John Colet (kŏ´lĬt), 1467?–1519, English humanist and theologian. While studying on the Continent (1493–96), Colet became interested in classical scholarship and in theories of education. After his residency at Oxford as a lecturer, in 1505 he became dean of St. Paul's Cathedral, London. He planned the new St. Paul's School (1509) and endowed it from his private fortune. With William Lily, the school's first headmaster, and Erasmus, he collaborated on a Latin grammar that was later called the Eton grammar and used by generations of schoolboys. Colet did not, himself, break with the Roman Church, but his ideas on church reform were influential later. Most of his writings were unpublished until the late 19th cent.
See biography by J. H. Lupton (2d ed. 1961); F. Seebohm, The Oxford Reformers (1913, repr. 1971).