“I leave you,” concluded Senate candidate Abraham Lincoln at a Chicago campaign rally in July 1858, “hoping that the lamp of liberty will burn in your bosoms until there shall no longer be a doubt that all men are created free and equal.”1 Perhaps the next month, Lincoln wrote a note for a speech: “As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master. This expresses my idea of democracy. Whatever differs from this, to the extent of the difference, is no democracy.”2 In his second Annual Message to Congress in December 1862, President Lincoln declared: “In giving freedom to the slave, we assure freedom to the free – honorable alike in what we give, and what we preserve. We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last, best hope of earth.”3
Liberty and democracy were at stake during the Civil War. For Lincoln the words of the Declaration of Independence and its equality principle were never far from his heart and mind. In April 1864, President Lincoln told a Baltimore meeting as Maryland prepared for a referendum that fal to abolish slavery: “The world has never had a good definition of the word liberty, and the American people, just now, are much in want of one. We all declare for liberty; but in using the same word we do not all mean the same thing. With some the word liberty may mean for each man to do as he pleases with himself, and the product of his labor; while with others the same word may mean for some men to do as they please with other men, and the product of other men’s labor. Here are two, not only different, but incompatable things, called by the same name — liberty. And it follows that each of the things is, by the respective parties, called by two different and incompatable [sic] names — liberty and tyranny.”
The shepherd drives the wolf from the sheep’s throat, for which the sheep thanks the shepherd as a liberator, while the wolf denounces him for the same act as the destroyer of liberty, especially as the sheep was a black one. Plainly the sheep and the wolf are not agreed upon a definition of the word liberty; and precisely the same difference prevails to-day among us human creatures, even in the North, and all professing to love liberty. Hence we behold the processes by which thousands are daily passing from under the yoke of bondage, hailed by some as the advance of liberty, and bewailed by others as the destruction of all liberty. Recently, as it seems, the people of Maryland have been doing something to define liberty; and thanks to them that, in what they have done, the wolf’s dictionary, has been repudiated.4
Lincoln never held an executive position prior to his election as president. He was a legislative man – having serving four terms in the state legislature after having once been defeated. He served one term in Congress in 1847-49 after having earlier been defeated for Whig nomination. Twice, in 1855 and 1858, Lincoln ran for the U.S. Senate and was defeated. Whether on the stump or in a legislative hall, Lincoln was very much at home with the kind of debate that democracy demanded. Historian William E. Gienapp observed; “From its inception, Lincoln’s partisanship grew out of his belief in democracy. ‘I go for sharing the privileges of the government, who assist in bearing its burthens,’ he wrote in announcing his candidacy for the legislature in 1836. “Consequently I go for admitting all whites to the right of suffrage, who pay taxes or bear arms, (by no means excluding females).’ He also accepted the idea that representatives should be guided by the will of their constituents rather than exercise any independent judgment. While a member of Congress in 1848, he asserted that ‘the primary, the cardinal,, the one great living principle of all Democratic representative government…[is] the principle, that the representative is bound to carry out the known will of his constituents.’”5 The threat of tyranny and mobs was something that Lincoln had explored in a speech at the Springfield Lyceum in 1838 on the “Perpetuation of Political Institutions”:
I hope I am over wary; but if I am not, there is, even now, something of ill-omen amongst us. I mean the increasing disregard for law which pervades the country; the growing disposition to substitute the wild and furious passions, in lieu of the sober judgement of Courts; and the worse than savage mobs, for the executive ministers of justice. This disposition is awfully fearful in any community; and that now exists in ours, though grating to our feelings to admit, it would be violation of truth, and an insult to our intelligence, to deny.6
Over time, Lincoln’s worries shifted. After passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act in the spring of 1854. Lincoln turned his attention to the evil of slavery and the blocking of its extension. Historian Sean Wilentz wrote that “by the late 1850s Lincoln was forthright about how his belief in democracy underpinned his antislavery views. ‘As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master,’ he wrote. ‘This expresses my idea of democracy. Whatever differs from this, to the extent of the difference, is no democracy.'”7 In the midst of the Civil War, Lincoln did not abandon his values. New York Tribune editor Horace Greeley wrote that Lincoln “was simply a plain, true, earnest, patriotic man, gifted with eminent common sense, which, in its wide range, gave a hand to shrewdness on the one hand, humor on the other, and which allied him intimately, warmly with the masses of mankind. I doubt whether any woman or child, White or Black, bond or free, virtuous or vicious, accosted or reached forth a hand to Abraham Lincoln, and detected in hid countenance or manner any repugnance or shrinking from the proffered contact, any assumption of superiority or betray of disdain.”8
