Her Majesty's Invitation
Letter to Disraeli from Queen Victoria, 19 Feb. 1874
Dep. Hughenden 78/1, fols. 5r-v
Following the Liberal defeat in the 1874 election Gladstone hesitated over whether the Government should resign immediately or fall back on precedent and wait until defeated in Parliament. The Queen favoured a quick resolution. Here she conveys news of the resignation of Gladstone and his colleagues, invites Disraeli to form a new government and sets the time for their meeting. These few words ushered in Disraeli's last Government. It had a solid parliamentary base but like his Labour successor as Prime Minister a century later in 1974, Harold Wilson, he was losing his zest for governing.
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