Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 7 May
1544: Earl of Hertford invaded Scotland in an attempt to force the Scottish estates to agree to the marriage of Edward, son of Henry VIII, and Mary Queen of Scots. Known as “The Rough Wooing”, it resulted in the burning and destruction of Border towns and abbeys and of Edinburgh.
1765: The warship Victory was launched at Chatham. She is now preserved at Portsmouth.
1777: The US cruiser Surprise captured British ship Prince of Orange in English Channel.
1791: First British veterinary surgeon, William Moorcroft, set up practice after qualifying in France.
1821: British African Company was dissolved because of heavy expense, and Sierra Leone, Gambia and Gold Coast were taken over by British government to form British West Africa.
1824: Beethoven conducted the first performance of his choral symphony, his ninth and last.
1832: Greece was proclaimed an independent kingdom with Otto I as King.
1848: Polish rebels surrendered after Prussian troops crushed insurrection in Warsaw.
1888: George Eastman patented his Kodak box camera with a name he thought would be easy to remember.
1909: St Ives lifeboat, James Stevens No10, made a dramatic rescue of the crew of the schooner Loango, foundering in high seas near Portminster. The lifeboat, built in 1899, was still seaworthy in 2008 when it was put up for sale.
1907: The first Isle of Man TT Race was held. The winner was Charles Collier on a Matchless, at an average speed of 38.22mph.
1915: The 762-foot Cunard passenger liner, Lusitania, captained by William Turner, was torpedoed by a German submarine ten miles off Old Head of Kinsale, Ireland, and sank in 18 minutes with the loss of 1,198 lives.
1918: In the Budget debate, HH Asquith announced the government’s intention to introduce an old age pension – five shillings (25p) a week for every person over 70, or seven shillings and sixpence for married couples.
1926: Women’s suffrage in Britain was lowered from the age of 30 to 21.
1941: In possibly the biggest intelligence coup of the war, Germany’s Enigma master codes were uncovered by Allies via documents found aboard a German ship seized off the coast of Iceland.
1945: Germany surrendered unconditionally to the Allies.
1970: Somalia nationalised all foreign oil companies and banks.
1973: The Washington Post won the Pulitzer Prize for the work of its reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein in exposing the Watergate scandal.
2000: Vladimir Putin was inaugurated president of Russia.
2001: The Great Train Robber, Ronnie Biggs, arrived back in Britain from Brazil, ending more than 35 years on the run. He died in 2013.
2002: A China Northern Airlines MD-82 plunged into the Yellow Sea, killing 112 people.
2008: Cannabis was reclassified as a class B drug because of uncertainty over its impact on mental health, reversing prime minister Tony Blair’s decision to downgrade it to class C, .
Christy Moore, Irish folk singer, 69; Lord (Asa) Briggs, historian, 93; Peter Carey, author, 71; Eagle-Eye Cherry, singer, 46; Anne Dudley, pop musician (Art of Noise) and orchestral composer, 58; Anya Hindmarch MBE, handbag designer, 46; Nicholas Hytner, film, theatre and opera director, 58; Breckin Meyer, actor, 40; Sir Tony O’Reilly KBE, rugby player and newspaper owner, 78; Richard O’Sullivan, actor, 70; Jimmy Ruffin, singer, 75; Michael Rosen, author, 68; Steve Diggle, guitarist (Buzzcocks), 59; Liam Tancock, swimmer, 29; Bill Kreutzmann, drummer (the Grateful Dead), 68; Sidney Altman, molecular biologist, 75.
Births: 1711 David Hume, philosopher and historian; 1812 Robert Browning, poet; 1833 Johannes Brahms, composer and pianist; 1840 Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, composer; 1847 Lord Rosebery, Liberal prime minister; 1876 Samuel Courtauld, industrialist and art patron; 1892 Marshal Tito, Yugoslavia’s founding president; 1896 Kitty Godfree, Wimbledon tennis champion; 1901 Gary Cooper, actor; 1909 Edwin Land, American inventor of Polaroid lens and instant camera; 1916 Sir Huw Wheldon, pioneering broadcaster; 1919 Eva Peron, Argentinian president’s wife; 1927 Elisabeth Söderström, soprano.
Deaths: 1841 Thomas Barnes, editor of the Times; 1890 James Nasmyth, inventor of the first steam hammer; 1917 Captain Albert Ball, air ace of First World War; 1940 George Lansbury, Labour Party leader; 1957 Eliot Ness, US government agent; 1963 Max Miller, comedian; 1985 Dawn Addams, actress; 2011 Severiano Ballesteros, golfer.