Wenman Coke (died 1776)

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Wenman Coke
For his grandson, see Wenman Coke (1828–1907).

Wenman Coke (ca. 1717 – 11 April 1776), known as Wenman Roberts until 1750, was a British landowner and politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1753 and 1776.


Anne Coke, mother of Wenman Coke

Born Wenman Roberts, he was the son of Major Philip Roberts and Anne Coke, daughter of Edward Coke and Carey Newton. He assumed the surname of Coke (pronounced "Cook") in lieu of his patronymic in 1750. In 1759 he succeeded to the substantial estates of his uncle, Thomas Coke, 1st Earl of Leicester, including the Coke family seat of Holkham Hall, Norfolk. Wenman's great-great grandfather, Sir Lewes Roberts (1596–1641), was a British merchant with the Levant and East India companies and an economist/writer on foreign commerce topics. His mother descended from Sir Edward Coke.

Political career[edit]

Coke was returned to Parliament for Derby in 1772. At the 1774 general election he was returned for both Derby and Norfolk, and chose to sit for the latter. He continued to represent this constituency until his death two years later.


Holkham Hall, Norfolk

Wenman Coke died in 1776. He had married Elizabeth Chamberlayne, daughter of George Chamberlayne and had several children. His wife survived him by over 30 years and died in 1810.

His son Thomas succeeded him to Holkham Hall and as Member of Parliament for Norfolk. He became an influential agricultural reformer and in 1837 the earldom of Leicester was revived in his favour.


Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
John Phillipson
Viscount Coke
Member of Parliament for Harwich
With: John Phillipson 1753–1756
Viscount Duncannon 1756–1758
Thomas Sewell 1758–1761
Succeeded by
Charles Townshend
John Roberts
Preceded by
Robert Vyner
George Brydges Rodney
Member of Parliament for Okehampton
With: Alexander Forrester
Succeeded by
Thomas Pitt
Thomas Brand
Preceded by
Lord Frederick Cavendish
William Fitzherbert
Member of Parliament for Derby
With: Lord Frederick Cavendish
Succeeded by
Lord Frederick Cavendish
John Gisborne
Preceded by
Thomas de Grey
Sir Edward Astley
Member of Parliament for Norfolk
With: Sir Edward Astley
Succeeded by
Sir Edward Astley
Thomas Coke