Revealed in a new book, the intensely emotional lyrics of schoolboy Winston Churchill

Sent to a boarding school, an unhappy Winston Churchill wrote dozens of letters to his mother Jennie

Expelled to a boarding school, an unhappy Winston Churchill wrote dozens of letters to his mother, Jennie, which are now published in a collection edited by the historian David Lough.

As the American wife of Tory Parliament Member Lord Randolph Churchill, she was a pillar of society, with little free time to visit her young son.

By 1890, Lord Randolph, unknown to Winston, aged 15, was being treated for late stage syphilis, although the modern medical opinion is that he might have suffered another serious illness …

Sent to a boarding school, an unhappy Winston Churchill wrote dozens of letters to his mother Jennie

Sent to a boarding school, an unhappy Winston Churchill wrote dozens of letters to his mother Jennie

June 12, 1890, 2 Connaught Place

Dear Winston,

I'm sending this for Everest [Winston’s nanny], who is going to see how you are doing? I would like to go with you, but I have so many things to fix about the Ascot party next week that I can not handle it.

I have a lot to tell you, I'm afraid it's not a pleasant nature. You know honey, I hate to detest your guilt, but this time I can not help it. First of all, your father is very angry with you for not recognizing the gift of £ 5 for a whole week, and then writing a careless letter.

Your report that I attached is because you will see a very bad one. You work so inharmoniously and irregularly that you will go out for the last time. Look your place in the form! Your father and I are more disappointed than we can say. If you only had a better place in your way and were a little more methodical, I would try to find an excuse for you.

Dear Winston, you make me feel very unhappy. I had accumulated so much hope about you and I was so proud of you, and now everything is gone. My only consolation is that their behavior is good and you are an affectionate son, but your work is an insult to your intelligence. If you just draw up an action plan for yourself and carry it out, and you're determined to do it, I'm sure you could achieve what you want. It is that thoughtlessness of yours that is your greatest enemy.

I will not say anything more now, but Winston is old enough to see how serious this is for you, and how next year or two and how you use them will affect your whole life. Stop and think for yourself and take a good tug before it's too late. You know dear boy, I will always help you as much as I can.

June 19, Harrow

My dear mom,

I will not try to apologize for not working hard, because I know that with one thing and another I have been quite lazy. Consequently, when the month ended, I received a bad report.

My own mom, I can tell you that your letter cut me a lot. Even so, there is a lot of time until the end of the quarter and I will do the best I can in what is left.

Goodbye, mine.

[That September, Jennie set off without Randolph on a two-month tour of her friends’ Scottish country estates, a progress that became a regular feature of her social calendar. ]

September 19, 1890, Invermark, Brechin

Darling Winston,

I hope you try and do not smoke. If you knew how silly and stupid you seem to be doing it, you would surrender, at least for a few years. If you quit and work hard this quarter, I'll get Dad to bring you a gun and a pony. I love you so much to continue. Do not forget to brush your teeth! & think of me.

Lady Randolph Churchill, the mother of Winston Churchill was very sincere in the answers to her schoolboy son

Lady Randolph Churchill, the mother of Winston Churchill was very sincere in the answers to her schoolboy son

Lady Randolph Churchill, the mother of Winston Churchill was very sincere in the answers to her schoolboy son

September 21, Harrow

My dear mom,

I will quit smoking at any time for 6 months because I think you are right.

Goodbye, honey, mom.

April 1891, Harrow [aged 16]

Dear Mama,

My face swells twice its life size through toothache. I made an appointment with Pritchard [a dentist] for Tuesday. Goodbye my love,

With love and kisses I remain, Your tooth tormented, but affectionate, son.

April 29, Banstead

[a rented manor house near Newmarket]

Dear Winston,

I do not want to give a lecture on the subject, but I am sure that if you took a little more care of your teeth, you would not suffer so much. Very apart from the "pigginess" of not brushing them !! However, I hope you love being better.

May 19, Harrow

My dear mom,

I'm fine and I'm fine, but I've just been in the worst row for breaking some windows in a factory. There were 5 of us and only 2 of us were discovered. They found me, with my usual luck, to be one of these 2.

June 21, Harrow

Dear Mama,

I have to pay 8 / – [£49 today] like my part of those windows that we broke. Please send it to me before Tuesday.

July 14, Harrow

My dear mom,

Mr. Welldon [Rev James Welldon, headmaster of Harrow] He told me last night that he had written to you about what was going to happen "at least 4 weeks" in France. His ideal, of course, is a "family."

I'm sure you would not want me to be out most of the holidays with some horrible French family. It would be perfectly, well, unpleasant. Of course, it's completely in your hands. But I'm sure you will not send me to such an abominable job with your free consent. I beg you to leave me some fun.

PS I really feel less interested in the army [his father wanted him to go to the Royal Military College at Sandhurst] every day. I think the church would suit me better.

Jennie and her children spent most of the summer holidays in Banstead, largely in the company of their new lover Charles Kinsky, the son of an Austro-Hungarian prince.

September 19, Harrow

Dear Mama,

Welldon wants you to write to him and explain. why did not I come back [to school] Thursday. & # 39; The Doctors Certificate & # 39; says that it accounts for Wed & # 39; I told the animal that I understood that if you telegraphed, it was enough. "No," he said. Then he proposes that you write him a letter saying that I could not favor him with my presence & # 39; because of anything. Twiggez-vous?

Do not say anything about the theater or that would make it unbridled. With lots of love and lots of kisses, I'm still your boring and exiled darling.

September 27, Harrow

My dear mom,

Why did not you write to me, as you said you would do, in response to my 3 letters? I think it's very unkind of him because I'm very bored and I'm working hard. I guess you're busy with your & # 39; breed [racing] party & # 39; and so have not had time to send me a line. I returned 10 days ago and you have not sent me a word.

