Macrocosm Appearing to Doctor Faustus

Macrocosm Appearing to Doctor Faustus

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Credit: New York Public Library/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Doctor Johann Georg Faust (1480-1540), also known as John Faustus, was an itinerant alchemist, astrologer, and magician of the German Renaissance. His life became the nucleus of the popular tale of Doctor Faust from the 1580s, notably culminating in Christopher Marlowe's play The Tragical History of the Life and Death of Doctor Faustus (1604) and Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's closet drama Faust (1808). During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, notions of macrocosm and microcosm were widely accepted. Many people believed that the same patterns are to be found in the human body (microcosm) on a small scale, as are found in the natural universe as a whole (macrocosm.)

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