John Wakeman
John Wakeman was an English Benedictine
Benedictine refers to the spirituality and consecrated life in accordance with the Rule of St Benedict, written by Benedict of Nursia in the sixth century for the cenobitic communities he founded in central Italy. The most notable of these is Monte Cassino, the first monastery founded by Benedict...

, the last Abbot of Tewkesbury and first Bishop of Gloucester
Bishop of Gloucester
The Bishop of Gloucester is the Ordinary of the Church of England Diocese of Gloucester in the Province of Canterbury.The diocese covers the County of Gloucestershire and part of the County of Worcestershire and has its see in the City of Gloucester where the seat is located at the Cathedral Church...

, both posts in the English
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 county of Gloucestershire
Gloucestershire is a county in South West England. The county comprises part of the Cotswold Hills, part of the flat fertile valley of the River Severn, and the entire Forest of Dean....

. In the earlier part of his life he went by the name John Wiche.


He was the second son of William Wakeman of Drayton
- In the United Kingdom :* Drayton, Hampshire* Drayton, Leicestershire* Drayton, Lincolnshire* Drayton, Norfolk* Drayton, Northamptonshire** Drayton Reservoir, Northamptonshire* Drayton, Cherwell, Oxfordshire* Drayton, Vale of White Horse, Oxfordshire...

, Worcestershire
Worcestershire is a non-metropolitan county, established in antiquity, located in the West Midlands region of England. For Eurostat purposes it is a NUTS 3 region and is one of three counties that comprise the "Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Warwickshire" NUTS 2 region...

. He supplicated in the name of John Wyche, for the degree of B.D. on 3 February 1511.

On 19 March 1534 a congé d'élire
Congé d'élire
Congé d'Elire a licence from the Crown in England issued under the great seal to the dean and chapter of the cathedral church of the diocese, authorizing them to elect a bishop or archbishop, as the case may be, upon the vacancy of any episcopal or archi-episcopal see in England.-History and...

was issued for the election of an abbot of the Benedictine monastery of Tewkesbury to replace Henry Beeley, deceased. On 27 April 1534 the royal assent was given to the election of John Wiche, late prior, as abbot. The temporalities were restored on 10 June. Wiche had secured his own appointment by intrigue, obtaining the interest of Sir William Kingston and of Thomas Cromwell, and by then persuading his brethren to refer the election to the king's pleasure. At the end of July 1535 both Cromwell and the king were staying at the monastery, and in October Wiche sent Cromwell a gelding and £5 to buy him a saddle. He supplied information to the government on the disaffection of one of his priors.

On 9 January 1539 he surrendered his monastery, receiving an annuity of four hundred marks. He then seems to have taken the name Wakeman, by which he was afterwards known. On his nomination to the newly erected see of Gloucester in September 1541 this pension was vacated. The date of the letters patent for the erection of the bishopric is 3 September 1541. Wakeman was consecrated by Thomas Cranmer
Thomas Cranmer
Thomas Cranmer was a leader of the English Reformation and Archbishop of Canterbury during the reigns of Henry VIII, Edward VI and, for a short time, Mary I. He helped build a favourable case for Henry's divorce from Catherine of Aragon which resulted in the separation of the English Church from...

, Edmund Bonner
Edmund Bonner
Edmund Bonner , Bishop of London, was an English bishop. Initially an instrumental figure in the schism of Henry VIII from Rome, he was antagonized by the Protestant reforms introduced by Somerset and reconciled himself to Roman Catholicism...

, and Thomas Thirlby
Thomas Thirlby
Thomas Thirlby was an English bishop. While he acquiesced in the Henrician schism, with its rejection in principle of the Roman papacy, he remained otherwise loyal to the doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church during the English Reformation....

 at Croydon
Croydon is a town in South London, England, located within the London Borough of Croydon to which it gives its name. It is situated south of Charing Cross...

 in September 1541.

In 1547 he attended the funeral of Henry VIII, and on 19 February of the same year assisted at the consecration of Arthur Bulkeley
Arthur Bulkeley
Arthur Bulkeley was Bishop of Bangor from 1541 until his death in 1553.Bulkeley was born in Beaumaris, Anglesey. He was a graduate of Oxford University and in 1523 became Rector of St Peter-le-Bailey, Oxford. Later he was the incumbent at St James Garlickhythe in the City of London. In 1541 he...

 as bishop of Bangor
Bishop of Bangor
The Bishop of Bangor is the Ordinary of the Church in Wales Diocese of Bangor.The diocese covers the counties of Anglesey, most of Caernarfonshire and Merionethshire and a small part of Montgomeryshire...

. Wakeman must have had some pretensions to scholarship and theology. In 1542, when Cranmer was projecting a revision of the translation of the New Testament
New Testament
The New Testament is the second major division of the Christian biblical canon, the first such division being the much longer Old Testament....

, he assigned the Revelation to Wakeman, with John Chambers
John Chambers (bishop)
John Chambers was an English Benedictine, the last Abbot of Peterborough and first Bishop of Peterborough.-Life:He was born at Peterborough, and was sometimes called Burgh or Borowe. He became a monk in the abbey there, and was elected its abbot in 1528. He was studied both at Oxford and...

, bishop of Peterborough, as his colleague. Wakeman died early in December 1549. His place of burial is Gloucester Cathedral
Gloucester Cathedral
Gloucester Cathedral, or the Cathedral Church of St Peter and the Holy and Indivisible Trinity, in Gloucester, England, stands in the north of the city near the river. It originated in 678 or 679 with the foundation of an abbey dedicated to Saint Peter .-Foundations:The foundations of the present...

. While abbot of Tewkesbury, Wakeman constructed a cadaver tomb
Cadaver tomb
A cadaver tomb or transi is a church monument or tomb featuring an effigy in the macabre form of a decomposing corpse. The topos was particularly characteristic of the later Middle Ages....

A cenotaph is an "empty tomb" or a monument erected in honour of a person or group of people whose remains are elsewhere. It can also be the initial tomb for a person who has since been interred elsewhere. The word derives from the Greek κενοτάφιον = kenotaphion...

 in Tewkesbury Abbey, on the north-east side of the high altar, which is still to be seen.

His nephew Richard was great-grandfather of Sir George Wakeman.
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