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Births: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, poet, playwright and author, 1749; Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, novelist, 1814; Thomas Seddon, painter, 1821; Walter Cecil Macfarren, composer, 1826; Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones, painter, 1833; Ira David Sankey, hymn-writer and revivalist, 1840; Bernhard Friedrich Wilhelm Listemann, violinist and conductor, 1841; George Hoyt Whipple, pathologist, 1878; Peter Fraser, statesman, 1884; Edward Vance Palmer, novelist, 1885; Ivor (Bertie) Gurney, poet and composer, 1890; Liam O'Flaherty, novelist, 1896; Charles Boyer, actor, 1897.

Deaths: St Augustine of Hippo, 430; Hugo Grotius, jurist and lawyer, 1645; John Leyden, physician and poet, 1811; Karl Theodor Korner, poet, playwright and patriot, 1813; James Henry Leigh Hunt, critic and poet, 1859; Albrecht Adam, painter, 1862; Ernest Orlando Lawrence, physicist, 1958; Bohuslav Martinu, composer, 1959; Prince William of Gloucester, killed in an air crash, 1972.

On this day: the Scots routed the Royalist army at the Battle of Newburn, 1640; the Indian War in New England ended with the surrender of the Indians, 1676; Cetewayo, the Zulu chief, was captured by the British, 1879; Montenegro was proclaimed an independent kingdom under Nicholas I, 1910; the Battle of the Heligoland Bight was fought, 1914; US forces under General George Marshall landed in Japan, 1945.

Today is the Feast Day of St Alexander of Constantinople, St Augustine of Hippo, St Edmund Arrowsmith, St Hermes of Rome, St John of Constantinople, St Julian of Brioude, St Moses of Abyssinia and St Paul IV of Constantinople.