It happened today – this day in history – March 11

537: Goths lay siege to Rome.

1513: Giovanni de’ Medici chosen as Pope Leo X.

1702: The first English daily newspaper The Daily Courant published.

1708: Queen Anne withholds Royal Assent from the Scottish Militia Bill – the last time a British monarch vetoes legislation.

1845: In New Zealand, chiefs Hone Heke and Kawiti lead 700 Māoris to chop down the British flagpole and drive settlers out of the British colonial settlement of Kororareka because of breaches of the 1840 Treaty of Waitangi.

1851: Guiseppe Verdi’s opera “Rigoletto” premieres in Venice.

1867: Guiseppe Verdi’s opera “Don Carlos” premieres in Paris.

1876: In the FA Cup Final at Kennington Oval, Wanderers and Old Estonians draw, 1-1; Wanderers win the replay, 3-0.

1900: Prime Minister Lord Salisbury rejects peace overtures from Boer leader Paul Kruger.

1915: Britain declares a blockade of all German ports.

1917: British forces occupy Baghdad.

1918: Moscow becomes the capital of revolutionary Russia.

1941: President Franklin D Roosevelt signs Lend-Lease Bill. On the same day, Old Trafford, home of Manchester United is severely damaged in a German bombing raid. The team is unable to play there for eight years.

1942: The first deportation train leaves Paris for Auschwitz concentration camp. On the same day, Japanese troops land on North Sumatra.

1955: Sir Alexander Fleming – the man who first discovered the life-saving drug penicillin – dies of a heart attack aged 73.

1958: Ole Kirk Christiansen, inventor of LEGO, dies of a heart attack aged 66.

1969: Sci-fi author John Wyndham dies aged 65.

1970: Death of writer Earl Stanley Gardner aged 80.

1974: Two self-proclaimed British spies escape from Mountjoy Prison in Dublin. On the same day, Mt Etna erupts on Sicily.


1977: Film director Roman Polanski is charged with raping a 13-year-old girl in Hollywood.

1978: French singer Claude Francois is electrocuted changing a light bulb while standing in his bathtub.

1985: Mikhail Gorbachev becomes leader of the Soviet Union following the death of Konstantin Chernenko.

1986: Blues artist Sonny Terry dies aged 74.

1988: The pound note ceases to be legal tender, replaced by one pound coin.

1990: Lithuania declares its Independence from the Soviet Union.

Singles chart:

  1. Dub Be Good To Me – Beats International ft Lindy Layton
  2. The Brits 1990 – Various Artists
  3. How Am I Supposed To Live Without You – Michael Bolton
  4. That Sounds Good To Me – Jive Bunny and the Mastermixers
  5. Infinity – Guru Josh
  6. Love Shack – The B52s
  7. Moments In Soul – JT and the Big Family
  8. Blue Savannah – Erasure
  9. Nothing Compares 2 U – Sinead O’Connor
  10. Lily Was Here – David A Stewart ft Candy Dulfer
1990: Phil Collins – …But Seriously

Album chart:

  1. But Seriously… – Phil Collins
  2. Missing… Presumed Having A Good Time – The Notting Hillbillies
  3. Number Of The Beast – Iron Maiden
  4. The Road To Hell – Chris Rea
  5. Foreign Affair – Tina Turner
  6. Vivaldi… The Four Seasons – Nigel Kennedy and the English Chamber Orchestra
  7. The Best Of… – Rod Stewart
  8. Soul Provider – Michael Bolton
  9. Pump Up The Jam – Technotronic
  10. Affection – Lisa Stansfield

1993: Oasis record their first demos at The Real People’s studio in Liverpool.

1997: The ashes of Star Trek creator, Gene Roddenberry are launched into space. On the same day, Paul McCartney is knighted by The Queen.

2003: The International Criminal Court holds its inaugural session in The Hague.

2004: 191 people die as explosions rip through three Madrid train stations during the morning rush-hour.

2006: Death of Slobodan Milosevic, former president of Serbia

2013: North Korea cuts the phone line with South Korea, breaching the 1953 armistice.

2016: Keyboards legend Keith Emerson commits suicide by shooting himself in the head.

2018: Death of comedian Ken Dodd aged 90.

2019: Drummer Hal Blaine of the Wrecking Crew, one of the most recorded musicians in pop music history dies aged 90.

BIRTHDAYS: Rupert (Keith) Murdoch, media magnate, 90; Mark Stein, vocals/keyboards (Vanilla Fudge) 74; Elias Koteas, actor, 60; Alex Kingston, actress, 58; Shane Richie, actor, 57; John Barrownam, actor, 54; Lisa Loeb, singer, 53; Rami Jaffee, keyboards (Foo Fighters) 52; Terence Howard, actor, 52; Johnny Knoxville, actor, 50; Didier Drogba, footballer, 43; Joel and Benji Madden, musicians (Good Charlotte) 42; Thora Birch, actress, 39; Jodie Comer, actress, 28; Andrew Robertson, footballer, 27.