History of the Devil, by Paul Carus, , at sacred-texts.com
THE DEVIL in folklore is entitled to our ungrudging admiration for his indefatigable energy. There are innumerable devil-stones thrown at churches, there are devil-walls, devil-bridges, cathedrals, monasteries, castles, dikes, and mills, built by him for the purpose of seducing and gaining souls. He has had his finger in the pie everywhere and appears to be all but omnipresent and omniscient.
In popular literature the Devil plays a most important role. While he is still regarded as the incarnation of all physical and moral evil, his main office has become that of a general mischief-worker in the universe; without him there would be no plot, and the story of the world would lose its interest. He appears as the critic of the good Lord, as the representative of discontent with existing conditions, he inspires men with the desire for an increase of wealth, power, and knowledge; he is the mouth-piece of all who are anxious for a change in matters political, social, and ecclesiastical. He is identified with the spirit of progress so inconvenient to those who are satisfied with the existing state of things, and thus
he is credited with innovations of all kinds, the aspiration for improvement as well as the desire for the overthrow of law and order. In a word, he is characterised as the patron of both reform and evolution.
The literature of devil-stories is very extensive. We select from them a number of the most representative tales.
Several legends indicate an origin by hallucination: For instance, St. Hilarion when hungry, saw a number of exquisite dishes. St. Pelagia, who had been an actress in Antioch, lived the life of a religious recluse in a cave on the Mount of Olives. Once the Devil offered her a number of rings, bracelets, and precious stones, which disappeared as quickly as they came. Rufinus of Aquileja relates the story of a monk, a man of great abstinence, living in a desert. One evening a beautiful woman appeared at his hermitage asking for a night's shelter. She conducts herself with modesty at first, but soon begins to smile, to stroke his beard, and to caress him. The monk grows excited and embraces her fervently, when, lo! the whole apparition vanishes, leaving him lonely in his cell. He hears the laughter of devils in the air, and, despairing of salvation, he goes back into the world and falls an easy prey to the temptations of Satan.
While Christianity was still under the influence of orientalised Gnosticism, the Church believed in the perversity of bodily existence, and therefore clung to the notion that all nature was the work of the Devil. Thus
the monk retired from the world, but he took with him into his solitude the memory-pictures of his life. Memory-pictures are part of our soul, and a man who suddenly cuts off all new impressions so that his present life becomes a blank, will have hallucinations as naturally as a man who falls asleep will have dreams. The darkness of the present throws into strong relief the most vivid recollections of the past; the emptiness of a solitary mode of existence causes the slumbering memory-images to appear almost in bodily reality.
A very interesting letter of St. Jerome to the virgin Eustochia, which exemplifies the truth of this explanation, is still extant. St. Jerome writes:
"Alas! how often, when living in the desert, in that dreary, sunburnt loneliness, which serves as an habitation to the monks, did I believe myself revelling in the pleasures of Rome. I sat lonely, my soul filled with affliction, clothed in wretched rags, my skin sunburnt like an Ethiopian's. No day passed without tears and sighs, and when sleep overcame me I had to lie on the naked ground. I do not mention eating and drinking, for the monks drink, even if sick, only water, and regard cooking as a luxury. And if I, who had condemned myself from fear of hell to such a life, without any other society than scorpions and wild beasts, often imagined myself surrounded by dancing girls, my face was pale from fasting, but in the cold body the soul was burning with desires, and in a man whose flesh was dead the flames of lust were kindled. Then I threw myself helpless at the feet of Jesus, wetted them with tears, dried them again with my hair, and subdued the rebellious flesh by fasts of a whole week. I am not ashamed to confess my misery; I am rather sorry for no longer being such as I was. I remember still how often, when fasting and weeping, the night followed the day, and how I did not cease to beat my breast until at the command of God peace had returned."
The legend of Merlin, as told by Bela in the old chronicles, characterises a whole class of stories.
