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From mycologists to pigeon-fanciers, divers to Imperial stormtroopers, the photographers Ursula Sprecher and Andi Cortellini offer an insight into the psyche of their countrymen with their tribute to Switzerland's 'hobby groups'

Swedish court rules that it is ‘okay’ to masturbate in public

A 65-year-old man who pleasured himself on a Stockholm beach acquitted of sexual assault because he ‘was not targeting a specific person’

Luyt in 1998 after resigning as head of South African rugby

Louis Luyt: Businessman and rugby union leader whose career was tarnished by controversy

Louis Luyt was best known as the boorishly fractious South African rugby boss who briefly won kudos for the Springboks' 1995 World Cup victory, but soon fell out with the rest of the rugby world, his own players and with Nelson Mandela. But his notoriety had been secured two decades earlier thanks to his role in the "Infogate" scandal.

Pasty-faced, soap-dodging would-be troubadour Pete Doherty

Want to see a dirty movie? Not *that* kind

I fear that someone has been having our Gallic friends across la Manche on. Somehow, they've come to believe that the pasty-faced, soap-dodging would-be troubadour that is Pete Doherty is not only cool, but that he is a sensible choice for the romantic lead in a period film.

Album: Klezmer Juice, Yiddish Lidele, (ARC)

According to the Jewish Argentinian clarinettist Gustavo Bulgach, who leads Klezmer Juice, klezmer is like a soapy pig which no one can catch; wherever it feeds, it takes on the local colour.

French connection

After a slow start, France is now flying the MBA flag high

The way of the word

'Ricin? It looks and sounds as if it were one of those things that you generally see listed on the side of packets of breakfast cereals'

Words: Impassionate adj.

SURELY THIS is the most useless word in English. If you look up impassionate in Chambers Dictionary you will find its meaning given as "impassioned, dispassionate" - in other words, full of passion or totally without passion.

English-Speaking Union appointments

English-Speaking Union

words : Dole

FRAUDULENT claims to dole money have been worrying social security chiefs, we read. The said chiefs do not, of course, generally talk about the dole. They prefer to speak of benefits. Dole got a bad name during the inter- war Depression, when the official word was assistance; the responsible body in those days was called the Unemployment Assistance Board. Any word was better than dole, so firmly identified with a tight-fisted bureaucracy which humiliated the poor.

Letters: Putting the apostrophe in its place

LIKE Suzi Feay, I, too, get extremely irritated by misused apostrophes.

WORDS:Dumb

Dumb
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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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