British prime minister Boris Johnson has been accused of ‘insulting’ the EU. Photograph: Andy Rain/EPA

A near-yearlong row about the UK’s refusal to grant full diplomatic status to the EU mission to the UK has worsened, with the leak of a letter reveali(...)

House speaker Nancy Pelosi. Get this impeachment wrong and Democrats throw away an eminently winnable election next year. Photograph: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Until Tuesday, Nancy Pelosi, who turns 80 in March, was honouring the rule that people grow cautious with age. The speaker of the US House of Represen(...)

US president Donald Trump, ‘a talented pointer-outer of things’. Photograph: Ian Langsdon/EPA

Among the oddities of Donald Trump’s negotiating style is his willingness to reveal his hand. “All we have to do,” the US president said of the EU la(...)

A drawing in red chalk widely accepted as a self-portrait of Leonardo da Vinci. Biblioteca Reale, Turin. Machiavelli collaborated with Leonardo on a plan to steal the river Arno from the Pisans, bringing them to their senses, or their knees, or both.

By the time he died, 500 years ago today, Leonardo da Vinci had long risen above the disadvantage of his illegitimate birth. His father was a wealthy (...)

Dublin’s  March for Science on Earth Day, April 22nd last. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Powerful politicians in electoral democracies have always bent the truth but US president Donald Trump is perhaps unique in turning it into a balloon (...)

British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn greets newly-elected  MP Gareth Snell at the House of Commons on Monday. Corbyn done as badly in his job as conventional wisdom predicted. Photograph:  Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Theresa May runs an imperious government and still no one knows if it is any good. Britain’s Conservative prime minister can cite poll leads, mastery (...)

On borrowed time? Stadio Moletolo, home of the struggling  Zebre  franchise. Photograph: Francesca Soli/Inpho

Attilio Bertolucci, the late Italian poet, wrote of his native Parma: “As a capital city, it had to have a river. As a little capital, it received a s(...)

Machiavelli: was strongly anti-Christian and advocated murder as an instrument of policy.

At an event in Boston earlier this year, the renowned scholar Edward Muir identified the correspondence of Niccolò Machiavelli’s on December 10th, 151(...)