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Births: Pierre de Ronsard, poet, 1524; James Thomson, poet, author of "Rule, Britannia", 1700; Thomas Barnes, editor of the Times, 1785; Sir George Clement Martin, organist and composer, 1844; Benjamin (Ben) Tillett, Labour leader, 1860; O. Henry (William Sydney Porter), short- story writer, 1862; Sir James Hopwood Jeans, mathematician and astrophysicist, 1877; David Herbert Lawrence, novelist, 1885; Theodor Adorno (Weisengrund), philosopher and sociologist, 1903.

Deaths: James Harrington, political theorist, 1677; David Ricardo, economist, 1823; Antero Tarquinio de Quental, poet, 1891; Prince Louis Mountbatten (first Marquess of Milford Haven), admiral, 1921; Mohammed Ali Jinnah, first Governor- General of Pakistan, 1948; Field-Marshal Jan Christian Smuts, South African statesman, 1950; Robert William Service, novelist and poet, 1958; Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev, Russian leader, 1971; Salvador Allende Gossens, president of Chile, allegedly committed suicide 1973.

On this day: the Duke of Marlborough defeated the French at the Battle of Malplaquet, the bloodiest war of the century, 1709; the British, commanded by General Howe, defeated the Americans under General George Washington at the Battle of Brandywine Creek, 1777; in Chile, the government was ousted by a military coup, and government was taken over by a junta, 1973; during a riot at a gold mine near Johannesburg, 11 African miners were shot and killed, 1973.

Today is the Feast Day of St Deiniol, St Paphnutius, St Patiens of Lyons, St Peter of Chavanon, Saints Protus and Hyacinth and St Theodora of Alexandria.