Memorable Quotations from Benjamin Disraeli

Book Cover

By Jim Dell


Memorable Quotations from Benjamin Disraeli
(Kindle Book at Amazon)

Benjamin Disraeli (1804–81), 1st earl of Beaconsfield was a British statesman and writer. Of Jewish ancestry, he was baptized a Christian in 1817. His political essays and novels secured him an enduring place in English literature. Elected to Parliament in 1837, he grew into an exceptional, practical, and scathingly witty politician. In 1848 he became leader of the Tory protectionists. Disraeli supported a political partnership with the working classes, and as chancellor of the exchequer (1852, 1858–59, 1866–68), he “educated his party” (now the Conservative party) to pass the somewhat radical Reform Bill of 1867, which enfranchised about 2 million men, largely of the working class, and significantly helped his party. He became prime minister in 1868 but lost the office to Gladstone that same year. His second ministry (1874–80) generated many domestic reforms but is notable for its forceful foreign policy. The annexation of the Fiji islands (1874) and the Transvaal (1877), and the wars against the Afghans (1878–79) and the Zulus (1879), declared England an imperial world power. Disraeli's purchase of controlling shares of the Suez Canal strengthened British interests in the Mediterranean. After the Russo-Turkish War, he persuaded Turkey to cede Cyprus to Great Britain, and through the Congress of Berlin he lessened Russian power in the Balkans. A favorite of Queen Victoria, he had her crowned empress of India in 1876. His policy of democracy and imperialism energized his party.



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