Droitwich (UK Parliament constituency)
Droitwich was the name of a constituency of the House of Commons of England in 1295, again from 1554 of the House of Commons of Great Britain from 1707 to 1800 and of the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1801 to 1918. It was a parliamentary borough in Worcestershire, represented by two Members of Parliament until 1832, by one member from 1832 to 1885; the name was transferred to a county constituency electing one MP from 1885 until 1918. The borough consisted of three parishes and parts of two others in the town of Droitwich, a market town which for many centuries depended on the salt trade for its prosperity; when Droitwich's right to return MPs was restored in 1554, there was only one salt pit in the borough, this became the basis of Droitwich's unique franchise: the right to vote was vested in those burgesses who owned shares in the pit giving them the right to draw brine. This was established by a resolution of the House of Commons in 1690. Although these details of the franchise were unique to Droitwich, in practice it in many ways resembled a burgage borough, like most of those came under the influence of a local magnate.
The Foley family, Worcestershire industrialists, controlled Droitwich from the middle of the 17th century, although they seem to have allowed the townspeople to choose one of the two members at some periods. There was no contested election between 1747 and 1832, by the time of the Reform Act it was estimated that only 28 men had the right to vote. In 1831, the population of the borough was 2,487, contained 533 houses. However, the boundaries were revised by the provisions of the Great Reform Act, taking in the rest of the town and some adjoining villages, so that the new constituency adjoined the borough of Worcester to the south; this increased the population to 5,992, enough for Droitwich to retain one of its two MPs, there were 243 voters on the register for the first election under the reformed franchise, in 1832. There was a further slight enlargement of the boundaries to the east in 1868. However, the constituency was not big enough to keep its MP under the Third Reform Act, which came into effect at the general election of 1885.
The borough was abolished, but the town's name was applied to the new county division in which it was placed, formally called The Mid or Droitwich Division of Worcestershire. This was a constituency with a considerable industrial vote, including the heavy industrial town of Stourbridge and the carpet-weaving town of Stourport-on-Severn, but contained a substantial middle-class residential population, boosted by the votes of the Kidderminster freeholders, as well as agricultural interests. With a popular sitting Liberal MP turning Liberal Unionist in 1886, this was enough to keep Droitwich a safe Unionist seat except in the Liberal landslide of 1906; the constituency was abolished in 1918, being divided between the redrawn Kidderminster and Evesham constituencies. The constituency was re-established during the reign of Queen Mary I; the following were members of Parliament during the succeeding period: Pakington was appointed Secretary of State for War and the Colonies, requiring a by-election.
Pakington was appointed First Lord of the Admiralty. Pakington was appointed First Lord of the Admiralty. Pakington was appointed Secretary of State for War. General Election 1914/15: Another General Election was required to take place before the end of 1915; the political parties had been making preparations for an election to take place and by the July 1914, the following candidates had been selected.
Battle of Dunkirk
The Battle of Dunkirk was a military operation that took place in Dunkirk, during the Second World War. The battle was fought between the Allies and Nazi Germany; as part of the Battle of France on the Western Front, the Battle of Dunkirk was the defence and evacuation to Britain of British and other Allied forces in Europe from 26 May to 4 June 1940. After the Phoney War, the Battle of France began in earnest on 10 May 1940. To the east, the German Army Group B advanced westward. In response, the Supreme Allied Commander—French General Maurice Gamelin—initiated "Plan D" and entered Belgium to engage the Germans in the Netherlands; the plan relied on the Maginot Line fortifications along the German–French border, but German forces had crossed through most of the Netherlands before the French forces arrived. Gamelin instead committed the forces under his command, three mechanised armies, the French First and Seventh Armies and the British Expeditionary Force, to the River Dyle. On 14 May, German Army Group A burst through the Ardennes and advanced to the west toward Sedan turned northward to the English Channel, using Generalfeldmarschall Erich von Manstein's plan Sichelschnitt under the German strategy Fall Gelb flanking the Allied forces.
