Dr. Faustus is one of the jewels of early modern English drama, and is still widely performed today. Interestingly, the play has come down to the contemporary audience in two distinct versions that have become known as the 'A' and the 'B' texts. David Bevington and Eric Rasmussen, who edited the original Revels edition over twenty years ago (and are two of the most eminent editors currently working), have hit upon the fascinating idea of presenting both texts on facing pages. This allows readers to compare the two 'versions', the 'A' text which is the one closest to Marlowe, and the longer 'B' text with additions by Samuel Rowley; in this unique edition, the reader is made aware of the changing tastes of audiences, the stage history of the play, and of just how intricate 'editing' a play can be. With a concise and illuminating introduction, and relevant notes and images, this Revels Student Edition of the 'A' and 'B' texts of Dr. Faustus will prove to be an enthralling document, and an excellent edition for student and theatre-goer alike.
David Bevington is Phyllis Fay Horton Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus and Chair of Theatre and Performance Studies at the University of Chicago Eric Rasmussen is Professor of English at the University of Nevada, Reno