Wildy logo
(020) 7242 5778

Wildy’s Book News

Book News cover photo

Vol 23 No 3 March/April 2018

Book of the Month

Cover of Scamell and Gasztowicz on Land Covenants

Scamell and Gasztowicz on Land Covenants

Price: £225.00

Offers for Newly Called Barristers & Students

Special Discounts for Newly Called & Students

Read More ...

Secondhand & Out of Print

Browse Secondhand Online


The Glittering Prizes: A Study of the First Earl of Birkenhead

ISSN: 4044-4044
Published: June 1960
Publisher: MacGibbon & Kee
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £69.00
(Second Hand)

In stock second-hand.

Out of Print

Birkenhead-rabble-rouser, self-indulgent, sybaritic K.C. ; spendthrift and shameless careerist, with perhaps the finest mind of his generation. When he died in 1930 no wonder The Times said of him that 'no public figure of his day has ever been more real to the mass of his contemporaries."

A meteor, perhaps, more than a man : a meteor which burnt itself out at the early age of fifty-eight, absurdly young for a lawyer. But, in truth. it was a miracle that he lasted so long. Lord Chancellor at forty-six, out of office at fifty, followed by eight years of increasing excess and decline, and then death, when ChurchilL who was only two years younger and his greatest friend, had not even entered his prime.

What was the truth about F. E. Smith? Nobody, it seemed, pursued the world's prizes with such single-minded, frantic energy. But was he as black as he painted himself? 'Self-interest' he proclaimed (in a notorious speech) to the rising generation, 'is and ought to be the mainspring of human conduct.' Was he, in fact, more ruthless than his political contemporaries, or simply more honest? Baldwin, who once said that he wouldn't touch him with a barge-pole, in later years revised his opinion : 'his heart was as good as his head, and that is saying a lot.'

In The Glittering Prizes William Camp has made a fascinating study of one of the most controversial - and tragic - figures of modern politics.