British Prime Minister, orator
Nobel Prize for literature 1953.
"A joke is a very serious thing."
"Without victory there is no survival!"
"Never give in. Never. Never. Never. Never."
"Give us the tools and we will finish the job."
"History will be kind to me for I intend to write it."
"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism."
"The empires of the future are the empires of the mind."
"I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat."
"Short words are best and the old words when short are best
"I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken
out of me."
"Although prepared for martyrdom, I preferred that it be
"There is nothing more exhilarating than to be shot at without
"It's a good thing for an uneducated man to read books of
"The greatest lesson in life is to know that even fools are
"A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change
"Success consists of going from failure to failure without
loss of enthusiasm."
"I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs
treat us as
"The farther backwards you can look, the farther forward
you are likely to see."
"Ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with
which we will not
"Don't talk to me about Naval tradition. It's nothing but
rum, sodomy, and
"In war: resolution. In defeat: defiance. In victory: magnanimity.
"Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by
so many to so few."
"There is no finer investment for any community than putting
milk into babies."
"True genius resides in the capacity for evaluation of uncertain,
hazardous and conflicting information."
"In wartime, truth is so precious that she should always
be attended by a bodyguard of lies."
"It is a mistake to look too far ahead. Only one link in
the chain of destiny can be handled at a time"
"My wife and I tried to breakfast together, but we had to
stop or our marriage would have been wrecked."
"If you go on with this nuclear arms race, all you are going
to do is make the rubble bounce."
"I always avoid prophesying beforehand, because it is a much
better policy to prophesy after the event has already taken place."
"Courage is the first of human qualities because it is the
quality that guarantees all the others."
"If we open a quarrel between the past and the present, we
shall find that we have lost the future."
"Danger - if you meet it promptly and without flinching -
you will reduce the danger by half. Never run away from anything.
"Where does the family start? It starts with a young man
falling in love with a girl - no superior alternative has yet
"The Americans will always do the right thing... after they've
exhausted all the alternatives."
"I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle
wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma."
"MacDonald has the gift of compressing the largest amount
of words into the smallest amount of thoughts."
"Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them
pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened."
"I am ready to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared
for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter."
"The whole history of the world is summed up in the fact
that, when nations are strong, they are not always just, and when
they wish to be just, they are no longer strong."
"The reserve of modern assertions is sometimes pushed to
extremes, in which the fear of being contradicted leads the writer
to strip himself of almost all sense and meaning."
"Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duty, and so bear
ourselves that, if the British Empire and its Commonwealth lasts
for a thousnad years, men will still say, 'This was their finest
"Vast and fearsome as the human scene has become, personal
contact of the right people, in the right places, at the right
time, may yet have a potent and valuable part to play in the cause
of peace which is in our hearts."
"Many forms of Government have been tried, and will be tried
in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is
perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is
the 'worst' form of Government except all those others that have
been tried from time to time."
"I gather, young man, that you wish to be a Member of Parliament.
The first lesson that you must learn is, when I call for statistics
about the rate of infant mortality, what I want is proof that
fewer babies died when I was Prime Minister than when anyone else
was Prime Minister. That is a political statistic."
".... You ask, What is our policy? I will say; "It is
to wage war, by sea, land and air, with all our might and with
all the strength that God can give us: to wage war against a monstrous
tyranny, never surpassed in the dark lamentable catalogue of human
crime. That is our policy." You ask, What is our aim? I can
answer with one word: Victory - victory at all costs, victory
in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road
may be; for without victory there is no survival."
"We shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We
shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and the oceans,
we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in
the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be.
We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds,
we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight
in the hills; we shall never surrender."
Copyright: Kevin Harris 1995 (may be freely distributed with