Newspaper headlines: Royal baby greeted by the press

With pull-out supplements, souvenir posters, pink-tinted front pages and many, many photographs, the Sunday papers celebrate the birth of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's second child.

For the details of the birth of the as-yet unnamed royal daughter, peruse the BBC News website's story.

What more can the newspapers tell us?

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The royal birth has sparked interest in the British monarchy around the world, including from this visitor to the Tokyo branch of Madame Tussauds,

Well, the Sun on Sunday has a list of Twitter tributes from celebrities for the new arrival, whose birth was the first such royal occasion to be announced on the social networking service.

The paper notes that the hashtag #RoyalBaby trended throughout Saturday in all parts of the world.

The Sunday Express may be unique in papers in having its own poet - singer Martin Newell - compose a poem for the occasion. William and Kate's first child, Prince George, had a poem composed on his birth by Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy.

The paper wonders if the other royals were giving subtle clues before the birth that a girl was expected.

Observers of the Duchess's "bump" had deduced that the size and shape suggested it was a daughter, the Express says, and pink paint was seen being delivered to the royal couple's Norfolk home.

The paper speculates that the Queen was in on the secret as she chose to wear a pink dress yesterday on an official engagement.

It also speculates on the name, saying there could be a two-day wait for confirmation - as there was for Prince George. Alice is the bookies' favourite, with Charlotte and Elizabeth close behind.

The Sunday Telegraph focuses on the princess's brother, saying that shy Prince George decided that "this walking lark was not for him" on his arrival at the hospital with his father.

Perhaps it was the sight of the massed ranks of the world's press that drove the 21-month-old back into Prince William's arms after just a few steps, the paper adds.

The paper also features a story about the team of four leading obstetricians who oversaw the smooth and routine delivery.

The quartet was led by high-risk pregnancy specialist Guy Thorpe-Beeston and included Dr Sunit Godambe, who recently made headlines by performing the first organ transplant from a newborn baby.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption The toddler prince may welcome having to share the limelight in future

The Queen's physician Prof Huw Thomas, and gynaecologist Alan Farthing, known to the world as the fiance of murdered TV presenter Jill Dando, were also present.

The Telegraph notes that the princess's birth means that Princess Beatrice is now "free to marry who she chooses".

Constitutional law means the first six persons in line to the throne must ask the Queen's permission before marrying: the new baby is fourth in line, shuffling Beatrice down to seventh.

The Mail on Sunday - probably the best place to go if you want to see lots of pictures from yesterday - takes a look at the last Princess of Cambridge.

Mary, Princess of Cambridge was a grand-daughter of George III , who became known as the "people's princess" for her charitable work.

However, the Mail notes the princess was also known for throwing lavish parties and living beyond her means with her German prince husband.

"They were forced into exile in 1883 to avoid their creditors and fled abroad," the paper notes, although they later returned to live in London with their daughter, Mary of Teck, future wife of George V.

One place not to find out too much about the royal birth is the Independent on Sunday, which keeps up its tradition of only briefly mentioning royal births, affording the latest one five paragraphs on page 29.

'Settled will'

Politics carries on in the papers with politicians and leader writers recommending ways you should vote.

The Sunday Express's editorial comes out in favour of UKIP, while the Sunday Times and Sunday Telegraph have pleas on behalf of the Conservatives and the Observer and Sunday People's editorials plug Labour. The Independent on Sunday says its readers should make up their own minds.

The papers increasingly speculate on what will happen after all the results come in, with the Observer predicting "weeks of political paralysis" with a "Tory-Lib Dem Mark Two" coalition looking difficult to broker given reservations in both parties about the other.

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Image caption Giant pandas: do they remind you of British politicians?

"Gruelling and protracted negotiations," could last well into the summer, it adds.

Elsewhere in the paper, comedian Stewart Lee compares the two largest parties progress on the campaign trail to "a titanic struggle between two tortoises - and not a hare in sight".

The Sunday Telegraph also predicts "weeks of political chaos" if, as seems likely, a hung parliament is returned on Thursday.

The paper says Labour is consulting lawyers over "ambiguities" in the Fixed term Parliaments Act.

It says should the Conservatives be the largest party , David Cameron will have the right under the Act to stay in Number 10 until early June while he seeks to build a coalition to approve his Queen's Speech.

Labour is seeking an earlier exit for Mr Cameron, with an immediate vote of no confidence in the PM by the new parliament.

John Prescott in the Sunday People compares the UK's political leaders to giant pandas - they need to "mate" to ensure survival, but don't seem very fond of each other's company.

Adam Boulton, writing in the Sunday Times, agrees with the former deputy PM, saying that he is "fed up" of the "unmagnificent seven" party leaders.

"If there's no majority government, the first-past-the-post system will have failed again to do what it was designed for. No one will be able to claim to represent the settled will of the people," he writes.

'Little grenades'

The death of famed crime writer Ruth Rendell at the age of 85 makes plenty of column inches.

The Mail on Sunday pays tribute to the author who sold more than 60m books in her lifetime.

The paper says her literary career got off to an inauspicious start at the Chigwell Times where as a cub reporter she was sacked for pretending to attend a tennis club dinner.

The young Rendell (then Ruth Grasemann) wrote a full account of the event for the paper, but had she checked she would have known that the speaker had died halfway through his speech.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Ruth Rendell

Her first book, the first of 24 Inspector Wexford novels, earned her £75, the Mail notes.

It adds that she ended up as an active Labour peer, sitting opposite her friend and fellow crime novelist PD James, who was a Tory peer until her death six months ago.

The Sunday Telegraph says Rendell possessed "the most astonishing imagination in British crime fiction".

The paper's art critic Jack Kerridge says, "The Wexford novels may be comparatively cosy, but they are full of little grenades designed to explode complacent thinking."

The Sunday Times' art editor Richard Brooks calls Rendell "the queen of grisly ends".

Brooks noted that many of her non-crime works - she wrote 81 novels and short story collections in total - examined issues, such as racial tensions, paedophilia, and female genital mutilation. She introduced a parliamentary bill to strengthen British law on FGM.

Critic Mark Lawson in the Observer says Rendell used her books to "explore twisted minds".

Lawson praises the books Rendell wrote under the pseudonym of Barbara Vine which "rivalled in sales, acclaim and TV adaptability" those which she published under her own name.

Discussing Rendell in tandem with PG James, Lawson concludes: "One of the most crucial improvements that these recently departed greats made to detective fiction was the removal of the assumption that the solution to a crime can achieve final consolation or peace.

"And it is hard to see as anything other than dark and barren a murder story world that is now without both Rendell and James.

"It will be a long time - if ever - before two such skilled and influential figures are again writing in the genre in parallel."

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