Famous 16th Century British Poets

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 1 William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare.
31
Famous As: Bard of Avon
Birthdate: April 26, 1564
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Stratford-upon-Avon
Died: April 23, 1616

English playwright, poet, and actor William Shakespeare is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language. He is also often called England's national poet. Many of his works have been translated into other languages and his plays continue to be produced till day. Popular during his lifetime, he acquired an iconic status after his death.

 2 John Donne

William Shakespeare.
4
Famous As: Poet, lawyer, satirist
Birthdate: January 22, 1572
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: March 31, 1631
English metaphysical poet John Donne is best known for his touch of sensuality and spirituality in his poems. One of his best-known poems is The Canonization. He had also worked on Latin translations, elegies, sermons, and epigrams. He was known for his reckless lifestyle, that affected his financial status. 
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 3 Edmund Spenser

William Shakespeare.
4
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1552 AD
Birthplace: London, England
Died: January 13, 1599

 4 Thomas Wyatt

William Shakespeare.
4
Famous As: Poet & Politician
Birthdate: 1503 AD
Birthplace: Allington, England
Died: October 11, 1542

 5 Christopher Marlowe

William Shakespeare.
4
Famous As: Playwright, Poet
Birthdate: February 26, 1564
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Canterbury, Kent, England, United Kingdom
Died: May 30, 1593

English playwright, poet, and translator, Christopher Marlowe, was one of the major literary figures of the Elizabethan era. It is believed that he greatly influenced his contemporary William Shakespeare. He led a troubled life and died young under mysterious circumstances. Despite his early death, he is regarded as one of the foremost dramatists of the 16th century London.  

 6 Philip Sidney

William Shakespeare
9
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: November 30, 1554
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Penshurst, Kent, England Kent, England
Died: October 17, 1586

 7 Ben Jonson

William Shakespeare.
4
Famous As: Dramatist, Poet & Actor
Birthdate: June 11, 1572
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Westminster, London, England
Died: August 6, 1637
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 8 Thomas Nashe

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Playwright
Birthdate: October 31, 1567
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Lowestoft, United Kingdom
Died: 1601 AD

 9 George Herbert

William Shakespeare.
4
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: April 3, 1593
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Montgomery
Died: March 1, 1633

George Herbert was an orator, poet, and priest of the Church of England. Although he is regarded as one of the most important British devotional lyricists, Herbert's poetry is often associated with the works of popular metaphysical poets. He was also a collector of proverbs and his collection was published in 1640.

 10 Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey

William Shakespeare
6
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: 1517 AD
Birthplace: Hunsdon, England
Died: January 19, 1547

 11 Anne Askew

William Shakespeare
6
Famous As: poet
Birthdate: 1521 AD
Birthplace: Stallingborough
Died: July 26, 1546

 12 Emilia Lanier

William Shakespeare.
6
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: December 31, 1569
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bishopsgate, London, England
Died: March 31, 1645

 13 John Lyly

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: 1553 AD
Birthplace: Kent, England
Died: October 31, 1606

 14 Thomas Middleton

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Playwright, Poet, Writer
Birthdate: April 18, 1580
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: London
Died: July 4, 1627

 15 Mary Sidney

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Countess
Birthdate: October 27, 1561
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Tickenhill Palace, Bewdley, Worcs, England
Died: September 25, 1621

 16 Michael Drayton

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Poet, Writer
Birthdate: 1563 AD
Birthplace: Hartshill, United Kingdom
Died: December 23, 1631

 17 John Skelton

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1463 AD
Birthplace: England
Died: June 21, 1529

 18 Robert Southwell

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1561 AD
Birthplace: Norfolk, England
Died: February 21, 1595

 19 John Heywood

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: 1497 AD
Birthplace: London, England
Died: 1580 AD

 20 Fulke Greville, 1st Baron Brooke

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: October 3, 1554
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Beauchamp Court, England
Died: September 30, 1628

 21 John Leland

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: September 13, 1503
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: London, England
Died: April 18, 1552

 22 Thomas Overbury

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: June 18, 1581
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Compton Scorpion, Warwickshire, England
Died: September 14, 1613

Sir Thomas Overbury, English poet and essayist, is probably best known for his 1614 poem Wife, which describes the virtues one should demand of the woman he is going to marry. Interpreted as an indirect attack on Lady Essex, a divorcee whom his mentor, Viscount Rochester, was to marry, it led to his imprisonment and ultimate murder by slow poisoning.

