Winston Churchill | History Hit
Back to Articles

Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill was a British politician, statesman, and writer who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom twice, from 1940-1945 and again from 1951-1955.

He is widely considered to be one of the greatest British leaders of the 20th century and is famous for his speeches and leadership during World War Two.

Churchill was born into a prominent British family in 1874 and was educated at Harrow School and the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. He began his career as a  a war correspondent before entering politics in 1900 as a member of the Conservative Party, although he switched to the Liberals in 1904. He served in a variety of government positions throughout his career, including as Home Secretary and First Lord of the Admiralty.

In 1940, Churchill became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom at a time when Britain was threatened by Nazi Germany. He rallied the British people with his powerful speeches and determination to fight against the German onslaught. Some of his most famous speeches include “We shall fight on the beaches” and “This was their finest hour“.

Under Churchill’s leadership, Britain successfully won the Battle of Britain and ultimately defeated Germany with significant contributions from the Soviet Union and the USA. After the war, Churchill lost the general election of 1945 and he resigned as Prime Minister. He returned to power as Prime Minister in 1951 and continued to play a major role in international affairs, including the formation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the establishment of the state of Israel. He resigned as Prime Minister in 1955.

Throughout his life, Churchill was also a prolific writer, publishing many books and articles on history, politics, and war. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1953 for his six-volume memoir The Second World War. He died in 1965 and was given a state funeral.