Lincoln was also ever cognizant of what he could and could not do constitutionally. Constitutionally, he felt secession was impossible. Constitutionally, he felt slavery could not be ended by legislative or executive action in a time of peace. But constitutionally, Lincoln felt that war changed the rules of the game. But that did not mean he could ignore the Constitution or the Congress. “He did not hestitate, he did not doubt, he did not falter; but at once resolved that at whatever peril, at whatever cost, the union of the States would be preserved. A patriot himself, his faith was strong and unwavering in the patriotism of his countrymen,” black abolitionist Frederick Douglas later observed. “But in the midst of all this tumult and timidity, and against all this, Abraham Lincoln was clear in his duty, and had an oath in heaven. He calmly and bravely heard the voice of doubt and fear all around him; but he had an oath in heaven, and there was not power enough on the earth to make this honest boatman, backwoodsman, and broad-handed splitter of rails evade or violate that sacred oath.”9 Lincoln scholar Mark E. Neely, Jr. observed that President Lincoln clearly understood the legitimate limits of warfare: “Lincoln left a meager written record, but what exists is clear and uncontradicted by contrary texts. He affirmed adherence to the rules of ‘civilized’ warfare in public. ‘Civilized belligerents,’ he said in a public letter in the summer of 1863, ‘do all in their power to help themselves, or hurt the enemy, except a few things regarded as barbarous or cruel. Among the exceptions are the massacre of vanquished foes, and noncombatants, male and females.’”10
The U.S. Congress during this period was a hotbed of activity. Despite the Civil War – and perhaps because of the absence of southern legislators who might have blocked some measures – Congress was able to pass a Homestead Act, Land-Grant universities, the transcontinental railroad, money, and banking reform. As Congress closed its session in March 1863, Senator James Doolittle wrote that the Congress “has passed more laws, it has passed more important measures than any other since the Government began.”11 Political scientist Allen G. Bogue wrote of Lincoln: “Sometimes, as in his messages relative to banking and currency, the recommendations bore particularly upon the problem of the war in the civil sector. In other cases he ranged further afield, as in his call for reconstruction of the government’s Indian policies.”12 Lincoln did not always initiate these activities, but he took a deep interest in their implementation – to the extent of personally choosing the eastern terminus of the transcontinental railroad.
Like Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill was familiar with defeat. Like Lincoln, he lost his first legislative election as a young man. Like Lincoln, he endured repeated reverses at the polls. Commentator Christopher Mathews wrote: “From his first electoral defeat in 1899 to his crudest defeat at the very hour of military victory in 1945, he lived out that defining fact of democracy: You win some, you lose some. The politician who sticks to his principles will know defeat as well as victory. As Anthony Eden pointed out, ‘Courage for some sudden act, maybe in the heat of battle, we all respect; but there is that still rarer courage which can sustain repeated disappointment, unexpected failure, and shattering defeat. Churchill had that too, and had need of it, not for a day, but for weeks and months and years.’”13 For Churchill, the first three years of World War II – from September 1939 to the fall of 1942 — were a nearly unbroken series of reverses.
Although like Lincoln, Churchill’s ideas and strategies evolved, his core values remained strong. “[T]he cause of freedom has in it a recuperative power and virtue which can draw from misfortune new hope and new strength,” declared Winston Churchill in a 1938 broadcast.14 Even before he took over as First Lord of the Admiralty in the fall of 1839, Churchill on September 1 declared the war’s purpose was “to establish, on impregnable rocks, the rights of the individual, and it is a war to establish and revive the stature of man.”15 In a conversation with Harry Hopkins in January 1941, Churchill declared: “We seek no treasure, we seek no territorial gains, we seek only the right of man to be free; we seek his rights to worship his God, to lead his life in his own way, secure from persecution. As the humble labourer returns from his work when the day is done, and sees the smoke curling upwards from his cottage home in the serene evening sky, we wish him to know that no rata-tat-tat – here he rapped on the table – of the secret policy upon his door will disturb his leisure or interrupt his rest. We seek government with the consent of the people, man’s freedom to say what he will, and when he thinks himself injured, to find himself equal in the eyes of the law. But war aims other than these we have none.”16
“Questions of honour touched him to the core and he could never forget how the Poles, allies beyond reach of help, had suffered and how they were suffering still,” observed historian Geoffrey Best.17 Churchill’s honor extended to his behaviour in office. Once Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain brought Churchill into his government in 1939, he felt honor-bound to support the prime minister even when he chafed about the leadership Chamberlain provided. From September 1939 to May 1940, he served with both loyalty and dedication – never criticizing the lack of energy that direction that Chamberlain provided even while he himself provided the moral vision and executive leadership that Chamberlain lacked.
