[[caption-width-right:300:"All they that love not [[GoodSmokingEvilSmoking tobacco]] and [[HoYay boys]] are [[CoolPeopleRebelAgainstAuthority fools]]."]]

->''Come, let us march against the powers of heaven,''\\
''And set black streamers in the firmament,''\\
''To signify the slaughter of the gods.''
-->--'''''Tamburlaine the Great'''''

'''Christopher Marlowe''' (baptised February 26, 1564 May 30, 1593) was an English poet, dramatist, and translator. He is probably best known for ''[[Theatre/DoctorFaustus The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus]]'', ''The Jew of Malta'', and ''Tamburlaine''. He was one of the first to write English drama in blank verse.

He was regarded highly, at least in terms of his writing, by his literary contemporaries, including Creator/WilliamShakespeare (who was beginning his own rise to fame when Marlowe died, and whose works contain many {{Shout Out}}s to Marlowe). [[MoralGuardians Staid, respectable people]], however, regarded him as a [[JerkAss contentious brawler]] and [[BombThrowingAnarchist a dangerous rebel against society]]. Which seems to have been exactly the reputation Marlowe was going for. By all accounts he was one of those over-clever young men who get a charge out of shocking their elders and social superiors. In his case it may have come back to bite him. It certainly bit his friend and roommate Thomas Kyd who probably died of the trauma he suffered when [[JackBauerInterrogationTechnique questioned]] about Marlowe's opinions and associates.

Marlowe's death in what was considered a Bar Brawl at Deptford was long the source of suspicion and rumor. In the 20th Century, a researcher discovered the original coroner's report and while he dismissed foul play, he did note that Marlowe spent his final day in the company of known underworld types linked to Thomas Walsingham, a relative of Queen Elizabeth's hatchet-man Sir Francis Walsingham. This has fed much ConspiracyTheory about Marlowe and the circumstances of his death. There are still others who argue that Marlowe faked his death and continued writing under the pseudonym of... Creator/WilliamShakespeare. One person who believes this is Creator/JimJarmusch, he even made [[Film/OnlyLoversLeftAlive a movie]] around it.

As a HistoricalDomainCharacter, his appearances in fiction almost invariably feature one or both of (a) his acquaintance with Shakespeare; (b) his death. (Which was somewhat suspicious, and has prompted theories that it was a set-up by the English secret service, either to keep him from spilling some secret or, more creatively, to allow him to adopt a new identity and go into hiding. People who promote the creative version are generally advocates of the theory that Marlowe was the true author of Shakespeare's plays, even the ones written after 1593, or else historical fiction writers who don't care whether it's true because it makes a good story.)

!!Works by Christopher Marlowe with their own trope pages include:

* ''Theatre/DoctorFaustus''
!!Other works by Christopher Marlowe provide examples of:

