News The home of the TV weatherman has been raided by police as part of an investigation into historic sexual abuse

Fred Talbot faces 9 charges of incident assault and one serious sexual assault

Bruce Mitchell: Anglo-Saxon scholar who wrote the definitive work on Old English syntax

The eminent Anglo-Saxonist Bruce Mitchell delighted in appearing to be a slightly old-fashioned scholar resistant to new developments, and defended his position rigorously and without apology, though always with humour. When he completed his monumental Old English Syntax in 1982, towards the end of his long career as a scholar of Anglo-Saxon, he introduced it with the words, "I have to state categorically my opinion that ... the techniques of the various forms of linguistics fashionable today have little to offer students of Old English syntax."

The Sketch: Fiddling, flipping and filching: what's a decent chap to do?

They couldn't get Lord Ashcroft to come in so they took it out on Hayden Phillips.

'Sexist' thinking still present in writing

Letters that begin "Dear Sir/Madam" and references to "Mr and Mrs" are both remnants of "sexist thinking", according to psychologists.

Charles Crawford: Language is a tool which must be kept well-honed to do its job

Language does not decay unless it ceases to be used for communication. It changes, sometimes other people's usage (or mistakes) grate upon those who say it differently, but the language itself is not in any danger.

Independents are outshone by state grammars in A-level results

State grammar schools took the top two places in this year's A-level league table, beating all of those in the independent sector.

Secondary schools tables

Errors & Omissions: Rhythmic writing and the grammatical flourish

On Boxing Day morning, you don't want this column's usual nit-picking about things that went wrong in the past week's issues of the paper. So this week we change into festive attire and offer instead a celebration of some particular felicities.

'Krak' (that's falling branch in monkey speak)

Researchers claim to have deciphered the way primates communicate

Why make learning a foreign language your New Year’s resolution?

It seems a bit churlish to start talking about New Year’s resolutions when we still have Christmas and all its glorious overindulgences to look forward to, but not all resolutions have to involve new trainers, rice cakes and celery.

Cameron keeps Mumsnet waiting

Parents left frustrated at technical delays to Conservative leader's webchat, reports Michael Savage

Anger at plan to expand grammar school system

Kent confirms reputation as Britain's most selective education authority

Overseas students are better at English than the British

Home undergraduates make three times as many grammatical, punctuation and spelling mistakes

Mary Warnock: Children need to be taught to think highly of education

Students from state schools won't tangle with the snobs and the toffs

Simon Carr: Without the right contacts, you'll never get Graham Norton on the phone

In networking terms, you wouldn’t ask a networker for a celebrity’s number

Album: Frankmusik, Complete Me, (Island)

To be completely Frank, it's digital pop at its very best
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Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine