Monday, July 25, 2016


When we're together, or on the telephone, a friend always asks, "What are you reading?"  Yesterday, when she asked, I answered, "Commander In Chief."  I didn't get to complete the title before she replied, incredulously, "You mean by Tom Clancy?"  I said, "No, it's by Nigel Hamilton and the full title is FDR's Battle With Churchill, 1943;  I thought I'd celebrate my birthday week devouring that tome!"

She said, "Oh, no, Quote Girl, this means I'll be hearing more Churchill quotes!"

She also calls me "Quote Girl" because I'd told her about a guy at the New York Times who was dubbed "Quote Boy" because he always seemed to have a perfect quote for every story.

Recently, I saw an article about quotes wrongly attributed to Winston Churchill. Even the extraordinary William Manchester misquoted Sir Winston in his otherwise exemplary book The Last Lion when he wrote that Churchill had spoken the words: "The government had to choose between war and shame. They chose shame. They will get war too."

Churchill, along with Twain and Lincoln, is perhaps the recipient of the most mis-quotes.

See my BLOG article (click here) about an instructor who was perturbed with me because I told him that George Santayana had spoken the words, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it," when he'd told the class that it was Churchill. It sounds Churchillian, I guess.

My grandmother would say, "The Bible says." to whatever point she wanted to make. Once, when I was around twelve years old she said, "Well the Bible says that God helps those who help themselves." I said, "No, that was Ben Franklin." For that statement she told my mother that she should slap my mouth for correcting my elders. My mother said, "No, I'll go by that suffer the children thing."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I see that Mr. Hamilton is going to be on BOOK NOTES soon! ML