Peele, George, 1558?–1597?, English playwright, educated at Oxford. He experimented in a variety of forms, including the pageant, history, pastoral, comedy, and melodrama, but his best-known work is The Old Wives Tale (1595), a frolicsome piece that infuses a depiction of ordinary English life with elements of folklore and romance. His other extant plays include The Arraignment of Paris (1584), Edward I (1593), The Battle of Alcazar (1594), and The Love of King David and Fair Bethsabe (1599). Some modern scholarship has attributed to him almost a third of Shakespeare's Titus Andronicus (c.1594). Peele was one of the
university wits,a group of poets and playwrights that included Marlowe, Nashe, and Robert Greene.
See his life and works, ed. by C. T. Prouty (3 vol., 1952–70); biography by G. K. Hunter (1968); B. Vickers, Shakespeare, Co-Author (2003).
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