Producers of the London stage production of Tamburlaine The Great have come under fire after censoring the Christopher Marlowe play for fear of angering Muslims.

While Marlowe had intended for the Koran to be burned onstage, David Farr, who directed and adapted the play, feared it would spark an uproar - particularly in light of the London bombings on 7 July (05).

Instead of the Islamic book being set alight, audiences will now see "a load of books" on fire.

Key references to Muhammad had been dropped, including the passage where Tamburlaine says he is "not worthy to be worshipped".

But the alterations have been condemned by scholars, senior figures in the theatre - and even religious leaders.

Terry Hands, who directed the production for the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1992, blasts, "I don't believe you should interfere with any classic for reasons of religious or political correctness."