[Ads-l] Quote: Attlee is a modest man who has a great deal to be modest about

Stephen Goranson goranson at DUKE.EDU
Thu Aug 24 14:01:15 UTC 2017

As you may know, according to an unverified google snippet, a 1940 use:

"As a Roumanian student said to an Englishman, "You English are very modest fellows, but you always manage to convey the impression that you've a great deal to be modest about."

Supposedly on p. 205 of Can Christianity save Civilization? by Walter Marshall Horton.

And sometimes said of Aneurin Bevin, Attlee's Labour associate.

Stephen Goranson


From: American Dialect Society <...> on behalf of ADSGarson O'Toole <...>
Sent: Thursday, August 24, 2017 9:40 AM
To: ...
Subject: [ADS-L] Quote: Attlee is a modest man who has a great deal to be modest about

The statement in the subject line is usually attributed to Winston
Churchill. It has been examined by several researchers, e.g., Nigel
Rees, Ralph Keyes, Fred R. Shapiro, and Richard M. Langworth.

In the past, a citation in 1954 was the earliest published evidence
presented in reference works. Now, I've posted an article on the Quote
Investigator website with a December 9, 1945 citation together with
other early items of evidence.


Feedback welcome


The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list