The defeated Satan proposes to regain his power by the same means by which God has vanquished him. He decides to have a son who shall undo Christ's work of redemption. All the intrigues of hell are used to ruin a noble family until only two daughters are left. The one falls into shame, while the other remains chaste and resists all temptations. One night, however, she forgot to cross herself, and thus the Devil could approach her,--even against her will. The pious girl underwent the severest penance, and when her time came she had a son whose hairy appearance betrayed his diabolical parentage. The child, however, was baptised and received the name Merlin. The excitement in heaven was great. What a triumph would it be to win the Devil's own son over to the cause of Christ. The Devil gave to his son all the knowledge of the past and the present; God added the knowledge of the future, and this proved the best weapon against the evil attempts of his wicked father. When Merlin grew up, he slighted his father and performed many marvellous things. He was full of wisdom, and his prophecies were reliable. It is generally assumed that after his death he did not descend into hell but went to heaven.
Similar is the story of Robert the Devil, the hero of a modern opera. The Duchess of Normandy, the old legend tells us, had no children. Having implored the help of God in vain, she addressed herself to the Devil who satisfied her wish at once. She had a son who was a rogue from babyhood. Being very, courageous and
strong, he became the chief of a band of robbers. He was knighted, to temper his malignity, but this appeal to his feeling of honor failed to have any effect. In a tournament he slew thirty knights, then he went out into the world to seek adventures. On his return he became a robber again. One day, when he had just strangled all the nuns of a cloister, he remembered that he had a mother and decided to visit her. But when he made his appearance, her servants dispersed in wild fear. For the first time in his life he was impressed with the idea that he had become odious to his fellow-men, and becoming conscious of his evil nature, he wanted to know why he was worse than others. With his sword drawn, he forced his mother to confess the secret of his birth. He was horror-struck, but did not despair. He went to Rome, confessed to a pious hermit, submitted willingly to the severest penance and combated the Saracens who happened to be laying siege to Rome. The emperor offered him his daughter as a reward. And now the two records of Robert's fate become contradictory. Not knowing the truth, we state both impartially. Some say that Robert married the emperor's daughter who was in love with him; others declare that he refused the match and crown, and returned to his hermit confessor, into the wilderness where he died blessed by God and mankind.
Not all the sons of the Devil, however, join the cause of the good Lord. Eggelino, the tyrant of Padua, forces his mother to confess the secret, that he and his brother Alberico were sons of Satan. Eggelino boasts that he will live as befits the son of the Evil One. He succeeds with the assistance of his brother in becoming the tyrant
of Padua, commits terrible crimes and dies at last in misery and despair. The story is dramatised by Albertino Mussato in his Eccerius.
On the right side of the high altar of the church of St. Denys, near Paris, a bas-relief illustrates the legend of St. Dagobert's death, which proves the soul-saving power of Christian saints. We are told that "a hermit on an island in the Mediterranean was warned in a vision to pray for the Frankish King's soul. He then saw Dagobert in chains, hurried along by a troop of fiends,
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DEMONS ON THE TOMB OF DAGOBERT.
(On the right of the high altar in the church of St. Denys, near Paris.)
who were about to cast him into a volcano. At last his cries to St. Denys, St. Michael, and St. Martin, brought to his assistance those three venerable and glorious persons, who drove off the devils, and with songs of triumph conveyed the rescued soul to Abraham's bosom." 1
Among the romances which represent the struggle of man with temptation and the powers of evil Spenser's Faerie Queene and Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress are well
known and need no further comment. The underlying idea, however, is not original with these authors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, but dates back to the fourteenth and thirteenth centuries. A manuscript-copy of Le Romant des trois Pélerinages by Guillaume de Guillauille describes the adventures of a man in his pilgrimage through life. In a deep valley the pilgrim meets covetousness, which Didron 1 describes as follows:
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(From the manuscript-copy in the Library of St. Geneviève, Paris.)
