Category: Red Herrings: False Quotes

Churchill Misquotes: The Red Herrings Now Number 175

Churchill Misquotes: The Red Herrings Now Number 175

Quotes and Misquotes

Churchill by Him­self, my ency­clo­pe­dia of Win­ston Churchill’s most quotable remarks, is to be repub­lished. (If the pub­lish­ers can ever agree about what form and sub­stance they will allow each oth­er to pro­duce.) To the the orig­i­nal 4000 quotes I’ve added so far 600 new ones.

The “Red Her­rings” appen­dix of mis­quotes has also grown apace. That, how­ev­er, is always kept up to date online. You can look it up:

All the “Quotes” Churchill Nev­er Said

Mis­quotes Part 1: Accept­ing Change to Euro­pean Union

Part 2: Fanat­ic to Liberty

Mis­quotes Part 3: Lies to Sex

Part 4: Sex­ism to Ypres

A trove of misquotes

The orig­i­nal “Red Her­rings” appen­dix (2008) con­tained about 80 mis­quotes.…

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No Cards, No Flowers: Churchill on the Death of Stalin

No Cards, No Flowers: Churchill on the Death of Stalin

Stalin redux

A cor­re­spon­dent to the Finan­cial Times slipped a red her­ring into our store of Churchill quo­ta­tions, and thanks to the news­pa­per for pub­lish­ing my correction.

In a let­ter to the FT, Mary Ellen Syn­on defend­ed Irish Taoiseach Eamon de Valera’s expres­sion of con­do­lences at the Ger­man Embassy upon the death of Adolf Hitler. Ms. Syn­on sug­gest­ed that this was just an ordi­nary diplo­mat­ic gesture—a for­mal­i­ty. After all, didn’t Churchill offer con­do­lences or a homi­ly fol­low­ing the death of Stalin?

Churchill was out­raged by de Valera’s action, but was not guilty of the same lack of pro­pri­ety (or hypocrisy).…

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Galloping Lies, Bodyguards of Lies, and Lies for the Sake of Your Country

Galloping Lies, Bodyguards of Lies, and Lies for the Sake of Your Country

About lies. Can you please advise whether or not Sir Win­ston Churchill said: “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.”  Many thanks. —A.S., Bermuda

That one lies with Cordell Hull

It was Franklin Roo­sevelt‘s Sec­re­tary of State, Cordell Hull, not Churchill. I have a slight vari­a­tion of it in the “Red Her­rings” appen­dix of  Churchill by Him­self, page 576: “A lie will gal­lop halfway round the world before the truth has time to pull its breech­es on.”  Although com­mon­ly ascribed to Churchill (who would have said “trousers,” not “breech­es”), this is def­i­nite­ly down to Hull.…

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