J. Enoch Powell (b. 1912), British Conservative politician. Speech, April 20, 1968, to West Midlands Conservatives, Birmingham. Quoted in Observer (London, April 21, 1968).
The day after making this notorious warning on the consequences of large-scale immigration into Britain from Commonwealth countries, Powell was dropped from the Shadow Cabinet. According to Brewer's Quotations (Nigel Rees, 1994), Powell afterwards commented that he should have quoted the remark in Latin to emphasize that he was not predicting a bloodbath, only evoking the Sybil's prophesy in Virgil's Aeneid, bk. 6, l. 86: "Et Thybrim multo spumantem sanguine cerno." The phrase "rivers of blood" was also used by, among others, Thomas Jefferson and Winston Churchill.