A series of Allied counter-attacks—including the Battle of Arras—failed to sever the German spearhead, which reached the coast on 20 May, separating the BEF near Armentières, the French First Army, the Belgian Army further to the north from the majority of French troops south of the German penetration. After reaching the Channel, the German forces swung north along the coast, threatening to capture the ports and trap the British and French before they could evacuate to Britain. In one of the most debated decisions of the war, the Germans halted their advance on Dunkirk. Contrary to popular belief, what became known as the "Halt Order" did not originate with Adolf Hitler. Generalobersten Gerd von Rundstedt and Günther von Kluge suggested that the German forces around the Dunkirk pocket should cease their advance on the port and consolidate to avoid an Allied breakout. Hitler sanctioned the order on 24 May with the support of the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht; the army was to halt for three days, which gave the Allies sufficient time to organise the Dunkirk evacuation and build a defensive line.
While more than 330,000 Allied troops were rescued and French military forces nonetheless sustained heavy casualties and were forced to abandon nearly all their equipment. On 10 May 1940, Winston Churchill became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. By 26 May, the BEF and the French 1st Army were bottled up in a corridor to the sea, about 60 mi deep and 15–25 mi wide. Most of the British forces were still around Lille, over 40 mi from Dunkirk, with the French farther south. Two massive German armies flanked them. General Fedor von Bock's Army Group B was to the east, General Gerd von Rundstedt's Army Group A to the west. Both officers were promoted to field marshal. On 24 May, Hitler visited General von Rundstedt's headquarters at Charleville; the terrain around Dunkirk was thought unsuitable for armour. Von Rundstedt advised him the infantry should attack the British forces at Arras, where the British had proved capable of significant action, while Kleist's armour held the line west and south of Dunkirk to pounce on the Allied forces retreating before Army Group B.
Hitler, familiar with Flanders' marshes from the First World War, agreed. This order allowed the Germans to consolidate their gains and prepare for a southward advance against the remaining French forces. Luftwaffe commander Hermann Göring asked for the chance to destroy the forces in Dunkirk; the Allied forces' destruction was thus assigned to the air force while the German infantry organised in Army Group B. Von Rundstedt called this "one of the great turning points of the war."The true reason for the decision to halt the German armour on 24 May is still debated. One theory is that Von Rundstedt and Hitler agreed to conserve the armour for Fall Rot, an operation to the south, it is possible that the Luftwaffe's closer ties than the army's to the Nazi Party contributed to Hitler's approval of Göring's request. Another theory—which few historians have given credence—is that Hitler was still trying to establish diplomatic peace with Britain before Operation Barbarossa. Although von Rundstedt after the war stated his suspicions that Hitler wanted "to help the British", based on alleged praise of the British Empire during a visit to his headquarters, little evidence that Hitler wanted to let the Allies escape exists apart from a self-exculpatory statement by Hitler himself in 1945.
The historian Brian Bond wrote: Few historians now accept the view that Hitler's behaviour was influenced by the desire to let the British off in hope that they would accept a compromise peace. True, in his political testament dated 26 February 1945 Hitler lamented that Churchill was "quite unable to appreciate the sporting spirit" in which he had refrained from annihilating British Expeditionary Force, at Dunkirk, but this hardly squares with the contemporary record. Directive No. 13, issued by the Supreme Headquarters on 24 May called for the annihilation of the French and Belgian forces in the pocket, while the Luftwaffe was ordered to prevent the escape of the English forces across the channel. Whatever the reasons for Hitler's decision, the Germans confidently believed the Allied troops were doomed. American journalist William Shirer reported on 25 May, "German military circles here tonight put it flatly, they said th
James VI and I
James VI and I was King of Scotland as James VI from 24 July 1567 and King of England and Ireland as James I from the union of the Scottish and English crowns on 24 March 1603 until his death in 1625. The kingdoms of Scotland and England were individual sovereign states, with their own parliaments and laws, though both were ruled by James in personal union. James was the son of Mary, Queen of Scots, a great-great-grandson of Henry VII, King of England and Lord of Ireland, positioning him to accede to all three thrones. James succeeded to the Scottish throne at the age of thirteen months, after his mother was compelled to abdicate in his favour. Four different regents governed during his minority, which ended in 1578, though he did not gain full control of his government until 1583. In 1603, he succeeded the last Tudor monarch of England and Ireland, Elizabeth I, who died childless, he continued to reign in all three kingdoms for 22 years, a period known after him as the Jacobean era, until his death in 1625 at the age of 58.
