Mephistophilis Character analysis: Discuss the character of Mephistophilis

Mephistophilis or "Mephistophiles" or "Mephistopheles" is neither a mythical nor a biblical character, it is derived by Christopher Marlow from German Folklore and introduced into English Literature. German folklore considered Mephistophilis as a demon while Marlow presents him as an assistant to Lucifer. However, the personality and character of Mephistophilis is quite unique because none has given such a rich and deep personality to the character of devil before Marlow. Mephistophilis has been given such great powers that none in the world can stand against him except the powers of good.

Mephistophilis, a character by Marlow, is a unique and innovative role of the character of devil, an assistant to the Satan, that reminds Faustus of hell and the pangs of that dark place but he also serves as an instrument in casting the net of evil for Dr. Faustus. Mephistophilis, a personal assistant to Lucifer, is assigned to Dr. Faustus for serving him and fulfilling all his evil desires for a period of 24 years. Mephistophilis appears as a very cunning and falsifying evil that leads Faustus to the abode of ever abiding torments, hell. He, like Lucifer, is also symbolic of the ever going war between the agencies of good and evil. Mephistophilis, a devil and partaker of Lucifer, unveils the fact to Faustus that it was him that:

"I do confess it, Faustus, and rejoice:

'Twas I that, when thou wert i'the way to heaven,

Damm'd up thy passage; when thou took'st the book

To view the Scriptures, then I turn'd the leaves,

And led thine eye.

Mephistophilis works for the spread of evil. It misguides and tries to overpower the light of power. However, despite all its might and magical prowess he cannot over power even a single man against that man's own free will. We severally learn that Lucifer is left with nothing but threats whenever Faustus is on the verge of seeking repentance. It is quite strange that Faustus is prized with newer gifts each time he returns to the devilish ways because Lucifer cannot punish once a man has set his foot on the right path.

Mephistophilis is an evil which is strong only for those that bow before him and are preoccupied with the deeds of evil; he admits before Faustus that he cannot overpower the old man because his faith is strong.