"William Anthony Hay provides in this book a major reassessment of British party politics in the first third of the nineteenth century. The transformation of the Whig party between 1808 and 1830 laid the foundations for the Whig-Liberal ascendancy that dominated British politics until 1886. On the basis of painstaking research Hay shows how and why the Whigs gained power in 1830. With their ranks thinning after the collapse of the Whig-dominated Ministry of Talents in 1807, the party seemed doomed to obscurity. Byron famously quipped that 'Nought's permanent among the human race/except the Whigs not getting into place.'"--BOOK JACKET.