Enter EMPEROR, FAUSTUS, [MEPHISTOPHELES,] and a KNIGHT, with Attendants
Master Doctor Faustus, I have heard strange report
of thy knowledge in the black art—how that none in my
empire, nor in the whole world, can compare with thee
for the rare effects of magic. They say thou hast a
familiar spirit by whom thou canst accomplish what
thou list. This, therefore, is my request: that thou
let me see some proof of thy skill, that mine eyes may
be witnesses to confirm what mine ears have heard reported.
And here I swear to thee, by the honour of mine imperial
crown, that whatever thou dost, thou shalt be no ways
prejudiced or endamaged.
(Aside.) I’faith, he looks much like a conjurer.
My gracious sovereign, though I must confess
myself far inferior to the report men have published,
and nothing answerable to the honour of your Imperial
Majesty, yet, for that love and duty binds me thereunto,
I am content to do whatsoever your Majesty shall
Then, Doctor Faustus, mark what I shall say.
As I was sometime solitary set
Within my closet, sundry thoughts arose
About the honour of mine ancestors—
How they had won by prowess such exploits,
Got such riches, subdued so many kingdoms
As we that do succeed or they that shall
Hereafter possess our throne shall,
I fear me, never attain to that degree
Of high renown and great authority.
Amongst which kings is Alexander the Great,
Chief spectacle of the world's preeminence,
The bright shining of whose glorious acts
Lightens the world with his reflecting beams—
As when I hear but motion made of him,
It grieves my soul I never saw the man.
If, therefore, thou by cunning of thine art
Canst raise this man from hollow vaults below
Where lies entombed this famous conqueror,
And bring with him his beauteous paramour,
Both in their right shapes, gesture, and attire
They used to wear during their time of life,
Thou shalt both satisfy my just desire
And give me cause to praise thee whilst I live.
My gracious lord, I am ready to accomplish your
request, so far forth as by art and power of my spirit
I am able to perform.
(Aside.) I'faith, that's just nothing at all.
But if it like your Grace, it is not in my ability
to present before your eyes the true substantial bodies
of those two deceased princes, which long since are
consumed to dust.
(Aside.) Ay, marry, Master Doctor, now there's
a sign of grace in you, when you will confess the truth.
But such spirits as can lively resemble Alexander
and his paramour shall appear before your Grace in that
manner that they best lived in, in their most
flourishing estate—which I doubt not shall
sufficiently content your imperial Majesty.
Go to, Master Doctor. Let me see them presently.
Do you hear, Master Doctor? You bring Alexander
and his paramour before the Emperor?
I'faith, that's as true as Diana turned me to a stag.
No, sir, but when Actaeon died, he left the horns
for you. [Aside to Mephistopheles] Mephistopheles, begone!
Nay, an you go to conjuring, I'll be gone.
[Aside.] I'll meet with you anon for interrupting
me so.—Here they are, my gracious lord.
Enter MEPHISTOPHELES with ALEXANDER and his PARAMOUR.
Master Doctor, I heard this lady while she lived
had a wart or mole in her neck. How shall I know
whether it be so or no?
Your Highness may boldly go and see.
[The Emperor makes an inspection, and then] Exit ALEXANDER [and his PARAMOUR].
Sure these are no spirits, but the true substantial
bodies of those two deceased princes.
Will't please your Highness now to send for the
knight that was so pleasant with me here of late?
One of you call him forth.
[An Attendant goes to summon the Knight]
Enter the KNIGHT with a pair of horns on his head.
How now, sir knight? Why, I had thought thou hadst
been a bachelor, but now I see thou hast a wife, that
not only gives thee horns but makes thee wear them.
Feel on thy head.
Thou damnèd wretch and execrable dog,
Bred in the concave of some monstrous rock,
How dar'st thou thus abuse a gentleman?
Villain, I say, undo what thou hast done.
Oh, not so fast, sir. There's no haste but good.
Are you remembered how you crossed me in my conference
with the Emperor? I think I have met with you for it.
Good Master Doctor, at my entreaty release him.
He hath done penance sufficient.
My gracious lord, not so much for the injury he
offered me here in your presence as to delight you
with some mirth hath Faustus worthily requited this
injurious knight; which being all I desire, I am
content to release him of his horns.—And, sir knight,
hereafter speak well of scholars.
[Aside to Mephistopheles] Mephistopheles, transform him straight.
[The horns are removed.]
Now, my good lord, having done
my duty, I humbly take my leave.
Farewell, Master Doctor. Yet, ere you go,
Expect from me a bounteous reward.
Exeunt EMPEROR, [KNIGHT, and Attendants].
Now, Mephistopheles, the restless course
That time doth run with calm and silent foot,
Short'ning my days and thread of vital life,
Calls for the payment of my latest years.
Therefore, sweet Mephistopheles, let us make haste
What, will you go on horseback or on foot?
Nay, till I am past this fair and pleasant green,
I'll walk on foot.
Enter a HORSE-CORSER
I have been all this day seeking one Master
Fustian. Mass, see where he is.—God save you, Master
What, Horse-corser! You are well met.
[Offering money.] Do you hear, sir? I have
brought you forty dollars for your horse.
I cannot sell him so. If thou lik'st him for
fifty, take him.
