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Births: Jakob Christopher Burckhardt, art historian, 1818; Tom Sayers, bare-knuckle pugilist, 1826; Jean-Charles Cazin, landscape painter, 1840; William Maxwell Aitken, first Baron Beaverbrook, newspaper proprietor, 1879; Igor Ivan Sikorsky, pioneer aircraft designer, and inventor of the helicopter, 1889; Theodore Roethke, poet, 1908.

Deaths: Pope Gregory VII, 1085; Gaspard (Doughet) Poussin, painter, 1675; William Paley, philosopher, 1805; Marie-Rosalie Bonheur, artist, 1899; Gustav Theodore Holst, composer, 1934; Joseph, first Baron Duveen of Millbank, art dealer, 1939; Sir Frank Watson Dyson, astronomer, 1939; Robert Capa, war photographer, killed in Vietnam 1954; Sydney Box, film producer, 1983.

On this day: Captain Cook sailed on his first voyage, 1768; Lloyd's insurance society received a Royal Charter, 1871; the House of Commons passed the Bank Holiday Act, 1871; Gilbert and Sullivan's opera HMS Pinafore was first produced in London, 1878; Oscar Slater (who later proved to be innocent) was sentenced to life imprisonment for murder, 1909; the British House of Commons passed the Irish Home Rule Act, 1914; Jesse Owens, black athlete, broke five world records at the Olympic Games in Berlin, 1936; a British expedition team climbed Kanchenjunga, 1955; the new Coventry Cathedral, designed by Sir Basil Spence, was consecrated, 1962.

Today is Ascension Day and the Feast Day of St Bede, St Dionysius of Milan, St Gennadius of Astorga, St Gregory VII, Pope, St Leo or Lye of Mantenay, St Madeleine Sophie Barat, St Mary Magdalen dei Pazzi and St Zenobius.