"The idol worn upon her head is 'the peny of gold or of silver whereon is emprinted the figure of the hye Lord of the countree.' The false God that blindeth him that turneth his eyes towards him and maketh fools to bend their eyes downwards. This God by whom she hath been disfigured and defamed is Avarice. The hands behind like griffin's claws are to symbolise Rapine, Coutteburse, and Latrosynie.'
"In the next pair of hands she holds a bowl for alms, or for the money she extorts through beggary, and a hook, with which she enters the house of Christ and seizes his servants. Taking their croziers and shepherds' crooks, she furnishes them with this devil's prong instead, fished up by her out of the darkness of Hell, and this hand is named Simony. in the next hands she holds a yard measure, purse, and scales. With the measure she deals out false lengths, with the balances she weighs false measure, and into
the purse she puts the ill-won gains of her treachery, gambling, and dishonesty. Round her neck hangs a bag, and nothing that is put therein can ever come out again; all things remain there to rot.
The Devil, fighting with God for the possession of mankind, was supposed to have a special passion for
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FAUST SIGNING THE CONTRACT WITH THE DEVIL IN BLOOD.
(By Franz Simm)
catching souls. Being the prince of the world he could easily grant even the most extravagant wishes, and was sometimes willing to pay a high price when a man promised to be his for time and eternity. Thus originated the idea of making compacts with the Devil; and it is worthy of note that in these compacts the Devil is very careful
to establish his title to the soul of man by a faultless legal document. He has, as we shall learn, sufficient reason to distrust all promises made him by men and saints. Following the authority of the old legends, we find that even the good Lord frequently lends his assistance to cheating the Devil out of his own. He is always duped and the vilest tricks are resorted to to cheat him. While thus the Devil, having profited by experience, always insists upon having his rights insured by an unequivocal instrument (which in later centuries is signed with blood); he, in his turn, is fearlessly trusted to keep his promise, and this is a fact which must be mentioned to his honor, for although he is said to be a liar from the beginning, not one case is known, in all devil-lore in which the Devil attempts to cheat his stipulators. Thus he appears as the most unfairly maligned person, and as a martyr of simple-minded honesty.
The oldest story of a devil-contract is the legend of Theophilus, first told by Eutychian, who declares he had witnessed the whole affair with his own eyes.
Theophilus, an officer of the church and a pious man, living in Adana, a town of Cilicia, was unanimously elected by the clergy and by the laymen as their bishop, but he refused the honor from sheer modesty. So another man became bishop in his stead. The new bishop unjustly deprived Theophilus of his office, who now regretted his former humility. But in his humiliation Theophilus went to a famous wizard and made with his assistance a compact with Satan, renouncing Christ and the Holy Virgin. Satan at once causes the bishop to restore Theophilus to his position, but now Theophilus
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THE LEGEND OF THEOPHILUS.
From Monk Conrad's illumined MS. (Thirteenth Century; Monastery Scheiern Now in the Royal Library of Munich.)
repents and prays to the Holy Virgin for forgiveness. After forty days of fasting and praying he is rebuked for his crime but not comforted; so he fasts and prays thirty days more, and receives at last absolution. Satan, however, refuses to give up his claim on Theophilus, and the Holy Virgin then actually castigates the enemy of God and men so severely that he at last surrenders the fatal document. Now Theophilus relates the whole story in the presence of the bishop to the assembled congregation in church; and after having divided all his possessions among the poor dies peacefully and enters into the glories of Paradise.
