Please explain and analyze this quotation from Dr Faustus.I, Jhon Faustus of Wittenberg doctor, by these presents, do give both body and soul to Lucifer, Prince of the East, and his minister...

Please explain and analyze this quotation from Dr Faustus.

I, Jhon Faustus of Wittenberg doctor, by these presents, do give both body and soul to Lucifer, Prince of the East, and his minister Mephastophilis, and furthermore grant unto them, that four and twenty years being expired, the articles above written inviolate, full power to fetch or carry the said Jhon Faustus body and soul, flesh, blood, or goods, into thier habitation wheresoever.

 

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rrteacher | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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This is the text of the agreement between Doctor Faustus and Lucifer that forms the key event of Christopher Marlowe's Tragicall History of the Life and Death of Doctor Faustus. Essentially, Faustus agrees to give his "body and soul" to the devil and "his minister Mephastophilis" after a period of twenty four years. In the meantime, Lucifer would grant Faustus the privilege of

Letting him live in all voluptuousness;
Having thee ever to attend on me;
To give me whatsoever I shall ask,
To tell me whatsoever I demand,
To slay mine enemies, and aid my friends,(100)
And always be obedient to my will.

In other words, Doctor Faustus is selling his soul to Lucifer in return for temporary power on earth. The text quoted in the question is Faustus's end of the bargain. Faust becomes a great and powerful man, but at the end of the play, Mephistopheles comes to collect, and demons tear Faustus to pieces, taking his soul to hell.

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