Sam Leith

Meghan woz right

6 December 2021 9:01 am

The Duchess of Sussex’s legal ding-dong with the Mail on Sunday (which published her private correspondence with her father) has…

The forever ‘war on Christmas’

29 November 2021 5:45 pm

It seems to get earlier each year, doesn’t it? It’s not yet even December, and the Mail on Sunday has…

The paradoxical integrity of our dodgy honours system

22 November 2021 9:25 pm

We are told that the Prince of Wales had no idea at the time that his underlings were offering to sell…

Rest in peace, Wilbur Smith

15 November 2021 6:40 pm

A sparrow falls. The death of Wilbur Smith at the weekend deprives the world of one of the great luminaries…

The Bitcoin delusion

8 November 2021 5:58 pm

Cast your mind back a few years to last week – when there was much laughing and wailing at the…

Why did we decide that Covid was over?

25 October 2021 12:45 pm

Look, I don’t know much epidemiology. Can’t pretend to. So what follows is, necessarily, a personal finger to the wind.…

No, the term ‘white privilege’ is not extremist

10 October 2021 11:42 pm

A Tory MP last week raised the delightful possibility that the big family of what we might call the terrorism…

Is anti-Etonian prejudice really OK?

27 September 2021 3:10 am

Don’t you wish Angela Rayner would come off the fence, just once in a while, and tell us what she…

Keir Starmer’s essay is a cliché-ridden disaster

23 September 2021 9:48 pm

Many years ago, a tabloid newspaper played an unkind prank on the author of a very long and much talked-about…

The true cost of the convenience economy

24 July 2021 9:00 am

‘Where’s the car?’ said my wife Alice, interrupting my Zoom meeting on Saturday morning. ‘It’s where you left it,’ I…

How to kill the English language

20 March 2021 9:00 am

Probably, most of you will have only the dimmest idea what a ‘fronted adverbial’ is. I used one in the…

Why Doc Martens are the only footwear you need

30 January 2021 9:00 am

Doc Martens are one of those quintessentially British things that, like the royal family and lorries queuing on the M20,…

‘People confuse sadness with darkness’: the complicated world of Mary Gaitskill

19 December 2020 9:00 am

An interview with the American novelist Mary Gaitskill

The serious business of graphic novels

12 December 2020 9:00 am

One of the running jokes about ‘serious’ graphic novels is that so many seem to consist, one way and another,…

The texture of our country is changing before our eyes

5 December 2020 9:00 am

On Saturday night we sat around the kitchen table, my family and I, and had a takeaway from the Turkish…

Barack Obama was decidedly a man of action as well as words

28 November 2020 9:00 am

Barack Obama was famous for his rhetoric, but his achievements show just what a steely political operator he was too, says Sam Leith

How moral is it to refuse a vaccine?

21 November 2020 9:00 am

Well thank goodness for that, eh? Just as we reached our darkest hour and resigned ourselves to an endless series…

The Hay festival’s uneasy dance with the UAE

24 October 2020 9:00 am

The Hay Festival, memorably described by Bill Clinton as ‘the Woodstock of the mind’, has, over the past couple of…

A cat’s-eye view of 18th-century social history

3 October 2020 9:00 am

Jeoffry is, by now, one of the best-known cats in literary history. And unlike the Cheshire Cat, Mr Mistoffelees, Orlando,…

In defence of wokeness

3 October 2020 9:00 am

We have been reading an awful lot about ‘wokeness’ recently. Nobody, I notice, seems to be much in favour of…

Today’s undergraduates are customers – and the customer is always right

22 August 2020 9:00 am

If you’re looking for a sign of the academic times, you could do worse than consider the image, published in…

She was just a damn cat – and I loved her

18 July 2020 9:00 am

I’ve never dug a grave before. But that was how I spent my Sunday afternoon. Three feet is awfully deep…


How do you enforce anarchy?

12 June 2020 1:48 am

I had an argument once, in a pub, with an anarchosyndicalist. We’d both been on the same protest march so…

Salman Rushdie: ‘The implausible has become everyday’

25 April 2020 9:00 am

Salman Rushdie on writing in the Age of Anything-Can-Happen

Coronavirus has made amateur mathematicians of us all

11 April 2020 9:00 am

‘What is the point of learning maths? When do you ever actually need it? How does it ever affect your…