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A political novel by B. Disraeli, published 1844. Disraeli declares that his purpose in the trilogy Coningsby—Sybil—Tancred was to describe the influence of the main political parties on the condition of the people, and to indicate how those conditions might be improved. Coningsby celebrates the new Tories of the ‘Young England’ set, whose opposition to Whiggery and whose concern at the treatment of the poor and the injustice of the franchise is strongly reflected in the narrative.

The high‐spirited and generous Coningsby, whose parents both die, is sent to Eton by his wealthy grandfather, Lord Monmouth, who represents the old type of oppressive Tory aristocrat. There Coningsby saves the life of his friend Oswald Millbank, the son of a Lancashire manufacturer, detested by Monmouth. At Cambridge and thereafter Coningsby develops political and social ideals and meanwhile falls in love with Oswald's sister Edith. His behaviour angers Monmouth. When he dies Coningsby finds he has been disinherited and has to work in the Inns of Court. Gradually Millbank, who had opposed Coningsby's marriage to his daughter, realizes the young man's worth; he helps him to stand for Parliament and sees him returned. Edith and Coningsby are married and Coningsby's fortunes are restored.

Subjects: Literature.

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Benjamin Disraeli (1804—1881) prime minister and novelist

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