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Gladstone : heroic minister, 1865-1898 by…

Gladstone : heroic minister, 1865-1898 (1999)

by Richard Shannon

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807824860, Hardcover)

William Ewart Gladstone was perhaps the greatest colossus of the Victorian Age. Along with his formidable rival, Benjamin Disraeli, he dominated Britain's political scene from the moment of his appointment as chancellor of the exchequer in Aberdeen's famous coalition ministry until his resignation as prime minister in March 1894, four years before his death. In the intervening years, he held the office of prime minister four times.

With this volume, Richard Shannon completes his magisterial biography of Gladstone. Tracing Gladstone's career from his rise to eminence in 1865 until his death in 1898, Shannon documents his emergence as the dominant personality in the Liberal Party, his activities as a statesman, and his decades-long battle with Disraeli.

In his analysis, Shannon pays particular attention to Gladstone's attempts to integrate his religion with his career. Profoundly influenced by his Anglican Christianity, Gladstone approached his causes with a missionary fervor, Shannon argues. This tenacity is perhaps best illustrated by Gladstone's unyielding support of Irish home rule—a position so at odds with Liberal policies that it caused many Liberals to ally themselves with the Conservatives, thereby instigating the decline of Gladstone's own party.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:35 -0400)

This important new single-volume study of W. E. Gladstone offers a readily accessible account of one of the most important and consequential political careers in modern British and Irish history. It is a story of how a statesman of almost superhuman energy and forcefulness of character strove to realise God's purposes, as he saw them, in the twisting and slippery paths of public service. Striving to realise God's purposes is the theme at the centre of this reading of Gladstone's life and career. For too long his intense religious faith has been exiled to the margins of the story, denied crucial explanatory power. Richard Shannon puts this right.

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