Graham Elliot

Haunted by the soft, sweet power of the violin

An extraordinary omission from Neil MacGregor’s A History of the World in 100 Objects is the lyre, the instrument closest to Homer’s heart. Without it, the evolution of bowed stringed instruments — rebec, lira da braccio, violetta — would not have taken place. Ipso facto, there would be no violin, nor its larger siblings; no

Italy’s Achilles heel: corruption and cronyism

Tim Parks is a seasoned, incisive observer of football, the railways, work, domestication and plenty more in his adoptive country of half a lifetime. What is, what ought to be and the machinations in the delta between provide much of his material. In this tale of two countries in one, bright, hard-working Valeria leaves Basilicata