Reprised below are my small contributions on Churchill and the great Irish statesman and thinker Edmund Burke (1729-1797). It was eclipsed in 2019 in a brilliant speech by Andrew Roberts which the Hillsdale College Churchill Project offers here. Dr. Roberts spoke after receiving The New Criterion 7th Edmund Burke Award for Service to Culture and Society. He also discusses Churchill on Burke in a video interview with James Panero.
2. Churchill on Burke
A reader writes:
I’d like to congratulate you on Churchill by Himself, but I could not find any Churchill comments on Edmund Burke in the index.…
“Three Outstanding War Books” is Excerpted from an essay for the Hillsdale College Churchill Project. Why settle for the excerpt when you can read the whole thing full-strength? Click here.
Better yet, join 60,000 readers of Hillsdale essays by the world’s best Churchill historians by subscribing. You will receive regular notices (“Weekly Winstons”) of new articles as published. Simply visit https://winstonchurchill.hillsdale.edu/, scroll to bottom, and fill in your email in the box entitled “Stay in touch with us.” (Your email remains strictly private and is never sold to purveyors, salespersons, auction houses, or Things that go Bump in the Night.)…
“How many speeches did Churchill make, and in how many words? Also, how many words did he write in his books and articles? [Updated from 2014.]
Through the wonders of computer science (Ian Langworth and the Hillsdale College Churchill Project), we know that the present corpus of works by and about Winston S. Churchill exceeds 80 million words (380 megabytes). This includes 20 million (120 megabytes) by Churchill himself (counting his letters, memos and papers in the 23 volumes of Churchill Documents. Here are his the top word counts among his books:
With colleagues I discussed which of young Winston’s early war books was derisively called, “A Subaltern’s Advice to Generals.” This was a popular wisecrack after his early works had the temerity to propose British military strategy in India, Sudan and South Africa. Churchill was in his mid-twenties at the time—but not reticent to speak his mind. Nothing we didn’t know here….
Malakand Field Force?
Without consulting references, I thought the “advice” line involved The Story of the Malakand Field Force (Churchill’s first book, 1898). I was influenced by its last chapter, “The Riddle of the Frontier.” Plenty of advice there, though it is as much political as it is military.…
Young Winston Churchill’s second speech in Parliament was a bravura performance taking up his father’s theme for economy in the budget.
In Churchill in His Own Words (p 45) I date this quotation 12 May 1901 and cite Churchill’s Mr. Brodrick’s Army, his 1903 volume of speeches (facsimile edition, Sacramento: Churchilliana Company, 1977), 16:
Wise words, Sir, stand the test of time, and I am very glad the House has allowed me, after an interval of fifteen years, to raise the tattered flag I found lying on a stricken field.
Can you direct me to a set of the “Collected Works” of Winston Churchill? If, as I suspect, this is a pricey and limited production, how can I build a complete collection of his works without spending a fortune? —G.S., Maine, USA
You refer to the Collected Works of Sir Winston Churchill, 40 volumes including four volumes of Collected Essays, published by the Library of Imperial History in London in 1974-75. (The Diner’s Club produced another collection of Major Works, but they were not complete.)