Talk:Benjamin Disraeli

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Deleted misattributed misquote


I removed a statement from the attributed section: "You don't even know who I am." This is from "Family Guy", the episode "One If By Clam, Two If By Sea":

Lois: Peter! He's charming! All british men are!
Peter: Yeah right... that's what they said about Benjamin Disraeli.
--- (cut to man writing at a desk circa 1850) ---
Benjamin Disraeli: [to the camera] You don't even know who I am.

This may be somewhat amusing in a surreal sort of way, but it hardly deserves to be placed among serious attributions. ~ Kalki 07:46, 9 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Your lordship's mistress


I deleted the following quote:

  • Once at a social gathering, Gladstone said to Disraeli, "I predict, Sir, that you will die either by hanging or of some vile disease". Disraeli replied, "That all depends, sir, upon whether I embrace your principles or your mistress."

This is a misquotation of Samuel Foote & the Earl of Sandwich, not Gladstone & Disraeli. ~~ AllanHainey (from history, 16:04, 16 Jun 2005)

Thanks for your cleanup! Aphaia

about dining with Gladstone and Disraeli


Interesting set of quotes about Disraeli here... I'm new to Wikiquotes, so I don't fee Bold enough to make any changes myself.

Jennie Jerome was Winston Churchill's mother, an American. "When I left the dining room after sitting next to Gladstone, I thought he was the cleverest man in England. But when I sat next to Disraeli I left feeling that I was the cleverest woman."

LAMB: I'll just read a couple. One: "As a general rule nobody has money who ought to have it."

LAMB: Two: "What is the use of diamond necklaces if you cannot help a friend into Parliament?"

LAMB: Three: "Marriage is a mighty instrument."

LAMB: Four: "Life is a masquerade."

LAMB: Five: "Desperation is sometimes as powerful and inspiring as genius."

LAMB: Six: "As for religion, generally, if a man believe in his maker and does his duty to his neighbor, in my mind that is sufficient."

LAMB: Seven: "It is not good taste to believe in the devil." LAMB: Eight: "A little knowledge of the world is a dangerous thing, especially in literature."

LAMB: Nine: "I prefer the society of a first-rate woman to that of any man."

LAMB: Eleven: "Never dine out in a high-neck dress."

LAMB: Another saying you took out of Endymion: "Only let a man be able to drive into Bamford on market day and get two of three linen drapers to take off their hats to him and he will be happy enough and always ready to die for our glorious constitution."

LAMB: Twelve: "The most precious stone must be cut and polished."

LAMB: Thirteen: "Without tact you can learn nothing. Tact teaches you when to be silent."

LAMB: Fourteen: "I think life would be very insipid if all of our lots were the same."

LAMB: Two more. Eighteen: "No one can be patient who is not independent."

"Every procession must end."

"Neither friends nor trivals are everlasting, but only profits"


Dear Guys, I am a Chinese Wikipedian. There is a sentence that been told from Benjamin Disraeli had been spreaded for long time in Chinese language societies, which is written in English as "Neither friends nor trivals are everlasting, but only profits". However i made some research and there are no evidence that Benjamin Disraeli had mentioned such sentence, event to google this sentence, the first results are came from Chinese web pages. I am wondering if it is possible that somebody could identify who mentioned that or it can be a iron case that Benjamin Disraeli had never ever mention this sentence. Thank all! --Prinz.W 12:39, 17 July 2011 (UTC)Reply

<Response to Prinz.W>I believe that phrase may be inspired by Winston Churchill: "There are no eternal friends or eternal enemies, only eternal interests." However, the meaning of the original statement is not quite the same.

Quoted in Carnegie's 'How to Win Friends'


Does anybody know if this is a correct attribution?

"'Talk to people about themselves,' said Disraeli, one of the shrewdest men who ever ruled the British Empire. 'Talk to people about themselves and they will listen four hours.'" p115 of How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie, Revised Edition.

I cannot find any reputable sources which confirm that Disraeli said this.

