At 92 years old, Clementine Churchill has this physical status:
Clementine Ogilvy Spencer-Churchill, Baroness Spencer-Churchill, (née Hozier; 1 April 1885 – 12 December 1977) was the wife of Winston Churchill and a life peer in her own right.
Although legally the daughter of Sir Henry Hozier and Lady Blanche Hozier (a daughter of David Ogilvy, 10th Earl of Airlie), her paternity is a subject of much debate, as Lady Blanche was well known for infidelity. After Sir Henry found Lady Blanche with a lover in 1891, she managed to avert her husband's suit for divorce because of his own infidelities, and thereafter the couple separated.
Lady Blanche maintained that Clementine's biological father was Capt. William George "Bay" Middleton, a noted horseman; Mary Soames, Clementine's youngest child, believed this. However, Clementine's biographer, Joan Hardwick, has surmised (due in part to Sir Henry Hozier's reputed sterility) that all Lady Blanche's "Hozier" children were actually fathered by her sister's husband, Algernon Bertram Freeman-Mitford, 1st Baron Redesdale (1837–1916), better known as a grandfather of the famous Mitford sisters of the 1920s. Whatever her true paternity, Clementine is recorded as being the daughter of Lady Blanche and Sir Henry.
In the summer of 1899, when Clementine was 14, her mother moved the family to Dieppe, a coastal community in the north of France. There the family spent an idyllic summer, bathing, canoeing, picnicking, and blackberrying. While in Dieppe, the family became well acquainted with 'La Colonie', or the other English inhabitants living by the sea. This group consisted of military men, writers and painters, such as Aubrey Beardsley and Walter Sickert. The latter came to be a great friend of the family.
According to Clementine's daughter, Mary Soames, Clementine was deeply struck by Sickert and thought he was the most handsome and compelling man she had ever seen. The Hoziers' happy life in France ended when Kitty, the eldest daughter, was struck with typhoid fever. Blanche Hozier sent Clementine and her sister Nellie to Scotland so she could devote her time completely to Kitty. Kitty died on 5 March 1900.
Clementine was educated first at home, then briefly at the Edinburgh school run by Karl Fröbel, the nephew of the German educationist, Friedrich Fröbel, and his wife Johanna and later at Berkhamsted School for Girls (now Berkhamsted School) and at the Sorbonne in Paris. She was twice secretly engaged to Sir Sidney Peel, who had fallen in love with her when she was 18.
Later life and death
After more than 56 years of marriage, Clementine was widowed on 24 January 1965 when Winston died at the age of 90.
After Sir Winston's death, on 17 May 1965 she was created a life peer as Baroness Spencer-Churchill, of Chartwell in the County of Kent. She sat as a cross-bencher, but her growing deafness precluded her taking a regular part in parliamentary life.
In her final few years, inflation and rising expenses left Lady Spencer-Churchill in financial difficulties and in early 1977 she sold at auction five paintings by her late husband. After her death, it was discovered that she had destroyed the Graham Sutherland portrait of her husband because Sir Winston had disliked it.
Lady Spencer-Churchill died at her London home, at 7 Princes Gate, Knightsbridge, of a heart attack on 12 December 1977. She was 92 years old and had outlived her husband by almost 13 years, as well as three of her five children.
She is buried with her husband and children at St Martin's Church, Bladon, near Woodstock in Oxfordshire.