AD 602: Byzantine Emperor Maurice and his five sons were beheaded by mutineers at Chalcedon in Asia Minor.
1582: William Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway. He was 18.
1703: More than 8,000 people died in 24 hours, and over 800 churches and 400 windmills were destroyed in a great storm. At least 300 vessels were lost at sea or smashed at their moorings, and the first Eddystone Lighthouse disappeared.
1879: French Chamber was moved from Versailles to Paris.
1912: Spain established a protectorate over Morocco.
1914: The first two trained policewomen to be granted official status in Britain, Miss Mary Allen and Miss EF Harburn, reported for duty at Grantham, Lincolnshire.
1919: Bulgaria signed First World War peace treaty which yielded territory to Greece and Yugoslavia.
1935: General election in New Zealand was won for the first time by the Labour Party. Michael Savage became the country’s first Labour prime minister.
1940: Germany annexed French province of Lorraine.
1942: As German troops arrived in Toulon, the French fleet was scuttled in the harbour.
1944: Between 3,500 and 4,000 tons of high explosives went off in a cavern beneath Staffordshire, killing 68 people and wiping out an entire farm. The explosion was recorded as an earthquake in Geneva.
1948: Clement Attlee, the prime minister, appointed the Lynskey Tribunal to investigate charges of corruption against ministers and officials.
1962: Britain agreed to provide arms to India to resist Chinese aggression.
1963: The Buchanan Committee published a report warning of future chaos as traffic in cities multiplied.
1975: Ross McWhirter, co-editor with his twin brother of The Guinness Book Of Records, was killed by IRA gunmen at his London home.
1990: John Major, at 47 years old, became Britain’s youngest prime minister this century.
1991: A 15th century Bible fetched £1.1 million at Christie’s – bought by a New York antiquarian bookseller.
1994: Raith Rovers caused a major football upset when they beat Celtic in a penalty shoot-out to win the Coca Cola Cup – their first major trophy.
1995: The Appeal Court in London upheld the convictions of four men who took part in illegal share-fixing that helped Guinness win control of Distillers.
1996: A fifth person died in an E coli food poisoning outbreak linked to a butcher’s shop in Wishaw, Lanarkshire. Twenty people would die in the outbreak.
2001: Hours after being sworn in as Scotland’s first minister to succeed Henry McLeish, Jack McConnell sacked almost half of the Labour Cabinet. Four senior ministers were dismissed and another resigned.
2009: A bomb blast caused a Russian train carrying 700 people to crash with the loss of more than two-dozen lives.
2009: The world’s top golfer, Tiger Woods, suffered facial injuries after he suffered a car crash outside his Florida home. In the aftermath of the accident, revelations about Woods’s private life emerged.
John Alderton, actor, 75; Rodney Bewes, actor, 78; Charlie Burchill, Glasgow-born rock guitarist (Simple Minds), 56; Andrea Catherwood, television presenter and journalist, 48; Alec Newman, Glasgow-born actor and singer, 41; Manolo Blahnik CBE, designer of shoes and furniture, 73; Kathryn Bigelow, first woman to win Oscar for Best Director, 64.
Births: 1701 Anders Celsius, astronomer who created the centigrade temperature scale; 1921 1925 Ernie Wise, comedian; 1917 Roland “Tiny” Rowland, businessman; 1935 Verity Lambert OBE, film and TV producer; 1940 Bruce Lee, martial art expert and action film star; 1942 Jimi Hendrix, singer, guitarist.
Deaths: 1811 Andrew Meikle, Dunbar-born inventor of the threshing machine; 1852 Ada Lovelace, mathematician, writer and the world’s first computer programmer; 1895 Alexandre Dumas, playwright; 1988 John Carradine, actor; 2000 Professor Sir Malcolm Bradbury, novelist, academic and critic; 2006 Alan “Fluff” Freeman MBE, DJ; 2011 Ken Russell, director; 2013 Lewis Collins, actor; 2014 Baroness James of Holland Park (PD James OBE), writer.