News A statue depicting a Neanderthal. Scientists have discovered that Neanderthal genes passed on to modern humans could affect our likelihood of developing auto-immune diseases.

The likelihood of people developing diseases including type two diabetes and Crohn's could be affected by genes inherited from Neanderthals

THE BOOK REVIEW

LIFE ON A MODERN PLANET Richard D North Manchester University Press, £25/£10.99

A gallery opens - after 18,000 years

The masterpieces discovered in a French cave will help unravel the myst eries of Stone Age art, says David Keys

Dam threatens Stone Age carvings

DOZENS of rare Stone Age carvings in a remote area of Portugal are posing a problem for the Portuguese government.

SCIENCE / Flesh on the bones of early man

LAST month's announcement of the discovery of Australopithecus ramidus, which some have called the 'missing link', was an intriguing clue to understanding the evolution of humans from our ape-like ancestors. More details of the complex story of human pre-history are emerging from other archaeological finds in the cradle of humanity - Africa. The aim eventually is to address the big questions in evolution: how, when and why did humans arise?

Stone-Age Mike Tyson was gnawed by a wolf

BRITAIN'S oldest known inhabitant was built like Mike Tyson and may have met his end, at the age of about 20 - in the jaws of a wolf.

Travel: A breath of fresh air from the Stone Age: Forget the leprechauns and long-winded folk songs: an archaeological excavation in Co Mayo has unearthed a thriving farming settlement of 6,000 years ago, says Sean Coughlan

About 6,000 years ago, when Rome was but a couple of goat sheds and the pyramids were still waiting for planning permission, a prehistoric crowd was hanging out in Ceide, Co Mayo, on the west coast of Ireland. With a mild climate, year-round grazing and a view of the sea, Ceide had plenty to offer the upwardly-mobile neolithic family.

World heritage status sought for Stone Age site: Discovery at Boxgrove 30 times bigger than thought

ONE OF Europe's oldest Stone Age sites - which hit the headlines earlier this summer when archaeologists found a 500,000-year-old human bone there - may be at least 30 times bigger than has so far been revealed.

ARCHAEOLOGY: Boxgrove Man reveals his Stone Age-old secrets

Archaeologists plan to reconstruct the diet, lifestyle, medical history and even age at death of the Stone Age man whose half- million-year-old leg bone was recently found in a gravel pit at Boxgrove in Sussex.

It's the flopstones as film hits the yabba-dabba-doo-doo: Phil Reeves in Los Angeles reports on the US critics' clubbing of 'The Flintstones'

PARENTS, pray that this summer is not wet. Hollywood's effort to cash in on the school holiday market by turning The Flintstones, the cartoon sitcom about cave people, into a flesh-and-blood blockbuster appears to have got off to . . . well, a rocky start.

We know where they're coming from: What happened to Neanderthal Man? Where did Homo sapiens appear? Why are there so many blonds in the Lake District? Steve Jones, winner of the Science Book Prize, and his colleagues in genetics are coming up with the answers. Steve Connor reports

There is a part of Little England that will forever be a little Flemish. Little England, a small peninsula in South Wales that sticks out into the Irish Sea, contains the genetic remnants of the Flemish craftsmen brought over by William the Conqueror soon after 1066. The present-day inhabitants of this part of the Pembrokeshire coast have genes that are quite distinct from their Welsh neighbours, but similar to the people now living in Flanders. It is a poignant reminder that our genes can help tell the story of human history because they constitute a library of the dead, as well as of the living.

Sussex site yields oldest human find in Britain

THE OLDEST human remains to be found in Britain have been unearthed in a Sussex quarry.

Oldest European

Remains of what could be the oldest man in Europe - believed to date back 500,000 years - have been unearthed in West Sussex. Archaeologists digging at an Old Stone Age site in Boxgrove found a fragment of a limb among animal bones. English Heritage said full details of the find, 100,000 years older than any previously located remains, would be released shortly.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science: Stone Age exit from Africa revised

OUR Stone Age ancestors went for a walkabout almost a million years earlier than was thought, according to an anthropologist.

Silly Questions: Toeing the line

HOW DID Stone Age man cut his toenails? There are two major schools of thought: Mark Salisbury and John Bartlett have independently come to the conclusion that Stone Age woman nibbled her mate's nails. This rudimentary act evolved into the practice of toe-sucking still seen in atavistic sections of society.

Parents win last-minute victory in school curriculum review: 'Neanderthals' to join advisory groups. Fran Abrams reports

PARENTS have been given seats on the advisory groups that, from next week, are to slim down the national curriculum. The last-minute move follows complaints that ministers' talk of bringing more 'parent power' into education has brought few results.
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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game