Tag: Kay Halle

All the “Quotes” Winston Churchill Never Said (3)

All the “Quotes” Winston Churchill Never Said (3)

Fake Quotes cont’d.

Red Her­rings: Quotes not by Churchill (or things he said quot­ing some­one else), con­tin­ued from Part 2.  Com­piled for the next expand­ed edi­tion of Churchill by Him­self.

A read­er sug­gests that the list of “Red Her­ring” fake Churchill quotes be sub­di­vid­ed. We should sep­a­rate quotes he actu­al­ly said, but bor­rowed from some­one else, from quotes sim­ply invent­ed out of whole cloth. Not sure we have much to learn from that. First, while I try to name the orig­i­na­tor of a quo­ta­tion not by Sir Win­ston, I don’t always suc­ceed. Sec­ond, my brief extends only to dis­prov­ing that the words orig­i­nat­ed with Churchill.…

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“Bring a friend if you have one”

“Bring a friend if you have one”

Alas the famous exchange between Churchill and George Bernard Shaw is  fic­tion.

Accord­ing to the usu­al­ly reli­able Kay Halle, in her quo­ta­tions book Irre­press­ible Churchill (Cleve­land: World, 1966, page 116), Shaw wrote to Churchill in 1924: “Am reserv­ing two tick­ets for you for my pre­miere. Come and bring a friend—if you have one.”

Churchill, Halle says, replied: “Impos­si­ble to be present for the first per­for­mance. Will attend the second—if there is one.” Finest Hour edi­tor Dal­ton New­field explained in the 1970s that the play in ques­tion was Shaw’s “St. Joan.”

But Allen Pack­wood, direc­tor of the Churchill Archives Cen­tre, has just come across an cor­re­spon­dence in a remote cor­ner of the Churchill Papers (CHUR 2/165/66,68) in which both Shaw and Churchill deny the exchange:

“A Mr.…

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