Faust: A Tragedy (German: Faust. Eine Tragödie, or retrospectively Faust. Der Tragödie / erster Teil) is the first part of the tragic play Faust by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and is considered by many as the greatest work of German literature. It was first published in 1808.
Faust: The Second Part of the Tragedy (German: Faust. Der Tragödie zweiter Teil in fünf Akten.) is the second part of the tragic play Faust by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. It was published in 1832, the year of Goethe's death. Because of the complexity of its form and content, it is usually not read in German schools, although the first part commonly is. Only part of Faust I is directly related to the legend of Johann Faust, which dates to at latest the beginning of the 16th century (thus preceding Marlowe's play). The Gretchen subplot, although now the most widely known episode of the Faust legend, was of Goethe's own invention. In Faust II, the legend (at least in a version of the 18th century, which came to Goethe's attention) already contained Faust's marriage with Helen and an encounter with an Emperor. But certainly Goethe deals with the legendary material very freely in both parts.