Dr Faustus Act 1

Act 1 (Scene 1)

Dr Faustus belongs to low family and brought by his relatives in Wittenberg. He was theologian and attempts to over reach himself in the field of divinity.  He studied Necromancy (divination by supposed communication with the dead) and wonder about in his specialization.

The main comment about the Dr Faustus is “he was widely known as physician but he disapproves the sound knowledge of Medicines.”  Means he thinks beyond to the known studies. He can make spirits to bring the choicest item from any part of the world. He wants to be a great magician like Agrippa.

Angle Suggestions

  • Good angle suggest him to study the scriptures (the bible or study dedicated to God)
  • Bad angle suggest him to study the magic and become powerful like God on this earth.

Dr. Faustus

Friends Suggestions Valdes and Cornelius

Faustus Reveal about the achievements of ravishing the study of magic to his friends. His friend suggest him following

  • Valdes appreciates his decision and encourage him by saying “all element spirits will serve him”
  • Cornelius suggests him to get more fame by his enviable magic study than the Delphic oracle (prediction) by virtue.

Here the Bad Angle and friends suggests him to study the magic and become powerful rather than to study the scripture of God. Dr Faustus ignored the Good Angle suggestion.

Act 1 Scene 2

Two well wisher or Fellows of Dr Faustus were worried about him because they haven’t meet Dr Faustus for some time. They try to contact Dr Faustus and ask his servant Wagner but his servant puzzle them. Later they got the guess of Valdes and Cornelius interest in Dr Faustus black art magic. They decide to inform the president of University so that Dr Faustus can be taken out from such kind of Practice.

Characteristics of Wagner

  • He is fun loving person.

Act 1 Scene 3

On Suggestion of Valdes, Faustus decides to conjure in the Dark Grove. He draws a circle planet, stars and writes the name of Jehovah (a holy Saint). He determines himself and ready to conjure and led Mephistopheles (evil spirit to whom Faust sold his soul in) to appear ugly. So he orders him to go back and dress in Franciscan Friar. Mephistopheles executes his command. Faustus feels happy for his achievement and obedience of Mephistopheles. He terms himself a “Conjure Laureate (mark of honor)”. He wants to extract promise from Devil to give service thought out the life. Devil (Mephistopheles) informs him to get the commitment from the Lucifer (all devils king, Chief ruler of all the devil of all the spirits) before promise.

Information by Mephistopheles before any commitment

  • He informs Faustus his speeches were incidental (secondary) which let him to arrive here.
  • He tells Faustus that the person who broke “Holy Trinity” (the three persons of the Christian Godhead (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit)) is rushed by Lucifer Agent immediately.
  • Lucifer was beloved angel of God and because he revolt against the god he was damned and doomed ever in the hell.

Before serving the Faustus, Devil have to ask Lucifer to accept the Faustus Proposal and exits for sanction.

My View

Dr Faustus is only a “Blind” (unwilling or unable to appreciate a factor) person in black art. Even he can’t conjure successfully.

As you heard the words “Man’s proud makes him blind” same you can find here. In Act 1 (Scene 1)good angel suggest him to study the scriptures but he refuse and conjure in dark grove on Friends Suggestions. He does so and incidentally he succeeds in doing so. Then Devil also guide him by providing example of Lucifer and his Revolt against God. But Faustus feels amazed and he ask devil to learn “Manly Fortitude” (Strength)

He tells Devil he is not afraid of damnation (eternal punishment in hell) and started prediction of good fortune with the help to Devil and wants to become the great emperor of the world.

Act 1 Scene 4   

Wagner feels sincerity and sympathy (a sharing of other feelings.) for the clown (comic entertainer). He wants to employ clown to serve him because he was semi-naked and Semi-starved. Clown shows him unwillingness to serve him. He tries to frighten the clown. He orders the two magic words which were picked from the Faustus magic book and therefore clown accept the Wagner’s employment to follow and serve him.

Characteristics of Wagner

He is a clever person and knows how to undertake others; in Act 1 Scene 2 Wagner is shown as fun loving person and he be-fools Faustus students

Image Source :

Dr Faustus by Phillip Marlowe


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