Definition of John Profumo from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


John Profumo

; NAmE
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(1915-2006) a minister in the Conservative government of Harold Macmillan, who admitted in 1963 that he had had a sexual affair with a prostitute called Christine Keeler. Keeler was also having a sexual relationship with a Russian navy officer, and this was felt to threaten national safety. Profumo resigned, and at the court trial of Christine Keeler shocking details were reported about the behaviour of top government figures, involving prostitutes and criminals. The matter became known as the Profumo Affair, and severely damaged public trust in the government. Profumo left politics but later followed a new career in social work and adult education.