(b. 1807. Canterbury, d. 1877, Ramsgate)


English sculptor. He was apprenticed to William Behnes in 1822 and studied at the Royal Academy (1823-26), winning a silver medal for sculpture in 1826. In 1827 he became an assistant to Francis Chantrey, with whom he remained until the latter's death in 1841; he then took over Chantrey's studio and completed his unfinished works, including the bronze equestrian statue of Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington (1841-44; London, Royal Exchange).

In 1852 Weekes was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy (ARA) and a full member of the Royal Academy in 1860; from 1869 until his death he was Professor of Sculpture there. He was the most successful establishment sculptor of the mid-Victorian period. His sculpture and writings, more than any other contemporary sculptor's, embodied current beliefs in fusing classicism and realism. Although he essentially maintained Chantrey's outlook, he was more intellectual than his mentor and had a wider imaginative range. Like Chantrey, he varied the format of his many portrait busts according to the subject; they ranged from the classical herm type in Henry William Whitbread (marble, 1864; Southill Park, Beds) to historical realism in Sir Joshua Reynolds (marble, 1874; London, Leicester Square).