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By Terry Jenkins

Benjamin Disraeli, Earl of Beaconsfield, is still the most attention-grabbing and enigmatic figures in British political background. He was once the romantic radical, who went directly to lead the Conservative social gathering; the city, center type Jew, who pointed out himself with a ruling elite according to the aristocracy, land and Anglicanism. This learn of Disraeli seeks to supply a balanced assurance of the complete of his occupation, giving equivalent weight to the lengthy interval spent as chief of the competition, in addition to reading his upward push to the Conservative management and his next list as major Minister. An evaluate is out there of Disraeli's contribution to the late-Victorian Conservative party's political ascendancy, and particularly to its photo because the 'national' celebration.

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The Maynooth grant was finally carried, with the help of Lord John Russell and the Opposition, but onehalf of Conservative MPs voted against it. 26 Imagination and Politics It was mentioned earlier that Disraeli had been careful to support Peel's Free Trade measures in 1842, and he even went so far as to claim, in a letter to a newspaper editor the following year, that Free Trade was simply a 'recurrence to old Tory principles', a policy in the best traditions of Bolingbroke and PittY In 1846, however, an opportunity arose for Disraeli to align himself with the most powerful Conservative element of all, the agricultural interest, when Peel disclosed that it was his intention to apply the principle of Free Trade to the land by repealing the protective tariffs known as the Corn Laws.

The only consolation was that Russell's attempt to harness anti-Catholic feeling in the Country, by passing the Ecclesiastical Titles Act in 1851, made a Liberal-Pee lite junction equally problematic. Serious policy differences between the Conservatives and Peelites undoubtedly existed, but the personal dimension was no less important. As Stanley had recognised, in january 1849, there was one individual in particular on the Conservative side who was 'the most powerful repellent we could offer to any repentant or hesitating Peelites.

The final night of the debate had been notable for the clash between Disraeli and Gladstone - the beginning of their long political rivalry - accompanied, appropriately enough, by the sound of a violent thunderstorm outside. E. M. Whitty, a journalist, provided the following description of the scene: 'it was the most superb parliamentary duel I ever witnessed .... it was a real debate, in which speech did affect votes, and in which each orator was exhausting his powers to obtain a majority ....

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