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27 BC - Octavian Caesar given the title Augustus by the Roman Senate.

929 - Emir Abd-ar-rahman III of Cordoba declares himself caliph, thereby establishing the Caliphate of Cordoba.

1362 - A great storm tide in the North Sea destroys the German island of Strand and the city of Rungholt.

1412 - The Medici family are made official bankers of the Papacy.

1456 - Painter Filippo Lippi elopes with Lucrezia Buti, a young nun from the convent of Saint Margherita.

1492 - The first grammar of a modern language, in Spanish, is presented to Queen Isabella.

1547 - Ivan the Terrible becomes Tsar of Russia.

1556 - Philip II becomes King of Spain.

1572 - The Duke of Norfolk is tried for treason for his part in the Ridolfi plot to restore Catholicism in England.

1581 - English Parliament outlaws Roman Catholicism.

1605 - The first edition of El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quijote de la Mancha (Book One of Don Quixote) by Miguel de Cervantes was published in Madrid.

1761 - British capture Pondicherry, India from the French.

1777 - Vermont declares its independence from New York.


1778 - The first white settlers from Europe land in Australia.

1780 - American Revolution: Battle of Cape St. Vincent.

1795 - French occupy Utrecht, Netherlands.

1809 - Peninsular War: The British defeat the French at the Battle of La Coruña.

1847 - John C. Fremont is appointed Governor of the new California Territory.

1883 - The Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act, establishing the United States Civil service, is passed.

1900 - The United States Senate accepts the Anglo-German treaty of 1899 in which the United Kingdom renounces its claims to the Samoan islands.

1909 - Ernest Shackleton's expedition finds the magnetic South Pole.

1917 - German Foreign Secretary Arthur Zimmermann sends the Zimmermann Telegram to Mexico, proposing a German-Mexican alliance against the United States.

1919 - Temperance movement: The 18th Amendment, authorizing Prohibition, is passed by the Congress of the United States, going into effect one year later.

1945 - Adolf Hitler moves into his underground bunker, the so-called Führerbunker.

1956 - President Gamal Abdal Nasser of Egypt vows to reconquer Palestine.

1968 - Youth International Party (Yippies) is founded.


1969 - Czech student Jan Palach commits suicide by self-immolation in Prague, in protest against the Soviets' crushing of the Prague Spring the year before.

1970 - Buckminster Fuller receives the Gold Medal award from the American Institute of Architects.

1979 - The Shah of Iran flees Iran with his family and relocates to Egypt.

1986 - First meeting of the Internet Engineering Task Force.

1991 - Gulf War: United States begins bombing Iraq in Operation Desert Storm, which began following Operation Desert Shield .

1992 - El Salvador officials and rebel leaders sign the Chapultepec Peace Accords in Mexico City that ends a 12-year civil war that claimed at least 75,000.

2001 - Congolese President Laurent-Désiré Kabila is assassinated by one of his own bodyguards.

2002 - The UN Security Council unanimously establishes an arms embargo and the freezing of assets of Osama bin Laden, Al-Qaida, and the remaining members of the Taliban.

2003 - Space Shuttle Columbia takes off for mission STS-107 which will be its final one. Columbia disintegrates 16 days later on re-entry.

2005 - Adriana Iliescu gives birth at age 66 and becomes the oldest woman in the world to do so.

2006 - Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf is sworn in as Liberia's new president. She becomes Africa's first female elected head of state.

2006 - Liu Xinjuan is committed by the Chinese government to a psychiatric hospital, allegedly for political activism.


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