John Playford (1623–1686/7) was a London bookseller, publisher, and member of the Stationers' Company, who published books on music theory, instruction books for several instruments, and Psalters with tunes for singing in churches. He is perhaps best known today for his publication of "The English Dancing Master" in 1651. The work contains both the music and instructions for English country dances. Although many of the tunes in the book are attributed to him today, he probably did not write any of them. Most were popular melodies that had existed for years.