1875 - 1926
Born December 4, 1875 in Prague, Rilke was a romantic poet. His early work is brooding and self-centered, but after he moved to Paris and worked under Rodin, he gained an intense interest in work and in things.
Some of his famous works are his New Poems, the Duino Elegies, and the Sonnets to Orpheus. I was introduced to his work through his Letters to a Young Poet, a collection of ... well, just what it says. He also wrote a novel called The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge.

Interesting fact: His mother wanted a girl and dressed him in girl's clothing for as long as she could get away with it.
another Interesting fact: He changed his name from René to Rainer at the urging of Lou Andreas-Salomé, when they were lovers.

He wrote his own epitaph:

Rose, oh pure contradiction, joy
of being No-one's sleep under so many