1571: Birth of German astronomer Johannes Kepler.
1831: HMS Beagle with Charles Darwin on board departs England for a survey of South America.
1904: “Peter Pan” by J. M. Barrie premieres at the Duke of York Theatre, London.
1923: Emperor Hirohito of Japan narrowly evades an assassination attempt by a Korean independence activist.
1924: Albania is declared a dictatorship under Ahmed Beg Zofu.
1934: Persia becomes Iran.
1941: Japan bombs Manila even though it had been declared an “open city”.
1943: The German warship “Scharnhorst” sinks in the Barents Sea.
1945: The International Monetary Fund is formally established by 29 member countries based on ideas of economists Harry Dexter White and John Maynard Keynes.
1949: Queen Juliana of the Netherlands grants independence to Indonesia.
1965: Britain’s first North Sea drilling rig, the Sea Gem, collapses, killing 13 men.
1966: Manchester United midfielder Bobby Charlton wins the Ballon d’Or.
1975: Steven Morrissey – yes THAT Steven Morrissey – has a letter published in the NME, complaining about the lack of media coverage for the New York Dolls.
1978: Spain becomes a democracy after 40 years of dictatorship as King Juan Carlos ratifies Spain’s first democratic constitution. On the same day, Hamburg forward Kevin Keegan wins the Ballon d’Or.
1979: Soviet forces stage a coup in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing President Hafizullah Amin.
1981: Australian bowler Denis Lillee becomes the leading wicket-taker in test cricket with 310. On the same day, songwriter Hoagy Carmichael dies aged 82.
- Don’t You Want Me – Human League
- Daddy’s Home – Cliff Richard
- One Of Us – ABBA
- Ant Rap – Adam and the Ants
- The Land Of Make Believe – Bucks Fizz
- It Must Be Love – Madness
- Wedding Bells – Godley & Creme
- Rock n Roll – Status Quo
- Mirror Mirror – Dollar
- I’ll Find My Way Home – Jon and Vangelis
- The Visitors – ABBA
- Greatest Hits – Queen
- Dare – The Human League
- Chart Hits ’81 – Various Artists
- Prince Charming – Adam and the Ants
- Pearls – Elkie Brooks
- Wired For Sound – Cliff Richard
- The Simon And Garfunkel Collection – Simon and Garfunkel
- The Best Of Blondie – Blondie
- Ghost In The Machine – The Police
1985: Simultaneous twin terrorist attacks at Rome and Vienna airports result in 18 deaths.
1997: Leading protestant paramilitary, Billy Wright, is shot dead at the maximum security Maze prison in Northern Ireland.
2002: Film director George Roy Hill dies aged 79.
2004: Ukraine’s “orange revolutionaries” celebrate as opposition leader Viktor Yushchenko is declared winner of the presidential election.
2007: Former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto is assassinated by a suicide bomber in Rawalpindi.
2008: With his Hull City side 4-0 down at half-time away to Manchester City, manager Phil Brown refuses to allow his team to leave the pitch, carrying out the team talk in front of the of the 5,500 travelling fans. On the same day, singer-songwriter,/guitarist, Delaney Bramlett dies from complications after gall bladder surgery.
2015: Harlem Globetrotters legend Meadowlark Lemmon, dies aged 83.
2016: Actress/author Carrie Fisher dies four days after suffering a heart attack on a flight from London to Los Angeles.
BIRTHDAYS: John Amos, actor, 82; Mike Pinder, keyvoards (The Moody Blues) 80; Mike Heron, singer-songwriter/multi-instrumentalist (The Incredible String Band) 79; Peter Sinfield, lyricist, 78; Mick Jones, guitarist/songwriter, (Foreigner) 77; Janet Street-Porter, TV personality, 75; Gérard Depardieu, actor, 73; Terry Bozzio, drummer (Frank Zappa/UK), 71; Youth (Martin Glover) record producer/bassist (Killing Joke) 61; Maryam D’Abo, actress, 61; Duncan Ferguson, former footballer/Everton assistant coach, 50; Emilie de Ravin, actress, 40; David Dunn, footballer, 40; Lily Cole, model/actress, 34; Hayley Williams, singer-songwriter (Paramore) 33; Timothée Chalamet, actor, 26.