Faust: Parts One and Two

Faust: Parts One and Two

by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


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The best-known work of the Enlightenment literary giant Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Faust took a lifetime to write. For more than sixty years, Goethe worked on his masterpiece and ultimately divided it into two parts, the second of which was published in 1832, the year of his death. Hailed as Germany's greatest contribution to world literature, Faust drew upon the legends surrounding a sixteenth-century sorcerer as well as Marlowe's Dr. Faustus. But Goethe's epic interpretation further explores the tension between learning and experience, and in this version Faust sells his soul not simply for magic powers but also for a heightened sense of existence.
Part One of the dramatic poem concerns the magician's devilish pact with Mephistopheles and his seduction of Gretchen, an innocent girl. Part Two incorporates a vast array of influences — theological, mythological, philosophical, political, musical, and literary—to relate Faust's life at court, his romance with Helen of Troy, and his salvation. This edition features the acclaimed translation by Bayard Taylor.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780486821887
Publisher: Dover Publications
Publication date: 06/13/2018
Series: Dover Thrift Editions Series
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 405,460
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 8.00(h) x (d)

About the Author

The greatest German literary figure of the modern era, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749–1832) was a poet, playwright, novelist, scientist, critic, theater director, and statesman. He is best known for Faust, which he started at the age of 23 and finished shortly before his death, 60 years later. The Sorrows of Young Werther, written at the age of 25, quickly achieved cult status and remains an exemplar of the Sturm und Drang literary movement. In addition to hundreds of poems of all kinds, Goethe wrote a series of classic memoirs of his childhood and travels as well as numerous essays on scientific subjects.
Translator Bayard Taylor (1829–1878) was a well-known poet and travel writer whose interpretation of Faust was praised by Encyclopedia Americana as "one of the finest attempts of the kind in any literature."

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Table of Contents

Faust: Part 1

Dedication 1

Prelude on The Stage 3

Prologue in Heaven 9

Scene I Night (Faust's Monologue) 13

Scene II Before the City-Gate 25

Scene III The Study (The Exorcism) 35

Scene IV The Study (The Compact) 44

Scene V Auerbach's Cellar in Leipzig 58

Scene VI Witches' Kitchen 67

Scene VII A Street 76

Scene VIII Evening 78

Scene IX Promenade 82

Scene X The Neighbor's House 84

Scene XI Street 88

Scene XII Garden 90

Scene XIII A Garden-Arbor 94

Scene XIV Forest and Cavern 95

Scene XV Margaret's Room 99

Scene XVI Martha's Garden 101

Scene XVII At the Fountain 104

Scene XVIII Donjon (Margaret's Prayer) 106

Scene XIX Night (Valentine's Death) 107

Scene XX Cathedral 111

Scene XXI Walpurgis-Night 113

Scene XXII Walpurgis-Night's Dream 124

Scene XXIII Dreary Day 130

Scene XXIV Night 132

Scene XXV Dungeon 132

Faust: Part 2

Act I.

Scene I A Pleasant Landscape 141

Scene II The Emperor's Castle 145

Scene III Spacious Hall (Carnival Masquerade) 154

Scene IV Pleasure-Garden (Paper-Money Scheme) 180

Scene V A Gloomy Gallery (The Mothers) 185

Scene VI Brilliantly Lighted Halls 189

Scene VII Hall of the Knights, Dimly Lighted 191

Act II.

Scene I A Gothic Chamber, Formerly Faust's 197

Scene II Laboratory (Homunculus) 204

Scene III Classical Walpurgis-Night 210

1 The Pharsalian Fields 210

2 Peneus 217

3 On the Upper Peneus, as Before 224

4 Rocky Coves of the Ægean Sea 238

5 Telchines of Rhodes 245

Act III.

Before the Palace of Menelaus in Sparta 252

Act IV.

Scene I High Mountains 299

Scene II On the Headland (The Battle) 307

Scene III The Rival Emperor's Tent 319

Act v.

Scene I Open Country 327

Scene II In the Little Garden 329

Scene III Palace 330

Scene IV Dead of Night 334

Scene V Midnight (Faust's Blindness) 337

Scene VI Great Outer Court of the Palace (Faust's Death) 341

Scene VII Mountain-Gorges, Forest, Rock, Desert 351

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Faust 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 35 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Warning--this is not the complete Faust as advertised. Only part one.
EA-Bucchianeri More than 1 year ago
Goethe¿s ¿Faust¿ is arguably the most important milestone in Romantic literature. Taking the famous medieval legend of Dr. Faustus and his pact with the devil, Goethe adapted the tale of old, and transformed it into a great love story, and a probing poetical tract on the nature of good and evil, salvation and damnation, failing and striving, the innate search for truth and lasting fulfilment.

Part One (first published 1808) features Faust¿s disgust with his life and the world at large, and attempting to unite with the Spirit of creation and soar above the petty corporality of earth, the proud old scholar is dashed to the ground, for he must first work his salvation out on earth by the sweat of his brow before he can be admitted into the presence of the Deity. In desperation, Faust tries to commit suicide, but then makes a wager with the devil: if Mephistopheles can show him that one moment of bliss he is searching for and succeeds in persuading him to cease all his human striving for that one moment, then his soul is forfeit. The devil agrees to the wager, grants Faust the gift of youth, and the adventures begin. He meets young Margareta and falls in love, a romance that leads to tragedy for the innocent maiden.

