This is the first in-depth study of the works of Isaac D’Israeli, the father of Benjamin Disraeli, the Prime Minister. Born in London in 1766 of an immigrant Jewish merchant, D'Israeli became a well-known man of letters. By the time of his death in 1848 his ever-renewing Curiosities of Litera-ture had gone through fourteen editions, establishing him as one of the most popular essayists of his day. In addition he produced poems, novels, miscellanies, notable historical and sociological studies, and an ambitious history of English literature.
D’Israeli was a lively and engaged author. He was enthralled by the promise of the French Revolution and then, disenchanted, warned of its abuses and threat in his nov-els Vaurieni and Despotism. He took aim at the follies of pseudo-scientists, quack pro-jectors, and crackpot philosophers of the time in his satirical novel Flim-Flams. He in¬fluenced the socio-political ideology of his son with his three-volume Commentaries of the Life and Reign of King Charles I. and his challenging The Genius of Judaism.
Benjamin Disraeli recognized the achieve¬ment of his father: “For sixty years, he largely contributed to form the taste, charm the leisure, and direct the studious disposi-tions of the great body of the public. His works have extensively and curiously illus-trated the literary and political history of our country.”