Critics like to cite research showing the rise in the world’s average surface temperatures has slowed down since 1998. But is it true?

See maori

If your knowledge of Maori culture stops at the All Blacks performing the haka at the start of rugby matches, you could benefit from a trip to the British Museum, which is home to an exhibition devoted entirely to the history, culture and arts of the Maori people. It tells the story of a group of people from tiny Pacific islands who colonised "The Land of the Long White Cloud" and created a unique and complex society and culture. It covers a period of fewer than 1,000 years from the time the first Polynesians arrived in New Zealand (exact date unknown) to the beginning of sustained contact with Europeans in the late-18th century The exhibition includes important early material collected during the three voyages of Captain Cook between 1768 and 1780, a collection assembled by Sir George Grey while Governor of New Zealand, as well as numerous other collections and gifts. On display are more than 500 objects, ranging from wood carvings to war canoes, weapons to cloaks, domestic implements to ornaments (including the naturalistic male figure created by the Ngati Kahungunu carvers, right). The exhibition also includes a selection of present-day objects purchased or commissioned by the museum from Maori artists, as well as lectures, events and dancing.

Green fund

Green fund

PCC adjudication

Detective Superintendent D McGookin of the Kent County Constabulary complained to the Press Complaints Commission that an article published in the Independent on Sunday on 1 June 1997, headlined "Law catches up with 'Bounty' islanders", attributed to him statements which he did not make, in breach of Clause 1 9 (Accuracy) of the Code of Practice.

Riddle of worms in very hot water

Riddle of worms in very hot water

Science: Captured in space: the deadly course of El Nino

Every picture tells a story - and this one is of the change last year in sea currents which caused droughts in Indonesia, western Africa and central America, heavy rains in east Africa and Canada, and, perhaps, the mild winter we're generally experiencing. El Nino is back - and this time it's really big. Charles Arthur, Science Editor, explains.

Letter: Heyerdahl was right

Letter: Heyerdahl was right

Science: DNA shows how Thor Heyerdahl got it wrong

Fifty years ago, Thor Heyerdahl and the Kon-Tiki expedition appeared to prove that ancient humans could have sailed west from South American to colonise the Pacific islands. But DNA evidence now shows that his theory was wrong. Charles Arthur, Science Editor, on the molecules that have upset a great adventure.

Friday's book: Roverandom by J R R Tolkien

That huge paperback in almost every 1970s student bedroom (which disintegrated the moment you lent it to someone) is probably still the popular image of a Tolkien book. The seemingly endless volumes of The History of Middle-Earth by Tolkien's son Christopher reinforce the idea: Tolkien's books are big.

Law catches up with 'Bounty' islanders

UK police are being sent to tackle a crime wave on remote Pitcairn Island, reports Tim Minogue

For another world, follow the guide to God's own islands

Simon Calder with an ocean-to-ocean tour of places that take their names from the Christian calendar. It's heavenly ...

Profits jump at Christies despite lean year for big sales

Christies International, the auctioneer and art specialist, expects to start selling several big single-owner collections after a lean year for large sales in 1996. Lord Hindlip (pictured above left), the company's chairman, who yesterday announced a 57 per cent surge to pounds 33.9m in taxable profits and a 70 per cent boost to 4.75p in the dividend payout for last year, said the outlook for first-half sales was encouraging.

Black boxes found in sea

An American salvage team has recovered one of the two black boxes from the wreck of an Aeroperu airliner that crashed more than two weeks ago into the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Peru. Searchers also spotted the bodies of seven of the jet's 70 occupants, and they will be recovered when ocean conditions permit, Aeroperu said.

Call a porn line and help a Third World country

Telephone sex is the new 'foolproof' moneyspinner for small countries. The only loser is the unwitting domestic user

Key diplomatic posts to be advertised by Labour

Key diplomatic posts will be advertised by Labour if it wins the general election in the hope of attracting leading businessmen to become ambassadors.

Britain joins South China Sea exercises

Britain joins South China Sea exercises
Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
a clockwork orange, stanley kubrick
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas