William Pitt's Appointment as Prime Minister

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Pitt's Appointment as Prime Minister Pitt obtained the independent seat of Appleby in January 1781, having secured the patronage of James Lowther, who virtually controlled the borough. This was seemingly the first major step in relation to Pitt's swift rise to power. This is predominantly due to the fact that the seat was independent, which in turn provided Pitt with the opportunity, and more importantly, the platform from which he could voice his own opinions. Pitt was able to openly challenge the King, and make his feelings known on important topical issues. Pitt's early speeches, sparse as they were, enabled Pitt to set precedents and improve his reputation as a public speaker, largely because of Pitt's ability to say whatever he desired. The fact that Pitt was able to obtain such a position in the first place was hugely influenced by his father, as well as friends he had acquired throughout his upbringing. For it was Charles Manners, 4th Duke of Rutland (a former colleague of Pitt at university) who greatly aided Pitt in securing Lowther's patronage. Pitt's maternal uncle, George Grenville, was also an important British statesman. But it was Pitt the elder who perhaps made the most sizable contribution to Pitt's ascent. Having a former prime minister as your father is obviously going to open ertain doors for a man who was seemingly obsessed with politics. The fact is that Pitt the Elder will have influenced his son in virtually all aspects of his life, as is customary within a father-son relationship. Pitt will have grown up in a political environment, and this underlying factor, combined with his natural intelligence, will have ensured that Pitt was destined for success in the political world. Pitt's own political savvy is not to be disregarded. Pitt was fiercely intelligent and a tremendous speaker and debater. Having been brought up in an
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