Even popes are said to have made compacts with the Devil. An English Benedictine monk, William of Malmesbury, says of Pope Sylvester II., who was born in France, his secular name being Gerbert, that he entered the cloister when still a boy. Full of ambition, he flew to Spain where he studied astrology and magic among the Saracens. There he stole a magic-book from a Saracen philosopher, and returned flying through the air to France. Now he opened a school and acquired great fame, so that the king himself became one of his disciples. Then he became Bishop of Rheims, where he had a magnificent clock and an organ constructed. Having raised the treasure of Emperor Octavian which lay hidden in a subterranean vault at Rome, he became Pope. As Pope he manufactured a magic head which replied to all his questions. This head told him that he would not die until he had read Mass in Jerusalem. So the Pope decided never to visit the Holy Land. But once he fell sick, and, asking his magic head, was informed that the
church's name in which he had read Mass the other day was "The Holy Cross of Jerusalem." The Pope knew at once that he had to die. He gathered all the cardinals around his bed, confessed his crime, and, as a penance, ordered his body to be cut up alive and the pieces to be thrown out of the church as unclean.
Sigabert tells the story of the Pope's death in a different way. There is no penance on the part of the Pope, and the Devil takes his soul to hell. Others tell us that the Devil constantly accompanied the Pope in the shape of a black dog, and this dog gave him the equivocal prophecy.
The historical truth of the story is that Gerbert was unusually gifted and well educated. He was familiar with the, wisdom of the Saracens, for Borrell, Duke of Hither Spain, carried him as a youth to his country where he studied mathematics and astronomy. He came early in contact with the most influential men of his time, and became Pope in 999. He was liberal enough to denounce some of his unworthy predecessors as "monsters of more than human iniquity," and as "Antichrist, sitting in the temple of God and playing the part of God;" but at the same time he pursued an independent and vigorous papal policy, foreshadowing in his aims both the pretensions of Gregory the Great and the Crusades.
The most famous, most significant, and the profoundest story among the legends of devil-contracts is the saga of Dr. Johannes Faustus. Whether the hero of the Faust legend derives his name from the Latin faustus, i. e., the favored one, or from the well-known Mayence goldsmith Fust, the companion of Gensfleisch
vom Gutenberg, the inventor of printing, or whether he was no historical personality at all, is an open question. Certain it is that all the stories of the great naturalists and thinkers whom the people at the time regarded as wizards were by and by attributed to him, and the figure of Dr. Faustus became the centre of an extensive circle of traditions. The tales about Albertus Magnus, Johannes
[paragraph continues] Teutonicus (Deutsch), Trithemius, Abbot of Sponheim, Agrippa of Nettesheim, Theophrastus, and Paracelsus, were retold of Faust, and Faust became a poetical personification of the great revolutionary aspirations in the time immediately preceding and following the Reformation.
The original form of the Faust-legend represents the Roman Catholic standpoint. Faust allies himself with
the Devil, works his miracles by the black art, and pays for its practice with his soul. He begins, his career in Wittenberg, the university at which Luther taught, and
is the embodiment of natural science, of historical investigation, of the Renaissance, and of modern discoveries and inventions. As such he subdues nature, restores to
life the heroes of ancient Greece, gathers knowledge about distant lands, and revives Helen, the ideal of classic beauty.
As the fall of the Devil is, according to Biblical authority, attributed to pride and ambition, so progress and the spirit of investigation were denounced as Satan's
work, and all inquiry into the mysteries of nature was regarded as magic. Think only of Roger Bacon, that studious, noble monk, and a greater scientist than his more famous namesake, Lord Bacon! In the thirties of the thirteenth century, at the University of Paris, when Roger Bacon, making some experiments with light, made the rainbow-colors appear on a screen, the audience ran away from him terrified, and his life was endangered because he was suspected of practising the black art.
The Faust Legend.
Faust is the representative of scientific manliness. He investigates, even though it may cost him the Christian's title to heavenly bliss; he boldly studies nature, although he will be damned for it in hell; he seeks the truth at the risk of forfeiting his soul. According to the mediæval theology Satan fell simply on account of his manly ambition and high aspiration, and yet Faust dares to break and eat of the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge. According to Marlowe's Faustus, Lucifer fell, not only by insolence, but first of all "by aspiring pride." Mephistopheles seems to regret, but Faustus comforts him, saying:
The oldest Faust book, dated 1587 (called the Volksbuch) exists in one single copy only which is now carefully preserved in Ulm, and Scheible has re-published it
in his work Dr. Johannes Faust (3 Volumes, Stuttgart, 1846).
