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Births: Robert Barclay, writer, 1648; James Gibbs, architect, 1682; Sir Richard Arkwright, inventor of the spinning frame, 1732; Frederick Augustus I, King of Saxony, 1750; Alexander I, Tsar of Russia, 1777; Jean- Francois Champollion, Egyptologist and decipherer of the Rosetta Stone, 1790; Charles-Augustin Sainte-Beuve, writer and critic, 1804; Joseph Smith, founder of the Mormons (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints), 1805; Arthur Reed Ropes ("Adrian Ross"), lyricist, 1859; Sir Hugh Percy Allen, organist, 1869; Joseph Arthur, first Baron Rank, miller and film magnate, 1888.

Deaths: Henri I de Lorraine, Third Duc de Guise, assassinated 1588; William Davison, Scottish Secretary of State to Queen Elizabeth I, 1608; Michael Drayton, poet, 1631; John Cotton, Puritan leader in America, 1652; Alastair Ruadh Macdonnell, "Pickle" the Jacobite spy, 1761; Thomas Robert Malthus, economist, 1834; Laurence Oliphant, journalist and traveller, 1888; Thomas William Hodgson Crosland, journalist, 1924; Anthony Herman Gerard Fokker, aircraft designer, 1939; Charles Dana Gibson, artist and illustrator, 1944; Hideki Tojo, former Japanese prime minister, hanged 1948; Eric Coates, composer, 1957; Edward Frederick Lindley Wood, first Earl of Halifax, Viceroy of India, 1959; Ernst Krenek, composer, 1991.

On this day: HMS Bounty, commanded by William Bligh, sailed from Spithead for the South Seas, 1787; Joseph Hansom patented a type of cab, 1834; Albert I ascended the throne of Belgium, 1909; the Federal Reserve Bank was founded in the USA, 1913; Rene-Jules Gustave Coty was elected president of France, 1953; Managua, capital of Nicaragua, was destroyed by an earthquake, with a loss of 12,000 lives, 1972.

Today is the Feast Day of St Dagobert II of Austrasia, St Frithebert, St John of Kanti, St Servulus, the Ten Martyrs of Crete, St Thorlac and Saints Victoria and Anatolia.