Mary William Ethelbert Appleton "Billie" Burke (August 7, 1884 – May 14, 1970) was an Oscar-nominated American actress primarily known to modern audiences for her role as Glinda the Good Witch of the North in the musical film The Wizard of Oz.
Known as Billie Burke, she toured the U.S. and Europe with a circus because her father, Billy Burke, was employed with them as a singing clown. Her family ultimately settled in London where she was fortunate to see plays in London's historic West End.
She wanted to be a stage actress. In 1903, she began acting on stage, making her debut in London, and eventually returning to America to become the toast of Broadway as a musical comedy star. She was praised by The New York Times for her charm and her brightness.