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Heywood, John, 1497?-1580?, English dramatist. He was employed at the courts of Henry VIII and Mary I as a singer, musician, and playwright. At the accession of Elizabeth I in 1564 Heywood, who was a Roman Catholic, fled to Belgium, where he stayed for the rest of his life. Important in the development of English comedy, Heywood was the most famous writer of the interlude, a short comic dialogue. Chief among his interludes are The Play of the Weather (1533) and The Four P's (c.1543). His other works include epigrams, proverbs, and ballads.

See his works (ed. by B. A. Milligan, 1956).

Heywood, Thomas, 1574?-1641, English dramatist. A prolific writer, he claimed to have written and collaborated on more than 200 plays, most of which are now lost. Although he wrote dramas based on English history, classical mythology, and romantic adventure, he is most famous for those dealing with contemporary English life. Heywood's best play, A Woman Killed with Kindness (1603), is one of the finest examples of domestic tragedy in the English drama. His other notable plays include The Fair Maid of the West (1631) and The London Traveler (1633). A professional actor as well as a playwright, he wrote an Apology for Actors (1612) in reply to attacks against the theater by the Puritans.

See studies by O. Cromwell (1928, repr. 1969), A. M. Clark (1931, repr. 1967), and F. S. Boas (1950).

Heywood, town (1991 pop. 29,639), Rochdale metropolitan district, NW England, in the Greater Manchester metropolitan area. Heywood's products include cotton goods, metal goods, boilers, industrial inks, carpets, paper, rope, and machinery.

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