Arts and Entertainment

A boy enters a palace of a hundred rooms where an assassin may lurk behind every door and shadowy figures are reflected in a Hall of Mirrors.  An astonishing treasure lies at its heart, but powerful enemies are at the gates.

Theatre / THE STEWARD OF CHRISTENDOM - Royal Court, London

Sebastian Barry wrote The Steward of Christendom as a way of discovering and coming to terms with his great-grandfather, Thomas Dunne - the last Catholic head of the Dublin Metropolitan Police before Irish Independence in 1922, a loyal servant of the British and hence not, as Barry writes in the programme, a comfortable ancestor.

Your heritage, by post

The middle-classes want aristocratic style. The aristocrats want middle-class money. Thanks to mail order, business can be conducted at a discreet distance. By Serena Mackesy


It can hardly have escaped your attention that the place to be right now, books-wise, is north of the border. The Edinburgh Book Festival comes to an end on Monday, just as an even more alluring event hoves into view. The Atholl Festival ("A Jacobite Pageant") begins on Saturday 2 Sept, catering for the spiritual, physical and intellectual sides of its punters with a vigour few other culture-fests can match.

how to be an extra

Sydney Gilman turns around in his stall seat in the Palace Theatre, Manchester, and looks blank for a moment. "What do you mean by extras?" he asks. "We're Cavalcaders."

Into the monkey's jaws

Firdaus Kanga on a magic realist blockbuster; Red Earth and Pouring Rain by Vikram Chandra Faber, pounds 15.99

Gingrichism of the week. 2

Newt Gingrich, Speaker of the US House of Representatives, tells the National League of Cities how public shame might be employed to tackle America's social problems:

Maori rage wrecks NZ treaty celebrations

Radical Maoris, angry about a government plan for the final settlement of their land claims that they regard as a trick, yesterday wrecked New Zealand's national-day celebrations at Waitangi, in the Bay of Islands, with violent protests. The Prime Minister, Jim Bolger, called off the ceremonies, in which he and other ministers were to have paid tribute to Maori-European co-operation, after police said they could not guarantee his safety.

BOOKS / Artists of the Lives: This extract from a new book considers 'The Future of Political Biography' in an anti-heroic age, and argues for nothing less than a literary revolution

WHAT IS WRONG with British political biography? The obvious answer is very little. 'Read no history, nothing but biography', wrote Disraeli, 'for that is life without theory.' In a nation traditionally suspicious of theory, many people seem to agree. Since the 1970s there has been a remarkable outpouring of 20th-century British biography - characterised by close attention to unpublished papers, the more or less systematic use of interview and a large number of reference notes.

Bottom line: Wates for the bulls

WATES City of London should be commended on still being around, unlike other City specialists, even to think about the next property cycle.

Woman savaged by zoo chimp 'not angry'

(First Edition)

Leading Article: Ordinary enough for humility

WAS Winston Churchill a racist? Is Britain, as the Archbishop of Canterbury seems to have said, 'an ordinary little nation'? These questions bobbed up last week in the wake of a Spectator article on Churchill by Andrew Roberts, and a snippet from an interview with Dr Carey in the uncorrected proofs of a book. They are interesting questions, even if the obvious answer to both of them is yes. To take one of several examples of Churchill's quoted views, Indians were the 'beastliest people in the world, next to the Germans' - difficult to argue from that that he took people as he found them, despite race, colour or creed. And while 'ordinariness' is a more difficult term to quantify, Britain is certainly more ordinary now than in its extraordinary imperial heyday.

Stockings sold

Apair of Queen Victoria's black silk stockings sold for pounds 1,127 at Sotheby's in London. The buyer was Alan East, a Staffordshire publican who intends to display them in his bar.

Landseer stag scene sets price record

IN 1888, Christie's sold Sir Edwin Landseer's Scene in Braemar - Highland Deer for 4,950 guineas; yesterday, Christie's sold it for pounds 793,500, writes Dalya Alberge.

Who cares about 1.2 million irate Scots?

HERE IS a story about culture and pride and democracy, about local government and the state, about money and muck. Here, first of all, is a story about water.

Letter: Duchess in limbo

Sir: So, the export of the marble effigy of the Duchess of Nemours, much-loved cousin of Queen Victoria, is to be blocked and may end up in a British museum (Diary, 17 March). This is hardly cause for celebration.
Lucerne’s Hotel Château Gütsch, one of the lots in our Homeless Veterans appeal charity auction
charity appeal
Arts and Entertainment
Tony Hughes (James Nesbitt) after his son Olly disappeared on a family holiday in France

Jo from Northern Ireland was less than impressed by Russell Brand's attempt to stage a publicity stunt

Scunthorpe goalkeeper Sam Slocombe (left) is congratulated by winning penalty taker Miguel Llera (right)
Arts and Entertainment
The Apprentice candidates Roisin Hogan, Solomon Akhtar, Mark Wright, Bianca Miller, Daniel Lassman
tvReview: But which contestants got the boot?
Life and Style
A woman walks by a pandal art installation entitled 'Mars Mission' with the figure of an astronaut during the Durga Puja festival in Calcutta, India
techHow we’ll investigate the existence of, and maybe move in with, our alien neighbours
Arts and Entertainment
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels ride again in Dumb and Dumber To
filmReview: Dumb And Dumber To was a really stupid idea
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Ian McKellen tempts the Cookie Monster
tvSir Ian McKellen joins the Cookie Monster for a lesson on temptation
Tourists bask in the sun beneath the skyscrapers of Dubai
travelBritish embassy uses social media campaign to issue travel advice for festive holiday-makers in UAE
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Lake Garda, Venice & Verona from £629pp
South Africa
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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
La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
10 best high-end laptops

10 best high-end laptops

From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum