Francis Beaumont, known by his contemporaries as Frank Beaumont, (1584 – 1616) was an English dramatist most famous for his collaborations with John Fletcher.
Beaumont was the son of Sir Francis Beaumont of Grace-Dieu, a justice of the common pleas. He was educated at Broadgates Hall (now Pembroke College) in Oxford at the age of 13. Following the death of his father, he left university without a degree and followed in his father's footsteps by entering the Inner Temple.
Accounts suggest that however that Beaumont did not work for long as a lawyer. He became a student of poet Ben Jonson and decided that was where his passions lay. His first work, Salmacis and Hermaphroditus, appeared in 1602. The 1911 edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica describes the work as "not on the whole discreditable to a lad of eighteen, fresh from the popular love-poems of Marlowe and Shakespeare, which it naturally exceeds in long-winded and fantastic diffusion of episodes and conceits". In 1607, Beaumont wrote the preface to a work of Jonson's.
Beaumont's collaboration with Fletcher probably began as early as 1605, but the pair truly became famous in 1608 with the writing and production of Philaster. Their collaboration continued 1612. Beaumont married in the following year, and died in 1616 and is buried in Westminster Abbey. Although today Beaumont is remembered as a dramatist, during his lifetime he was celebrated as a poet.
Note the true extent to which each play was written by Fletcher and by Beaumont is unknown (compare also the shared song-writing of John Lennon and Paul McCartney), though the following categorizations are generally agreed upon.
Joint works with John Fletcher
The Scornful Lady (acted circa 1609, printed 1616)
Philaster or Love Lies a-Bleeding (c.1609, 1620)
The Maid's Tragedy (c. 1609, 1619),
A King and No King (December 26, 1611, 1619),
The Knight of the Burning Pestle (c. 1610, 1613),
Cupid's Revenge (January 1612, 1615)
The Coxcomb (c. 1610, 1647)
Solely authored works
The Woman Hater (1607)
The Masque of the Inner Temple and Grays Inn (26th of February 1612)
Of Four Plays, or Moral Representations, in One (1608, 1647)
The Induction, with The Triumph of Honor
The Triumph of Love