Churchill & Mrs. Astor repartee--in 1902!

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Mon Jan 24 13:15:23 UTC 2005

In the version I remember, from a kids' book of baseball anecdotes in 1957, the actors were an irate lady fan and a put-upon umpire.


Bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:
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Subject: Churchill & Mrs. Astor repartee--in 1902!

>From the OXFORD DICTIONARY OF QUOTATIONS (6th edition, 2004), pg. 222:
NANCY ASTOR: If I were your wife I would put poison in your coffee!
CHURCHILL: And if I were your husband I would drink it.
Consuelo Vanderbilt Balsan _Glitter and Gold_ (1952)
Oxford surely checked and checked again. Does Fred have this?
Where the Laughs Come. By "A.K.". New York Times (1857-Current file). New
York, N.Y.: Sep 28, 1902. p. 27 (1 page)
These lines are saved from "Captain Molly," in which Elizabeth Tyree
appeared at the Manhattan:
Bunner--If I were your husband I'd give you poison.
Molly--If I were your wife I'd take it.
The Washington Post (1877-1954). Washington, D.C.: Sep 30, 1906. p. ES4 (1
"Mr. Blank, if I were your wife, I'd give you a cup of poison."
"Madam," he responded, without a smile. "If you were my wife, I'd be glad to
drink it."
I couldn't find this in the OXFORD DICTIONARY OF QUOTATIONS. I suppose Fred
has it from 1951 on ProQuest.
23 January 2005, NEW YORK POST, pg. 41, col. 1:
"IN wartime," said Winston Churchill, "truth is so precious that she should
wlways be attended by a bodyguard of lies."

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