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Births: Conte Giacomo Leopardi, poet and classicist, 1798; Wilhelm Dettmer, bass opera singer, 1808; George Washington Goethals, builder of the Panama Canal, 1858; James Harvey Robinson, historian, 1863; George Ellery Hale, astronomer, 1868; Frank Loesser, composer and lyricist, 1910.

Deaths: Anton Raphael Mengs, painter, 1779; Thomas Addison, physician and discoverer of 'Addison's Disease', 1860; Elizabeth Barrett Browning, poet, 1861; Joseph Aloysius Hansom, architect and inventor of the hansom cab, 1882; Thomas Henry Huxley, biologist, 1895; Karl Brugmann, philologist, 1919; Lady Randolph Churchill (Jennie Jerome), 1921; Paul Klee, modernist painter, 1940; Ignaz Jan Paderewski, pianist and statesman, 1941; Jayne Mansfield (Vera Jayne Palmer), actress, killed in a car crash 1967; Primo Carnera, heavyweight boxer, 1967; Pierre-Alexandre Balmain, fashion designer, 1982.

On this day: Shakespeare's Globe Theatre was burned down, 1613; an Act of Parliament established the first passenger railway, from Swansea to Oystermouth, 1804; the Press Association news agency was founded, 1868; US planes bombed Hanoi, North Vietnam, 1966.

Today is the Feast Day of St Cassius of Narni, St Paul the Apostle, St Peter the Apostle and Saints Salome and Judith.