Winston Churchill: Epic Trivia and Quotes

Churchill was undoubtedly a great man. He led a rich, interesting life and was renowned as a great speaker and a sharp wit. Here are some interesting, lesser-known trivia and quotes from the great leader.

Did You Know He…?

winston churchill monument with big ben

  • Exhibited paintings under the pseudonym Charles Moren
  • Fathered five children: Diana, Randolph, Sarah, Marigold, and Mary. Marigold tragically died in infancy
  • Took three attempts to pass his Sandhurst exams
  • Almost drowned in Lake Lausanne, Switzerland, in 1895
  • Excelled at history in school, his favorite subject
  • Wrote over 70 full-length books, including A History of the English-Speaking Peoples, The Second World War, Marlborough: His Life and Times (the 1st Duke of Marlborough was his ancestor)
  • Won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1953
  • Had a black poodle named Rufus
  • Requested his grave at Bladon was positioned so that you had a view of the room where he was born
  • Had a US missile-cruiser named after him – in 1999 the US Navy launched the USS Winston S. Churchill, the first ship to be named after a non-US person
  • Received honorary US citizenship in 1963
  • Died January 24, 1965 – his father died on the exact same day in 1895

Winston Churchill Quotes

Churchill offered many insightful quotes, oozing wisdom:

  • “Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.”
  • “The price of greatness is responsibility.”
  • “We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give.”
  • “It is a mistake to look too far ahead. Only one link in the chain of destiny can be handled at a time.”
  • “Courage is the first of human qualities because it is the quality which guarantees all others.”
  • “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”
  • “One ought never to turn one’s back on a threatened danger and try to run away from it. If you do that, you will double the danger. But if you meet it promptly and without flinching, you will reduce the danger by half.”
  • “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.”
  • “Everyone has his day and some days last longer than others.”

Churchill World War II Quotes

  • “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.”
  • “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 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.”

Witty Churchill Quotes

  • Replied to Nancy Astor’s comment, “If I was your wife, I’d poison your coffee,” with, “If I was your husband, I’d drink it.”
  • “I am ready to meet my maker – but whether my maker is prepared for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter.”
  • On Germany invading Russia: “If Hitler invaded Hell, I would at least make a favorable reference to the Devil in the House of Commons.”
  • When an actor friend telegraphed Churchill saying, “2 tickets reserved for you first night. Bring a friend if you have one.” Churchill replied, “Can’t make first night. Will come to the second. If you have one.”
  • To MP Bessie Braddock, who accused him of being drunk: “I may be drunk, Miss, but in the morning I will be sober and you will still be ugly.”
  • “Although prepared for martyrdom, I prefer that it be postponed.”

Churchill success quote