We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Article |

A Medical Version of the Faust Legend

Marjorie C. Meehan, MD
JAMA. 1966;196(1):36-40. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03100140090025.
Text Size: A A A
Published online


Although the legend of Faust, the scholar who sold his soul to the devil, has been a popular subject for literary works since the 16th century, it was not until mid-20th century that a medical interpretation was given to the story. Previous writers had portrayed the devil as an actual personification of evil or as an imaginary symbolic character. They made no attempt to interpret Faust's behavior in psychiatric terms. Thomas Mann, the German novelist, in his Doctor Faustus, showed the devil as imaginary or hallucinatory, but the pact with him as real, in that the protagonist willingly accepted syphilis of the central nervous system as a means to greater artistic creative power.

Early Versions  Dr. Johannes Faustus was evidently a real individual who lived in the 15th and early 16th centuries, about whom many odd stories were told. Between 1570 and 1587, these were gathered in manuscript form, and


Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?

First Page Preview

View Large
First page PDF preview




Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Please click the checkbox indicating that you have read the full article in order to submit your answers.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

0 Citations

Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.