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The 1616 version omits 36 lines but adds 676 new lines, making it roughly one third longer than the 1604 version.Among the lines shared by both versions, there are some small but significant changes in wording; for example, "Never too late, if Faustus can repent" in the 1604 text becomes "Never too late, if Faustus will repent" in the 1616 text, a change that offers a very different possibility for Faustus's hope and repentance.
In the prologue, The Chorus introduces the reader to Faustus and his story.
He is described as being "base of stock"; however, his intelligence and scholarship eventually earns him the degree of a Doctor at the University of Wittenburg.
Bushnell transferred his rights to the play to John Wright on 13 September 1610.
the 1604 version came to be regarded as an abbreviation and the 1616 version as Marlowe's original fuller version.
As an Elizabethan playwright, Marlowe had nothing to do with the publication and had no control over the play in performance, so it was possible for scenes to be dropped or shortened, or for new scenes to be added, so that the resulting publications may be modified versions of the original script.
In the past, it was assumed that the comic scenes were additions by other writers.
The powerful effect of the early productions is indicated by the legends that quickly accrued around them.
In Histriomastix, his 1632 polemic against the drama, William Prynne records the tale that actual devils once appeared on the stage during a performance of Faustus, "to the great amazement of both the actors and spectators".
During this opening, the reader also gets a first clue to the source of Faustus's downfall.
Faustus's tale is likened to that of Icarus, who flew too close to the sun and fell to his death when the sun melted his waxen wings.