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Baby George stays indoors as British royals celebrate Christmas

Prince William and his wife Catherine left their baby son Prince George having a fun time indoors as the British royal family made their Christmas Day outing to church. William said it had been a good first Christmas morning with the five-month-old, while Kate revealed he was more interested in wrapping paper than his presents. In her annual Christmas Day message to the Commonwealth, Queen Elizabeth II said George's arrival had brought "renewed happiness and hope" -- while life for William and Kate would never be the same again.

It's a wrap for baby George as British royals celebrate Christmas

Prince William and his wife Catherine left their baby son Prince George to revel in wrapping paper as the British royal family made their Christmas Day outing to church. William said it had been a good morning with the five-month-old, while Kate revealed he was more interested in wrapping paper than his presents. As per tradition, the royals were spending their winter break at Queen Elizabeth II's private Sandringham residence in Norfolk, eastern England.

William, Kate and baby Prince George head Down Under

Prince William and his wife Kate will visit New Zealand and Australia in April, taking their baby son Prince George with them, palace officials announced on Thursday. The long flight is likely to be a challenge with the little prince, who was born on July 22 this year, although William was the same age when he first visited Australia. His parents Prince Charles, the heir to the throne, and Diana took the young William with them on an official tour of Australia and New Zealand in March-April 1983.

Czarist letters revealing state, bedroom secrets draw bidders at Swiss auction

By Robert Evans GENEVA (Reuters) - A trove of letters from Russian royals revealing secrets of state and bedchamber and voicing scorn for the "hypocrisy" of Victorian court life in Britain drew big money, including some from Moscow, at a Geneva auction on Monday. Written in Russian and French by two 19th century czars, an empress and a pride of princesses, the 230 letters were found in a Massachusetts attic in the 1990s and experts say they open a window into hidden corners of a long-vanished world.

Legal hostilities over England's King Richard III adjourned

By Michael Holden LONDON (Reuters) - A legal fight over the remains of England's King Richard III, discovered under a car park some 500 years after the medieval monarch was slain in battle, was adjourned until the New Year on Tuesday. The skeleton of Richard, whose death effectively ended a civil war known as The War of the Roses and whose reign has divided historians ever since, was discovered last year in one of the most remarkable English archaeological finds in recent times.

China cake millionaire at home in his six castles

As the greatest urbanisation drive in history swells China's cities with ranks of identikit apartment blocks, one culinary businessman is indulging his architectural appetite with a visual feast of extravagant, outlandish castles. "I don't have any hobbies, except for planting trees and building castles," said Liu Chonghua, standing on a crenellated turret atop the largest of the six he has constructed.

Prince Charles opens boycott-hit Commonwealth summit

Britain's Prince Charles formally opened a Commonwealth summit in Colombo Friday whose build-up has been dogged by a dispute over rights abuses at the end of Sri Lanka's ethnic war. "It gives me very great pleasure to declare this meeting of Commonwealth heads of government open," said the prince who is representing his mother, Queen Elizabeth II. co /mtp

Britain's Prince Charles becomes a pensioner

Britain's Prince Charles officially became a pensioner as he celebrated his 65th birthday on Thursday, another landmark in his patient wait for the grand role he was born to play. The heir apparent, Queen Elizabeth II's eldest son, will mark the occasion in India, where he is currently touring with his wife Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, before flying to the Sri Lankan capital Colombo in the evening. Charles is set to visit a museum and a synagogue in Cochin, in the southern Indian state of Kerala, where he will receive a traditional blessing.

Britain's Prince Charles becomes a pensioner

Britain's Prince Charles officially became a pensioner as he celebrated his 65th birthday on Thursday, another landmark in his patient wait for the grand role he was born to play. The heir apparent, Queen Elizabeth II's eldest son, will mark the occasion in India, where he is currently touring with his wife Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, before flying to the Sri Lankan capital Colombo in the evening. Charles is set to visit a museum and a synagogue in Cochin, in the southern Indian state of Kerala, where he will receive a traditional blessing.

Prince Charles defies critics to make new plea for organic farming

By Belinda Goldsmith LONDON (Reuters) - Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne, has made a fresh appeal for more organic farming, insisting his approach was based on science rather that "a quirk" and dismissing those who would prefer he keeps his opinions private. Charles, who turns 65 this week, has often voiced strong views on the environment, architecture and social affairs, a stance that contrasts sharply with his mother, Queen Elizabeth, who never reveals her thoughts on such matters.
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