It happened today – this day in history – December 10

1394: James I of Scotland is born in Dunfermline Palace.

1510: Muslim ruler of Goa, Yusuf Adil Shah and his Ottoman allies surrender to Portuguese forces led by Alfonso de Albuquerque, who puts the Muslim population to the sword.

1520: Martin Luther publicly burns the papal edict demanding he recant.

1718: Laurence Eusden is appointed Poet Laureate by George I.

1745: Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Jacobite army reaches Manchester.

1799: The metric system is first adopted in France.

1816: The Dutch regain Sumatra from the British.

1817: Mississippi is admitted as the 20th state of the Union.

1830: Poet Emily Dickinson is born in Amherst, Massachusetts.

1884: “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain is published in the UK and Canada. The book didn’t appear in the US until February 1885 due to a printing error.

1887: Austria-Hungary, Italy and Great Britain sign the Balkan military treaty.

1898: The Treaty of Paris which ends the Spanish-American War is signed by US President McKinley. The US acquires The Philippines, Puerto Rico and Guam.

1901: The first Nobel Peace Prizes are awarded to Red Cross founder Jean Henri Dunant and peace activist Frederic Passy. The first Nobel Prize in physics is awarded to Wilhelm Röntgen for his discovery of X-rays.

1903: The Nobel Prize for physics is awarded to Pierre and Marie Curie for their study of spontaneous radiation.

1906: US President Theodore Roosevelt becomes the first American to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

1907: Rudyard Kipling becomes the first English-language writer to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. On the same day, 1,000 medical students clash with 400 police officers in the worst night of London’s Brown Dog riots over the existence of a memorial for animals who have been vivisected.

1914: The French government returns to Paris.

1919: US President Woodrow Wilson is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

1922: Danish physicist Niels Bohr is awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics, for his work on the structure of atoms.

1925: Playwright George Bernard Shaw is awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.

1936: Edward VIII signs the Instrument of Abdication, giving up the British throne for a life with American divorcee Wallis Simpson. He becomes Duke of Windsor and his brother Bertie, Duke of York, becomes King George VI.

1941: The British battleship Prince of Wales and battlecruiser Repulse are sunk following Japanese aerial attacks off Malaya. On the same day, Japanese troops overrun Guam.

1948: The UN General Assembly adopts the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

1954: USAF Lt Col John Stapp travels at 632 mph in a rocket sled at Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico. On the same day, theologian/philosopher Albert Schweitzer wins the Nobel Peace Prize.

1959: The four male members of The Platters are acquitted of aiding and abetting prostitution, lewdness and assignation after an incident on August 10 in Cincinnati.

1961: Alfred Luthuli, leader of the banned African National Congress, attacks South Africa’s apartheid regime as he receives the Nobel peace prize.

1962: David Lean’s film “Lawrence of Arabia”, based on life of T. E. Lawrence and starring Peter O’Toole, premieres at the Odeon Leicester Square.


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1963: Zanzibar gains independence from Great Britain.

1964: The Nobel Peace Prize is presented to Dr Martin Luther King Jr.

1967: Soul singer-songwriter Otis Redding and four members of the Bar-Kays are killed when the light plane they are travelling in crashes into the icy waters of Lake Monoma, Wisconsin.

1968: Joe Frazier beats Oscar Bonavena in 15 rounds for the heavyweight boxing title.

1971: Frank Zappa is pushed off stage by the jealous boyfriend of an audience member. Zappa falls onto the concrete-floored orchestra pit suffering serious fractures, head trauma and injuries to his back, leg, and neck as well as a crushed larynx, which ultimately causes his voice to drop a third. He remains wheelchair bound for almost a year and is unable to tour. On the same day, West German Chancellor Willy Brandt receives the Nobel Peace Prize.

1974: The EEC calls for a European Parliament.

1979: Stunt motorcyclist Eddie Kidd successfully completes an 80ft leap across the River Blackwater at Maldon in Essex.

1981: A mystery epidemic discovered amongst gay men causes increasing concern in the US.

1984: Archbishop Desmond Tutu is presented with the Nobel Peace Prize.

1990: The first of the hostages held in the Persian Gulf for four and a half months arrive in Britain after their release by Saddam Hussein.

1999: The Band bassist Rick Danko dies in his sleep at his home near Woodstock in New York state.

2000: Singles chart:

  1. Stan – Eminem
  2. Can We Fix It – Bob The Builder
  3. Never Had A Dream Come True – S Club 7
  4. Independent Women – Destiny’s Child
  5. Can’t Fight The Moonlight – Leann Rimes
  6. Who Let The Dogs Out – The Baha Men
  7. Stronger – Britney Spears
  8. Operation Blade (Bass In The Place) – Public Domain
  9. 911 – Wyclef ft Mary J Blige
  10. Number 1 – The Tweenies
2000: Madonna – Music

Album chart:

  1. 1 – The Beatles
  2. Coast To Coast – Westlife
  3. The Greatest Hits – Texas
  4. Sing When You’re Winning – Robbie Williams
  5. Born To Do It – Craig David
  6. Music – Madonna
  7. 7 – S Club 7
  8. The Marshall Mathers LP – Eminem
  9. Parachutes – Coldplay
  10. The 50 Greatest Hits – Elvis Presley

2003: The Court of Appeal quashes the conviction of Angela Cannings from Salisbury, jailed for life for the murder of her two baby sons.

2005: Comedian Richard Pryor dies aged 65.

2006: One million Lebanese opposition supporters gather in Beirut, calling for the government to resign.

2007: Led Zeppelin, with late drummer John Bonham’s son Jason on drums, play a triumphant one-off gig at the O2 stadium. More than a million people applied for the 18,000 tickets made available by ballot.

2009: US President Barack Obama accepts the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo.

2010: The original hand-written lyrics to Bob Dylan’s The Times They Are A-Changin sell at a New York auction for $422,500.

2013: Uruguay becomes the first country to legalize the growth, sale, and use of marijuana.

2015: Janis Joplin’s psychedelic 1965 Porsche sells for $1.76 million at Sotheby’s car auction in New York.

2018: Prime Minister Theresa May cancels a parliamentary vote on the Brexit bill in the face of certain defeat. On the same day, French President Emmanuel Macron announces a rise in the minimum wage and tax concessions after weeks of civil unrest. Also, Russia’s most prolific mass murderer, Mikhail Popkov, is sentenced to a second life sentence for a total of 56 murders.

2019: Sydney, Australia, is blanketed in smoke from bush fires, pushing air quality to hazardous levels.

2020: Actress Barbara Windsor dies aged 83.

2021: Musician Michael Nesmith of The Monkees dies aged 78.

Susannah Reid

BIRTHDAYS: Ace (Christopher) Kefford, bassist (The Move) 77; Clive Anderson, TV personality/writer, 71; Paul Hardcastle, composer/musician, 66; Sir Kenneth Branagh, actor/director, 63; J (Joseph) Mascis, guitar/vocals, (Dinosaur Jr) 58; Susannah Reid, TV personality/journalist, 53; Brian Molko, guitar, vocals, (Placebo) 51; Meg White, drummer (The White Stripes) 49; Raven-Symoné (Pearman) actress/singer, 38; Grace Chatto, cellist (Clean Bandit) 38; Charlie Adam, footballer, 38; Gonzalo Higuaín, footballer, 36; Wilfried Bony, footballer, 35; Danny Rose, footballer, 30.