Spring 1892 (Age 17)

Winston’s great achievement this term was the winning of a fencing championship. He reported to his mother that he was “far and away first. Absolutely untouched in the finals.” He also wrote to his father about his accomplishments, asking for more money. Lord Randolph’s response focused on the financial request: “I send you £1 but you are really too extravagant … If you were a millionaire you could not be more extravagant … This cannot last, and if you are not more careful should you get into the army six months of it will see you in Bankruptcy Court.”

The Harrovian recognized the achievements overlooked in the paternal response. The comments in the student paper indicated how Churchill would fight battles all of his life: “…his quick and dashing attack … took his opponents by surprise.” It would not be the last time that “Churchill must be congratulated on his success over all his opponents … many of whom must have been much taller and more formidable than himself.”

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