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TODAY: Births: Charles George Gordon, hero of Khartoum, 1833; Sir Henry Morton Stanley, journalist and explorer, 1841; Artur Rubinstein, pianist, 1889. Deaths: Charlemagne, Frankish emperor, 814; King Henry VIII, 1547; Sir Francis Drake, sailor, a t sea,1596; William Butler Yeats, poet, 1939. On this day: the Diet of Worms began, 1521; the space shuttle Challenger exploded moments after take-off, killing six astronauts and a woman teacher, 1986; The Independent on Sunday was first published, 1990

. Today is the Feast Day of St Amadeus of Lausanne, St Paulinus of Aquileia, St Peter Nolasco, St Peter Thomas and St Thomas Aquinas.

TOMORROW: Births: Anton Pavlovich Chekhov, playwright, 1860; Frederick Delius, composer, 1862; W.C. Fields, comedian, 1880. Deaths: King George III, 1820; Edward Lear, painter and writer, 1888; Douglas, first Earl Haig, field marshal, 1928. On this day: Greenwich Mean Time was adopted in Scotland, 1848; Desert Island Discs was first broadcast, 1942. Tomorrow is the Feast Day of St Gildas the Wise, St Sabinian of Troyes and St Sulpicius "Severus". n