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This edition is based on the earlier version of this hugely successful Renaissance tragedy, the A-text published in 1604 which, it is generally agreed, preserves much of Marlowe's original version.
In addition, it separately includes the scenes that were adapted or added in the B-text of 1616.
Marlowe joined the form of the late medieval morality play to the historical material found in the German tale of Johann Faust, who sells his soul to the devil in return of infinite power and knowledge.
Ironically undercutting the aspirations of Renaissance Man, the play presents a devil who fails to impress the sinner with the realities of hell - 'I think hell's a fable,' Faustus shrugs - and calls into question the medium of theatre, which time and again serves the devil to distract Faustus when the pious promptings of his heart threaten to lead him to repentance.