Benjamin Disraeli: Lothair

(3733 words)

Lothair (1870) was composed in year following Benjamin Disraeli’s first term as Prime Minister, which ended in late 1868 with the Conservative Party’s defeat in the November general election. It became an instant bestseller, going through seven editions in 1870. Despite its initial popularity and critical praise—both Edmond Gosse and J. A. Froude judged it to be the best of Disraeli’s novels, a judgment later endorsed by Robert Blake, who thought it “perhaps the best constructed work from Disraeli’s pen” (520)—for the last 50 years it has been virtually ignored by both readers and critics despite appearing in Oxford’s English Novels series in 1975.

The incident that seems to have provided Disraeli with …

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Clausson, Nils. "Lothair". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 April 2012
[, accessed 01 October 2016.]