Faust

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Thales Character Analysis

Thales is a pre-Socratic philosopher whom Homunculus consults about achieving a proper existence. In contrast to Anaxagoras, Thales believes that nature was created tranquilly, by water (a theory called Neptunism). He leads Homunculus to the Aegean Sea, the origin of all life, where Homunculus succeeds in escaping his vial and becoming reconciled to the nature.
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Thales Character Timeline in Faust

The timeline below shows where the character Thales appears in Faust. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 2: Act 2: Classical Walpurgis Night: The Pharsalian Fields
Reason and Passion Theme Icon
The Human Desire for Meaning and Transcendence Theme Icon
Parts, Wholes, and Limits Theme Icon
Intellectualism and the Value of Words Theme Icon
Homunculus tells Mephistopheles that he’s on the trail of two pre-Socratic philosophers, Anaxagoras and Thales, from whom he hopes to learn about Nature, real existence, and the wisest course for... (full context)
The Human Desire for Meaning and Transcendence Theme Icon
Parts, Wholes, and Limits Theme Icon
Politics Theme Icon
Anaxagoras and Thales enter, arguing about the creation of the mountain on which the Pygmies have settled. Anaxagoras... (full context)
Parts, Wholes, and Limits Theme Icon
Politics Theme Icon
Suddenly Thales observes that a black cloud of cranes is menacing the Pygmies on their mountain, avenging... (full context)
Part 2: Act 2: Classical Walpurgis Night: Rocky Inlets of the Aegean Sea
The Human Desire for Meaning and Transcendence Theme Icon
...highest point in the sky. Sirens sit on rocks by the sea, fluting and singing. Thales and Homunculus arrive at the shore, the philosopher urging the creature to speak with the... (full context)
The Human Desire for Meaning and Transcendence Theme Icon
Parts, Wholes, and Limits Theme Icon
Homunculus and Thales withdraw to speak with Proteus. They lure him over to them by shining the lamp... (full context)
The Human Desire for Meaning and Transcendence Theme Icon
Pleasure and Love Theme Icon
Parts, Wholes, and Limits Theme Icon
...open waters. There his lamp illuminates the grace and beauty in the waters. From afar Thales sees Homunculus’ flame burn brighter with passion, till at last Homunculus shatters his vial and... (full context)