David Luke¿s award-winning translation is one of the best I have read. While the rhythms do jar on occasion, this does not take away from the `flow¿ of this rendition. There will always be discrepancies when a text is taken out of its original language in any case, so it is more constructive to concentrate on the `readability¿, this translation succeeds in portraying the mood of Goethe¿s text and the personality of his vibrant characters. In some instances, it may be argued the translation is too modern, for example, lines [2065-2070] when Mephistopheles prepares his magic flying cloak for their journey to a new life of youthful debauchery:

¿One merely spreads one¿s cloak¿you¿ll find
It give us aerial elevation.
Though, please, this bold step for mankind,
Imposes luggage-limitation.
I¿ll set the burners going, heat some air, and lo!
We travel light, the earth lies far below.¿

Did Neil Armstrong land on the moon in Goethe¿s time? Of course not, but Luke¿s witty lines humorously displays Mephistopheles¿ rakish personality and has become one of my personal favourites in this English edition.

The book features an informative introduction on Goethe¿s biography and the composition of Part One and includes a graph displaying how he edited and added to the scenes until he arrived at the text we know today.
There is also a select bibliography, a general chronology of Goethe¿s life and career, and helpful explanatory endnotes for those who wish to study the details of the text more thoroughly. For ¿Urfaust¿ scholars, Luke highlights the lines that were part of Goethe¿s early draft.

E.A. Bucchianeri, author of ¿Faust: My Soul be Damned for the World¿
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Genius for its time. It is no wonder that Mellville cites him in his work.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think that 'Faust' is a excellent book. It displays the remmicks of good and evil and respresents of how one's soul is a very important source of who one is. Goeth has really captured the true essence of the human soul.
miquixote on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What does Faust mean? Tough to find too many books more open to interpretation since Columbus landed on American soil. Obvious comparisons with Adam and Eve and the serpent: except the sinner/first one to bite the apple/knowledge-seeker here is a man (yup, feminists have jumped all over that one). interpretations still up for grab: is the sinner a rebel? overly ambitious? is wanting knowledge a deadly sin (ie. pride) -- should Faust be punished? ; or maybe the socialist interpretations are right and Mephistoles symbolizes dissidence -- truth seekers may just be rejecting oppression...down with the elites, closed minds and limited worldviews! Is Mephistopheles the tempter, trying to destroy Faust or is he freeing him? This book was also the center of a cultural war of interpretation in Germany between the Nazis and the spirit of the Weimar....we all know who won that battle... What Goethe was really trying to say, you'll have to decide for yourself...The cultural war (or class war?) is far from over...so read it!
multifaceted on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I'm not sure what to think of the tone of the book over all, as I come away from it with a feeling that Faust is being condemned to the devil for seeking too much knowledge. I feel like there is also something of the old "doctor wanting to be god" joke in here, as well. But I get the feeling that, over time, Faust will come to be one of my favorite characters, along with Voltaire's Candide and Camus' Meursault. And there is definitely something "absurdly" tragic about Goethe's character, as well. Because, to me, Faust isn't just about someone who makes a deal with the devil to make his life better. Rather, it's about someone whose thirst for knowledge is never slaked, who seeks to know everything and what it's like to be everyone. Or, should I say, Faust seeks to be omniscient. (And I have to wonder, is that necessarily a bad thing? Would the world be worse off if we knew just what it was like to be the millionaire in his mansion, or the low class beggar in the city?) But to get back on track: at the same time, he realizes he is merely only a human, and he is burdened, depressed, and frenzied by the knowledge that he probably can never know everything--and there is something so full of humility, so pathetically human about his situation. This leads him to not just "make a deal" with the devil, but to acquiesce to Mephistopheles as a sort of last resort. Why not, if there is no other way he can gain omniscient knowledge, anyway? Of course, Mephistopheles makes him become enamored with a woman, and this love transports Faust, and makes him finally feel like he has gained everything he's ever wanted. Where am I going with this? I don't know, because I don't quite know what Goethe was going for, either. But Faust's words say it all the better:"And here, poor fool! with all my loreI stand, no wiser than before"
gbill on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Sequels are never as good as the originals. :-( It may be sacrilege to say it and the books were meant by Goethe to be read as a unified whole, but part two diverges way too far into classical allegory for my tastes. Only for the hardcore. Bring a headlamp and leave a popcorn trail, you might get lost.Just a few quotes:On life; I thought of the mist trail in Yosemite when I read these lines:¿And so I turn, the sun upon my shoulders,To watch the water-fall, with heart elate,The cataract pouring, crashing from the boulders,Split and rejoined a thousand times in spate;The thunderous water seethes in fleecy spume,Lifted on high in many a flying plume,Above the spray-drenched air. And then how splendidTo see the rainbow rising from this rage,Now clear, now dimmed, in cool sweet vapour blended.So strive the figures on our mortal stage.This ponder well, the mystery closer seeing;In mirrored hues we have our life and being.¿On marital dissatisfaction:¿Observe the married creature:There I begin; and can in every caseThe purest bliss by idle whims deface,So varies mood and hour and human nature.And holding in his arms what most should charm him,Each fool will set his dreams on some new yearning;From highest joy, now grown familiar, turning,He shuns the sun, and takes the frost to warm him.With practiced hand I rule in these affairs,And bring in Asmodeus, trusty devil,To sow, when time is ripe, conjugal evil,And thus I wreck the human-race in pairs.¿
lizzyforshizzy More than 1 year ago
A great journey-of-the-soul type book (even if you're an atheist). Just a wonderful human argument which any and all humans experience at one time or another.
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Very cool
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