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Births: Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland, 1274; Charles-Antoine Coypel, painter, 1694; Joseph-Jerome de Lalande (Le Francais), astronomer, 1732; Thomas Bowdler, editor and censor of Shakespeare, 1754; Thomas Wakley, founder of the Lancet, 1795; Celestin-Francois Nanteuil, painter and engraver, 1813.

Deaths: William Robertson, historian, 1793; Charles Macklin, actor and playwright, 1797; William Ernest Henley, poet and critic, 1903; Simon Newcomb, astronomer, 1909; Eugenia Maria de Montijo de Guzman, Comtesse de Teba, Empress of France, 1920; Alfred Dreyfus, soldier, 1935; George Gershwin (Jacob Gershvin), composer, 1937; Sir Arthur John Evans, archaeologist, 1941; Lucien Pissarro, landscape painter and book designer, 1944; Paul Nash, painter, printmaker and photographer, 1946; George Gard (Buddy) DeSylva, lyricist and film director, 1950; the Aga Khan III, 1957.

On this day: the Duke of Marlborough was victorious over the French at the Battle of Oudenarde, 1708; Captain James Cook sailed from Plymouth on his last voyage, 1776; Waterloo Station, London, was officially opened, 1848; the Treaty of Villafranca was signed between Napoleon III and the Emperor Francis Joseph of Austria, 1859; the Bombardment of Alexandria by the British fleet began, 1882; the province of Katanga in Zaire was proclaimed independent by its prime minister, Moise Tshombe, 1960; the first television transmissions via Telstar began from Maine, USA, to France, 1962; the Britannia Road Bridge across the Menai Strait was opened by the Prince of Wales, 1980.

Today is the Feast Day of St Benedict, St Drostan, St Hidulf, St John of Bergamo, St Olga.