Book of the Month: Churchill’s Cigar

by Stephen McGinty (Pan MacMillan) 978-0-330-46121-4

The Greatest, or perhaps only Great, Briton of the last century was said to have smoked 200 000 Cigars in his life.

Many of these in a time when a less courageous soul would have been chewing on his nail instead. From a coal mine in Johannesburg; on a train fleeing to Maputo; in the nude on Cuban Beaches to his underground War Rooms in London, he smoked his cigars. So great a part of his self was the Cigar, he refused to be seen without one. His Cigars were valued so highly that the stubs started fights in the streets of London, and have sold for sums as high as £ 2000.

Find out how these rolled leaves may have changed the course of History in the most enjoyable history I have ever read. The story of a man seen through a smoky haze of blue smoke is perhaps a true telling of his character, rather than his importance.

He was so respected that Cubans, red or otherwise, have chosen to honour him with not only the gift of the finest Cigars, but they have even named a class of them in his name. These cigars are the largest and most difficult to make. They bully all of the others into insignificance, rather like the man himself.

Christopher Dean


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