Cover the borisaurus

Do you know your Boosterism from your Backstopectomy? Can you tell Prometheus from Cincinnatus, and if so, do you know what Prime Minister Boris Johnson is trying to say when he namechecks esoteric figures from the classics, quotes obscure phrases from history or just makes words up?


Certainly, Johnson is the most verbose Prime Minister of recent years, no doubt the result of a classical education, a closet full of public-school confidence and a former career as a wordsmith for The Times. Boris, more than perhaps any other leader, knows the importance of words, but he also knows how to have serious fun with them.


Welcome to The Borisaurus, a lexicon of the Prime Minister’s funniest, wittiest, most interesting words and phrases compiled in one brilliant dictionary, with every entry accompanied by a guide to its etymology, pronunciation, meaning and the intention of its use.


“Some PMs have struggled with language, so get others to write their words. Boris sees language as Play-Doh, as raw material to be manipulated into an infinite number of novel shapes and combinations. This ingenious book takes us on a journey into the mind of our Play-Doh player-in-chief.”


Anthony Seldon, historian and author of May at 10

“For the past three decades Simon Walters has been Westminster’s most brilliant political journalist. In The Borisaurus, he applies his talents to a fascinating exploration of how Boris Johnson has invented a new type of political discourse. Everyone who wants to understand British politics today must read this book and keep it by their desk.”

Peter Oborne, broadcaster, columnist and former chief political commentator of the Daily Telegraph

“Boris Johnson is perhaps the most beguiling wordsmith of the age, soaring to the peak of high office on wings of glittering prose. How did he amass his memory bank of instantly retrievable bon mots and pitch-perfect classical allusions? Here, Simon Walters studies the BoJo trail from Eton to Downing Street, filtering the pure ore from the glister of fool’s gold.”


Trevor Kavanagh, journalist and former political editor of The Sun
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  • Hardback, 200 pages
  • ISBN: 9781785905698
  • 9 April 2020
    Available to pre-order
  • £12.99

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  • ISBN: 9781785905083
  • 9 April 2020
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  • £6.99

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