It was ironic that having waited so long for the Premiership, Bonar Law should have occupied the office for less time than any other twentieth-century Prime Minister; such a fate almost justified, retrospectively, his dour pessimism. The same ironic fatalism also ensured that a man who had put most of his energies into keeping the party united should have attained the highest office only as the result of a party split. Law remains, however, the only Conservative to have returned to the party leadership having once relinquished it.
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