Marlowe's death has been an ongoing source of speculation. Officially, Marlowe was killed by one Ingram Frizer during a dispute about a bill. However, Frizier, as well as two other men present, were known to have connections to England's spy-network, leading some to believe that Marlowe was also a spy, and was assassinated for some reason connected to that occupation.
Christopher Marlowe in "We Haven't Got There Yet"Edit
William Shakespeare was reminded of the late Christopher Marlowe's Doctor Fautus as he watched a production of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. Shakespeare realized that the eponymous leads of the latter play didn't even have the definitive ending of Marlowe's Faustus, who at least ended the play knowing he was in Hell.
Christopher Marlowe in Ruled BritanniaEdit
Christopher Marlowe (1564-1598) was an English playwright who had once been employed in Queen Elizabeth's secret service. Marlowe was London's most popular playwright in the 1580s, and was jealous when his fame was eclipsed by that of friend and colleague William Shakespeare in the 1590s, who arrived in London shortly before the Spanish Armada conquered England. He was particularly jealous of Shakespeare's Prince of Denmark.
Marlowe had extensive connections to two separate worlds in London, the world of the theater and the underworld of crime. Many members of the one were acquainted with members of the other through him. This occasionally placed writers and actors in embarrassing legal situations. For instance, at a 1597 auto da fe, convicted alchemist Edward Kelley publicly called upon William Shakespeare for assistance; Kelley and Shakespeare had a passing acquaintance through Marlowe. Shakespeare did not, of course, attempt to interfere with Kelley's execution, but the authorities investigated him as a result of the episode nonetheless.
Though not a believer in religion of any stripe, Marlowe was secretly loyal to Elizabeth and her counselor William Cecil's plot to restore Elizabeth to the throne, and was jealous of Shakespeare when Cecil asked him to write Boudicca rather than Marlowe himself. Marlowe, who had often run afoul of both Tudor and Hapsburg authorities, was much more comfortable in the cloak-and-dagger world of political intrigue than Shakespeare, and provided Shakespeare with some support and guidance as he learned the trade.
Marlowe was a man of many vices, including being a smoker of tobacco and a homosexual. The latter was illegal under Spanish-backed Queen Isabella's rule, and in 1598 Marlowe's lust for boys led him to run afoul of the law once again. He fled London, but knew that Cecil's plot would soon come to fruition. He could not resist the temptation to be present when this happened, so he soon returned to London disguised as a Puritan. He was recognized by Lope de Vega and was killed by the Spanish soldier/playwright on the day that news of Philip II's death reached England.
A "big rough-looking blond man" thanked de Vega for saving him a bit of work immediately after he had killed Marlowe. Shakespeare had previously warned Robert Cecil that Marlowe had returned to London and so presumably Cecil had ordered Frizer to kill Marlowe.
The fatal wound de Vega delivers to Marlowe is a stab wound directly above Marlowe's right eye--the very same improbable injury that resulted in his mysterious death in OTL. Frizier, Marlowe's OTL killer, is a character in Ruled Britannia, as is Nick Skeres, who was also present at OTL Marlowe's death.