Former editor Boris Johnson wins Spectator's £1,000 limerick competition (May 2016)
A £1,000 limerick competition run by the Spectator magazine has been won by its former editor, Boris Johnson. The competition was aimed at finding a limerick most insulting to Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The judge, Douglas Murray, said: “I am sure there will be those who claim this is a stitch-up.”
He added: “Certainly there were better poems. For sure there were filthier ones (and may I take this opportunity to congratulate the person who got the term ‘dirty trombone’ into their entry? The discovery that something called a ‘Turkey slap’ already exists also inspired several readers to new poetic heights). But this award is entirely anti-meritocratic.”
The Spectator launched its competition after a comedian was prosecuted in Germany for a poem about President Erdogan. In Germany it is a criminal offence to insult or ridicule foreign heads of state.
Boris Johnson, a Conservative MP and former London mayor, is a key leader of the Leave campaign to take Britain out of the EU. You can read his winning limerick here