13 Famous Historical Figures Who May Have Sold Their Soul to The Devil

Johann Georg Faust

Johann Georg Faust, the real-life subject of Goethe’s famous tragedy, Faust, was an alchemist, astrologer, and magician of the German Renaissance. His rumored collusion with the Devil became the subject of numerous tales, most notably Goethe’s Faust and The Tragical History of the Life and Death of Doctor Faust.

Faust allegedly made a deal with the Devil (represented by a lesser demon, Mephistopheles) for his soul in return for twenty-four years of service from Mephistopheles himself. While the deal was for the demon to fulfill “every lust in [Faust’s] heart,” all the granted wishes eventually end horribly, and after sixteen years, Faust regrets his deal and asks to withdraw.

The end of his tale differs depending on the version. In some, angels save Faust and bring him into heaven despite his deal; in others, Mephistopheles carries him off to hell to be tormented eternally.

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  1. Archie San Romani says

    Looking at all this makes me remember…. Bob Timmons?? my high school track coach, He said, “you are on your way, or in the way”… the take on this is always look and move forward…. or like Bill Bowerman, from Oregon, said, ” sometimes you come home a champion, holding your shield high… sometimes you come home on it… a winner always gets up and back in the game… for what ever, but, the idea of all that works in everyday life…. ( for some )