William Shakespeare was an English poet, playwright, and actor, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. His birth (and death) are both said to be on April 23 (1564 and 1616, respectively). One of eight children born to John Shakespeare and Mary Arden, his youth was spent in Stratford-Upon-Avon, England before heading into London to become the playwright known today. When he was eighteen, he married Anne Hathaway, an older woman of twenty-six. He had three children: Susanna, born in 1583, and twins, Judith and Hamnet, born in 1585. The author of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, and additional poems, William Shakespeare is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon". Read his full biography on Wikipedia: wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Shakespeare.