Even more than Lincoln, Churchill was fundamentally a legislative man with a deep and fervent belief in the legislature. Historian Geoffrey Best wrote: “He was heart and soul a parliamentarian and a House of Commons man.”18 On September 17, 1940 during the height of the Battle of Britain, Churchill declared: “I am first of all a Parliamentarian and House of Commons man.”19 In October 1940, MP Harold Nicolson had recorded an appearance of Churchill in the House Smoking room: “He sits there sipping a glass or port and welcoming anyone who comes in. ‘How are you?’ he calls gaily to the most obscure Member. It is not a pose. It is just that for a few moments he likes to get away from being Prime Minister and feel himself back in the smoking-room.”20 In 1944 Churchill told the Commons: “I am not afraid of [political controversy] in this country. We are a decent lot. All of us, the whole nation.”21
In his memoirs, Winston Churchill wrote that Britain operated under “extraordinary powers” granted by Parliament in May 1940. “In general terms of law the powers granted by Parliament were absolute. The Act was to ‘include power by Order in Council to make such Defence Regulations making provision for requiring persons to place themselves, their services and their property at the disposal of His Majesty as appear to him to be necessary or expedient for securing the public safety, the defence of the Realm, the maintenance of public order, or the efficient prosecution of any war in which His Majesty may be engaged, or for maintaining supplies or services essential to the life of the community.”22 Martin Gilbert wrote: “In the course of the war, Parliament had to take many things on trust; some information was conveyed to it in specially convened secret sessions, where Churchill spoke with great frankness, but where the usual parliamentary record was not made public. As Churchill told Roosevelt: ‘Democracy has to prove that it can provide a granite foundation for war against tyranny.’”23
As an executive, however, Churchill believed in firm leadership – even while honoring the limitations imposed by the War Cabinet and the Chiefs of Staff. “He knew that, for so long as a state of national emergency lasted, even the most democratic democracy had to have a single responsible leader. Summing up the critical debates which produced some Cabinet changes early in 1942, he wrote ‘All I wanted was compliance with my wishes after reasonable discussion’. (This must have provoked hollow laughter among the senior officers who had had to do the discussing with him.) His understanding of his position was strictly constitutional. He was Prime Minister because the King had appointed him and because Parliament supported him…”24 Best noted that Churchill exercised extraordinary power because his colleagues “wanted it that way.”25
As a young legislator, Lincoln became a friend of his political opponents. As a young legislator, Churchill made enemies of his political friends. Conservative Churchill was elected to the House of Commons in 1900, but over the next four years, he became increasingly critical of the Conservative government until on May 31, 1904, Churchill “crossed the floor” to join the Liberal Party. When the Liberals took office again in 1905, Churchill sought the post of “Under secretary for the Colonial Office.” He remained a Liberal during World War I, but returned to the Conservative Party in the early 1920s. Along the way, his sharp elbows and sharper tongue created a large cohort of politicians who admired his abilities but doubted his judgement and prudence. Those doubts had not been erased by the time he became prime minister in May 1940. Churchill Private Secretary John Martin wrote of the spring and summer of 1940: “It may have been ‘the finest hour’; but when we were living through it, it was a time of agony piled on agony. ‘The month of June’ he wrote afterwards ‘was particularly trying for all of us.’ He enjoined on his colleagues the duty of the stiff upper lip and told Parliament that ‘if we get through the next three months we shall get through the next three years’; but at the time no solid grounds for confidence were visible.”26