The preface of the Volksbuch states that the publisher had received the manuscript from a good friend in Speyer, and that the original story had been written in Latin. The contents of this oldest version of the Faust legend are as follows:
Faust, the son of a farmer in Rod, near Weimar, studied theology at Wittenberg. Ambitious to be omniscient and omnipotent like God, he dived into the secret tore of magic, but unable to make much progress, he conjured the Devil in a thick forest near Wittenberg. Not in the least intimidated by the Devil's noisy behavior, he forced him to become his servant. Faust, having gained mastery over demons, did not regard his salvation endangered, and when the Devil told him that he should nevertheless receive his full punishment after death, he grew extremely angry with him and bade him quit his presence, saying: "For your sake I do not want to be damned." When the Devil had left, Faust felt an uneasiness not experienced before, for he had become accustomed to his services. Accordingly, he ordered the Devil to return, who now introduced himself as Mephistopheles. The name is derived from the Greek , "not-the-light-loving," and was afterwards changed to Mephistopheles. He now made a compact with the Devil who consented to serve him for twenty-four years, Faust to allow him afterwards to deal with him as he pleased. The contract was signed by Faust with his blood, which he drew with a penknife from his left arm. The blood, running out of the wound, formed
the words: Homo fuge (man, fly!). This startles Faust, but he remains resolute.
Mephistopheles entertained his master with all kinds of merry illusions, with music and visions. He brought him dainty dishes and costly clothes stolen from royal households. Faust became luxurious and desired to marry. The Devil refused, because marriage is a sacrament. Faust insisted. Then the Devil appeared in his real shape which was so terrific that Faust was frightened. He gave up the idea of marriage, but Mephistopheles sent him devils who assumed the shape of beautiful women, and made him dissolute.
Faust conversed with his servant about eschatological subjects, and heard many things which greatly displeased his vanity. Mephistopheles said, "I am a devil and act according to my nature. But if I were a man, I would rather humiliate myself before God than before Satan."
Faust became sick of his empty pleasures. His ambition was to be recognised in the world as a man who could explain nature, presage future events, and so excite admiration. Having received sufficient information concerning the other world, he wanted to come into direct contact with it, and Mephistopheles introduced to him a number of distinguished devils. When the visitors left, the house was so full of vermin that Faust had to withdraw. However, he did not neglect his new acquaintances on that account, but paid them a visit in their own home. Riding upon a chair built of human bones, he visited hell and contemplated with leisure the flames of its furnaces and the torments of the damned.
Having safely returned from the infernal region, he was carried in a carriage drawn by dragons up to heaven. He took a ride high in the air, first eastwards over the whole of Asia, then upwards to the stars, until they grew before his eyes on his approach into big worlds, while the earth became as small as the yolk of an egg.
His curiosity being satisfied in that direction, he concentrated his attention upon the earth. Mephistopheles assumed the shape of a winged horse upon which he visited all the countries of our planet. He visited Rome and regretted not having become Pope, seeing the luxuries of the latter's life. He sat down invisible at the Pope's table and took away his daintiest morsels, and the wine from his very lips. The Pope, believing himself beset by a ghost, exorcised its poor soul, but Faust laughed at him. In Turkey he visited the Sultan's harem, and introduced himself as the prophet Mohammed, which gave him full liberty to act as he pleased. Beyond India he saw at a distance the blest gardens of Paradise.
Faust, being invited in his capacity of magician to visit the Emperor Charles the Fifth, made Alexander the Great, the beautiful Helen, and other noted persons of antiquity appear before the whole court. Faust fell in love with Helen, so that he could no longer live without her. He kept her in his company and had a child by her, a marvellous boy who could reveal the future.
