If you’re not a liberal when you’re 25, you have no heart. If you’re not a conservative by the time you’re 35, you have no brain.

Winston Churchill (1874-1965) British statesman and author

This hasn't been found in Churchill's writings, and is generally believed by researchers (and the Churchill Centre) to be spurious.  It has been attributed at different points to George Bernard Shaw, Benjamin Disraeli, Otto von Bismarck, and others.  It  has been found in the works of mid-nineteenth century historian and statesman François Guizot: "Not to be a republican at 20 is proof of want of heart; to be one at 30 is proof of want of head."

Further, Paul Addison of Edinburgh University notes: "Surely Churchill can't have used the words attributed to him. He'd been a Conservative at 15 and a Liberal at 35! And would he have talked so disrespectfully of Clemmie, who is generally thought to have been a lifelong Liberal?"

Added on 11-May-11 | Last updated 11-May-11
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