Churchill was a sentimental man and the House of Commons was one of the objects of his sentiment. Biographer Martin Gilbert wrote: “On May 10 the worst, and in fact final attack of the Blitz of 1941 was made on London. The debating Chamber of the House of Commons, empty at the time, was among the buildings destroyed. Five docks and more than thirty factories were destroyed, and for three night the glow of the fires lit the London sky.”27 Churchill wrote his son Randolph: “Our old House of Commons has been blown to smithereens. You never saw such a sight. Not one scrap was left of the Chamber except a few of the outer walls. The Huns obligingly chose a time when none of us were there. Oddly enough, on the last day but one before it happened I had a most successful Debate and wound up amid a great demonstration. They all got up and cheered as I left. I shall always remember this last scene. Having lived so much of my forty years in this building, it seems very sad that its familiar aspect will not for a good many years before me. Luckily we have the other place in good working order, so that Parliamentary institutions can function ‘undaunted amid the storms.’”28 In October 1943, Churchill argued for retaining the cramped size of a rebuilt House of Commons: “If the House is big enough to contain all its members, nine-tenths of its debates will be conducted in the depressing atmosphere of an almost empty, or half-empty, Chamber. The essence of good House of Commons speaking is the conversational style, the facility for quick, informal interruptions and interchanges.”29
The House of Commons was not always a rubber stamp for Churchill. Because Parliament denied Churchill the right to simultaneously broadcast his speeches on radio, Churchill later had to deliver them a second time on the BBC. These radio broadcasts, without an audience to inspire him, often were judged not nearly as good in the ears of his friends and associates. “How I wish Winston would not talk on the wireless unless he is feeling in good form. He hates the microphone, and when we bullied him into speaking last night, he just sulked,” wrote MP Harold Nicolson. “Now, as delivered in the House of Commons, that speech was magnificent.”30 General John Kennedy had a similar reaction when he listened to Churchill’s BBC broadcast after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941: “He was either very tired or not quite sober. He spoke badly.”31
In late March 1944, the Churchill administration was narrowly defeated by a narrow vote on an education bill. Churchill immediately counter-attacked and asserted that there would be a re-vote to be considered a vote of confidence. Many in the House were surprised by the harsh line taken by Churchill. An MP allied with him wrote: “The only person who really enjoyed it was Winston himself. He grinned all over. A man came up to him in the smoking-room and said that he thought it exaggerated to make them all swallow their vote, and could some other means not be devised whereby confidence could be reaffirmed? ‘No,’ said Winston. ‘Not at all. I am not going to tumble round my cage like a wounded canary. You knocked me off my perch. You have now got to put me back on my perch. Otherwise I won’t sing.’”32 A few days later, Churchill telegraphed his son Randolph: “The House of Commons this week has showed itself a rock on which war can be waged. Their kindness to their servant is beyond description.”33
Churchill’s respect for the institution was reflected in a diary entry by Harold Nicolson in May 1944. MP Emanuel “Shinwell sits on the front Opposition bench and is the most redoubtable of Winston’s critics. Beside him sits Lord Winterton. The House of Commons joke is that they sit there looking like arsenic and old lace. But Shinwell had interrupted the P.M. at one moment, and Winston grinned across at him and said, ‘The Hon. Member has often been a vigilant and severe critic of His Majesty’s Government, but as a real Opposition figure he has failed, because he can never conceal his satisfaction when we win – as we sometimes do.’ Loud cheers. Shinwell was touched and pleased. ‘There is a grace about Churchill’, he said to me at luncheon. ‘One cannot get away from that.’”34
Churchill was vigilant about civil liberties in the face of war. Churchill wrote in late November 1940: “On no account should we lend any countenance to the totalitarian idea of the right of the Executive to lock up its political opponents or unpopular people. The door should be kept open for the full restoration of the fundamental British rights of habeas corpus and trial by jury on charges known to the law.”35
Repeatedly during World War II, Churchill had to provide the philosophical foundation and the rhetorical superstructure that would define the war effort. As Churchill wrote FDR in early 1942: “Democracy has to prove that it can provide a granite foundation for the war against tyranny.”36 Speaking to the Italian people in late August 1944, “It has been said that the price of freedom is eternal vigilance. The question arises. What is freedom? There are one or two quite simple, practical tests by which it can be known in the modern world in peace conditions.” Churchill then listed a series of questions, beginning:
Is there the right to free expression of opinion and of opposition and criticism of the Government of the day?
