Anniversaries

Births: Elizabeth Hamilton, writer, 1758; Paul Julius, Baron von Reuter, news-agency founder, 1816; Thomas William Hodgson Crosland, journalist, 1868; Harold Hart Crane, poet, 1899; Ernest Miller Hemingway, novelist, 1899.

Deaths: Robert Burns, poet, 1796; Colvin Smith, portrait painter, 1875; Karl von Piloty, historical painter, 1886; Dame Ellen Alicia Terry, actress, 1928; Louis-Hubert Gonzalve Lyautey, Marshal of France and statesman, 1934; George Macaulay Trevelyan, historian, 1962; Philip St John Basil Rathbone, actor, 1967; Albert John Luthuli, president of the African National Congress, 1967.

On this day: Napoleon defeated the Mamelukes in Egypt in the Battle of the Pyramids, 1798; the Confederates were victorious in the first Battle of Bull Run, 1861; Battersea Bridge, London, opened, 1890; the Tate Gallery, presented to the nation by Sir Henry Tate, was opened, 1897; Mrs Sirimavo Bandaranaike became prime minister of Ceylon (Sri Lanka), 1960; Runcorn Bridge across the Mersey opened, 1961; Commander Neil Armstrong became the first man to set foot on the Moon, 1969; France exploded a nuclear device at Maruroa Atoll in the Pacific, 1973; the British ambassador to the Irish Republic was killed by a landmine, 1976; the first London performance of the musical show Follies was staged, 1987.

Today is Independence Day in Belgium and the Feast Day of St Arbogastes, St Laurence of Brindisi, St Praxedes and St Victor of Marseilles.

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