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German Gardiner (Germain, Jermyn) (date of birth unknown; executed at Tyburn, 7 March 1544) was a Roman Catholic layman, nephew to Stephen Gardiner, who became involved in the Prebendaries' Plot against Thomas Cranmer.
While he had corresponded unwisely with Cranmer's opponents, German Gardiner was scapegoated in the Plot. Henry VIII was becoming more severe on Protestants and Cranmer fell under suspicion. Gardiner was (or was thought to have been) employed in drawing up a list of Cranmer's errors in the Faith. His condemnation was part of a deal with which Cranmer gained the king's full support: Cranmer's higher-ranked enemies were allowed to remain in place, while a charge of collusion with Cardinal Pole was brought against Gardiner.
He wrote a tract against John Frith (dated 1 August, 1534).
Gardiner's indictment states that he was executed for endeavouring "to deprive the King of his dignity, title, and name of Supreme Head of the English and Irish Church". Thomas Haywood, who had been condemned with him, was afterward pardoned on recanting his opinions. His other companions at the bar were John Larke, and John Ireland, who had once been Thomas More's chaplain. They suffered the death of traitors at Tyburn.
- This article incorporates text from the entry Bl. German Gardiner in Catholic Encyclopedia of 1913, a publication now in the public domain.
- Bede Camm, Lives of English Martyrs (London, 1904), i, 543-7;
- John Strype, Cranmer (1694), 163-8;
- More, Life of More (1726), 27