Titus Maccius Plautus, comic playwright of the Roman Republic; the years of his life are uncertain, but his plays were first produced between about 205 and 184 B.C.E. Twenty-one plays survive.
Plautus's comedies, which are the earliest surviving intact works in Latin literature, are all adaptations of Greek models for a Roman audience. The characters remain in Greek settings, or perhaps a Greek setting imagined by a Roman. His most typical character is the clever slave who manipulates his master, undermining some of our conceptions of normal social relationships in the Roman world.
Plautus' work gave ideas to many playwrights afterwards, such as William Shakespeare, Molière, Lessing and others.
See also: Terence