 23 George Peele

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: July 25, 1556
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London, England
Died: November 9, 1596

 24 Thomas Sackville, 1st Earl of Dorset

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1536 AD
Birthplace: Withyham, England
Died: April 19, 1608

 25 Samuel Daniel

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1562 AD
Birthplace: Taunton, England
Died: October 14, 1619

 26 Henry Wotton

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: March 30, 1568
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: England
Died: December 1, 1639

 27 Thomas Lodge

William Shakespeare
3
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: 1558 AD
Birthplace: London, England, United Kingdom
Died: August 31, 1625

 28 John Marston

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: October 7, 1576
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Coventry,England
Died: June 25, 1634

 29 Edward Herbert, 1st Baron Herbert

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Soldier
Birthdate: March 3, 1582
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Eyton-on-Severn, England
Died: August 5, 1648

 30 Gervase Markham

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1568 AD
Birthplace: Nottinghamshire, England
Died: February 3, 1637

 31 George Gascoigne

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: English poet
Birthdate: 1535 AD
Birthplace: Cardington, England
Died: October 7, 1577

 32 Robert Sidney, 1st Earl of Leicester

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Statesman
Birthdate: November 19, 1563
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Kent, England
Died: July 13, 1626

 33 Arthur Brooke

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 0000 AD
Birthplace: England
Died: March 19, 1563

 34 John Davies

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: English poet and writing master
Birthdate: April 16, 1569
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Wiltshire, United Kingdom
Died: December 8, 1626

 35 Francis Quarles

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: May 8, 1592
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Romford, United Kingdom
Died: September 8, 1644

 36 Thomas Tusser

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Author, Writer
Birthdate: 1524 AD
Birthplace: England, United Kingdom
Died: May 3, 1580

 37 George Sandys

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Traveler
Birthdate: March 2, 1578
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: near York, England
Died: March 1, 1644

 38 George Wither

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: June 11, 1588
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Hampshire, England
Died: May 2, 1667

 39 Anthony Munday

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Playwright
Birthdate: 1560 AD
Birthplace: London, England
Died: August 10, 1633

 40 William Cornysh

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Composer
Birthdate: 1465 AD
Birthplace: Greenwich, England
Died: September 30, 1523

 41 Francis Meres

William Shakespeare
2
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: November 30, 1565
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kirton, England
Died: January 29, 1647

 42 Edward Dyer

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Courtier
Birthdate: September 30, 1543
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Glastonbury, Somerset, England
Died: April 30, 1607

 43 Phineas Fletcher

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: April 8, 1582
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Cranbrook, England
Died: December 13, 1650

 44 Thomas Deloney

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: 1543 AD
Birthplace: Norwich, England
Died: March 31, 1600

 45 Robert Herrick

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: August 24, 1591
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Cheapside, City of London, England
Died: September 30, 1674

Best remembered for penning the lines "Gather ye rosebuds while ye may," poet Robert Herrick wrote everything from elegies to love songs and religious verse, and was inspired by English folklore. He was a true Cavalier poet, who wrote verses in support of King Charles I.

 46 Robert Crowley

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1517 AD
Birthplace: Gloucestershire, England
Died: June 18, 1588

Robert Crowley was a 16th-century poet, polemicist, and Protestant clergyman. He was one of the Marian exiles at Frankfurt. He worked as a tutor after completing his education and later became a member of the Stationers' Company. He was involved in the preparation and publication of several books. He was ordained a deacon in 1551. 

 47 Stephen Hawes

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1474 AD
Birthplace: Suffolk, England
Died: 1523 AD

 48 Richard Brathwait

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1588 AD
Birthplace: Kendal, England
Died: May 4, 1673

 49 Thomas Vaux, 2nd Baron Vaux of Harrowden

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: April 25, 1509
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Northamptonshire, England
Died: October 15, 1556

 50 Thomas May

William Shakespeare
1
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: 1595 AD
Birthplace: Mayfield and Five Ashes, England
Died: November 13, 1650