Christmas

Why Christmas sends a shiver down my spine

25 December 2020 6:00 pm

Does Christmas send a shiver down your spine? It should. We seek at this time of year to reclaim the…

Christmas raises the most basic political question

24 December 2020 6:00 pm

A few years ago, around this time of year, I overheard a nice exchange in a charity shop (I was…

The grumpy genius of Raymond Briggs

19 December 2020 9:00 am

No one captures better than Raymond Briggs the ambivalence that many of us feel towards the festive season, says Daisy Dunn

It’s been a tough year for socialites

19 December 2020 9:00 am

New York Here we go again, the annual holiest of holies is upon us, although to this oldie last Christmas…

I Live Here Now: a short story by Ian Rankin

19 December 2020 9:00 am

A short story. Illustrated by Carolyn Gowdy

Theresa May’s recipe for Christmas cake

19 December 2020 9:00 am

This recipe was given to me years ago by an old friend — hence the imperial measurements — and I…

How to find hope in a year filled with despair

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Finding hope in a year like no other

The wonderful ghosts of Christmas past

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Seances, trikes and the miracle of tinfoil

A romcom with very little com: BBC1’s Black Narcissus reviewed

19 December 2020 9:00 am

In Black Narcissus, based on the novel by Rumer Godden, five nuns set off for a remote Himalayan palace in…

Food to absorb alcohol: Christmas hampers reviewed

19 December 2020 9:00 am

There is straw inside the Fortnum & Mason Christmas Treat Hamper (£100). As the straw drifts through the house, it…

On the trail of one of the first artists to paint ordinary things

19 December 2020 9:00 am

The Master of Flémalle was one of the first painters to depict in detail the reality of ordinary things. But who was he? Martin Gayford finds a prime suspect

The anxieties that long ago shadowed Christmas are back

19 December 2020 9:00 am

The anxieties that long ago shadowed Christmas are back

The Darvell marvel has brought joy to a Covid Christmas

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Many ingenious ways of evading Covid-19 have been devised to assist commerce, fewer to assist worship. In our next-door village,…

Do divorces really increase after Christmas?

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Now and then Were households allowed to mix at Christmas during the plague? Samuel Pepys’s diary entry for 25 December…

The joy of a cancelled Christmas

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Among the greatest bores right now are those friends who insist on telling you, usually as if it’s some kind…

Joan Collins: The politics of Christmas trees

19 December 2020 9:00 am

To say that the past nine months have been tough is like saying a hurricane felt like a spring shower.…

Mick Fleetwood: Why Peter Green was the greatest guitarist

19 December 2020 9:00 am

In a normal week, I would jam with local musicians, but that stopped in March and we musicians miss the…

Deserves to be a permanent winter fixture: Potted Panto at the Garrick reviewed

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Potted Panto is a 70-minute parody presented by two burlesque comedians. Jeff is a tall, playful bungler and his colleague,…

Every page of this astonishingly beautiful ode to the citrus is a treat

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Laura Freeman is transported by J.C. Volkamer’s astonishingly beautiful ode to the citrus

The magic of Anthony Powell

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Every few years I’ve picked up one or other of Anthony Powell’s A Dance to the Music of Time series…

My fateful appearance at the Bank of England’s Christmas drinks

19 December 2020 9:00 am

Tidings of comfort as the vaccination programme advances, but shortage of joy. That’s my summary of a season in which…

Boris Johnson’s Christmas Covid gamble

17 December 2020 3:56 am

Boris Johnson is taking a gamble with his decision to stick with the easing of Covid restrictions for Christmas. The…

Four-nations Christmas Covid truce hangs in balance

16 December 2020 6:16 am

It’s become a regular refrain to hear that Brexit talks have been extended. Now the same applies to negotiations over…

Was endorsing Boris one of my worst misjudgments ever?

5 December 2020 9:00 am

Now that our social lives are a Venn diagram that only mathematicians can understand I am officially becoming a recluse.…

Melania’s au revoir to Christmas

1 December 2020 1:08 am

Washington DC It’s still dark outside and dumping rain as the media waits for the annual White House Holiday Decor…