The most unparliamentary language was used to berate David Davis following a remark he made in the House of Commons bar.
When the Brexit secretary approached Diane Abbott following the historic Brexit vote, where the Hackney MP voted in favour of triggering Article 50, she told him to "f... off".
He seemed to lean in and embrace Ms Abbott in the late-night encounter, but later said he thanked her for the vote.
The Shadow Home Secretary was absent for the second reading of the Brexit bill saying she had a migraine. It was speculated that she was considering voting against the Bill, defying her friend and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn's three-line whip. She returned to the front bench during the third reading and voted in favour.
Later, Mr Davis exchanged a series of text messages with a Conservative colleague, making disparaging remarks about the Labour MP.
According to texts leaked to the Mail on Sunday, an acquaintance of Mr Davis said, "Cannot believe you made an attempt to give DA (Diane Abbott) a hug!"
The Brexit secretary replied: "Didn't, but the myth grows. I whispered in her ear 'Thanks for your vote' hence the 'F off'. I am not blind."
When his friend sent back, "Ha! Ha! Thank God you aren't blind. Great week for you and Brexit!", Mr Davis added: "Actually it would make a good Optical Express advert... Yes, a reasonable success."
It appears that he was confusing Optical Express with an advert for Specsavers, where people without glasses amusingly make embarrassing mistakes.
A spokesman for Mr Davis said: “This was a self-evidently jocular and private exchange with a friend.
"The Secretary of State is very sorry for any offence caused to Miss Abbott, someone he has known and respected for many years.”