Thursday, June 20, 2024
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Harry to inherit mum Diana’s 10m pound gift on 30th birthday

London: Britain’s Prince Harry is set for a 10 million pound gift on his 30th birthday next month as his share of mother Princess Diana’s inheritance. When Diana, Princess of Wales, died in Paris in 1997, her will stipulated that a share of her fortune should go to her two sons when they each turned 25.

The executors, however, later decided, to change the age to 30. For the past five years, Harry has been able to access the interest on his mother’s fortune but he will be able to obtain his full entitlement only on his birthday on September 15, ‘The Sunday Times’ said. The fourth in line to Britain’s throne, who lives in Nottingham Cottage in Kensington Palace, is paid a salary from the army of about 40,000 pound a year and has access to the 2 million pound left to him by his great grandmother Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.

He has already been entrusted with some of Diana’s jewellery, which was shared between him and Prince William for the eventual use of their respective wives. William gave his mother’s sapphire engagement ring to Kate Middleton on their engagement in 2010. William, who turned 30 in June 2012, has already received his share of the inheritance, thought to be about 10 million pound. Harry’s share is expected to be higher due to the accumulated interest in the interim period. A palace source told the newspaper: “The inheritance is in line with what Prince William received when he turned 30.” A palace spokesperson declined to comment on the amount Prince Harry was due to receive. (PTI)

Five new monkey species identified in South America

Washington: Scientists have identified five new species of the elusive Amazonian saki monkeys in South American forests. For many years, it was believed that there were just five species of sakis, but this study showed the existence of 16 – five of them new to science.

The five new species are found in Brazil, Peru, and Bolivia – three of them are endemic to Brazil and one to Peru. Three species recognised were previously considered to be subspecies, and another three, already described, were previously thought to be just variants. The study is the largest revision for any Neotropical primate genus in more than half a century, researchers said. Dr Laura K Marsh, the director and co-founder of the Global Conservation Institute, carried out the study – 10 years of research involving the examination of specimens in 36 museums in 17 countries in North America, South America, Europe and Japan.

“I began to suspect there might be more species of saki monkeys when I was doing field research in Ecuador,” Marsh said. “The more I saw, the more I realised that scientists had been confused in their evaluation of the diversity of sakis for over two centuries,” said Marsh. (PTI)

2000-year-old Roman wooden toilet seat discovered

London: Archaeologists have unearthed a perfectly preserved 2,000-year-old wooden toilet seat at a Roman fort in northern England. The wooden latrine (toilet) seat was discovered by Dr Andrew Birley, Director of Excavations, in the deep pre-hadrianic trenches at the Roman fort of Vindolanda, which was a key military post on the northern frontier of Britain before the building of Hadrian’s Wall.

According to the Vindolanda Charitable Trust, there are many examples of stone and marble seat benches from across the Roman Empire but this is believed to be the only surviving wooden seat, almost perfectly preserved in the anaerobic, oxygen free, conditions which exist at Vindolanda. Although this wooden seat is not as grand as a marble or stone toilet bench, it would be far more comfortable to sit on in the cool climate of Britannia, the trust said. The seat has clearly been well used and was decommissioned from its original purpose and discarded amongst the rubbish left behind in the final fort at the site before the construction of Hadrian’s Wall started in the early second century. “There is always great excitement when you find something that has never been seen before and this discovery is wonderful,” Birley said. “We know a lot about Roman toilets from previous excavations at the site and from the wider Roman world which have included many fabulous Roman latrines but never before have we had the pleasure of seeing a surviving and perfectly preserved wooden seat. (PTI)

Longtime personal chef to Obama weds MSNBC host

Pocantico Hills (US): President Barack Obama has temporarily set aside the pressures of trying to calm the world’s trouble spots and assumed the role of spectator for something more joyous: the wedding of his family’s longtime chef and friend.

Chef Sam Kass and MSNBC host Alex Wagner were tying the knot at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, a farm-to-table restaurant, just north of New York City yesterday. Obama and Kass have a close relationship, which Obama highlighted earlier this month by spending several hours at dinner at Kass’ apartment amid the turmoil in Iraq, Ukraine and Ferguson, Missouri. It’s long been said that time is a president’s most precious commodity.

That Obama would spend five hours at Kass’ home on one of the aide’s final evenings as a bachelor was a testament to their bond. Obama’s rounds of golf are often his only other outings that last as long and those games sometimes include Kass. Obama, his wife, Michelle, and their daughters, Malia and Sasha, attended the ceremony and reception at the restaurant, which is a favourite of both Kass and Michelle. The first lady hosted the spouses of world leaders there in 2010.

Obama wore a dark suit, and Michelle and their daughters each wore sleeveless black dresses. The first family spent about six hours at the wedding. Obama had no known role, other than to give his best to the bride and groom. (AP)

Meet the world’s fastest ‘pooch on two legs’

London: A Pomeranian dog named Jiff has been broken the Guinness record for being the world’s fastest dog on two legs. Jiff, who has also appeared in Katy Perry’s video ‘Dark Horse’, entered the Guinness World Records for being the fastest 10m on hind legs (6.56 seconds) and fastest 5m on front paws (7.76 seconds), the Mirror reported. The famous pooch can also ride a skateboard, stamp his own autograph and can shake hands as well. Guinness World Records editor-in-chief, Craig Glenday, said that Jiff might be tiny but he got a huge personality, and unmatched talent could not be doubted. (ANI)

Florida man caught killing, and eating, threatened tortoises

Florida: Wildlife authorities in Florida caught a man who killed and ate 15 gopher tortoises and planned to slaughter 11 more of the threatened reptiles, a spokeswoman said on Thursday.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said a tip-off led an officer to woods in Citrus County on Florida’s west coast where he found tire tracks and shells dumped on the ground. Returning the next day, he found a container holding 11 live gopher tortoises.

“He hid himself and waited, figuring the subject would return that afternoon,” the FWC said in a statement, adding that when the man came back he admitted to feasting on the threatened species. (Reuters)

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