After the Union of the Crowns, he based himself in England from 1603, only returning to Scotland once in 1617, styled himself "King of Great Britain and Ireland". He was a major advocate of a single parliament for Scotland. In his reign, the Plantation of Ulster and British colonisation of the Americas began. At 57 years and 246 days, James's reign in Scotland was longer than those of any of his predecessors, he achieved most of his aims in Scotland but faced great difficulties in England, including the Gunpowder Plot in 1605 and repeated conflicts with the English Parliament. Under James, the "Golden Age" of Elizabethan literature and drama continued, with writers such as William Shakespeare, John Donne, Ben Jonson, Sir Francis Bacon contributing to a flourishing literary culture. James himself was a talented scholar, the author of works such as Daemonologie, The True Law of Free Monarchies, Basilikon Doron, he sponsored the translation of the Bible into English that would be named after him: the Authorised King James Version.
Sir Anthony Weldon claimed that James had been termed "the wisest fool in Christendom", an epithet associated with his character since. Since the latter half of the 20th century, historians have tended to revise James's reputation and treat him as a serious and thoughtful monarch, he was committed to a peace policy, tried to avoid involvement in religious wars the Thirty Years' War that devastated much of Central Europe. He tried but failed to prevent the rise of hawkish elements in the English Parliament who wanted war with Spain. James was the only son of Mary, Queen of Scots, her second husband, Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley. Both Mary and Darnley were great-grandchildren of Henry VII of England through Margaret Tudor, the older sister of Henry VIII. Mary's rule over Scotland was insecure, she and her husband, being Roman Catholics, faced a rebellion by Protestant noblemen. During Mary's and Darnley's difficult marriage, Darnley secretly allied himself with the rebels and conspired in the murder of the Queen's private secretary, David Rizzio, just three months before James's birth.
James was born on 19 June 1566 at Edinburgh Castle, as the eldest son and heir apparent of the monarch automatically became Duke of Rothesay and Prince and Great Steward of Scotland. He was baptised "Charles James" or "James Charles" on 17 December 1566 in a Catholic ceremony held at Stirling Castle, his godparents were Charles IX of France, Elizabeth I of England, Emmanuel Philibert, Duke of Savoy. Mary refused to let the Archbishop of St Andrews, whom she referred to as "a pocky priest", spit in the child's mouth, as was the custom; the subsequent entertainment, devised by Frenchman Bastian Pagez, featured men dressed as satyrs and sporting tails, to which the English guests took offence, thinking the satyrs "done against them". James's father, was murdered on 10 February 1567 at Kirk o' Field, Edinburgh in revenge for the killing of Rizzio. James inherited his father's titles of Duke of Earl of Ross. Mary was unpopular, her marriage on 15 May 1567 to James Hepburn, 4th Earl of Bothwell, suspected of murdering Darnley, heightened widespread bad feeling towards her.
In June 1567, Protestant rebels imprisoned her in Loch Leven Castle. She was forced to abdicate on 24 July 1567 in favour of the infant James and to appoint her illegitimate half-brother, James Stewart, Earl of Moray, as regent; the care of James was entrusted to the Earl and Countess of Mar, "to be conserved and upbrought" in the security of Stirling Castle. James was anointed King of Scots at the age of thirteen months at the Church of the Holy Rude, Stirling, by Adam Bothwell, Bishop of Orkney, on 29 July 1567; the sermon at the coronation was preached by John Knox. In accordance with the religious beliefs of most of the Scottish ruling class, James was brought up as a member of the Protestant Church of Scotland, the Kirk; the Privy Council selected George Buchanan, Peter Young, Adam Erskine, David Erskine as James's preceptors or tutors. As the young king's senior tutor, Buchanan subjected James to regular beatings but instilled in him a lifelong passion for literature and learning. Buchanan sought to turn James into a God-fearing, Protestant king who accepted the limitations of monarchy, as outlined in his treatise De Jure Regni apud Scotos.
