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When was the last time you had a first time.....?

Future perfect in ancient Italy

Room Service: Torre di Moravola, Moravola Alta, Montone, Umbria, Italy

Opera: Written on Skin at The Royal Opera House

A heavenly tale that gets under the skin

Album: Laura Mvula, Sing to the Moon (Sony)

We've got a special one here.

Out of proportion? We're surprised by fat rich kids, yet expect it of the poor

One study claiming middle-class children are more obese than working-class peers has upset expectations. But it's those expectations that need a close, hard look

Bright in winter's depths: why the flawless flower of Candlemas is a joy forever

Our Environment Editor on the enduring beauty of Snowdrops

France declares Mali intervention 'a success' but warns of dangerous new phase resisting guerrilla war

French forces expected to occupy last rebel town Kidal later today

The Undiscovered Country: Journeys Among the Dead, By Carl Watkins

A cultural history that reflects on the traditions that surround our final journey – to the coffin

The Weekend's Viewing: A passable night in

Great Night Out, Fri, ITV1 // World without End, Sat, Channel 4

Stand up and admire the demotic nobility of darts

Surely the argument over whether this is a sport or not can be considered redundant

The Book of Barely Imagined Beings: a 21st-Century Bestiary, By Caspar Henderson. Granta, £20

The first thing that strikes the reader on picking up Caspar Henderson's Book of Barely Imagined Beings is the care that has gone into its production. Once past the cover (embossed in gold), the foil-blocked spine and illustrated end-papers, the most innovative note is struck by the footnotes that run parallel to the main text, colour-matched to highlighted words.

Hitler and the Henrys: let’s not teach students the same subjects over and over again

Michael Gove has been worried for a while about the lack curriculum in history teaching.

God bless this royal foetus! As Kate Middleton announces she is pregnant, here's why we should all love the glorious House of Windsor

We shall line the streets for the happy couple - and a good thing too!

DVD & Blu Ray: Brave (PG)

While Brave looks okay it's also terribly meh.

François Fillon and Jean-François Copé are vying for the UMP job

Sarko without the talent or Mr Wait-And-See? French right decides who will succeed Nicolas Sarkozy

If Copé wins, it is possible the UMP will split and moderate figures will drift to a new centre party

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 12 March 2015
The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss