News On Wednesday the moon will appear to be 4 per cent smaller than usual as it reaches its apogee

The moon will reach its apogee three hours after it rises

Scientists solve bizarre mystery of Mima mounds – they are not the work of aliens…

New research suggests geological anomalies are not Native American burial sites but are created by gophers over hundreds of years

US finally honours the Native American ‘code talkers’ of the Second World War

The role of Native American “code talkers” in transmitting secrets during the Second World War has been finally recognised in the US.

Members of the Native American Women Warriors march during the annual Veterans Day Parade in New York earlier this month

First people to colonise the Americas before Christopher Columbus are linked to Europe by new DNA discovery

DNA indicates that group of Siberians must have played a key role

Twin Towers costumes, a llama and a sombrero: How to do (or not to do) drunken tomfoolery

This week we’ve seen the best and worst sides of drunken excesses. What have we learnt? Just like in life: llamas good, racism bad.

Alexander Fury: Fragrant men are always in fashion

Wear, what, why, when?

Alexander Fury column

Wear, what, why, when?

Marvin Rainwater: Rock’n’roller who led the US invasion of 1950s Britain

In April 1958 Marvin Rainwater was one of the first American rock’n’roll stars to tour the UK, and when he came on stage at the Liverpool Empire he wore his buckskins and beaded headband, admittedly with only one feather.

Postcard from... Almeria

Ecuador will go ahead with drilling in Amazon rainforest after abandoning 'pay or we drill' scheme

Ecuador's president Rafael Correa is abandoning his ambitious ambitious plan to persuade rich nations to pay his country not to drill for oil in an unspoiled Amazon rainforest preserve.

Kate, Duchess of Cambridge holds the Prince of Cambridge

Welcome, baby George. And don't mind the millions of eyes watching your every move

The royal baby's name has been decided. It had to be something simple, English and firm, didn’t it?

Johnny Depp in London for the Lone Ranger premiere

Johnny Depp rides into London's 'wild' West End for The Lone Ranger premiere

Johnny Depp rode into the 'wild' West End of London for The Lone Ranger premiere.

Cather: Won a Pulitzer for One of Ours

Invisible Ink: No 182 - Willa Cather

When Dorothy got home to Kansas it always seemed to me she'd been sold a pup; Oz was far more exciting than the hardscrabble toil of her family homestead. Life for settlers in the "oblong states" of the West was tough, mean and short. Reading Willa Cather, I'd assumed she knew about frontier life on the Great Plains because, although her family was originally Welsh, she'd been born on a farm in Virginia in 1873. But the Cathers were an upwardly mobile family; Willa's father had switched from farming to real estate and insurance, and Willa went to the University of Nebraska. After she began to get articles published she switched her major and became a writer.

The Independent's Tom Peck

Shut up the windows and tuck into a curry: Hot tips for surviving the heatwave

Short of moving somewhere cold, how do you beat the heat? Tom Peck tried some of the many suggestions for staying cool

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There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
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Claudia Winkleman and co-host Tess Daly at the Strictly Come Dancing final
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Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
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Elton John and David Furnish will marry on 21 December 2014
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J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
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The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick