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  1. Biography Newsletter
  2. Christopher Marlowe: the man, the myth and the mighty line - The British Library
  3. Christopher Marlowe, Renaissance Dramatist
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Massacre portrays the events of the Saint Bartholomew's Day Massacre of , in which French royalty and Catholic nobles instigated the murder and execution of thousands of protestant Huguenots.

‘Doctor Faustus’ by Christopher Marlowe: context and play summary (1/2) *REVISION GUIDE*

In London, agitators seized on its theme to advocate the murders of refugees, an event that the play eerily warns the queen of in its last scene. Interestingly, the warning comes from a character referred to as "English Agent," a character who has been thought to be Marlowe himself, representing his work with the queen's secret service.

Marlowe's most famous play is The Tragicall History of Doctor Faustus , but, as is the case with most of his plays, it has survived only in a corrupt form, and when Marlowe actually wrote it has been a topic of debate. Based on the German Faustbuch , Doctor Faustus is acknowledged as the first dramatized version of the Faust legend, in which a man sells his soul to the devil in exchange for knowledge and power.

Biography Newsletter

While versions of story began appearing as early as the 4th century, Marlowe deviates significantly by having his hero unable to repent and have his contract annulled at the end of the play. He is warned to do so throughout by yet another Marlowe variation of the retelling--a Good Angel--but Faustus ignores the angel's advice continually. In the end, Faustus finally seems to repent for his deeds, but it is either too late or just simply irrelevant, as Mephistopheles collects his soul, and it is clear that Faustus exits to hell with him. The constant rumors of Christopher Marlowe's atheism finally caught up with him on Sunday May 20, , and he was arrested for just that "crime.

Despite the gravity of the charge, however, he was not jailed or tortured but was released on the condition that he report daily to an officer of the court.

  1. Last years and literary career..
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  3. Marlowe's poetically odd life, presented in context - Los Angeles Times.
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On May 30, however, Marlowe was killed by Ingram Frizer. Frizer was with Nicholas Skeres and Robert Poley, and all three men were tied to one or other of the Walsinghams--either Sir Francis Walsingham the man who evidently recruited Marlowe himself into secret service on behalf of the queen or a relative also in the spy business. Allegedly, after spending the day together with Marlowe in a lodging house, a fight broke out between Marlowe and Frizer over the bill, and Marlowe was stabbed in the forehead and killed.

Conspiracy theories have abounded since, with Marlowe's atheism and alleged spy activities at the heart of the murder plots, but the real reason for Marlowe's death is still debated.

Christopher Marlowe: the man, the myth and the mighty line - The British Library

What is not debated is Marlowe's literary importance, as he is Shakespeare's most important predecessor and is second only to Shakespeare himself in the realm of Elizabethan tragic drama. We strive for accuracy and fairness. If you see something that doesn't look right, contact us! Sign up for the Biography newsletter to receive stories about the people who shaped our world and the stories that shaped their lives.

English poet and playwright Robert Browning was a master of dramatic verse and is perhaps best known for his book long form blank poem 'The Ring and the Book. Auden was a British poet, author and playwright best known as a leading literary figure in the 20th century for his poetry. John Donne, leading English poet of the Metaphysical school, is often considered the greatest loved poet in the English language. There is argument among scholars concerning the order in which the plays subsequent to Tamburlaine were written.

His last play may have been The Jew of Malta, in which he signally broke new ground.

Christopher Marlowe, Renaissance Dramatist

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