Jerry Springer: Era-defining TV host dies aged 79

Jerry Springer, the TV presenter best known for his raucous talk shows, has died aged 79.

The Jerry Springer Show, which ran for nearly three decades from 1991, brought fights, flying chairs, and the fringes of US society to a global audience.

Springer died peacefully on Thursday at his home in Chicago, his publicists confirmed to BBC News.

Jene Galvin, a friend of Springer's and spokesman for the family, described him as "irreplaceable".

"Jerry's ability to connect with people was at the heart of his success in everything he tried whether that was politics, broadcasting or just joking with people on the street who wanted a photo or a word," he said.

"He's irreplaceable and his loss hurts immensely, but memories of his intellect, heart and humour will live on."

Springer's chat show became a symbol of low-brow television over the course of almost 5,000 episodes with its chaotic confrontation, swearing and infidelity revelations.

Fellow chat show host Ricki Lake led the tributes on social media, writing: "Just waking to the very sad news of the passing of my longtime talk show rival and friend Jerry Springer. A lovely man. May he rest in peace."

Broadcaster Piers Morgan described Springer as a "TV icon and such an intelligent, warm, funny man".

"Loved working with him on AGT [America's Got Talent], loved hanging out with him (we lived in same hotel for two years), loved arguing with him (he loved his politics), loved everything about him," he added.