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Christopher Marlowe has been identified as the most important of Shakespheres predecessors The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus remains the most celebrated and most often anthologized of Marlowes plays Christopher Marlowe was born in Canterbury England on February 6 1564 Marlow is the eldest son of John Marlowe a Shoemakers Guld and Katherine Arthur a Dover girl of yeoman stock Christopher Marlowe was baptized at St Georges Church Canterbury on February 26 1564 Christophers intermediate and extended family had a reputation of getting into quarrels and trouble with the law For example his sister was known for being a selfish person seeking the unjust vexation of her neighbors His father was continually engaged in lawsuits most of the time as a defendant for debt Christopher Marlowe entered the Kings School Canterbury at the New Year 1579 He was elected a Queens Scholar The school which enjoyed a brillant reputation was a center of theatrical interests The school contained a large library filled with a number of volumes which have been claimed as sources for Marlows plays There Marlowe uncritically read medieval romances which contained enough bloodshed and rapine for any adolescent After two years in December 1580 Marlowe moved to Corpus Christi College Cambridge where he studied for the next six years He received a scholarship founded by Mathew Parker master of the college from 1544 to 1553 and later archbishop of Cnterbury The scholarship was for six years and was granted more or less on the understanding that those holding it should study for church Marlowes acedemic career was uneventful except for mysterious and increasingly long absences after his second year Marlowe was absent from college for weeks even months at a time It is now assumed that in some of these periods he ws involved in yet undiclosed government service either as a secret agent or as a confidential messanger The first mention of Marlowes involvement is some type of espionage mission
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