“Red Herrings”: Fake Churchill Quotes (or things he said quoting someone else), continued from Part 1.… Compiled for the next expanded edition of Churchill by Himself. Chapter references are to current editions of that book.
“If you’re going through hell, keep going” is the most common counterfeit. Heard by everyone from presidents to comics, it is sheer fantasy—Churchill wasn’t given to such redundancy. What’s your favorite among these Red Herrings? Mine is the one about golf, which I experienced personally before I wisely gave it up.
Fanatic – France
Fanatic: A fanatic is someone who won’t change his mind and won’t change the subject.…
In 1686 the Oxford English Dictionary described “red herring,” a metaphor to draw pursuers off a track, as “the trailing or dragging of a dead Cat or Fox (and in case of necessity a Red-Herring) three or four miles…and then laying the Dogs on the scent…to attempt to divert attention from the real question.” I apply the term to quotes, allegedly by Churchill, which he never said—or if he did, was quoting somebody else.
Hence my Red Herrings Appendix, updated herewith, for the new, expanded edition of my quotes book Churchill by Himself.…
Churchill had profound respect for the Italian 19th century democratic revolutionary Giuseppe Garibaldi, and once hoped to write his biography. But it is unlikely that his famous lines, "blood, toil, tears and sweat" were adapted by something Garibaldi said—they date back quite a bit farther.