Alas, sir, I have no more.
I pray you, speak for me.
[To Faustus.] I pray you, let him have him.
He is an honest fellow, and he has a great charge, neither
wife nor child.
Well, come, give me your money.
[He takes the money.]
My boy will deliver him to you. But I must tell you
one thing before you have him: ride him not into the
water, at any hand.
Why, sir, will he not drink of all waters?
Oh, yes, he will drink of all waters, but ride him
not into the water. Ride him over hedge, or ditch, or
where thou wilt, but not into the water.
Well, sir. [Aside.] Now am I a made man
for ever. I'll not leave my horse for forty. If he
had but the quality of hey, ding, ding, hey, ding, ding,
I'd make a brave living on him; he has a buttock as
slick as an eel.
sir. Your boy will deliver him me? But hark ye,
sir: if my horse be sick or ill at ease, if I bring
his water to you, you'll tell me what it is?
Away, you villain! What, dost think I am a
What art thou, Faustus, but a man condemned to die?
Thy fatal time doth draw to final end.
Despair doth drive distrust unto my thoughts.
Confound these passions with a quiet sleep.
Tush! Christ did call the thief upon the cross;
Then rest thee, Faustus, quiet in conceit.
Sleep in his chair.
Enter HORSE-CORSER all wet, crying.
Alas, alas! 'Doctor' Fustian, quotha!
Mass, Doctor Lopus was never such a doctor. H'as given
me a purgation, h'as purged me of forty dollars. I
shall never see them more. But yet, like an ass as I was,
I would not be ruled by him, for he bade me I should
ride him into no water. Now I, thinking my horse had
had some rare quality that he would not have had me
known of, I, like a venturous youth, rid him into the
deep pond at the town's end. I was no sooner in the
middle of the pond but my horse vanished away and I
sat upon a bottle of hay, never so near drowning in my
life. But I'll seek out my doctor and have my forty
dollars again, or I'll make it the dearest horse! Oh,
yonder is his snipper-snapper.—Do you hear? You,
hey-pass, where's your master?
Why, sir, what would you? You cannot speak
But I will speak with him.
Why, he's fast asleep. Come some other
I'll speak with him now, or I'll break his
glass windows about his ears.
I tell thee he has not slept this eight
An he have not slept this eight weeks,
I'll speak with him.
See where he is, fast asleep.
Ay, this is he.—God save ye, Master Doctor.
Master Doctor, Master Doctor Fustian! Forty dollars,
forty dollars for a bottle of hay!
Why, thou seest he hears thee not.
[Holler in his ear.] So-ho, ho! So-ho, ho!
No, will you not wake? I'll make you wake ere I go.
Pull him by the leg, and pull it away.
Alas, I am undone! What shall I do?
O my leg, my leg! Help, Mephistopheles! Call the
officers! My leg, my leg!
[Seizing the Horse-corser.] Come, villain, to
O Lord, sir, let me go, and I'll give you
forty dollars more.
Where be they?
I have none about me. Come to my hostry,
and I'll give them you.
HORSE-CORSER runs away.
What, is he gone? Farewell, he! Faustus has his
leg again, and the Horse-corser, I take it, a bottle
of hay for his labour. Well, this trick shall cost him
forty dollars more.
How now, Wagner, what's the news with thee?
Sir, the Duke of Vanholt doth earnestly entreat
The Duke of Vanholt! An honourable gentleman, to
whom I must be no niggard of my cunning. Come,
Mephistopheles, let's away to him.
[Enter FAUSTUS with MEPHISTOPHELES] Enter to them the DUKE [OF VANHOLT] and the [pregnant] DUCHESS. The DUKE speaks.
Believe me, Master Doctor, this merriment hath much
My gracious lord, I am glad it contents you so well.—
But it may be, madam, you take no delight in this. I
have heard that great-bellied women do long for some
dainties or other. What is it, madam? Tell me, and
you shall have it.
Thanks, good Master Doctor. And, for I see your
courteous intent to pleasure me, I will not hide
from you the thing my heart desires. And were it now
summer, as it is January and the dead time of the
winter, I would desire no better meat than a dish of
Alas, madam, that's nothing.
[Aside to Mephistopheles] Mephistopheles, begone!
Were it a greater thing than this, so it would content
you, you should have it.
Enter MEPHISTOPHELES with the grapes.
Here they be, madam. Will't please you taste on them?
[The Duchess tastes the grapes.]
Believe me, Master Doctor, this makes me wonder above
the rest, that, being in the dead time of winter and
in the month of January, how you should come by these
If it like your Grace, the year is divided into
two circles over the whole world, that when it is here
winter with us, in the contrary circle it is summer
with them, as in India, Saba, and farther countries in
the East; and by means of a swift spirit that I have,
I had them brought hither, as ye see.—How do you like
them, madam? Be they good?
Believe me, Master Doctor, they be the best
grapes that e'er I tasted in my life before.
I am glad they content you so, madam.
Come, madam, let us in,
Where you must well reward this learnèd man
For the great kindness he hath showed to you.
And so I will, my lord, and whilst I live
Rest beholding for this courtesy.
I humbly thank your Grace.
Come, Master Doctor, follow us and receive your reward.