John Hacket

John Hacket

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John Hacket was an 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...

 churchman, Bishop of Lichfield and Coventry from 1661 until his death.


He was born in London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 and educated at Westminster
Westminster School
The Royal College of St. Peter in Westminster, almost always known as Westminster School, is one of Britain's leading independent schools, with the highest Oxford and Cambridge acceptance rate of any secondary school or college in Britain...

 and Trinity College, Cambridge
Trinity College, Cambridge
Trinity College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge. Trinity has more members than any other college in Cambridge or Oxford, with around 700 undergraduates, 430 graduates, and over 170 Fellows...

. On taking his degree he was elected a fellow of his college, and soon afterwards wrote the comedy
Comedy , as a popular meaning, is any humorous discourse or work generally intended to amuse by creating laughter, especially in television, film, and stand-up comedy. This must be carefully distinguished from its academic definition, namely the comic theatre, whose Western origins are found in...

, Loiola (London, 1648), which was twice performed before King James I
James I of England
James VI and I was King of Scots as James VI from 24 July 1567 and King of England and Ireland as James I from the union of the English and Scottish crowns on 24 March 1603...

. He was ordained in 1618, and through the influence of John Williams
John Williams (archbishop)
John Williams was a British clergyman and political advisor to King James I. He served as Bishop of Lincoln 1621–1641, Keeper of the Great Seal also known as Lord Keeper or Lord Chancellor 1621–1625, and Archbishop of York 1641–1650...

 became rector in 1621 of Stoke Hammond, Buckinghamshire
Buckinghamshire is a ceremonial and non-metropolitan home county in South East England. The county town is Aylesbury, the largest town in the ceremonial county is Milton Keynes and largest town in the non-metropolitan county is High Wycombe....

, and Kirkby Underwood, Lincolnshire
Lincolnshire is a county in the east of England. It borders Norfolk to the south east, Cambridgeshire to the south, Rutland to the south west, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire to the west, South Yorkshire to the north west, and the East Riding of Yorkshire to the north. It also borders...


In 1623 he was chaplain to James, and in 1624 Williams gave him the livings of St Andrew's, Holborn, and Cheam, Surrey
Cheam is a large suburban village close to Sutton in the London Borough of Sutton, England, and is located close to the southern boundary between Greater London and Surrey. It is divided into two main areas: North Cheam and Cheam Village. North Cheam includes more retail shops and supermarkets,...

. He was Archdeacon of Bedford from 1631 to 1661.

When the so-called Root and Branch Bill was before Parliament
Parliament of England
The Parliament of England was the legislature of the Kingdom of England. In 1066, William of Normandy introduced a feudal system, by which he sought the advice of a council of tenants-in-chief and ecclesiastics before making laws...

 in 1641, Hacket was selected to plead in the House of Commons
British House of Commons
The House of Commons is the lower house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which also comprises the Sovereign and the House of Lords . Both Commons and Lords meet in the Palace of Westminster. The Commons is a democratically elected body, consisting of 650 members , who are known as Members...

 for the continuance of cathedral establishments. In 1645 his living of St Andrew's was sequestered, but he was allowed to retain the rectory of Cheam.

On the accession of Charles II
Charles II of England
Charles II was monarch of the three kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland.Charles II's father, King Charles I, was executed at Whitehall on 30 January 1649, at the climax of the English Civil War...

, his fortunes improved; he frequently preached before the king, and in 1661 was consecrated Bishop of Lichfield and Coventry. His time at the Cathedral coming immediately after the English Civil War
English Civil War
The English Civil War was a series of armed conflicts and political machinations between Parliamentarians and Royalists...

 meant that Hacket had the unenviable task of overseeing the restoration of Lichfield Cathedral
Lichfield Cathedral
Lichfield Cathedral is situated in Lichfield, Staffordshire, England. It is the only medieval English cathedral with three spires. The Diocese of Lichfield covers all of Staffordshire, much of Shropshire and part of the Black Country and West Midlands...


There is an effigy in remembrance of Bishop Hacket in Lichfield Cathedral.


His best-known book is the biography of his patron, Archbishop Williams, entitled Scrinia reserata: a Memorial offered to the great Deservings of John Williams, D.D. (London, 1693).