When the twenty-four years had almost elapsed, Faust grew melancholy, but the Devil mocked him. At midnight, on the very last day, some students who had been in his company heard a frightful noise, but did not
WIDMAN's FAUST. (Reduced from Scheible's Reproductions.)
dare to enter his room. The next morning they found him torn to pieces. Helen and her child had disappeared, and his famulus Wagner inherited his books on magic art.
This briefly is the contents of the Volksbuch on Faust.
LAST HOURS AND DEATH. (Widman's Faust.) 1
A transcription of the Faust-legend in rhymes was published as early as 1587 in Tübingen. Another version by Widman appeared in Hamburg in 1599. It is less complete than the first Faust-book and lacks depth of conception while it abounds rather more in coarse incidents.
CHRISTOPH WAGNER. (From an old popular edition, illustrated by J. Nisle.)
[paragraph continues] Widmann's edition became the basis of several further renderings, one in 1674 by Pfitzer in Nuremberg, another in 1728 in Frankfort and Leipsic. Faust must have appeared on the stage in the seventeenth century, for the clergy of Berlin filed a complaint that Faust publicly abjured God on the stage. The puppet-play Faust was compiled for the amusement of peasants and children, in fairs and market places. Yet it was powerful enough to inspire Goethe who saw it still performed when
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THE DEVIL IN THE PUPPET PLAY
a boy, to write the great drama which became the most famous work of his life.
The Faust-legend found a continuation in the story of Christoph Wagner, Faust's famulus and companion. The Wagner-story, however, contains nothing new and is nothing but a bare repetition of Faust's adventures and sorry end.
English editions appeared very early, and Marlowe, the greatest pre-Shakespearian dramatist, used the Faust-story for one of his dramas, which is still extant.
Goethe's conception of Faust represents the Protestant standpoint. Faust allies himself with the spirit of negation and promises to pay the price of his soul on condition that he shall find satisfaction; but Faust finds no satisfaction in the gifts of the spirit that denies. However, he does find satisfaction, after having abandoned the chase for empty pleasures, in active and successful work for the good of mankind. Goethe's Faust uses the Devil but rises above his negativism. However, he inherits from the revolutionary movement of the age that gave birth to the legend, the love of liberty. Says the dying Faust:
This Faust cannot be lost. His soul is saved. Mephistopheles now ceases to be a mere incarnation of badness; his negation becomes the spirit of critique. The spirit of critique, although destructive, leads to the positive work of construction; and thus Faust becomes a representative of the bold spirit of investigation and progress which characterises the present age.
The Devil of the Volksbuch is real; actors and spectators believe in his power and are afraid to fall into his clutches. In Goethe's Faust the mythology of the story is felt to be mere allegory and has become part of the dramatic machinery. This is plainly seen in the Walpurgis night scene which has become a satirical intermezzo of Goethe's time.
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WITCHES CELEBRATING WALPURGIS NIGHT.
(By Franz Simm.)
The figure of the Evil One began slowly to lose the awe which it exercised during the Middle Ages upon the imagination of the people, and Hans Sachs treats the Devil in his poems as a being of whom no courageous man need be afraid. Thus the German halberdier, he says, laughs at him, for Old Nick would not dare to admit a Landsknecht of their rank into his kingdom.
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The first man, however, who (so far as I am aware) was wise enough to take, as a matter of principle, a humorous view of the Devil and hell was Dionysius Klein. In his Tragico-Comœdia, published in the year 1622, he describes his trip both to heaven and to the infernal region, which latter place is reported to be well equipped with water-power and good machinery, as these were used in the beginning of the seventeenth century.
In modern times the humorous character of Satan develops ill the degree that he is no longer regarded as all individual being but changes to the principle of evil.
In the British Islands where the majority of the people
still believe in a personal Devil, there exists all unwritten law which reads, "Thou shalt not take the name of the Devil in vain." In Germany and France, however, and in all other countries of the European continent, people use the word freely in a way that must shock the feelings of a well-bred Englishman.