In 1568, Mary escaped from her i
George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham
George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham, KG, was an English courtier and patron of the arts. He was a favourite and also a lover of King James I of England. Despite a patchy political and military record, Buckingham remained at the height of royal favour for the first three years of the reign of King Charles I, until a disgruntled army officer assassinated him. George Villiers was born in Brooksby, Leicestershire, on 28 August 1592, the son of the minor gentleman Sir George Villiers, his mother Mary, daughter of Anthony Beaumont of Glenfield, widowed early, educated her son for a courtier's life. She sent him to travel in France with John Eliot. Villiers took to the training set by his mother: he could dance and fence well, spoke a little French, overall became an excellent student. Godfrey Goodman declared Villiers "the handsomest-bodied man in all of England. In August 1614 at age twenty-one, Villiers caught the eye of James I at a hunt in Apethorpe. Opponents of the king's favourite Robert Carr saw an opportunity to displace the Earl of Somerset and began promoting Villiers.
Money was raised to purchase Villiers a new wardrobe, intense lobbying secured his appointment as Royal Cup-bearer, a position that allowed him to make conversation with the king. Villiers began to appear as a dancer in masques from 1615, in which he could exhibit his grace of movement and beauty of body, a recognised avenue to royal favour since the time of Elizabeth I. Under the king's patronage Villiers advanced through the ranks of the nobility, his court appointments grew in importance. In 1615 he was knighted as a Gentleman of the Bedchamber. In 1616, when he was made the King's Master of Horse, he was elevated to the peerage as Baron Whaddon, Viscount Villiers, made a Knight of the Garter; the next year he was made Earl and in 1618 promoted Marquess of Buckingham finally in 1623 Duke of Buckingham. Villiers' new rank allowed him to dance side by side with the royal heir Charles I, with whom his friendship developed through his tutoring of the prince in dance. Villiers was appointed Lord Admiral of the Fleet in 1619, in 1623 the former dukedom of Buckingham was recreated for him when he was negotiating abroad on the king's behalf.
Since reductions in the peerage had taken place during the Tudor period, Buckingham was now the highest-ranking subject outside the royal family as the only duke in England. Villiers was the last in a succession of handsome young favourites on whom the king lavished affection and patronage, although the personal relationship between the two has been much debated. James's nickname for Buckingham was "Steenie", after St. Stephen, said to have had "the face of an angel". Speaking to the Privy Council in 1617, James tried to clarify the situation in the face of rumours: You may be sure that I love the Earl of Buckingham more than anyone else, more than you who are here assembled. I wish to speak in my own behalf and not to have it thought to be a defect, for Jesus Christ did the same, therefore I cannot be blamed. Christ had John, I have George. Historian David M. Bergeron claims "Buckingham became James's last and greatest lover" citing flowery letters that followed 17th century styles of masculinity.
Other scholars say there was no physical sodomy, note that the king's many enemies never accused him of sodomy. In a letter to Buckingham in 1623, the King ended with the salutation, "God bless you, my sweet child and wife, grant that ye may be a comfort to your dear father and husband". Buckingham reciprocated the King's affections, writing back to James: "I so love your person, adore all your other parts, which are more than one man had", "I desire only to live in the world for your sake" and "I will live and die a lover of you". Restoration of Apethorpe Palace in 2004–8 revealed a unknown passage linking his bedchamber with that of James. Buckingham himself provides ambiguous evidence, writing to James many years that he had pondered: "whether you loved me now…better than at the time which I shall never forget at Farnham, where the bed's head could not be found between the master and his dog". Speculation about the close relationship between king and favourite was not confined to the kingdom, moreover.
It was carried back to France by the poet Théophile de Viau, resident in England in 1621 and had addressed to Buckingham the flattering ode Au marquis du Boukinquan. On his return, he went on to justify his own masculine preferences by a witty appeal both to Classical mythology and to the contemporary gossip: Apollo with his songs Debauched young Hyacinth... And that learned English king, Didn’t he fuck Buckingham? Until James I died in 1625, Buckingham was the king's constant companion and closest advisor, enjoying control of all royal patronage. Buckingham used his influence to prodigiously enrich his relatives and advance their social positions, which soured public opinion towards him. In his rise to power, Buckingham became connected with jurist Francis Bacon. Bacon wrote letters of advice to the young favourite and drafted the patent of nobility when Buckingham ascended to the peerage. With Buckingham's support, Bacon was appointed Lord Chancellor in 1618. In gratitude, Bacon honoured Buckingham's many requests for favours from the court for friends and allies.