* AllGirlsWantBadBoys: Zenocrete in ''Tamburlaine''.
* AmbitionIsEvil: ''The Jew of Malta'', ''Tamburlaine''. The only way to get anywhere in the world is to murder your way to the top.
* {{Arcadia}}: "The Passionate Shepherd to his Love"
* AssShove: [[spoiler: The end of ''Edward II'' [[CruelAndUnusualDeath with a branding iron.]]]]
* TheBeard: Isabella from ''Edward II''
* BlackAndGrayMorality: ''The Jew of Malta''
* BreakTheHaughty: The VillainProtagonist by the third act of any Christopher Marlowe play. (''Tamburlaine'', ''The Jew of Malta'', ''Theatre/DoctorFaustus'', etc.)
* ByronicHero: Doctor Faustus, Tamburlaine
* BuryYourGays: [[spoiler: Edward II and Mycetes of Tamburlaine]]
* TheCaligula: Tamburlaine as the story progresses.
* CampGay: Edward II, also King Mycetes in ''Tamburlaine.''
* ComeToGawk: Happens to [[spoiler:Bajazeth]] in ''Tamburlaine''
* CruelAndUnusualDeath: ''Edward II''
* DeadlyDecadentCourt: in ''Edward II''
* TheDeterminator: Tamburlaine
* DoNotDoThisCoolThing: ''The Jew of Malta'' has the flashy MagnificentBastard VillainProtagonist that is the [[EvilIsCool coolest character in the show and wins at absolutely everything]], but then gets [[spoiler:boiled alive]] in the last five minutes as if to say that "we aren't supposed to root for them" was invoked.
* DrivenToSuicide: [[spoiler:Bajazeth]] in ''Tamburlaine''
* DudeWheresMyRespect: Edward II. Yes he's gay but he's still the King, dammit! That flies about as well as you might imagine in [[MedievalMorons medieval Europe.]]
* TheEpic: ''Tamburlaine''
* FromNobodyToNightmare: "Tamburlaine? He's just a sheep herder..."
* GreedyJew: ''The Jew of Malta''
* HeroicComedicSociopath: Because of ValuesDissonance and the fact that he's [[AffablyEvil very entertaining in his evil schemes]] the audience may end up [[RootingForTheEmpire rooting for]] [[VillainProtagonist The Jew of Malta.]]
** Doctor Faustus can likewise be [[ComedicSociopathy cruel and funny.]]
* HistoricalDomainCharacter: Creator/NiccoloMachiavelli delivers the prologue to ''The Jew of Malta''; as anyone who had actually read Machiavelli would know, Governor Ferneze arguably could be a follower of his. Many modern productions have Ferneze and Machiavelli played by the same actor.
* KarmicDeath: [[spoiler: How any Marlowe [[VillainProtagonist protagonist]] meets his end.]]
* TheKillerBecomesTheKilled: [[spoiler: Lightborne immediately after killing the king is killed by the other conspirators [[HeKnowsTooMuch to keep his silence.]]]]
* LeaveNoSurvivors: When one kingdom sends in their maidens pleading that Tamburlaine have mercy on them his response is essentially '[[KickTheDog you should have surrendered when I gave you the chance.]]'
* LoverAndBeloved: Zeus and Ganymede in ''Dido, Queen of Carthage''.
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast: [[LouisCypher Lightborne]] from ''Edward II''.
* [[ParentalMarriageVeto Parental Relationship Veto]]: ''Edward II''. As soon as his dad is dead he gets together with Gaveston.
* PrideBeforeAFall: The VillainProtagonist by the third act of any Christopher Marlowe play. (''Tamburlaine'', ''The Jew of Malta'', ''Theatre/DoctorFaustus'', etc.)
* ProfessionalKiller: Lightborne in ''Edward II''
* PuppetKing: In ''Edward II'' the other members of the DeadlyDecadentCourt fear [[EvilChancellor Gaveston's influence]] on the king.
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: ''The Jew of Malta''.
* RoyalBrat: ''Edward II''.
* SelfMadeMan: Tamburlaine. Sheep-herder turned world conqueror.
* StockholmSyndrome: Zenocrete in ''Tamburlaine''.
* TakeOverTheWorld: ''Tamburlaine''.
* ThenLetMeBeEvil: In ''The Jew of Malta'' the protagonist gets cheated out of his fortune by those in power who hold the attitude that [[GreedyJew Jews are greedy and evil]], [[{{Hypocrite}} oh and by the way make more money so we can cheat you out of it again.]] This is his StartOfDarkness because he decides if he's going to be considered wicked no matter what he does he might as well show them true villainy.
* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: ''Edward II'' and ''Tamburlaine''
* VillainProtagonist: ''The Jew of Malta'', ''Tamburlaine''.
* [[YaoiFangirl Yaoi Fanboy]]: He shipped [[Literature/TheBible Jesus and John]]. Someone quoted, or paraphrased, him as saying that "John the baptist was bedfellow to Christ, and leaned alwaies in his bosom, and used him as the sinners of Sodoma." He is also supposed to have said that "Christ was a bastard and his mother dishonest [unchaste]" and that "the Angel Gabriel was bawd [pimp] to the Holy Ghost". Due to this he was accused of atheism (though it meant something more like "heresy" in those days) and blasphemy-serious charges-but died only days before his case was scheduled to be heard before the Privy Council, which some see as linking his murder with it.
** He also opened one play, ''Dido, Queen of Carthage'', with a love scene between [[Myth/ClassicalMythology Zeus and Ganymede]], though that was already shipped for him.
* {{Yandere}}: Isabella in ''Edward II'' starts off insanely jealous of the affection Edward lavishes on Gaveston, which is one of the reasons she conspires with the nobles, in particular her [[{{hypocrite}} lover]] Mortimer Jr., to [[MurderTheHypotenuse have Gaveston done away with]].
* YaoiGuys: [[{{Uke}} Edward II]] with [[{{Seme}} Gaveston]]
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: In ''Tamburlaine'' [[spoiler: Tamburlaine does this to the conspirators when he takes the Persian crown.]] Also [[spoiler: Lightborne]] in ''Edward II''.
* YouKilledMyFather: ''Tamburlaine''
* YoungConqueror: ''Tamburlaine''