Q. Who originated the famous words, “How odd of God to choose the Jews”?
A. The question was debated in the correspondence columns of the London “Jewish Chronicle” some years ago. More than one writer said that it began in a conversation in the Savage Club and the words originated with a foreign correspondent, WN Ewer (1885-1976).
In response, someone else said, “But not so odd/as those who choose/the Jewish God/but spurn the Jews”. Another response was, “Oh no/it’s not;/God knows/what’s what”.
Yet another: “Not odd/of God;/the goyim/annoy ‘im”.
True, there are views that the original comment originated with Hilaire Belloc or GK Chesterton, neither of them too well disposed towards Jews, but it is more likely that Ewer, a philo-semite, was the author.
Commenting on Chesterton’s antisemitism, the poet Humbert Wolfe wrote: “Here lies GK Chesterton/who to heaven would have gone/But didn’t when he heard the news/that the place was run by Jews”.