Following an investigation by Parliament into royal grants of monopoly, financial peculation and corrupt officials, Bacon was convicted of corruption and forced into retirement. Neither Buckingham nor the King attempted to intervene on Bacon's behalf. Many of Bu
Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Canada's southern border with the United States is the world's longest bi-national land border, its capital is Ottawa, its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto and Vancouver. As a whole, Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land area being dominated by forest and tundra, its population is urbanized, with over 80 percent of its inhabitants concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, many near the southern border. Canada's climate varies across its vast area, ranging from arctic weather in the north, to hot summers in the southern regions, with four distinct seasons. Various indigenous peoples have inhabited what is now Canada for thousands of years prior to European colonization. Beginning in the 16th century and French expeditions explored, settled, along the Atlantic coast.
As a consequence of various armed conflicts, France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces; this began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster of 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act of 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament. Canada is a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy in the Westminster tradition, with Elizabeth II as its queen and a prime minister who serves as the chair of the federal cabinet and head of government; the country is a realm within the Commonwealth of Nations, a member of the Francophonie and bilingual at the federal level. It ranks among the highest in international measurements of government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic freedom, education.
It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many other countries. Canada's long and complex relationship with the United States has had a significant impact on its economy and culture. A developed country, Canada has the sixteenth-highest nominal per capita income globally as well as the twelfth-highest ranking in the Human Development Index, its advanced economy is the tenth-largest in the world, relying chiefly upon its abundant natural resources and well-developed international trade networks. Canada is part of several major international and intergovernmental institutions or groupings including the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the G7, the Group of Ten, the G20, the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. While a variety of theories have been postulated for the etymological origins of Canada, the name is now accepted as coming from the St. Lawrence Iroquoian word kanata, meaning "village" or "settlement".
In 1535, indigenous inhabitants of the present-day Quebec City region used the word to direct French explorer Jacques Cartier to the village of Stadacona. Cartier used the word Canada to refer not only to that particular village but to the entire area subject to Donnacona. From the 16th to the early 18th century "Canada" referred to the part of New France that lay along the Saint Lawrence River. In 1791, the area became two British colonies called Upper Canada and Lower Canada collectively named the Canadas. Upon Confederation in 1867, Canada was adopted as the legal name for the new country at the London Conference, the word Dominion was conferred as the country's title. By the 1950s, the term Dominion of Canada was no longer used by the United Kingdom, which considered Canada a "Realm of the Commonwealth"; the government of Louis St. Laurent ended the practice of using'Dominion' in the Statutes of Canada in 1951. In 1982, the passage of the Canada Act, bringing the Constitution of Canada under Canadian control, referred only to Canada, that year the name of the national holiday was changed from Dominion Day to Canada Day.
The term Dominion was used to distinguish the federal government from the provinces, though after the Second World War the term federal had replaced dominion. Indigenous peoples in present-day Canada include the First Nations, Métis, the last being a mixed-blood people who originated in the mid-17th century when First Nations and Inuit people married European settlers; the term "Aboriginal" as a collective noun is a specific term of art used in some legal documents, including the Constitution Act 1982. The first inhabitants of North America are hypothesized to have migrated from Siberia by way of the Bering land bridge and arrived at least 14,000 years ago; the Paleo-Indian archeological sites at Old Crow Flats and Bluefish Caves are two of the oldest sites of human habitation in Canada. The characteristics of Canadian indigenous societies included permanent settlements, complex societal hierarchies, trading networks; some of these cultures had collapsed by the time European explorers arrived in the late 15th and early 16th centuries and have only been discovered through archeological investigations.
