Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 2 October
1263: The Battle of Largs, after which defeat of the Norsemen leads to cession of the Hebrides and Mann to Scotland.
1608: The first telescope was demonstrated by Dutch lensmaker Hans Lippershey.
1836: HMS Beagle, with Charles Darwin, the naturalist, aboard, returned after nearly five years’ study of South American waters.
1925: London’s first red buses with roofed-in upper decks went into service.
1929: Reunion of the Church of Scotland and the United Free Church of Scotland as the Church of Scotland.
1935: Italian forces invaded Abyssinia after Mussolini’s bombers pounded border towns.
1942: The British cruiser Curacao sank off Donegal, with the loss of 338 lives, after a collision with the Cunard liner Queen Mary, which was carrying thousands of troops and zigzagging to avoid U-boats.
1945: Fluorescent lighting was first used in London, on a platform of the Piccadilly Circus Underground station.
1950: Legal aid became available in Britain.
1958: The Republic of Guinea in West Africa opted for full independence.
1972: Sweden voted in favour of joining the European Economic Community.
1983: Neil Kinnock became the leader of the Labour Party with a vote of just over 71 per cent.
1990: Dame Joan Sutherland’s 40-year operatic career came to a close with a rapturous reception at Sydney Opera House.
1990: Reunification of East and West Germanys created Europe’s largest country.
1992: In South America’s worst prison riot, 111 prisoners died in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
2002: The Beltway sniper attacks, which took place in Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia, in the US began, extending over three weeks.
2007: President Roh Moo-hyun of South Korea walked across the Military Demarcation Line into North Korea on his way to a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.
2009: Police officers involved in the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes were told they would not face punishment. Mr de Menezes was shot dead in 2005, by firearms officers who mistook him for a wanted failed suicide bomber.
Sting (Gordon Sumner CBE), singer, 63; Lorraine Bracco, actress, 60; Sir Trevor Brooking CBE, Football Association’s director of football development, 66; Anna Ford, broadcaster, 71; Donna Karan, fashion designer, 66; Don McLean, singer, 69; Jan Morris CBE, writer, 88; Jana Novotna, tennis player, 46; Philip Oakey, singer (Human League), 59; Annie Leibovitz, photographer, 65; Tiffany, singer-songwriter, actress, 43; Simon Gregson, actor, 40; Mike Rutherford, musician (Genesis), 64; Frankie Fredericks, world record-breaking sprinter, 47; Victoria Derbyshire, TV and radio journalist and presenter, 46; Dr Duncan Thomson, former director of Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 80.
Births: 1869 Mohandas “Mahatma” Gandhi, Indian political and religious leader; 1890 Henry “Groucho” Marx, American comedian; 1904 Graham Greene, novelist and playwright.
Deaths: 1958 Marie Stopes, pioneer of birth control ; 1985 Rock Hudson, film actor; 1985 George Savalas, actor; 1988 Sir Alec Issigonis CBE, designer of the Mini motor car; 1998 Gene Autry, TV and film star (the “Singing cowboy”).