Winston Churchill 1874–1965
Sir Winston Spencer Churchill was born at Blenheim Palace, the eldest son of Lord Randolph Churchill and grandson of the seventh Duke of Marlborough. He was educated at Harrow and the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. He recounted his military adventures in My Early Life (1903). Early books about army campaigns were followed by Lord Randolph Churchill (1906), Liberalism and the Social Problem (1909), The World Crisis (4 vols, 1923–9), and Marlborough: his Life and Times (1933–8), among many other publications. The extent of his writing is extraordinary, given the demands of political life and office. War Speeches 1940–45 (1946) was followed by The Second World War (6 vols, 1948–54), and A History of the English-Speaking Peoples (4 vols, 1956–8). As an historian and as an orator, he revived the grand style of English prose. He was too grandiloquent for some; but W. W. Robson has rightly said of his speeches as Prime Minister in the early 1940s that ‘he used English literature as a weapon of war’. Churchill was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1953.
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