John Colet (1467-1519) was an English Renaissance preacher, teacher, and theologian, who gained eminence as dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral and who founded one of the first Humanist schools for boys. He was instrumental in influencing Desiderius Erasmus and advocating the reformation of the abuse of privilege and corruption in the Roman Catholic Church.

Colet was of relatively humble origins. His father Henry rose to prominence (and eventual wealth) in local governance and was twice Lord Mayor of London – in 1486 and 1495 – and became one of the leading wardens of the Mercers Company. His mother, Christian Knyvet, came from a family of London merchants. She bore twenty-two children, eleven boys and the same number of girls (the figures are provided by Erasmus). John was the eldest child

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Citation: Sturgeon, Elizabeth M.. "John Colet". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 24 July 2013 [, accessed 23 February 2024.]

950 John Colet 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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