Life and Style Buttering up: The popularity of artisan butters has forced the big makers of other spreads to change their products

Margarine makers have an unusual response to  our renewed taste for butter

The Austerity Issue: don't panic

Amid the bewildering complexities of the global financial crisis, one simple fact stands out: the little we have left needs to go a lot further. Fear not! We'll show you how to endure the forthcoming recession with a bit of grit, some nous and the wise advice of our post-war forebears. And you never know, you might have a laugh or two along the way... To begin our special issue, a celebration of the true heroine of austerity Britain: the housewife

Paperback: Hubbub, by Emily Cockayne

Provided the reader is in robust good health and not about to eat a meal, this account of "filth, noise and stench" in 17th and 18th-century England makes an entertaining, even amusing read. Cockayne draws us into a world where snickleways (narrow, often noisome passages) might be contaminated by fallen axunge (pig fat used to grease axles) or the overflow from a "house of easement". Butchers, dogs, fleas and gin play leading roles in this account of history's backside. We learn that umbrellas were black "so that the sooty rain did not stain them", while London's Mount Pleasant was "a tongue-in-cheek name" for an 8-acre soil dump. Like Dung Wharf adjoining Puddle Dock, it was literally a shit-heap. The pollution could be aural as well as physical. Described as "unpleasing and tuneless", street musicians provoked the proverb: "Give the piper a penny to play and twopence to leave off", but laws were passed to limit nocturnal racket, like the 1598 statute that "no man shall after the hour of nine at night beat his wife". Cockayne concludes by observing that, though urban dwellers were subject to stink, itch, racket, filth, overcrowding and murk, at least they were not stranded in the countryside among rustics castigated by one Londoner as "clownish, ignorant, rude, slovenly, absurd, boisterous and blustering".

Market Report: InterContinental Hotels surges on £5.7bn bid talk

The private-equity industry may have spent a staggering $700bn(£357bn) on deals across the globe in 2006, but investors do not expect the spending spree to end just yet. InterContinental Hotels rose 56p to 1,217p yesterday, easily the best blue-chip performer, as talk of a 1,500p-per-share bid persisted.

Cod Liver Oil: Should I continue taking it?

A recent study showed that taking cod-liver oil supplements may have no benefits and indeed may be harmful. My husband and I, both in our seventies, have been taking cod-liver oil tablets for the past five years. We take regular exercise and have a good diet. Should we continue taking cod-liver oil?

Time to step on the bio-gas

In Brazil, cars run on sugar cane. In the US, a lorry is fuelled with wood. Terry Kirby wonders why we're being so slow to follow the lead

Words: butter, n.

"DO YOU want butter on it?" asked the man in a Brighton sandwich- shop. "Yes, please." With which, he dug his knife into a tub of grease which I could not believe was butter. "Is that margarine?" "Yes." "But you just asked if I wanted butter." "I know," he said, knife aloft, "it's a figure of speech, isn't it?"

Formula milk `can set back babies'

BABIES MAY suffer early impairment of their intelligence if, for their first four months, they are fed infant formula that lacks an ingredient found in breast milk, say British scientists.

Non-stick ketchup runs out of the lab

A SCANNING technique for head injury patients is helping to develop the perfect ketchup.

Cod-liver oil health fears

Cod-liver oil health fears

Girl, 13, was `bullied to death'

A teenager took an overdose of pills out of desperation at the bullies who were hounding her, her family claimed yesterday.

Oldest person, 122, dies

Jeanne Calment, who credited olive oil and port for making her the world's oldest person, died aged 122 in Arles. Though blind, nearly deaf and in a wheelchair, she remained spirited and mentally sharp to the end. On her 121st birthday she released a CD, Time's Mistress, on which she reminisced to rap. AP -Arles
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Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
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Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence