian bargain")[edit]

  In the 1st 'graph of the lead, we said

Faust and Faustian imply a situation in which an ambitious person surrenders moral integrity in order to achieve power and success for a delimited term.[1]

A more ambitious editor could verify whether EB's wording provides actual verification, but i'm more concerned about the formatting for the moment: Faust is the work, but the context implies the intent that "a Faust" (i've added the emphasis) refers to someone like the namesake of the medieval book (and to the book Faust itself), i.e. a person, not a work; the bold-facing is justified bcz Faustian is a Rdr to here, and thus functions as an "alternate title" for the topic, calling for its first mention to be bolded for those entering the article via that Rdr (and thus expecting "Faustian" to appear in bold somewhere in the lead section -- even tho i'm inclined to argue it should thus be worked into in the lead sentence). But the page "Faustian" refers to is a (quasi-)article, not even a quasi-work, and also deserves no italics. Thus i edit to

Faust and Faustian imply....

--Jerzyt 14:44, 22 December 2015 (UTC)

  1. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg Walter Alison Phillips (1911). "Faust". In Chisholm, Hugh. Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. 

"Appropriations" of the ("real"?) Faust[edit]

   The professional writer who is my humanities consultant joins me in considering "adaptations" a better word than "appropriations" to describe works inspired by an earlier work. Other opinions?
--Jerzyt 15:25, 22 December 2015 (UTC)

One silly question[edit]

What is Faust's first name? There is another article about Johann Georg Faust, but is a first name used in the fictional works as well? ♆ CUSH ♆ 21:41, 26 December 2016 (UTC)

This article is just broken. The Faustbuch tradition sets in around 1590 and is clear that Faust is "Johann [Georg] Faust". The problem is that no reliable biographical data is available, and it is possible that this was a pseudonym used by more than one person. It is undeniable that occult/magical books have been printed under this name in 1505, so someone was "Dr. Faust" with a floruit at that time. ("In the light of records of an activity spanning more than 30 years, it has been suggested that there were two itinerant magicians calling themselves Faustus, one Georg, active ca. 1505 to 1515, and another Johann, active in the 1530s")
The "Johannes Fust" thing is just an obscure 1980s academic idea of who else may have influenced the later tradition.
The way this should work is that
  • Faust should be the main article about the (modern) literary character
  • Faustbuch is on the early modern publication history
  • Johann Georg Faust is on the question of historicity and biography; yes, there may or may not have been two "Fausts" and it isn't possible to decide the question with certainty. This doesn't mean it isn't possible to write a coherent article about what is known about the historicity of the person (or persons).
--dab (𒁳) 07:42, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

Beethoven's Last Night[edit]

The album "Beethoven's Last Night" by Trans-Siberian Orchestra tells a story that is clearly largely based on Faust, so shouldn't it be added to the "Music" section? (talk) 10:10, 6 April 2017 (UTC)

I just discovered that the article for "Beethoven's Last Night" on Wikipedia ( is included under the category "Works Based on the Faust Legend", so clearly it has already been acknowledged elsewhere. (talk) 10:16, 6 April 2017 (UTC)