Churchill, Winston Leonard Spencer

Winston Churchill (1874-1965, knighted 1922, knight of the Order of the Garter 1953) attended Harrow and Sandhurst schools but lacked a university education, a deficiency which--he maintained (as reported by Harrod)--had handicapped him in his political career. His early years were spent in the army, and as a journalist he covered the campaigns in which he took part. He was Member of Parliament with short interruptions from 1900: as a Unionist first, then Liberal (1904-22), then Constitutionalis and, finally, Conservative. He held various ministerial posts at intervals from 1906; in 1924-29 he was Chancellor of the Exchequer. A dissident Conservative on the Munich and appeasement issues, he was First Lord of the Admiralty (1939-40), when the Statistical Branch directed by Lindemann was constituted (in which Harrod took part), Prime Minister (1940-45 and 1951-55) and leader of the Opposition (1945-51).

In 1929-30 Harrod was the tutor of Churchill's son Randolph . Some correspondence regarding Randolph's education is extant, including a few invitations to Chartwell. In Harrod's view, Churchill's "claim to great pre-eminence [...] is that he is one of the greatest intellects of the twentieth century and one of the greatest intellects that has ever happened to hold the post of prime minister in any country".

See list of letters .

Source: DNB ; www ; R. F. Harrod, "Randolph in Oxford", in K. Halle, Randolph Churchill. The Young Unpretender. Essays by His Friends (London: Heinemann, 1971); Harrod, The Prof. (1959), pp. 13-14 and passim.


Welcome page

top of page

Return to index of this section

Go to previous page

Go to next page