Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 2 April
1593: The College of New Aberdeen was founded by the Earl Marischal of Scotland, George Keith of Inverugie.
1699: Admiral John Benbow was sent to West Indies to gain reparations from Spain for destruction of ships at Darien.
1801: Horatio Nelson, aboard the Elephant, said to have put his telescope to his blind eye at the Battle of Copenhagen, and so did not see the signal from Admiral Parker to cease fighting. The Danish fleet was destroyed.
1849: The British annexed the Punjab.
1868: Frances Kidder was hanged outside Maidstone jail for murder, the last public execution of a woman.
1877: The first human cannonball circus act was performed at London’s Amphitheatre, when Zazal was shot by elastic springs into a safety net. She was “fired” every weekday for two years.
1907: The first cinema, The Electric Theatre, opened in Los Angeles. The programme featured a four-minute drama entitled Ruined By Hard Drink.
1917: US president Woodrow Wilson summoned Congress to declare war on Germany.
1946: The Royal Military Academy was established at Sandhurst, combining the Royal Military College there (established 1799) and Royal Military Academy, at Woolwich since 1741.
1951: US General Dwight Eisenhower took over as Supreme Allied Commander in Europe.
1961: Forty Biblical scrolls found in cave in Judaea threw new light on origin of Dead Sea Scrolls and Jewish history.
1973: An ice meteor fell from the sky in Burton Road, Manchester. It contained 51 layers of ice.
1977: Charlotte Brew on Barony Fort became the first woman to ride in a Grand National. Her mount fell at the 27th fence. Red Rum became the only horse ever to win the race three times.
1982: Argentinian forces invaded and occupied the British Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic.
1990: An earthquake of 5.2 on the Richter scale affected much of England and Wales.
1992: In New York, Mafia boss John Gotti was convicted of murder and racketeering and was later sentenced to life in prison.
2009: At the G20 summit, world leaders agreed a $1.1 trillion boost to reverse the credit crunch.
Dame Penelope Keith, actress, 74; Sir Jack Brabham OBE, world motor racing champion and race car builder, 88; Linford Christie OBE, Olympic gold medallist athlete and coach, 54; Paul Gambaccini, disc jockey, 65; Raymond Gubbay, concert promoter, 68; Emmylou Harris, American country singer, 67; Linda Hunt, actress, 69; Camille Paglia, author and academic, 67; Dermot Reeve, cricketer and commentator, 51; Leon Russell, rock musician, 72; Sue Townsend, author, 68; Denis Tuohy, broadcaster, 77; Keren Woodward, singer (Bananarama), 53.
Births: 1725 Giovanni Casanova, adventurer, gambler, secret agent; 1805 Hans Christian Andersen, writer of fairy tales; 1840 Emile Zola, novelist; 1891 Max Ernst, Surrealist artist and sculptor; 1914 Sir Alec Guinness, actor; 1925 George Macdonald Fraser, writer; 1939 Marvin Gaye, singer.
Deaths: 1821 James Gregory, Edinburgh physician and professor of medicine in Edinburgh; 1865 Richard Cobden, statesman; 1872 Samuel Morse, inventor of Morse Code; 1966 CS Forester, novelist; 1974 Georges Pompidou, French prime minister and president; 2005 Pope John Paul II.