William Shakespeare was a playwright and poet of the 16th century; considered by many to be the greatest writer of the English language. His extensive work includes over three dozen plays (including Hamlet, King Lear, Othello, and Macbeth), not to mention his sonnets, as well as poems. His plays are performed more that any other and they have been translated into all common, current day languages.
Shakespeare was always a well regarded poet and writer, but his fame spread rapidly during the 19th century due to the Romantics and Victorians love for Shakespeare. Little is known of Shakespeare’s private life, and speculation has always existed as to if some of the works attributed to him were actually written by him.