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Births: Thomas Kyd, playwright, 1558; James Gregory, inventor of the reflecting telescope, 1638; Colley Cibber, actor and playwright, 1671; Adolphe (Antoine-Joseph) Sax, inventor of the saxophone, 1814; Dr James A. Naismith, inventor of basketball, 1861; Thomas Harper Ince, pioneer film producer, 1882; Gus Kahn, lyricist, 1886.

Deaths: Henry Frederick, Prince of Wales, son of James I, 1612; William II, Prince of Orange, 1650; John Murray (McMurray), publisher, 1793; George Anton (Jiri Antonin) Benda, harpsichordist, oboist and composer, 1795; Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, composer, 1893; Kate (Catherine) Greenaway, illustrator of children's books, 1901; Frank Arthur Swinnerton, novelist and critic, 1982; Gene Eliza Tierney, actress, 1991.

On this day: Henry VI of England was crowned, 1429; the Quorn Hunt was founded, 1753; Mexico declared herself independent, 1813; Abraham Lincoln was elected as 16th US President, 1860; diamonds were discovered at Kimberley, South Africa, 1869; the third battle of Ypres ended when Passchendaele Ridge was captured by British and Canadian troops, 1917; the Republic of Poland was proclaimed, 1918; Stanley Baldwin became Prime Minister of Great Britain, 1924; the United States exploded the first hydrogen bomb at Eniwetok Atoll, in the Pacific, 1952; on the River Zambesi, work was begun on the Kariba High Dam, 1956.

Today is the Feast Day of St Barlaam of Khutyn, St Demetrian of Khytri, St Illtud, St Leonard of Noblac, St Melaine and St Winnoc.