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Births: Reginald Pole, Archbishop of Canterbury, 1500; Ignazio Fiorillo, composer, 1715; Chang and Eng, the original Siamese twins, 1811; Jean-Leon Gerome, painter, 1824; Ottmar Mergenthaler, inventor of the Linotype machine, 1854; Anatoly Konstantinovich Lyadov, composer, 1855; Irving Berlin (Israel Isadore Baline), 1888; Paul Nash, painter, 1889; Dame Margaret Rutherford, actress, 1892; Mikhail Alexandrovich Sholokhov, novelist, 1905.

Deaths: Matteo Ricci, Jesuit missionary in China, 1610; William Pitt, first Earl of Chatham, statesman, 1778; Spencer Perceval, prime minister, assassinated in the House of Commons 1812; Tom Cribb, pugilist, 1848; Francois-Eugene Vidocq, adventurer and detective, 1857; Max Reger, composer, 1916; Big Jim Colosimo, Chicago racketeer, shot dead by Al Capone 1920; Juan Gris, painter, 1927; Frederic William Goudy, typographer and printer, 1947; Barbara Hutton, heiress, 1979; Harold Adrian Russell 'Kim' Philby, spy for the Soviet Union, 1988.

On this day: Constantinople was dedicated as the new capital of the Roman Empire, 330; Peter Stuyvesant, explorer, arrived at New Amsterdam (New York), 1647; Siam changed its name to Thailand, 1949; the liner France was launched at St Nazaire, 1960; the Daily Sketch newspaper appeared for the last time, 1971; the musical show Cats was first produced, London 1981.

Today is the Feast Day of St Ansfrid, St Asaph, St Comgall, St Francis di Girolamo, St Gengulf or Gengoul, St Ignatius of Laconi, St Mayeul or Majolus, St Mamertus, St Richard Reynolds, St Tudy or Tudec of Brittany and St Walter of L'Esterp.