Let us assume that the Remain camp has won the referendum. But at least thirty Tory MPs are demanding a recount, crowding angrily around the referee and angrily insisting that even if this result stands for the moment, it was achieved by lies, fraud and deceit. Cameron must go, they say.

The headless Tories will be looking for a champion. Apart from the absurd suggestions – Adam Afriye, David Davis, Penny Mordaunt – there are two serious candidates. The first is Michael Gove. But he has always insisted that he does not want to be Prime Minister (though his wife may have other ideas. There have even been rumours that Mr Gove might leave politics and edit a newspaper. The second, and here the word ‘serious’ applies to the candidacy but not the man, is Boris.

It is easy to imagine what Boris would be saying in a few hours’ time. “Pax, chaps. This is like the end of a good, hard game of Rugger. We’ve all had a few bashes and bruises: we’ve given out a fair few as well. But the match is over. Dave has won. It’s time to go to the pub for a few pints and be friends again. Above all, it’s time to rally behind the PM.” Then comes the unspoken sub-text: “With me as the crown prince.”

It is astonishing that Boris Johnson believes himself to be qualified for the Premiership. What has he ever done to demonstrate deep-lain principle, command of detail or the ability to address the multi-dimensional complexity of a Prime Ministerial agenda? His one experience of executive office was as Mayor of London, when his Turkish ancestry was manifest. Because of the crazy number of cycle lanes and road works, journey times in London are rapidly increasing to Istanbul levels.

He did get rid of bendy buses, but not bendy principles. Not long ago, he supported an amnesty for illegal immigrants. During this campaign, only Nigel Farage blew harder on the immigration dog whistle. A few weeks ago, he declared that there was no chance of Turkey joining the EU. Then suddenly, it became a real prospect, if Remain won. This is a man who will say anything.

Lefties often accuse Messrs Cameron and Osborne of believing in “entitlement”: a hereditary right to high office. But both those two worked hard for many years and showed an aptitude for the political hard slog. No, the man who feels entitled is Boris. “I am older than Dave. At Eton, I was head of school. I should be prime Minister, not him.”

Boris has considerable charm, which he has used to extricate himself from many a scrape. But it is wholly superficial. Other peoples’ existence is only of interest to him as a means of his own gratification. A charismatic narcissist in the tradition of Alcibiades, Bill Clinton, Jacques Chirac, he is solely interested in office as a further means of self-gratification.

Anyone who wants to know what a Boris premiership would be like should re-read the history of the Sicilian expedition. So for wise Tories who believe that their party has a crucial role in serving their country, the battle against Brexit is only the first phase. Now comes the battle against Boris.