News The former first lady, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy

The former first lady, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, is threatening legal action after an online petition asked her to repay nearly €410,000 (£354,000) used to fund her website while her husband was President.

Carla Bruni: First lady of schmaltz

Carla Bruni is a self-styled femme fatale. So it's a pity that on her new album, the French President's wife comes across as simpering and weedy, says Andy Gill

<i>J'accuse!</i> Ségol&egrave;ne Royal links Sarkozy 'clan' with break-in at apartment

A vitriolic political row has exploded in France after the defeated presidential candidate, Ségolène Royal, accused President Sarkozy's "clan" of being "linked" to a break-in at her flat.

The Ten Best Summer Jackets

Whether you're dressing for a wedding, heading to the park or going on a night out, we have the pick of the summer jackets

Carla Bruni's new pop album is all sex, drugs and no role for Sarkozy

France's First Lady, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, sings about drugs and 30 love affairs on her new pop album released next month.

Fashion world bids farewell to Yves Saint Laurent

Celebrities he clothed and designers he inspired gathered for the funeral of Yves Saint Laurent in Paris today.

Asda bosses will rue dumping Coleen for glamorous Carla

Proof that Asda is run by people who haven't learnt the first rule of dating: never try your luck with anyone hotter than you. Last week an Asda spokesman confirmed that it has dropped Coleen McLoughlin as the face of its George clothing range and is choosing a replacement. "Among the names being considered is Carla Bruni," he revealed. "She's very attractive and a highly stylish person. We feel she would fit in very well with the George look."

Struggling Sarkozy to remind French: 'I'm a man of action'

A year after his victory in the first round of French presidential elections, Nicolas Sarkozy will attempt tonight to refloat an administration which threatens to sink into a morass of internal bickering and popular discontent.

Is it art, or is it cashing in?

A 15-year-old magazine photograph of a naked Carla Bruni fetched 23 times its estimate at auction, raising the stakes in the photographic world. Sophie Heawood reports

Christina Patterson: Beauty... a commodity ripe for taxation

If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, the beholder seems remarkably unimaginative

Nude Bruni image sells for &pound;45,500

A nude photo of the new high-profile wife of French President Nicolas Sarkozy smashed its auction estimate as it sold for more than £45,000 in New York, Christie's said.

Leading article: Charm offensive

Julius Caesar once summed up a battle with the words: "I came, I saw, I conquered." Another Italian-born aristocrat could make the same claim with regards to Britain this week. But whereas the Roman emperor's victory was achieved through force of arms, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy's conquest of these isles was accomplished through beauty, grace, couture, not to mention a revealing photograph, which went on sale just as the French President and his wife arrived in Britain for the state visit.

Carla la Magnifique? Anne Penketh says 'Oui'

The French President's wife has left Britain smitten, with her sparkling display of timeless elegance

The view from France: pride and shame in equal measure

Carla was perfect. Sarko was, despite his best efforts, Sarko. That was the considered view of the French press on the presidential state visit to Britain.

Terence Blacker: Is it so terrible that marriage is in decline?

Like a tired old couple nagging wearily away at one another, politicians and the media have been bickering over the great marriage crisis exposed by the Office of National Statistics. In 2005, the number getting married fell by nine per cent from the previous year; 2006 saw another significant fall, this time of four per cent. The national marriage rate, according to the OFT, is now at its lowest level since 1862.

Beckham highlights England's talent void

Soon David Beckham will be presented with his 100th cap that, in a pale imitation of the World Cup trophy he has never won, will be golden rather than blue. After the team's elimination from Euro 2008, English football has become so desperate they are inventing trophies to award to themselves, like those Soviet bloc nations who boycotted the 1984 Olympic s and earnestly held their own games instead, in which the international Communist brotherhood was assured of all three medals.

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Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee