News The Costa Concordia at Giglio

Divers searching the Costa Concordia have found eight more bodies, including that of a 5-year-old Italian girl, onboard the semi-submerged cruise ship.

Has Geoffrey Robinson's Tuscan villa broken the rules of the House? broken the rules of the House?

Nestling in the Italian hills lies the idyllic property - worth pounds 1.5m - that is causing the latest trouble for the Paymaster-General

What's on the menu? tonight?

No time to cook? Call rent-a-wife, says James Sherwood

Cinema: Italian film revival struggles against blockbusters

After years in the doldrums, the Italian cinema has something to shout about - a new wave of film comedies from Tuscany. They are doing good business at the box-office, winning the odd festival prize and drafting new talent into a struggling industry. But

Leaning tower of the North makes a move on Pisa

Edinburgh is the `Athens of the North' and now Scotland has grounds to make a claim for an emerging `Pisa of the North'. Stephen Goodwin, Heritage Correspondent, reports on a monument on the move.

Property: Dig in abroad, but don't expect the value to grow

No wonder some people return from their own homes abroad more exhausted than when they left. Weeks spent laying a patio, to say nothing of the hours spent hunting down the plumber are hardly relaxing. Penny Jackson asks whether it is all worthwhile.

on politicsMr Mandelson should get himself a proper portfolio

This column is not afraid to state the obvious, which is that we are in the middle of August, the height of the silly season. The origins of the phrase are well known to all students of the history of journalism. In this month Parliament had risen, the royal family had removed itself to Scotland, other rich and powerful persons had done likewise, being too sensible in those days to travel from a warm and sticky city to an even hotter and more uncomfortable Tuscany or French Riviera. The consequence was that there was "no one in London". The papers thought they had to make up stories, "stunts" as they were then called, to keep their readers happy.

WIN A HOLIDAY FOR FOUR IN ITALY WITH TUSCANY NOW

This is your chance to win a holiday for four in Italy with the leading villa-hire specialists Tuscany Now, and The Independent on Sunday Review. You and three friends will stay for one week, from 6 to 13 September, at the Villa Rosso Fiorentino (pictured, right), a restored 16th-century farmhouse near the renowned medieval Tuscan village of San Gimignano. The house has a large swimming pool, five bedrooms and three bathrooms. It also boasts a stunning kitchen and Tuscany Now will be supplying a cook for two nights to prepare dishes, as featured in the River Cafe Cook Book Two. The prize also includes car hire, and more guests can be taken at your own expense.

WIN A HOLIDAY FOR FOUR IN ITALY WITH TUSCANY NOW

This is your chance to win a holiday for four in Italy with the leading villa-hire specialists Tuscany Now, and The Independent on Sunday Review. You and three friends will stay for one week, from 6 to 13 September, at the Villa Rosso Fiorentino (pictured, right), a restored 16th-century farmhouse near the renowned medieval Tuscan village of San Gimignano. The house has a large swimming pool, five bedrooms and three bathrooms. It also boasts a stunning kitchen and Tuscany Now will be supplying a cook for two nights to prepare dishes, as featured in the River Cafe Cook Book Two. The prize also includes car hire, and more guests can be taken at your own expense.

Independent choice: kitchen culture

Pick of the week Walking and Eating in Tuscany and Umbria

I walk in the valley of light, and marvel

Olives, vines, mushroom-scented woods - the Val d'Orcia in southern Tuscany has entranced generations of visitors. Juliet Clough joined a party of walkers to discover its secrets

chianti and cornflakes

By their Volvos shall you know them . . . As a new film spotlights Brits behaving badly in Tuscany

State of emergency declared in Tuscany after severe flooding

The Italian government declared a state of emergency yesterday in the north-western corner of Tuscany, where flash floods have transformed mountain valleys into terrifying rivers of mud, killing at least 12 people and forcing a mass search for two dozen others.

A stylish scurry across the Arno

The British have always loved Florence. George Bull enjoys a celebratio n of the jewel of Chiantishire

Judge frees the Florence 'monster'

ANDREW GUMBEL

Letter: Hell is on holiday - with the British

From Mr Robert Sandow
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Kim Sears is reported to have directed abuse at Berdych
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Gywneth Paltrow proposed that women seek out a special herbal steam-treatment service
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Life and Style
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The party's potential nominations read like a high school race for student body president

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A mother and her child
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The veterans Mark Hayward, Hugh Thompson and Sean Staines (back) with Grayson Perry (front left) and Evgeny Lebedev
charity appealMaverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
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Cold case: Aaron McCusker and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvReview: Sky Atlantic's ambitious new series Fortitude has begun with a feature-length special
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Three people wearing masks depicting Ed Miliband, David Cameron and Nick Clegg
voicesPolitics is in the gutter – but there is an alternative, says Nigel Farage
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee