1797: Pope Pius VI, by Treaty of Tolentino, ceded the Romagna, Bologna and Ferrara to France, as Napoleon Bonaparte advanced through Tyrol to Vienna.
1807: British fleet forced way through Dardanelles to support Russia in war against Turkey.
1843: In the middle of a performance of Norma at the Royal Opera House, Madrid, the leading lady rushed off stage to give birth to a daughter, who later became opera singer Adelina Patti. Her father was a tenor.
1901: The Mercedes car, a 35 horsepower model, was named after Mercedes Jellinck, the daughter of a director of the Daimler Company.
1906: In the United States, William S Kellogg formed the Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Company to make the cereal he invented as therapy for mental patients.
1945: Iwo Jima was invaded by United States Marines. The island was conquered on 16 March with the loss of 4,590 lives.
1957: Emergency Ward 10, the first continuous television series, began on ITV – it was shown twice-weekly for ten years.
1959: Agreement was signed in London by Greece, Turkey and Britain for independence of Cyprus.
1976: Iceland broke off diplomatic relations with Britain after the two countries failed to agree on limits in the Cod War fishing dispute.
1982: John de Lorean’s sports car firm went into receivership with an estimated loss of at least £17.8million of taxpayers’ money.
1985: EastEnders began on BBC television.
1989: Norway banned the killing of seal pups for a year after British-Swedish documentary on its sealing methods.
1991: Snow fell on the Algerian Sahara Desert for the first time for 30 years.
1991: Boris Yeltsin called for the resignation of Russian premier Mikhail Gorbachev, saying Gorbachev was sacrificing reform for increased personal power.
1992: Sara Keays, former mistress of Cecil (now Lord) Parkinson, won £105,000 libel damages against New Woman magazine.
1999: President Bill Clinton issued a posthumous pardon for US Army Lieutenant Henry Ossian Flipper.
2002: Nasa’s Mars Odyssey space probe began to map the surface of Mars using its thermal emission imaging system.
Benicio del Toro, actor and film producer, 47; Jeff Daniels, actor, 59; John Freeman MBE, former diplomat, MP 1945-55 and broadcaster, 99; Tony Iommi, rock guitarist (Black Sabbath), 66; Dr Michael Kennedy CBE, music critic, writer and broadcaster, 88; Hana Mandlíková, tennis player, 52; Seal (Seal Henry Samuel), soul singer, 51; Smokey Robinson, soul singer, 74; Gwen Taylor, actress, 75; Prince Andrew, Duke of York, 54.
Births: 1473 Nicolaus Copernicus, astronomer; 1843 Adelina Patti, soprano; 1893 Jimmy Durante, actor and comedian; 1893 Sir Cedric Hardwick, stage and film actor; 1911 Merle Oberon, film actress; 1912 Stan Kenton, bandleader and composer; 1961 Justin Fashanu, footballer.
Deaths: 1849 Bernard Barton, poet; 1897 Charles Blondin (Jean-François Gravelet), tightrope walker who crossed Niagara Falls many times; 1916 Ernst Mach, physicist; 1995 Sir Nicholas Fairbairn QC, MP; 2001 Stanley J Kramer, film director; 2010 Lionel Jeffries, actor, screenwriter and director.