(1564-93) an English writer of plays and poetry. He is considered the greatest English playwright of the period before William Shakespeare, and was an important influence on Shakespeare's style. His best-known works are Tamburlaine (c. 1587), Doctor Faustus, The Jew of Malta (c. 1590) and Edward II (c. 1592). He may also have written parts of the Shakespeare plays Titus Andronicus and Henry VI. Marlowe led a wild and violent life, was put in prison briefly in 1589 on suspicion of murder, and was himself murdered in a fight at the age of 29.