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:
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).…
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.…