It is Commencement time across colleges and universities, and some speakers will be quoting Churchill on success in life. In the hope that they will quote him accurately, here is a small selection. At the bottom are two no-nos: things he never said, but is always credited as saying.
University of Miami, 26 February 1946:
I am surprised that in my later life I should have become so experienced in taking degrees, when, as a school-boy I was so bad at passing examinations. In fact one might almost say that no one ever passed so few examinations and received so many degrees.…
Optimist and Pessimist: Fifteen minutes of fame! David Davis MP, Secretary of State for Brexit, boots one in his recent speech and I’m finally in The Guardian. Probably the first and last time, given my opinions. **
Question: Referring to your posts of quotations Churchill never said, do you know who actually did say “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty”? I find no attribution other than to Churchill.
If a man is coming across the sea to kill you, you do everything in your power to make sure he dies before finishing his journey. That may be difficult, it may be painful, but at least it is simple. We are now entering a world of imponderables, and at every stage occasions for self-questioning arise. Only one link in the chain of destiny can be handled at a time.
—Winston S. Churchill, 18 February 1945
It was recently asserted that Churchill doesn’t have much to say to us today, and that the only people who use Churchill as a guide nowadays are “over-testosteroned American neocons.”
Well, as Richard Nixon allegedly remarked, let me say this about that.…