Lord Byron

Does a stick insect count as a pet?

8 June 2019 9:00 am

What is it that distinguishes humans from other animals? The default answer nowadays is tediously misanthropic, but a more interesting…

Contessa Teresa Guiccioli

Notes on… Lord Byron in Venice

17 March 2018 9:00 am

‘I want to see Venice, and the Alps, and Parmesan cheeses.’ So wrote Lord Byron in 1814, some two years…

Portrait of Ada, aged 20

Was Ada Lovelace the true founder of Silicon Valley?

17 March 2018 9:00 am

It’s more than 160 years since the death of the computer pioneer Ada Lovelace, Charles Babbage’s ‘enchantress of numbers’ and…

Fascinating, sexy, improbably compelling and scathingly funny: The Big Short reviewed

23 January 2016 9:00 am

The Big Short is a drama about the American financial collapse of 2008. It talks you through sub-prime mortgages, tranches,…

‘Chelsea pensioners reading the Waterloo Dispatch’ by Sir David Wilkie

From prince to pauper: a dramatic overview of Britain on 18 June 1815

7 February 2015 9:00 am

Of all the big battalions of books marking the bicentenary of the battle of Waterloo that have come my way,…

Patrick Leigh Fermor as a major in the parachute regiment, October 1945

Patrick Leigh Fermor and the long, daft tradition of Brits trying to save Greece

31 May 2014 9:00 am

Twenty-odd years ago, while on holiday in the deep Mani at the foot of the Peloponnese, I got into conversation…