The official website of Sir Martin Gilbert – 20th Century British Historian and the official biographer of Sir Winston Churchill

It is for the historian either to Say what happened or to say that he cannot discover it.

To say, “Perhaps it was like this” is to mask a failure to get to the bottom of a problem: and failure in historical research is no crime. It is one of the hazards of the profession.

Sir Martin Gilbert

Welcome to Sir Martin Gilbert's website, a celebration of his life and his work, his passion, his philosophy, his favourite haunts, his humour and his humanity.

The official biographer of Winston Churchill and a leading historian on the Twentieth Century, Sir Martin is a scholar and an historian who, through his 88 books, has shown there is such a thing as “true history”.

  • Churchill, the “Great Gentleman”

    Photo: Churchill and Alexander, 24 August 1944, from In Search of Churchill 500 words/ 2 ½ minute read The list of Churchill’s reform measures is impressive. The Tory Democrat who became an active Liberal and then a Conservative again (at the age of fifty-six) c...

    Churchill & Alexander
  • Hitler Youth

    Is Holocaust Education the Antidote to Antisemitism? By Esther Gilbert

    Photo: Hitler Youth at a Nazi Party convention rally in Nuremberg, c. 1934; Photo, Encyclopedia of the Holocaust 1760 words/8 ½ minute read Through the years, in thinking and teaching about the Holocaust, I have viewed it as a way to see what human beings are capable o...

  • Esther’s Moving on … But not really. By Esther Gilbert

    Photo:  The Canadian Rockies, February 2021, E Gilbert photo 515 words/ 2 ½ minute read Geography was so important to Martin. It was not only the history of a particular moment in time that counted, but that moment was inextricably linked to the place where it happen...

    IMG_0396 (1)
  • “Along Afghanistan’s War-torn Frontier”

    Photo:  Steve McCurry’s 1984 photograph of young Sharbat Gula in an Afghan refugee camp in Pakistan, published in 1985. 630 words / 3 minute read The face of then twelve-year old Sharbat Gula that adorned the cover of the June 1985 edition of National Geographic...

    Screenshot 2021-08-19 at 18.13.02

    When journalists write history. From Esther Gilbert

    Photo: Is he facing the truth, or filtering it? The dark shadow of this biography. Image from 430 words / 2 minute read Andrew Roberts wrote a review in The Spectator of a new Churchill biography. It seems that the author of the book uses his journalism ...

  • Learning the Lessons of Leadership: Inspiring Our Next Generation

    Photo: Gordon Brown, Sir Martin, Rabbi Sacks, 11 June 2011, Hendon Synagogue; Sir Martin holding the pages with his questions. Photo by Sandra Meyer, with thanks to Rabbi Mordechai Ginsbury. 575 words / 3 min read On 15 June 2011, at Hendon Synagogue, Sir Martin moderat...

    Screenshot 2021-08-19 at 10.16.15