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Thousands of people joined druids and pagans who gathered together to celebrate the Winter Solstice at Stonehenge, the shortest day and longest night of the year.

Stone-age humans began using lethal technology 71,000 years ago to fight Neanderthals

The date when stone-age humans first invented the lethal technology of spears and arrows has been set back many thousands of years with the discovery of small stone blades dating to 71,000 years ago.

Debate about the Neanderthals' fate has raged for decades

Neanderthals vs. Humans: Who would win in a fight?

We've had Alien vs. Predator, Monsters vs. Aliens and Dracula vs. Frankenstein, but what would happen if modern man and his prehistoric ancestor were to square off?

Quvenzhané Wallis and Dwight Henry in 'Beasts of the Southern Wild'

Beasts of the Southern Wild, Benh Zeitlin, 93 mins (12A)

This Sundance-winning fantasy is a cajun-spiced primal stew of a film, until cutesiness creeps in

Boy discovers 30,000-year-old mammoth

An 11 year-old Russian boy made one of the discoveries of the century when he stumbled across the remains of a 30,000-year-old woolly mammoth, the New Scientist reports.

DVD/Blu-ray: The Land That Time Forgot (PG)

Men of a certain age (my age) hold this Amicus-produced sci-fi caper from 1975 with affection and as cheap-looking and silly as it undoubtedly is, its still has its pleasures.

Neanderthal man's 'life of domesticity'

Neanderthal man may have preferred domestic chores to a rugged hunter-gatherer lifestyle, researchers have said.

Also showing: The Giants, Ice Age: Continental Drift, Chariots of Fire and Salute

The Giants (84 mins, 15)

Three boys in their early teen years, having been abandoned by their parents, roam the Belgian countryside having both sad and funny misadventures one summer.

A detail from the 'Panel of Hands', El Castillo Cave in northern Spain showing red disks and hand stencils made by blowing or spitting paint onto the wall. A date from a calcium carbonate layer covering one of the red disks has revealed that the painting is more than 41,000 years old, making it the oldest known definitively-dated cave art in Europe. The image of the bison was painted by other Prehistoric people long after the hand images had been created.

Brutish? You have to hand it to the Neanderthals after all

Cave paintings dated as 15 milliennia older than originally thought, making them Europe's earliest known paintings

Hedge Britannia: a curious history of a British obsession, By Hugh Barker

Barrier, border, habitat, evergreen history – a rich past dwells inside your humble hedge.

Night at the museum: Priceless treasures at the Natural History Museum after hours

In the 2004 film Night at the Museum, Ben Stiller’s security guard was in for quite a shock when the exhibited T-Rex skeleton sprang to life and began to chase him around the building.

New Zealand's penguin power

A giant penguin more than 4ft (1.2m) tall roamed New Zealand about 27 million years ago, according to paleontologists who have reconstructed it from fossil remains.

Craig Rhos-y-Felin, north Pembrokeshire: the newly discovered original source of some of the early stones used or installed at and around Stonehenge in the Neolithic

Scientists discover source of rock used in Stonehenge's first circle

Discovery reignites debate over transportation of smaller standing stones

Poetry: Songs of elegance and of experience

Christmas books of the year

What lies within: Why we are fascinated by caves

They inspire artists, hold ancient secrets and, in the popular imagination, they're the refuge of bandits and terrorists. Caves remain unmapped in our know-everything age.
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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
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

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Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

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Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

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Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

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Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

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The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
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Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

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Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

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Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

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Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test