Have the people the right to turn out a Government of which they disapprove, and are constitutional means provided by which they can make their will apparent?
Are their courts of justice free from violence by the Executive and from threats of mob violence, and free of all association with particular political parties?
Will these courts administer open and well-established laws which are associated in the human mind with the broad principles of decency and justice?37
Speaking to the House in December 1944 about Britain’s intervention in a developing civil war in Greece, Churchill declared: “One must have some respect for democracy and not use the word too lightly. The last thing which resembles democracy is mob law, with bands of gangsters, armed with deadly weapons, forcing their way into great cities, seizing the policy stations and key points of government, endeavouring to introduce a totalitarian regime with an iron hand, and clamouring, as they can nowadays if the get the power.”38 During the parliamentary debate in December 1944 on intervention in Greece : “Democracy, I say, is not based on violence or terrorism, but on reason, on fair play, on freedom, on respecting other people’s rights as well as their ambitions. Democracy is no harlot to be picked up in the street by a man with a tommy gun. I trust the people, the mass of the people, in almost any country, but I like to make sure that it is the people, and not a gang of bandits who think that by violence they can overturn constituted authority, in some cases ancient Parliaments, governments and States. (Democracy has a price). We are paying for it with our treasure and our blood. We are not paying for it without honour or by defeat.”39
“A scarred veteran of democracy, Churchill scorned those who loved the word, but rejected free elections,” wrote Christopher Matthews. “‘Democracy is not some harlot in the street,’ he said in condemning the Greek Communists toward the end of World War II, ‘to be picked up by some man with a Tommy gun. Democracy is based on reason, a sense of fair play, and freedom and a respect for the rights of other people.’”40 Churchill never gave up hoping for self-determination by those freed from the grip of Nazism. Britain during World War II was the united nations of exiled governments. He was less sensitive to the fate of those living in British colonies. Churchill had a strong sense of justice. He would not sell out Jews – even when Arabists in the British Civil Service wanted him to hand over Palestine to Arabs. His sense of justice was admittedly limited by the notion of imperial Britain that he held dear – and a contempt for the right of self-determination, especially in India.
After he was defeated in July 1945, Churchill told the new Parliament: “I have great hopes of this Parliament, and I shall do my utmost to make its work fruitful. It may heal the wounds of war, and turn to good account the new conceptions and powers which we have gathered amid the storm. I do not underrate the difficult and intricate complications of the task which lies before us; I know too much about it to cherish vain illusions; but the morrow of such a victory as we have gained is a splendid moment both in our small lives and in our great history. It is a time not only of rejoicing but even more of resolve. When we look back on all the perils through which we have passed and at the mighty foes we have laid low and all the dark and deadly designs we have frustrated, why should we fear for our future? We have come safely through the worst.”41
Churchill had his critics. CIGS Alan Brook, himself a skeptic of democracy, admitted after the war: “Our present system of democracy certainly did throw up one of the most wonderful national leaders of our history, Winston Churchill. One of his first acts, however, was virtually to convert that democracy into a dictatorship! Granted that he still was responsible to a Parliament, and granted that he still formed part of a Cabinet; yet his personality was such, and the power he acquired adequate, to place him in a position where both parliament and Cabinet were only minor inconveniences to be humoured occasionally, but which he held in the palm of his hand, able to swing both of them at his pleasure.”42 Churchill, however, understood that democracy could not always afford full transparency. He shielded information gained from Project Ultra from even his closest advisors and even military commanders. Speaking with Liberal Violet Bonham Carter in November 1943, Churchill “had a marvelous sentence about democracy’s duty being not to conceal but to confuse – ‘not the silence of the oyster serene in its grotto – but the smudge & blur of the cuttlefish’.”43
For Further Reference
- Roy P. Basler, editor, Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln (CWAL). Volume II, p. 502 (Abraham Lincoln, Speech in Chicago, July 10, 1858).
- CWAL, Volume II, p. 532 (ca. August 1, 1858)
- CWAL, Volume V, p. 537 (Abraham Lincoln, Message to Congress, December 1, 1862).
