Births: Gilbert Burnet, Bishop of Salisbury and author, 1643; Dr Samuel Johnson, lexicographer and writer, 1709; Pope Gregory XVI, 1765; Stefano Ronchetti- Monteviti, composer, 1814; Jean- Bernard-Leon Foucault, physicist, 1819; Anton Mauve, landscape painter, 1838; Hans Muller, historian of music, 1854; Sir Owen Seaman, poet and editor of Punch, 1861; Gerald Hugh Tyrwhitt-Wilson Berners, 14th Baron, composer, 1883; Arthur Benjamin, composer, 1893; Fay Compton (Virginia Lilian Emeline Compton), actress, 1894; John George Diefenbaker, statesman, 1895; Greta Garbo (Greta Lovisa Gustafsson), actress, 1905; Kwame Nkrumah, Ghanaian Prime Minister, 1909.

Deaths: Domitian, Roman emperor, murdered, 96; Louis VII, King of France, 1180; Hubert (Huybrecht) van Eyck, painter, 1426; Matthew Prior, poet and diplomat, 1721; Andrew Foulis, bookseller and printer, 1775; Leonhard Euler, mathematician, 1783; Gottlieb August Spangenberg, founder of the Moravian Church in America, 1792; Louis- Lazare Hoche, French revolutionary general, 1797; Olaf Swartz, botanist, 1818; Robert Pollok, poet, 1827; William Hazlitt, critic and essayist, 1830; Joseph Locke, railway engineer, 1860; Dion Boucicault (Dionysius Lardner Boursiquot), playwright and actor, 1890; Armand-Hippolyte-Louis Fizeau, physicist, 1896; George MacDonald, poet and novelist, 1905; Francis Herbert Bradley, philosopher, 1924; Dr Dag Hammarskjold, secretary- general of the UN, 1961; Sean O'Casey, playwright, 1964; Sir John Douglas Cockcroft, physicist, 1951; Franchot Tone (Stanislas Pascal Franchot Tone), actor, 1968.

On this day: the Battle of Quebec ended after the French surrendered to the British, 1759; the Theatre Royal, Covent Garden, London (Royal Opera House) second theatre opened, 1809; Chile revolted and became independent of Spain, 1810; the Anti- Corn Law League was established by Richard Cobden, 1838; the New York Times was first published, 1851; the Irish Home Rule Bill received Royal Assent, 1914; South African troops landed in German South West Africa, 1914; the Battle of Megiddo (Palestine) started, 1918; in the US, the Columbia Broadcasting System was inaugurated, 1927; Manchuria was taken by the Japanese, who set up the puppet state of Manchukuo, 1931; the Soviet Union was admitted to the League of Nations, 1934; following continual interruption of newspaper production by the NGA, the Newspaper Publishers Association announced that all national newspapers in London and Manchester would be closed down on the following day, 1971.

Today is the Feast Day of St Ferreolus of Limoges, St Ferreolus of Vienne, St John Massias, St Joseph of Cupertino, St Methodius of Olympus and St Richardis.

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