Disraeli’s ultimate aesthetic triumph was his political career. Before he was elected to Parliament, he spoke of the day when he would become Prime Minister. His career was predicated on his ability to imagine himself in a position and then to find the resources to attain that position. By position, I mean not only a post but a political attitude, stance or policy. Disraeli instinctively adopted the role necessary to further his political career. As Robert Blake has remarked, ‘He knew that he had to preserve an iron control over his voice and countenance if he was to avoid revealing the passion and ambition which seethed in his mind. Hence his assumption of that magniloquent half-ironic half-serious manner which so disconcerted those who had expected the ordinary self-deprecatory candour of the English upper class.’1
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