- CWAL, Volume VII, p. 302 (Address at Sanitary Fair, Baltimore, Maryland, April 18, 1864).
- William E. Gienapp, Abraham Lincoln and Civil War America, p. 30.
- CWAL, Volume I, p. 109 (Address Before the Young Men’s Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois, January 27, 1838).
- Eric Foner, editor, Our Lincoln: New Perspectives on Lincoln and His World, pp. 71-72.
- Rufus Rockwell Wilson, editor, Lincoln Among His Friends, p. 459 (Century magazine, July 1891).
- Frederick Douglas, The Life and Times of Frederick Douglass, p. 360.
- Mark E. Neely, Jr., The Civil War and the Limits of Destruction, pp. 194-195.
- Duane Mowry, “A Dark Period of our Civil War and a Notable Speech of that Time,” The American Historical Magazine, 1908.
- Allen G. Bogue, The Congressman’s Civil War, p. 46.
- Christopher Matthews, “The Very Model of a Democratic Statesman”, Finest Hour, Spring 2000, p. 17.
- Richard Langworth, editor, Churchill by Himself, p. 388.
- Lynne Olson, Troublesome Young Men: The Rebels Who Brought Churchill to Power and Helped Save England, p. 217.
- Oliver Lyttleton, Viscount Chandos, The Memoirs of Lord Chandos, p. 165
- Geoffrey Best, Churchill in War, p. 146.
- Geoffrey Best, Churchill in War, p. 126.
- Richard Langworth, editor, Churchill by Himself: The Definitive Collection of Quotations, p. 544.
- Nigel Nicolson, editor, The War Years: Diaries and Letters of Harold Nicolson, p. 121 (October 17, 1940).
- Nigel Nicolson, editor, The War Years: Diaries and Letters of Harold Nicolson, p. 413 (November 29, 1944).
- Winston Churchill, Their Finest Hour, Volume II, p. 56.
- Martin Gilbert, Continue to Pester, Nag and Bite: Churchill’s War Leadership, p. 29.
- Geoffrey Best, Churchill: A Study in Greatness, p. 183.
- Geoffrey Best, Churchill: A Study in Greatness, p. 185.
- John Martin, Downing Street: The War Years, p. 6.
- Martin Gilbert, Winston S. Churchill Finest Hour, 1939-1941, p. 1086.
- Martin Gilbert, Winston S. Churchill Finest Hour, 1939-1941, p. 1105.
- Charles McMoran Wilson Moran, Churchill, Taken from the Diaries of Lord Moran: the Struggle for Survival, 1940-1965, p. 131 (October 29, 1943).
- Nigel Nicolson, editor, The War Years: Diaries and Letters of Harold Nicolson, p. 97.
- Andrew Roberts, Masters and Commanders: How Four Titans Won the War in the West, 1941-1945, p. 42.
- Nigel Nicolson, editor, Harold Nicolson: Diaries and Letters, 1939-1945, p. 358 (April 2, 1944).
- Martin Gilbert, Winston S. Churchill: Road to Victory 1941-1945, p. 726.
- Nigel Nicolson, editor, Harold Nicolson: Diaries and Letters, 1939-1945, p. 373 (May 24, 1944).
- Martin Gilbert, Winston S. Churchill: Road to Victory 1941-1945, p. 567 (November 25, 1863).
- Martin Gilbert, Winston S. Churchill: Road to Victory 1941-1945, p. 65.
- Martin Gilbert, Winston S. Churchill: Road to Victory 1941-1945, p. 918 (August 28, 1944).
- Martin Gilbert, Winston S. Churchill: Road to Victory 1941-1945, p. 1090 (December 8, 1944).
- Winston S. Churchill, Triumph and Tragedy: The Second World War, Volume V, pp. 294-295.
- Winston S. Churchill, Triumph and Tragedy: The Second World War, Volume V, pp. 254-255 (December 8, 1944).
- Winston S. Churchill: His Complete Speeches, 1897-1963: 1943-1949, p. 7219.
- Alex Danchev and Daniel Todman, War Diaries, 1939-1945: Field Marshal Lord Alanbrooke, p. 170.
- Mark Pottle, editor, Champion Redoubtable, The Diaries and Letters of Violet Bonham Carter, 1914-1945, p. 247 (November 12, 1942).