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TODAY: Births: Robert Stevenson, civil engineer, 1772; Sir John Everett Millais, painter, 1829; Frank Lloyd Wright, architect, 1869. Deaths: the Prophet Mohammed, 632; Bishop Richard Scrope, executed, 1405; Gerard Manley Hopkins, poet, 1889; Sir Norman Hartnell, royal dressmaker, 1979. On this day: the electric suction vacuum-cleaner was patented, 1869; the second Labour government, under Ramsay MacDonald, took office, 1929. Today is the Feast Day of St Cloud of Metz, St Maximinus of Aix, St Medard and St William of York or Thwayt.

TOMORROW: Births: Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, physician, 1836; Walter Weedon Grossmith, comedian and author, 1853. Deaths: Jan van Eyck, painter, buried 1441; Charles John Huffham Dickens, novelist, 1870. On this day: the first Book of Common Prayer was issued to all dioceses in the Church of England, 1549; in Britain, the proceedings of the House of Commons were broadcast live for the first time, 1975. Tomorrow is the Feast Day of St Columba of Iona, St Ephraem, St Pelagia of Antioch, Saints Primus and Felician, St Richard of Andria and St Vincent of Agen.