Arts and Entertainment

'One of its most notable contributors was in Broadmoor'

Wordwatching: Field Notes from an Amateur Philologist by Julian Burnside, book review: 'The wonderful world of language, in so many words'

The Australian author of this lively collection of essays about language is an amiable guide to his subject. "Amiable" is, however, a stiff adjective to use when describing Julian Burnside, QC, who praises HW Fowler, author of A Dictionary of Modern English Usage (1926), and Samuel Johnson for allowing their personalities to colour their writings about words. He mocks philologists for their dryness, dismisses "cherished superstitions" that remain popular with conservative querulists and describes an attempt to ban the use of "mate" from the Australian parliament in appropriately matey style.

The Whitaker's Quiz of the Year: Round 2 - Events of the year

1. Who was sentenced to a year in prison in March for arranging the wiretapping of a political rival  and publishing the recorded conversation?

Bin there: New Delhi produces 10,000 tons of rubbish a day

Mark Jones: 'Incredible India' is getting incredibly trashed

Something to Declare

'Being an incorrigible rogue' under the Vagrancy Act 1824 is one of 309 offences to be repealed

Sleep soundly, incorrigible rogues: you're no longer committing a criminal offence

309 offences to be repealed and removed from the statue book this year

Google-perplexed: Why won't Android's next predictive dictionary help me sex-text?

Sometimes, it seems, autocorrect just isn’t on board with the fun stuff

YotaPhone review: the dual-screen smartphone is coming to the UK

It's got and LCD screen on the front and an E Ink display (above) on the back - but does it make any sense when you're using it?

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: The final word on HS2 (plus about 20 million others, too)

It makes Gibbon’s six-volume Decline And Fall Of The Roman Empire look like a postcard. The weight of the printed version is likely to be equivalent to that of a Toyota Aygo car.

'Selfie' beats 'twerk' to be named word of 2013 by Oxford Dictionaries

'Selfie' beat 'twerk' and 'binge-watch' to be chosen as the word of the year

Tim Key: ‘At times I was playing Scrabble with such beauty, it became more like ballet’

A friend challenged me to a game of Scrabble. They should have known better

Quiz: Are you down with the kids?

Do you find yourself listening in to 'young people' conversations unable to understand a word of what they're saying?

Germany in ****storm over rise of English words in dictionary

The country’s language association took the respected Duden Sprachewörterbuch’s editors to task for using the word ‘soccer’

Dogs take 'selfies' at Battersea Cats And Dogs Home in bid to attract new owners

Dogs at Battersea Cats and Dogs Home have been taking ‘selfies’ in a bid to attract new owners with their pouty profiles.

Blurred Lines? Miley Cyrus twerks during her performance with Robin Thicke at the VMAs.

Still hard at twerk? Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber's new collaboration 'Twerk' leaks online

Just three days after her raunchy bum wiggling caused outrage at Sunday's MTV Video Music Awards, Miley Cyrus has teamed up with Justin Bieber to sing about twerking.

Book review: Hobson-Jobson: The Definitive Glossary of British India Henry Yule & AC Burnell, edited by Kate Teltscher

A mutual trade in vocabulary took place during the British Raj, this book illustrates

Godfrey Bloom, shown here about to be excluded from the European parliament for shouting

Ukip MEP Godfrey Bloom insists that "Bongo Bongo Land" simply means land of the antelope

Unrepentant MEP refuses to back down or apologise over comments that caused storm of protest, insisting there was no racist intent behind phrase

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Rihanna celebrates Germany's win
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Rio Ferdinand, Alan Shearer, Alan Hansen and Gary Lineker during Hansen's final broadcast
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Brendan O'Carroll has brought out his female alter-ego Agnes Brown for Mrs Brown's Boys D'Movie
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Ian Thorpe has thanked his supporters after the athlete said in an interview that he is gay
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Professor Kathy Willis will showcase plants from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew
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Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?