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Births: Thomas Chatterton, poet, 1752; John Wall Callcott, organist and composer, 1766; Sir Samuel Cunard, shipowner, 1787; William Chappell, music publisher, 1809; Edwin Powell Hubble, astronomer, 1889; Henri-Georges Clouzot, film director, 1907; Gene Tierney, actress, 1920; Robert Francis Kennedy, politician, 1925.

Deaths: Sir Christopher Hatton, Lord Chancellor, 1591; Henry Francis Lyte, writer of hymns ("Abide With Me"), 1847; Anton Grigoryevich Rubinstein, pianist and composer, 1894; Leo Nikolayevich, Count Tolstoy, novelist, 1910; John Rushworth Jellicoe, first Earl Jellicoe, admiral of the fleet, 1935; Admiral Luis Carrero Blanco, Spanish prime minister, assassinated 1973.

On this day: Britain declared war on the Netherlands, 1780; Beethoven's opera Fidelio was first performed, 1805; Venezuela was declared to be independent of Spain by Simon Bolivar, 1818; in London, a great fire caused widespread damage, burning for two days, 1897; Charles Stewart Rolls and Frederick Henry Royce combined to form the firm of Rolls-Royce, 1906; after five years of blackout, lights were switched on in London in Piccadilly, the Strand and Fleet Street, 1944; the Nuremberg war crimes trial began, 1945; the Queen (then Princess Elizabeth) married the Duke of Edinburgh, 1947; Snowdonia was declared a National Park, 1951; after the Soviet Union agreed to withdraw Ilyushin bombers from Cuba, the US lifted its blockade, 1962.

Today is the Feast Day of St Bernward, St Dasius, St Edmund the Martyr, St Felix of Valois, St Maxentia of Beauvais and St Nerses of Sahgerd.