September 28, Harrow

Dear Mama,

Oho! Aha! And now, behold, I have written 3 long epistles and I have not written any SOLITARY lines.

I'm going to sell my bike for a Bull-dog. I have known him for a while and he is very docile and affectionate. He is a famous blood dog and worth £ 10 [£1,200]. So please write my mummy and give your kind consent. Goodbye my bird.

September 29, Banstead

Dear Winston,

I confess that I have been very negligent with writing, but I have been too busy. Do what you want from your bike, but it would be smarter, I think to keep it, a dog is sometimes a nuisance. Goodbye my love. I will write again.

October 28, Banstead

Dear Winston,

Since I saw you, I've been so busy that I have not had time to write. I have been very negligent, I confess, but dear son, your letters always have the same refrain "please send me money". You cross it in the fastest way. Here is a P.O.O. for £ 1 [today £120].

I was horrified to learn from Everest that you had another tooth. It is very silly of you and you will regret it. Send me the dentist's address, since I want to see it and give you an idea.

December 6, Harrow [aged 17]

My dear mom,

Mr. Welldon is very interested in going to Paris directly from here. Dear mom, I think it will be very unpleasant and unnatural if you allow me to take my Christmas away.

Please do not pressure me. Welldon got very angry last night when I told him I could not stop going back home. But Mom is not cruel and makes me unhappy. I have firmly decided not to go abroad until after 27. If, despite my pleas, they force me to go, I will do as little as I can and the parties will be a continuous battle.

December 8, London

Dear Winston,

My dear boy, I am sorry for you in every way and I can fully understand your anxiety and desire to be home for Christmas, but apart from other considerations, the tone of your letter is not calculated to make it too lenient. When one wants something in this world, it is not by delivering an ultimatum that one can obtain it.

You can be very sure, my dear, that I will decide what is best, but I tell you frankly that I am going to decide, not you. If it has to go, I'll see if it's possible to compensate it in another way. I'm counting on you not making a useless uproar, until then I bless you and work so Dad can see a good report.

December 9, Harrow

My dear mom,

You should not be so sarcastic with me since I'm not the one who has to make the sacrifice. You say "you tell me frankly" very well. Mamma, I just frankly told you my intentions that I would throw all the obstacles in the way of my departure abroad before the 27th.

You say it is for you to decide. I am forced to give up my vacation, not you, I am forced to resort to people who bored me excessively, not you. You were asked to leave a small part of the year to take me abroad, you promised, you rejected it and I did not insist.

I am very surprised and hurt to think that both you and Dad should treat me like this, like a machine. Please, have a little respect for my happiness.

December 15,

2 Connaught Place

Dear Winston,

I just read a page of your letter and sent it back to you, since I do not like your style. I confess that after our conversation the other day I did not expect you to go back to your word, and you try to make everything as unpleasant for you and for everyone else as possible. Dear, you will not gain anything by taking this line.

Everything I can do for you to make everything as pleasant and appetizing as possible, I will do it; more I can not promise it. Write me a good letter!

December 16, Harrow

My dear mom,

I never would have believed that you had been so cruel. I am completely miserable. That you refuse to read my letter is very painful for me. There was nothing in that that gave him reasons to reject it. However, I am happy to have waited 3 hours before answering or to have sent you something that would have surprised you.

I can not tell you how bad you made me feel; instead of doing everything possible to make me happy, you are going to cut the ground under my feet that way. Oh my mom!

I decided that I would not write any letter for you of any extension in the future as in my letters [sic] length that I can perceive a [reason] so you do not read it I guess you were too busy with your parties and arrangements for Christmas. I console myself with this.

Regarding the style [of my letter] – It was pretty good. Dear mom, I am so unhappy, but if you do not read this letter it will be the last one you will have problems returning. I'm more unhappy than I can say. However, his lack of kindness has relieved me of all feelings of duty.

Dear mom, if you want me to do something for you, especially such a big sacrifice, do not be so cruel to your loving son, Winny.

December, Harrow

My dear mom,

Attend my letter. I'm so miserable Even now I cry. Please, my dear mom, be kind to your loving son. Do not let my silly lyrics make you angry. Let me at least think that you love me – Dear mom, I despair. I'm so miserable I do not know what to do. Do not get angry, I'm so miserable.

Goodbye, honey, mom.

Winston lost this fight. Jennie wrote to Randolph: "It makes as much fuss as if I went to Australia for two years."

December 22, Versailles

My dear mom,

Despite a horrible smell of Brandy and beer on the boat, I was not sick. Au contraire I slept all the time. Fatigue, the passage. The strange food, the cold, the home sickness, the thoughts of what was behind and what before caused me to write a letter that would have hurt you.

I have progressed a lot in French. Of course I would give much to return, but considering all things, I am willing to stay in my month. Goodbye my dear mummy

December 27, Versailles

My dear mom,

I can not wait to go back. I count the hours. I will not travel second [class] again for Jove. Hoping to see you in 3 weeks 21 hours.

February 7, 1892, Harrow

My dear mom,

I am becoming terribly low in my finances. You say that I never write for love but always for money. I think you're right, but remember that you're my banker and who else I have to write to.

Please send me une[sic] Peu. J & # 39; espère that vous êtes in bonne santé, comme votre fils devoué. [I hope you’re in good health, like your devoted son.]

  • Adapted from Darling Winston edited by David Lough, published by the Head of Zeus on September 20 at £ 30.
  • To order a copy for £ 24 (offer valid until September 15, free P & P), visit or call 0844 571 0640.

The copyright in Winston's letters is © The Estate of Winston S. Churchill; Copyright in Lady Randolph Churchill's letters are © The Master, Fellows and Scholars of Churchill College, Cambridge.