John Brown 87 (talk) 05:32, 1 April 2013 (UTC)Reply


  • We make our fortunes and we call them fate.
    • Frequently attributed to Disraeli (example).
  • Characters do not change. Opinions alter, but characters are only developed.
  • England is governed not by logic but by parliament.
  • Charles Greville was the most conceited person with whom I have ever been brought in contact, though I have read Cicero and known Bulwer-Lytton.
    • Attributed by George William Erskine Russell in his Portraits of the Seventies (1916), pp. 38–39. In Russell's earlier Collections and Recollections (1898) this appeared as "I knew the author, and he was the most conceited person with whom I have ever been brought in contact, although I have read Cicero and known Bulwer Lytton" (p. 177).
  • Cleanliness and order are not matters of instinct; they are matters of education, and like most great things, you must cultivate a taste for them.
  • Great countries are those that produce great people.
  • Great services are not cancelled by one act or by one single error.
  • His shortcoming is his long staying.
    • Also attributed to Lewis L Lewisohn.
  • Life is too short to be small.
  • Many thanks: I shall lose no time in reading it.
    • Reputedly Disraeli's reply to an author who had sent him an unsolicited manuscript. Wilfrid Meynell, in his The Man Disraeli (1903) p. 119, goes no further than to say "it might very well be his". It has also been fathered on Heinrich Heine and, needless to say, on George Bernard Shaw and Winston Churchill.
  • Moderation is the centre wherein all philosophies, both human and divine, meet.
  • On the education of the people of this country the fate of the country depends.
  • One secret of success in life is for a man to be ready for his opportunity when it comes.
    • Variant: The secret of success in life is for a man to be ready for his opportunity when it comes.
    • Variant: The secret of success is to be ready when your opportunity comes.
  • The best way to become acquainted with a subject is to write a book about it.
  • The governments of the present day have to deal not merely with other governments, with emperors, kings and ministers, but also with the secret societies which have everywhere their unscrupulous agents, and can at the last moment upset all the governments' plans.
  • The greatest good you can do for another is not just share your riches, but to reveal to him his own.
  • The most dangerous strategy is to jump a chasm in two leaps.
    • This has been attributed to Benjamin Disraeli, David Lloyd George, Winston Churchill, Vaclav Havel, Jeffrey Sachs, Rashi Fein, Walter Bagehot and Philip Noel-Baker. It has been described as a Greek, African, Chinese, Russian and American proverb, and as "an old Chassidic injunction". The earliest citation found so far is from Frederick Lewis Schuman Design for Power: The Struggle for the World (1942), p. 200: "A comment Lloyd George, 'There is nothing more dangerous than to leap a chasm in two jumps'".
  • The palace is not safe when the cottage is not happy.
    • Said at a Wynyard Horticultural Show in 1848, according to Monypenny & Buckle The Life of Benjamin Disraeli (1913) p. 368.
  • The right honourable gentleman is reminiscent of a poker. The only difference is that a poker gives off the occasional signs of warmth. (On Robert Peel).
  • The very phrase 'foreign affairs' makes an Englishman convinced that I am about to treat of subjects with which he has no concern.
  • The worst atrocity in Bulgaria is Gladstone's pamphlet on the subject.
    • Referring to Gladstone's pamplet "Bulgarian Horrors and the Question of the East" (1876).
  • When I want to read a novel, I write one.
    • According to Wilfrid Meynell (Benjamin Disraeli (1903) p. 124) this was Disraeli's reply on being asked whether he had read George Eliot's Daniel Deronda.
  • You have heard me accused me of being a flatterer. It is true. I am a flatterer. I have found it useful. Everyone likes flattery; and when you come to Royalty you should lay it on with a trowel.
    • Supposedly said in conversation with Matthew Arnold c. 1880; quoted in G. W. E. Russell, Collections and Recollections (1898) p. 224.
  • [On his deathbed, after hearing that Queen Victoria wanted to visit him.] What's the use? She would only want me to take a message to dear Albert.
  • No man will treat with indifference the principle of race. It is the key to history and why history is so confused is that it has been written by men who were ignorant of this principle and all the knowledge it involves. Language and religion do not make a race-- there is only one thing that makes a race and that is blood.
  • Yes, I have climbed to the top of the greasy pole.
    • To friends, on being made Prime Minister (1868).