Beaumont, Francis [key], 1584?–1616, English dramatist. Born of a distinguished family, he studied at Oxford and the Inner Temple. His literary reputation is linked with that of John Fletcher, with whom he began collaborating about 1606. Their plays are noted for plot symmetry, refined taste, and provocative sexual situations. The plays usually ascribed to him as sole author are The Woman Hater (published 1607), the burlesque Knight of the Burning Pestle (c.1607), Philaster (c.1609), and The Maid's Tragedy (c.1610). After his marriage in 1613 he retired to his estate in Kent and ceased writing for the stage.
See biography by L. Bliss (1987); studies by G. C. Campbell (1972) and M. Baldwin (1974).
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