Anniversaries : On this day:

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The Independent Online
On this day: HMS Bounty, commanded by William Bligh, sailed from Spithead for the South Seas, 1787; the poem " 'Twas the Night Before Christmas" by Clement Clarke Moore was printed in the Troy Sentinel, New York, 1823; Asiatic cholera first appea red in Scotland, 1831; Joseph Hansom patented a type of cab, 1834; over 60 vessels were lost in the North Atlantic during heavy storms, 1890; Humperdinck's opera Hansel and Gretel was first produced, Weimar, 1893; the Aldwych Theatre, London, opened, 190

5; Albert I ascended the throne of Belgium, 1909; Wolf-Ferrari's opera The Jewels of the Madonna was first produced, Berlin, 1911; a bomb was thrown at Lord Hardinge, Viceroy of India, as he entered the new capital at Delhi, 1912; the Federal Reserve Bank was founded in the US, 1913; in Germany, Marinus Van der Lubbe, a Dutchman, was found guilty of setting fire to the Reichstag and sentenced to death, 1933; British forces took Benghazi, Libya 1941; in the Soviet Union, Lavrenty Beria and six others wer e executed for treason, 1953; Rene-Jules Gustave Coty was elected President of France, 1953; 117 people died when the cruise liner Lakonia burned in the Atlantic although 919 people were saved, 1963; Managua, capital of Nicaragua, was destroyed by an ear thquake, with a loss of 12,000 lives, 1972.