1520: Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan sailed through the strait later named after him and into the Pacific Ocean.
1660: The Royal Society was founded at a meeting in London of 12 scholars, including Sir Christopher Wren.
1717: The pirate Blackbeard attacked the French merchant ship La Concorde, which he then captured and renamed Queen Anne’s Revenge.
1720: Irish pirate Anne Bonny and her English accomplice, Mary Read, were sentenced to death in Jamaica. They were subsequently given a stay of execution as they were both pregnant.
1725: Natchez Indians massacred 135 Frenchmen, 35 Frenchwomen and 56 children at Fort Rosalie, near the site of modern-day Natxhez, Mississippi.
1814: The Times newspaper printed for the first time using automatic, steam-powered presses, heralding the beginning of newspapers being available to a mass readership.
1821: Panama declared itself independent of Spain and joined Republic of Colombia.
1843: Hawaii independence day. The kingdom of Hawaii was officially recognised by the UK and France as an independent nation.
1885: British forces occupied Mandalay in Burma.
1871: Trials of the Ku Klux Klan began at the Federal district Court, South Carolina.
1905: Sinn Fein was founded in Dublin.
1912: Albania declared independence.
1916: London experienced its first air raid.
1918: The Kaiser abdicated the crown of Prussia and Germany.
1919: American-born Lady Astor became the first female elected to the House of Commons.
1922: Six former ministers of Greece were executed.
1934: Winston Churchill gave warning that weak defences could leave Britain “tortured into absolute subjection” in a war with Germany.
1942: A fire that destroyed Cocoanut Grove nightclub in Boston resulted in 492 deaths.
1943: The “Big Three” - Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin - met in Tehran to discuss post-war policy.
1964: Nasa launched Mariner 4 to explore Mars.
1968: John Lennon was fined £150 for unauthorised possession of cannabis.
1971: Jordan’s prime minister, Wasfi Tell, was assassinated at an Arab conference in Cairo.
1987: South African Airways jet with 159 people aboard crashed in Indian Ocean near Mauritius.
1989: West German chancellor Helmut Kohl proposed a plan for the confederation of East and West Germany.
1994: Eight rebel MPs were stripped of the Conservative whip as Prime Minister John Major survived a vote of confidence on Europe.
2010: A body of UK and international doctors voted antibiotics the most important medical development of the past 50 years.
2012: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey – the first of the Hobbit film series – starring Martin Freeman and Ian McKellen premiered in New Zealand.
Fiona Armstrong, television presenter, 59; Alistair Darling, Labour politician, 62; Lord Macdonald, Chief of the Name and Arms of Macdonald, 68; Caitlin McClatchey, Scottish swimmer, 30; Randy Newman, singer and songwriter, 72; Stephen Roche, Tour de France winner, 56; Judd Nelson, actor, 56; Ed Harris, actor and director, 65; Martin Clunes OBE, actor, 54; Richard Osman, TV presenter and producer, 45; Kriss Akabusi MBE, athlete, 57; Gavin Rae, Scottish footballer, 38; Armando Iannucci, Scottish writer, TV director, 52; Hugh McKenna, musician (Sensational Alex Harvey Band), 66.
Births: 1489 Margaret Tudor, Queen of Scots, wife of James IV of Scotland; 1628 John Bunyan, author of Pilgrim’s Progress; 1757 William Blake, poet and artist; 1820 Friedrich Engels, German socialist and associate of Karl Marx; 1904 Nancy Mitford CBE, novelist and journalist; 1908 Claude Lévi-Strauss, anthropologist.
Deaths: 1499 Edward Plantagenet, 17th Earl of Warwick; 1859 Washington Irving, author; 1945 Dwight Davis, donor of the Davis Cup for tennis; 1968 Enid Blyton, writer of children’s books; 1994 Buster Edwards, Great Train Robber; 2000 Len Shackleton, Sunderland and England footballer; 2001 Bill Reid, Glasgow-born VC; 2010 Leslie Nielsen, actor.