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Births: Geronimo Cardano, physician and mathematician, 1501; Albrecht Eusebius Wenzel von Wallenstein, general, 1583; Johan de Witt, statesman, 1625; Horace Walpole, fourth Earl of Orford, writer, 1717; John Marshall, Secretary of State, 1755; Julius Klengel, cellist and composer, 1859; Samuel Rutherford Crockett, novelist, 1860; Sir Alan (AP) Patrick Herbert, writer and MP, 1890; Andre Cournand, physician, 1895; Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald, novelist, 1896; Howard Walter Florey, Baron Florey, pathologist, 1898; Konstantin Chernenko, Soviet leader, 1911.

Deaths: Pepin III (the Short), King of the Franks, 768; Pope Innocent II, 1143; John Keyse Sherwin, engraver and painter, 1790; Henry, first Viscount Hardinge of Lahore, Governor General of India, 1856; Niels Ryberg Finsen, physician, 1904; Carl Laemmle, film producer, 1939; Melanie Klein (Reizes), child psychoanalyst, 1960; Dame Isobel Baillie, oratorio singer, 1983.

On this day: the St Leger horse race was run for the first time, 1776; the US Supreme Court was created by the Federal Judiciary Act, 1789; Sir James Brooke was appointed Rajah of Sarawak, 1841; a Papal Bull was issued, establishing a Roman Catholic hierarchy in England, 1850; Henri Giffard, a mechanic, flew from Paris to Trappe in the first dirigible balloon, 1852; the Northern Daily Times, the first provincial daily newspaper in England was founded in Liverpool, 1853; France annexed New Caledonia, 1853; the industrial estate at Harlow New Town was opened, 1951; the USS Enterprise, the first nuclear-powered aircraft- carrier, was launched at Newport, Virginia, 1960.

Today is the Feast Day of St Gerard of Csanad, St Geremarus or Germer, St Pacifico of San Severino and St Robert Flower of Knaresborough.