Anniversaries

Births: Catherine Maria Fanshawe, painter and poet, 1765; Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, founder of Singapore, at sea, off Port Morant, Jamaica, 1781; Sir William Jackson Hooker, botanist, 1785; Nicholas I, Tsar of Russia, 1796; 1818; Maximilian, Emperor of Mexico, 1832; Walter Runciman, first Baron Runciman, shipowner, 1847; Elisabeth Lutyens, composer, 1906.

Deaths: Henry II, King, 1189; Jan Huss, religious reformer, burnt at the stake, 1415; Ludovico Ariosto, poet, 1533; St Thomas More, executed, 1535; Edward VI, King, 1553; John Davies, poet and writing master, 1618; Michael Bruce, poet, 1767; Baron Pierre-Narcisse Guerin, painter, 1833; Sir Edwin Chadwick, physician and sanitary pioneer, 1890; Henry-Rene-Albert-Guy de Maupassant, writer, 1893; Odilon Redon, painter and engraver, 1916; Wilhelm, Graf von Mirbach-Harff, German ambassador, assassinated in Moscow 1918; Kenneth Grahame, children's author, 1932; Aneurin Bevan, statesman, 1960; William Harrison Faulkner, novelist, 1962; Sarah Gertrude Millin (Liebson), South African author, 1968; Daniel Louis Armstrong, jazz musician, 1971.

On this day: the troops of James II defeated the Duke of Monmouth at the Battle of Sedgemoor, the last battle to be fought on English soil, 1685; the Republican Party was established at Ripon, Wisconsin, in the United States, 1854; Queensland, Australia, was separated from New South Wales as a colony in its own right, 1859; Louis Pasteur successfully treated a subject with his anti-rabies vaccine, 1885; the Duke of York (later King George V) married Princess Victoria Mary of Teck, 1893; Brooklands motor racing circuit was opened, 1907; Col Thomas Edward Lawrence, British soldier, took over command of the Arab Revolt against Turkey, 1917; the first airship to cross the Atlantic, the British R34, reached New York, having crossed in 108 hours, 1919; the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was formally constituted, 1923; the first all-talking feature film, The Lights of New York, was shown, New York 1928; the first London performance of the operetta Maritza was staged, 1938; President Roosevelt enunciated the Four Freedoms in a speech, 1940; the frontier between East Germany and Poland was declared to be the Oder-Neisse Line, 1950; London's last tram ran, 1952; the Saar became part of West Germany, 1959; Nyasaland, renamed Malawi, became independent, 1964; Malawi became a republic, 1966; civil war erupted in Nigeria, when fighting broke out between federal troops and men from the province of Biafra, 1967.

Today is the Feast Day of St Dominica, St Goar, St Godeleva, St Mary Goretti, St Modwenna, St Romulus of Fiesole, St Sexburga and St Sisoes.

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