Gazette: Anniversaries

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Births: John Ford, playwright, 1586; John Pierpont Morgan, financier, 1837; Konstantinos Petrou Kavafis (Constantine Cavafy), poet, 1863; Ian Hay (John Hay Beith), novelist, 1876; Sir (Charles) Leonard Woolley, archaeologist, 1880; Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev, Russian leader, 1894; Thornton Niven Wilder, novelist and playwright, 1897; Lindsay Gordon Anderson, film, television and theatre director, 1923.

Deaths: Marie de Rabutin Chantal, Marquise de Sevigne, 1696; Benjamin Franklin, writer, diplomat and scientist, 1790; Catherine Maria Fanshawe, painter and poet, 1834; William Henry Ireland, forger of Shakespearean manuscripts, 1835; Scott Brady (Gerald Tierney), actor, 1985.

On this day: at Dordrecht (Dort), Holland, the sea broke through the dykes, and over 100,000 people were drowned, 1421; Martin Luther was excommunicated by the Diet of Worms, 1521; the Republic of Guatemala was founded, 1839; the Empire Theatre, London, opened as the Royal London Panorama, 1870; Turkey declared war on Greece, 1897; Yugoslavia surrendered to the Germans, 1940; Premium Savings Bonds were introduced in Britain, 1956; the attempted invasion of Cuba took place at the Bay of Pigs, 1961; in Czechoslovakia, Alexander Dubcek was replaced by Dr Gustav Husak as first secretary of the Communist Party, 1969; in Cambodia, the civil war ended after the capital, Phnom Penh, surrendered to the Khmer Rouge forces, 1975; a policewoman, Yvonne Fletcher, was shot dead outside the Libyan embassy in London, 1984.

Today is the Feast Day of St Aybert, St Donnan and Others, St Innocent of Tortona, St Mappalicus and Others, St Robert of Chaise-Dieu and St Stephen Harding. Today is also the first day of the Muslim New Year.


Births: Lucrezia Borgia, Duchess of Ferrara, daughter of Pope Alexander VI, 1480; Sir Francis Baring, banker and merchant, 1740; George Henry Lewes, journalist and critic, 1817; Henry Clarence Kendall, poet, 1839; Sir George Clausen, painter, 1852.

Deaths: Filippino Lippi, painter, 1504; John Leland, antiquary, 1552; George Jeffreys, first Baron Jeffreys of Wem, judge, 1689; Jean-Baptiste Isabey, painter, 1855; Sir Robert Smirke, architect, 1867; Gustave Moreau, Symbolist painter, 1898; Florrie Forde, music hall artiste, 1940; Albert Einstein, physicist, 1955; Ben Hecht, journalist and playwright, 1964; Benny Hill (Alfred Hawthorn Hill), comedian, 1993; Dame Elisabeth Frink, sculptor, 1993.

On this day: Paul Revere, American silversmith and patriot, made his dramatic ride from Charleston to Lexington, 1775; the 2,000 Guineas horse- race was first run at Newmarket, 1809; the remains of David Livingstone were interred in Westminster Abbey, 1874; the Natural History Museum in South Kensington was opened, 1881; San Francisco was devastated by a great earthquake, 1906; the International Court of Justice was opened at the Hague, 1946; the League of Nations was formally dissolved, and its assets handed over to the United Nations, 1946; the Republic of Ireland Act came into force, when Eire became a republic, 1949; London Bridge was sold to a US oil company; the bridge was later re-erected in Arizona, 1968; the US Senate voted that, in 1999, the Panama Canal would be turned over to the Republic of Panama, 1978.

Tomorrow is the Feast Day of St Apollonius the Apologist, Saints Eleutherius and Anthia, St Galdinus, St Idesbald and St Laserian or Molaisse.