Life and Style

First of all, a caveat: the clothes we see in 16th-century portraits aren't fashion. At least, not to our eyes. They're court costume – emphasis on the costume. It's difficult to reconcile the lavishly slashed, brocaded and jewel-bedecked gowns of lustrous Renaissance portraiture with our jeans-and-T-shirt culture, or even with the grander creations on the international catwalks.

Silence marks passing of WWI generation

The nation fell silent on Armistice Day as the passing of the First World War generation was marked at a moving memorial service today.

Fit for a Princess: The Hardy Amies exhibition

The archive of the Savile Row designer, which includes unseen photos of the Royal Family, is to be shown to the public for the first time

Sissinghurst, By Adam Nicholson

As a townie, I'm a sucker for romantic depictions of the countryside such as this one. Especially with the added attraction of not only a historic country house (its original owner was chosen by Queen Elizabeth I to give the news of her execution to Mary, Queen of Scots), but also a literary connection – Nicholson's grandmother is the writer Vita Sackville-West, who bought Sissinghurst when she lost her own family seat, Knole.

Bermuda visit for the Queen

The Queen will visit Bermuda to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the island's settlement, Buckingham Palace has confirmed.

Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, By William Shawcross

On 7 July 1959, Isaiah Berlin described a dinner party with Maria Callas and the Queen Mother. "I thought the QM not indeed particularly intelligent nor even terribly nice," he wrote, "but a very strong personality – much stronger than I thought her – and filled with the possibility of unexpected answers."

Boyd Tonkin: Swansongs for a poet and a queen

The Week In Books

Queen Mother backed Thatcher honour

The Queen and Margaret Thatcher never really hit it off. Of all the prime ministers for whom the Queen held an audience, Mrs Thatcher was notoriously one of those she liked the least.

Queen Mother's letter in full

Here is the full text of the Queen Mother's letter:

My darling Mama,

I hardly know how to begin to tell you of the horrible attack on Buckingham Palace this morning.

Last Night's Television: Manson, FIVE<br />On Tour With The Queen, Channel 4

Forty years ago this week, Los Angeles was reeling in the wake of a crime horrifying even by the standards of that blood-splattered metropolis. Three months later, the murderers of seven people including actress Sharon Tate, the heavily pregnant 26-year-old wife of director Roman Polanski, were identified as acolytes of the sociopathic Charles Manson, members of his so-called Family, who had been acting on his addled orders with the intention of kindling a race war between blacks and whites, to which he, influenced by the Beatles, called Helter Skelter.

The return of the debutante

After 12 years' absence, the traditional 'coming out' ceremony for the young and privileged is back. Jerome Taylor meets the young women who <I>will</I> go to the ball

Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears, Jazz Café, London

Joe Lewis is much smaller, more wiry and slippery than his near-namesake, America's iconic heavyweight champ. You can bet the man who was itching to call his first album Nat Turner, after the feared leader of a US slave revolt in 1831, knows tall about Louis. Growing up in a Texas small town, MC Hammer claimed the 28-year-old's affections long before his current heroes James Brown and Lightnin' Hopkins. But the grit of Southern life at ground level hasn't changed too much, and he sings his take on 1960s soul with casual conviction.

Carol Ann Duffy : 'I was told to get a proper job'

She's the first female poet laureate and a set-text fixture, but, says Carol Ann Duffy, life hasn't really changed all that much

Queen to request &#163;7m more from the Civil List

Royal expenditure increased to record &pound;41.5m last year

Royal family costs each taxpayer 69p a year

The Queen and the Royal Family cost the taxpayer 69p per person last year - an increase of 3p, Buckingham Palace accounts showed today.

'This is where all my mates are'

On the eve of the D-Day anniversary, John Lichfield joined the 500 veterans who returned to Sword Beach to remember the soldiers who didn't come back
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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
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General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

How a composer turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
11 best bedside tables

11 best bedside tables

It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?

Italy vs England player ratings

Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

An underdog's tale of making the most of it

Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police
No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat