Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 17 October
1346: David II of Scotland was taken prisoner at the Battle of Neville’s Cross, in Durham, and spent the next 11 years in captivity.
1651: Charles II escaped from Cromwell’s army across the English Channel.
1662: Chalres II sold Dunkirk to France for 2.5 million livres (£320,000).
1740: Ivan VI became Tsar of Russia.
1814: In the London Beer Flood, a three-storey high vat in the Meux and Company Brewery exploded, causing a tidal wave of 323,000 gallons of beer, destroying two homes, crumbling the walls of a neighbouring pub and swamping two neighbouring streets with beer. Nine people were killed.
1850: James Young obtained a patent for the extraction of paraffin from shale, the beginning of the paraffin industry in West Lothian.
1855: Henry Bessemer patented his process for making steel.
1860: Willie Park senior scored 164 to win the inaugural Open Championship at Prestwick Golf Club.
1899: Boers defeated by British troops at Glencoe, South Africa.
1912: Millie and Christine, American Siamese twins, died aged 60. They had been continually exhibited and even danced in a freak show chorus line.
1912: Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia declared war on Turkey.
1918: Republic of Yugoslavia was established formally.
1922: Scottish workers in Glasgow set off on a hunger march to London.
1931: US gangster Al Capone was jailed for 11 years for tax evasion.
1933: Albert Einstein arrived in the USA as a refugee from Nazi Germany.
1945: Colonel Juan Peron staged a coup in Buenos Aires and became absolute dictator of Argentina.
1956: Calder Hall in Cumbria, Britain’s first large-scale atomic energy station, was opened by the Queen when power was first fed into the grid system.
1972: The Queen became the first reigning monarch to visit a communist country when she arrived in Yugoslavia.
1977: West German commandos stormed hijacked Lufthansa airliner at airport in Somalia and freed all 86 hostages aboard.
1990: The Pope allowed two married men to be ordained as priests on condition they gave up sex and live forever as brother and sister with their wives.
1991: Four ITV companies, TV-am, Thames, TVS and TSW lost their licences under changes announced by the Independent Television Commission.
1993: US golfers beat England, the holders, in the final of the Dunhill Cup at St Andrews.
1995: A long-awaited report by the Scottish Constitutional Convention envisaged a Scottish parliament of 129 members elected under a proportional representation system.
2000: Four died and more than 100 were injured when a GNER King’s Cross to Leeds express was derailed at over 100mph at Hatfield, in Hertfordshire.
2001: New guidelines to prepare for terrorist attacks using bubonic plague, smallpox and botulism were sent to doctors and hospitals throughout Britain.
2013: Fifty-nine people were killed during a wave of attacks on Shia Muslims in Iraq.
Ernie Els, golfer, 46; Aravinda de Silva, cricketer, 50; Eminem (born Marshall Bruce Mathers III), rapper, 43; Alan Garner OBE, author, 81; Wyclef Jean, rapper (Fugees), 46; Margot Kidder, actress, 67; Stephen Kovacevich, pianist and conductor, 75; Sir Cameron Mackintosh, musical producer, 69; Ziggy Marley, reggae singer, 47; Kimi Raikkonen, Formula One champion 2007, 36; Mark Gatiss, actor, comedian, novelist, 49; Gregg Wallace, TV presenter, 51; Patrick Lambie, South African rugby union internationalist, 25; Matthew Macfadyen, actor, 41; Peter Stringfellow, nightclub owner, 75; George Wendt, actor, 67.
Births: 1727 John Wilkes, political agitator; 1914 Earl of Dalhousie, governor-general of Rhodesia and Nyasaland; 1915 Arthur Miller, playwright; 1918 Rita Hayworth, actress; 1920 Montgomery Clift, actor; 1921 George Mackay Brown, Orcadian poet and story-teller; 1925 Harry Carpenter OBE, sports commentator; 1938 Evel Knievel, stuntman.
Deaths: 1849 Frédéric Chopin, pianist and composer; 1998 Joan Hickson, actress; 2002 Derek Bell MBE, harpist, pianist and composer; 2008 Levi Stubbs, singer (Four Tops).