It happened today – this day in history – June 4

781BC: The oldest Chinese recording of a solar eclipse.

1070: Roquefort cheese created in a cave near Roquefort, France.

1615: Forces under Japanese shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu take Osaka Castle

1647: Charles I is taken prisoner by the English Parliamentary army.

1738: Birth of George III.

1783: Joseph and Jacques Montgolfier make 1st public hot-air balloon flight (unmanned), covering 2km and lasting 10 minutes with an estimated altitude of 1,600-2,000m.

1784: Madame Elizabeth Thible becomes the first female balloonist.

1798: Death of Giacomo Casanova aged 73.

1896: Henry Ford drives his first car through the streets of Detroit.

1913: Suffragette Emily Davison dies after throwing herself in front of George V’s horse Anmer during the Epsom Derby.

1916: General Aleksei Brusilov begins a massive Russian offensive on the Eastern Front.

1917: American men begin registering for the draft.

1919: US marines invade Costa Rica.

1928: President of the Republic of China, Zhang Zuolin, is assassinated by Japanese agents.

1940: As the last Allied soldier leaves Dunkirk, Prime Minister Winston Churchill vows his forces “shall never surrender”.

1941: Former Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany dies aged 82.

1942: Glenn Wallichs launches Capitol Records in the US.

1944: The 5th Army enters and liberates Rome from Mussolini’s fascists. On the same day, General Eisenhower cancels the planned D-Day invasion set for June 5 after unfavourable weather reports.

1945: The US, Soviet Union, Britain and France agree to divide up occupied Germany.

1951: Actress Janet Leigh marries Tony Curtis.

1954: France grants Vietnam independence inside French Union.

1955: At the French Tennis Championships, Angela Mortimer of England beats American Dorothy Knode 2-6, 7-5, 10-8 for her first Grand Slam singles title.

1960: Actor Marlon Brando marries actress Movita Castaneda.

1964: The Test Cricket debut of Geoffrey Boycott v Australia at Trent Bridge. On the same day, The Beatles begin their world tour in Denmark with Jimmy Nichol on drums while Ringo Starr is in the UK having his tonsils removed.

1967: A British Midland flight crashes in Hopes Carr, Stockport, killing 72 passengers and crew.

1968: Dover prepares to cull its seagulls.

1970: Tonga declares independence from the UK.


1972: Singles chart:

  1. Metal Guru – T. Rex
  2. Vincent – Don McLean
  3. Lady Eleanor – Lindisfarne
  4. Oh Babe What Would You Say? – Hurricane Smith
  5. Rocket Man – Elton John
  6. At The Club – The Drifters
  7. Could It Be Forever – David Cassidy
  8. California Man – The Move
  9. Sister Jane – New World
  10. Rockin’ Robin – Michael Jackson
1972: Wishbone Ash – Argus

Album chart:

  1. Exile On Main Street – The Rolling Stones
  2. Honky Chateau – Elton John
  3. Bolan Boogie – T. Rex
  4. 20 Dynamic Hits – Various Artists
  5. Cherish – David Cassidy
  6. Bridge Over Troubled Water – Simon and Garfunkel
  7. Fog On The Tyne – Lindisfarne
  8. Bread Winners – Jack Jones
  9. American Pie – Don McLean
  10. Argus – Wishbone Ash

1976: The Sex Pistols appear at The Lesser Free Trade Hall, Manchester, on a now legendary night regarded as the catalyst for the punk rock movement outside London. Among the small audience were Morrissey, Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook and Mark E Smith.

1977: Five British plane-spotters imprisoned in Greece on spying charges are released after 10 weeks in jail. On the same day, Scottish fans dig up the Wembley turf following their team’s 2-1 victory over England in the Home International Championship.

1982: Israel attacks targets in south Lebanon.

1984: DNA is successfully cloned from an extinct animal.

1985: Elton John begins a high court battle with Dick James Music seeking the rights to his early songs and recordings plus damages estimated at more than £30 million.

1987: Hurdler Ed Moses’ 122 race winning streak which extends to nearly 10 years ends when he is beaten by countryman Danny Harris in Madrid.

1988: Steffi Graf beats Natalia Zvereva of Belarus 6-0, 6-0 in 32 minutes to win the Ladies Singles in the French Open Tennis Championship.

1989: A Beijing policeman shoots and wounds Chinese premier Li Ping on the day Chinese troops clear the Tiananmen Square of student protesters, unofficial figures place death toll near 1,000. On the same day, the Solidarity Party comes to power in Poland.

1990: Punk rock singer Stiv Bators (Steven Bator) of the Dead Boys and The Lords of the New Church dies after being hit by a taxi in Paris. He is taken to hospital but leaves before seeing a doctor and dies in his sleep that night. On the same day, Dr Jack Kevorkian assists an Oregon woman to commit suicide, beginning a national debate over the right to die.

1991: Defence Secretary Tom King confirms Britain will reduce the amount it spends on the army.

1993: Australian spin bowler Shane Warne bowls England batsman Mike Gatting with his first ball of an Ashes series.

1994: Haile Gebreselassie runs a world record 5 km (12:56.96).

1995: New Zealand creates a world record score for a Rugby Union international in thrashing Japan, 145-17 in the World Cup in Bloomfontein, South Africa.

1997: Singer-songwriter Jeff Buckley’s body is discovered floating in the Mississippi River. Buckley had disappeared when swimming on May 29 in Wolf River Harbor, while wearing boots, all of his clothing, and singing the chorus of Whole Lotta Love by Led Zeppelin. On the same day, Ronnie Lane dies aged 51 from MS.

2002: Wyclef Jean of The Fugees is one of ten people arrested for disorderly conduct in a New York rally protesting cuts to education.

2008: TV presenter Michael Parkinson is knighted by The Queen at Buckingham Palace.

2012: Herb Reed, bass singer and founder member with doo-wop group The Platters, dies aged 83.

2013: Cornelius Harp, the original lead singer with The Marcels, dies aged 73.

2017: Ariana Grande headlines a benefit concert for victims of her Manchester concert bombing. Coldplay, Katy Perry and Justin Bieber also appear.

2018: Donald Trump tweets: “I have the absolute right to pardon myself.”

2019: Former US school security guard Scot Peterson is charged with neglect of a child and culpable negligence for not confronting a gunman during the Parkland School massacre in a landmark case.

2020: Steve Priest, bassist and co-founder of glam rock band Sweet, dies ages 72. On the same day, musician, songwriter and record producer Rupert Hine dies age 72.

2023: Ukraine begins its counter-offensive against Russia with increased fighting in the east and south of the country.

Angelina Jolie

BIRTHDAYS: Bruce Dern, actor, 88; Cliff Bennett, singer, 84; Roger Ball, saxophonist (The Average White Band) 80; Lou Macari, footballer/manager, 75; Val McDermid, author, 69; Reeves Gabrels, guitarist, 68; Nad Sylvan, singer, 65; Bradley Walsh, comedian/TV host, 64; Scott Wolf, actor, 56; Noah Wyle, actor, 53; Debra Stephenson, actress/impressionist, 52; Angelina Jolie, actress/director, 49; Russell Brand, comedian/actor/broadcaster, 49; Robin Lord Taylor, actor, 46; T J (Todd Joseph) Miller, comedian/actor, 43; Tim Rozon, actor, 42; Lukas Podolski, footballer, 39; Oona Chaplin, actress, 38; Mollie King, singer (The Saturdays) 37; Ben Stokes, cricketer, 33.