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HELL ACCORDING TO DIONYSIUS KLEIN'S TRAGICO-COMŒDIA.
(Reproduced from Bastian's Die Denkschöpfung.)
Victor Hugo uses the Devil as a setting for his political satire. No more trenchant sarcasm in poetic form can be imagined than his lines on Napoleon III. and Pope Pius IX. He says:
'Well, take them!' cried God Father,
'You'll find them useless rather!'
The Devil laughed and swore:
'They'll serve my cause, I hope.
The one I'll make a pope,
The other emperor!'" 1
["Un jour Dieu sur la table
Jouait avec le diable
Du genre humain haï;
Chacun tenait sa carte,
L'un jouait Bonaparte
Et l'autre Mastaï.
"Un pauvre abbé bien mince,
Un méchant petit prince,
Quel enjeu pitoyable
Dieu fit tant que le diable
Les gagna tous les deux.
"'Prends! cria Dieu le père,
Tu ne sauras qu'en faire!'
Le diable dit: 'erreur!
Et, ricanant sous cape,
Il fit de l'un un pape,
De l'autre un empereur.'"]
The Devil in the literature of to-day is of the same kind: a harmless fellow at whose expense the reader enjoys
a hearty laugh. Lesage's novel The Devil on Two Sticks is a poor piece of fiction, and Hauff's Memoirs of Satan are rather lengthy.
Heinrich Heine said jestingly:
["Freund verspotte nicht den Teufel,
Kurz ist ja die Lebensbahn;
Und die ewige Verdammniss
Ist kein blosser Pöbelwahn."]
In another poem Heine tells how he made the acquaintance of Satan and what impression he made on the poet. According to Miss Emma Lazarus's translation Heine says:
He said he was proud my acquaintance to make
And should prize my friendship, and bowed as he spake.
And asked if we had not met before
At the house of the Spanish ambassador.
Then I noted his features line by line,
And found him an old acquaintance of mine."
In modern times it has become quite customary in French, German, and American papers to picture the Devil without fear and in good humor, and few are they who would take offence at the sight.
Hell Up to Date is a genuine Chicago production of modern style. The author introduces himself as a newspaper reporter who interviews "Sate," and is shown round the Inferno. He finds that "Hell is now run on
THE DEVIL IN MODERN SATIRICAL JOURNALS.
the broad American plan." "Captain" Charon, who began his career as a ferryman with a little tub of a "rowboat," is now running big steamers on the Styx, "the only navigable river in hell." Judge Minos sits in court, and an Irish policeman introduces the poor wretches one by one. The lawyers are condemned to be gagged, and their objections are overruled by Satan; the inventor of the barbwire fence is seated naked oil a barbwire
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HELL UP TO DATE.
fence; tramps are washed; policemen are clubbed until they see stars; quack doctors are cured according to their own methods; poker fiends, board of trade gamblers, and fish-story tellers are treated according to their deserts; monopolists are baked like pop-corn, and clergymen are condemned to listen to their own sermons which have been faithfully recorded in phonographs.
* * *
Devil-stories are myths in which Christian mythology is carried to the extreme. Symbols are taken seriously, and from the literal belief of the Christian dogma the imagination weaves these pictures which to our ancestors were more than mere tales that adorn a moral.
412:1 Gesta Dagob. (cc. 23, 44). Baronius (647, 5). D. Bouquet. Rec. des histoires de France, t. ii. p. 593. Didron, Christian Iconography, ii. p. 132.
413:1 A manuscript-copy of an old English translation exists in the University Library of Cambridge, England.
427:1 Most of these illustrations need no further comments. The last three represent the storm that was raging during Faust's funeral, the inheritance of Wagner, consisting of Faust's books and instruments, and also Helen and her son. The last picture shows Faust's ghost haunting his old residence at Wittenberg.
434:1 Translation specially made by E. F. L Gauss.
437:1 By permission from A. Young's Hell Up to Date. Copyright 1892 by F. J. Schulte.