Fifty years on, Mandy Rice-Davies stands by that famous quote

Andy McSmith

“He would, wouldn’t he?” is one of the most quotable and damning remarks ever made about a political figure. It is attributed to Mandy Rice-Davies, one of the young women involved in the Profumo scandal, which is close to its 50th anniversary. It was put to her during a magistrates court hearing that Lord Astor denied having had sex with her, and that was her quoted riposte.

Only Sir Ivan Lawrence, a 76 year old former barrister and Tory MP, claims she never said it. He was in court as a junior counsel, taking careful notes and “with all my imperfections as a note-taker, I could hardly have avoided recording such a significant and witty statement had it been uttered,” he wrote, in a letter to The Times.

However, Mandy Rice-Davies, now 68, has come back, disputing the accuracy of Sir Ivan’s notes. “It was said,” she insists, in a letter in today’s Times. “The palest ink is not always better than the best of memory, Sir Ivan – besides I have before me the court transcript.”

  • kgbarrett

    It probably wouldn’t have seemed a profound quote at the time. Just a flippant remark. Only over the years has it gained gravitas. Anyway, I would rather trust a hooker’s word than a lawyer’s word.

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