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George Ortiz was one of the great contemporary collectors. He came to public attention in 1994, when the Royal Academy showed his breathtaking collection of antiquities. Not all were impressed: Lord Renfrew criticised the show, talking of “the large-scale looting which is the ultimate source of so much of what he is able to exhibit.” This stung, because Ortiz’s collecting was guided by the concept of André Malraux’s Musée Imaginaire, where objects could be viewed without the preconceptions that grouped them by country and period – contrary to the traditional practice of curators and art historians.

The Sanssouci Palace

Fresh cuts: There are lots of pluses in Prussia

Adrian Mourby takes in Christmas markets with a gulp of glühwein and a dash of history

Gennady Bogolyubov has become a frequent visitor to London’s civil courts

Heard the one about the rabbi and the oligarch? Business deal turned sour sends shockwaves through London’s Chabad Jewish community

Gennady Bogolyubov and Rabbi Yonah Pruss' bitter legal battle over multi-million pound property deals looks destined for the High Court

St Peter's bones are believed to have been found in the fourth century

Vatican to display relics that it believes are the bones of St Peter

Relics believed to be the bones of St Peter are to be put on public display for the first time.

The real-life Willy Wonka: Brian Sollitt, inventor of the After Eight, dies aged 74

A historian described his impact on chocolate making in Britain as ‘incalculable’

On this day 1504: Michaelangelo's David unveiled in Florence

Michelangelo's David was unveiled in Florence 509 years ago today.

Room Service: Hotel B, Peru

Art and glamour by the sea in Lima

China issues nationwide warning as Shanghai suffers hottest July for 140 years

More than 10 people have died from heatstroke as temperatures soar to nearly 41C

Police fired teargas and water cannons at protesters as they tried to prevent them gathering in Gezi Park

Turkey unrest: Gezi Park reopens after police fire teargas during overnight clashes with protesters

Preparations made for Ramadan fast-breaking dinner in park

Designer digs: One of the Four Rooms

B&B and Beyond: Four rooms, Porto - Discreet elegance in Portugal’s lovely second city

This converted townhouse offers design fans a serene and stylish stay in Porto’s old fishermen’s district, says Katie Monk

The front entrance to Liberace's former home in Las Vegas

Behind the Michaelangelo copies and bling… Liberace party house for sale at £345,000

It was once the ultimate bling-filled party house, but, despite its gilded history, Liberace’s sprawling Las Vegas mansion is now on the market for a mere $529,900 (£345,000).

Andy McSmith's Diary: Dear Leader Dave dips his toe into the macho political pool

By taking a 6am dip in the chilly waters of Lough Erne, accompanied by a reluctant police protection officer, while the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, stayed in bed, David Cameron has joined the macho band of political leaders who have sought to reinforce their authority with displays of physical fitness.

Pretty lethal: Ian Poulter attempts to blast out of a sand trap on the 16th hole as he completed his second round

US Open 2013: Ian Poulter discovers Merion favours the lucky player

This brute of a course punishes good shots rather than testing the best as many have discovered

Light fantastic: One of the bright, spacious apartments

Stay the Night: Baixa House, Lisbon

A dozen apartments in a converted 18th-century building offer an insight to local life in the city, says Caroline Kamp

Carlton House used to be Mukhtar Ablyazov 's main UK residence

High Court rules that billionaire fraudster should lose three luxury properties

It is alleged that Kazakh businessman, Mukhtar Ablyazov, embezzled more than $6bn during his time as chairman of BTA Bank

Revealed: Stunning new images show gold-plated, ultra-luxurious Riyadh metro station that Saudi king has ordered to be built

King Abdullah Financial District Metro Station has been designed by half-British architect Zaha Hadid

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us