The indigenous population at the time of the first European settlements is estimated to have been between 200,000
Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield, was a British statesman of the Conservative Party who twice served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. He played a central role in the creation of the modern Conservative Party, defining its policies and its broad outreach. Disraeli is remembered for his influential voice in world affairs, his political battles with the Liberal Party leader William Ewart Gladstone, his one-nation conservatism or "Tory democracy", he made the Conservatives the party most identified with the power of the British Empire. He is the only British prime minister to have been of Jewish birth, he was a novelist, publishing works of fiction as prime minister. Disraeli was born in Bloomsbury a part of Middlesex, his father left Judaism after a dispute at his synagogue. After several unsuccessful attempts, Disraeli entered the House of Commons in 1837. In 1846 the Prime Minister at the time, Sir Robert Peel, split the party over his proposal to repeal the Corn Laws, which involved ending the tariff on imported grain.
Disraeli clashed with Peel in the House of Commons. Disraeli became a major figure in the party; when Lord Derby, the party leader, thrice formed governments in the 1850s and 1860s, Disraeli served as Chancellor of the Exchequer and Leader of the House of Commons. Upon Derby's retirement in 1868, Disraeli became Prime Minister before losing that year's general election, he returned to the Opposition, before leading the party to winning a majority in the 1874 general election. He maintained a close friendship with Queen Victoria, who in 1876 appointed him Earl of Beaconsfield. Disraeli's second term was dominated by the Eastern Question—the slow decay of the Ottoman Empire and the desire of other European powers, such as Russia, to gain at its expense. Disraeli arranged for the British to purchase a major interest in the Suez Canal Company. In 1878, faced with Russian victories against the Ottomans, he worked at the Congress of Berlin to obtain peace in the Balkans at terms favourable to Britain and unfavourable to Russia, its longstanding enemy.
This diplomatic victory over Russia established Disraeli as one of Europe's leading statesmen. World events thereafter moved against the Conservatives. Controversial wars in Afghanistan and South Africa undermined his public support, he angered British farmers by refusing to reinstitute the Corn Laws in response to poor harvests and cheap imported grain. With Gladstone conducting a massive speaking campaign, his Liberals bested Disraeli's Conservatives at the 1880 general election. In his final months, Disraeli led the Conservatives in Opposition, he had throughout his career written novels, beginning in 1826, he published his last completed novel, shortly before he died at the age of 76. Disraeli was born on 21 December 1804 at 6 King's Road, Bedford Row, London, the second child and eldest son of Isaac D'Israeli, a literary critic and historian, Maria, née Basevi; the family was of Sephardic Jewish Italian mercantile background. All Disraeli's grandparents and great-grandparents were born in Italy.
Disraeli romanticised his origins, claiming that his father's family was of grand Spanish and Venetian descent. Historians differ on Disraeli's motives for rewriting his family history: Bernard Glassman argues that it was intended to give him status comparable to that of England's ruling elite. Disraeli's siblings were Sarah, Naphtali and James, he was close to his sister, on affectionate but more distant terms with his surviving brothers. Details of his schooling are sketchy. From the age of about six he was a day boy at a dame school in Islington that one of his biographers described as "for those days a high-class establishment". Two years or so—the exact date has not been ascertained—he was sent as a boarder to Rev John Potticary's St Piran's school at Blackheath. While he was there events at the family home changed the course of Disraeli's education and of his whole life: his father renounced Judaism and had the four children baptised into the Church of England in July and August 1817. Isaac D'Israeli had never taken religion seriously, but had remained a conforming member of the Bevis Marks Synagogue.
His father, the elder Benjamin, was a devout member. After Benjamin senior died in 1816 Isaac felt free to leave the congregation following a second dispute. Isaac's friend Sharon Turner, a solicitor, convinced him that although he could comfortably remain unattached to any formal religion it would be disadvantageous to the children if they did so. Turner stood as godfather when Benjamin was baptised, aged twelve, on 31 July 1817. Conversion to Christianity enabled Disraeli to contemplate a career in politics. Britain in the early-nineteenth century was not a anti-Semitic society, there had been Members of Parliament from Jewish families since Samson Gideon in 1770, but until 1858, MPs were required to take the oath of allegiance "on the true faith of a Christian", necessitating at least nominal conversion. It is not known whether Disraeli formed any ambition for a parliamentary career at