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19 Oct
1216
King John of England died. He was the youngest son of Henry II, and brother of Richard the Lionheart. Though generally regarded a weak king, he was responsible for granting the…King John of England died. He was the youngest son of Henry II, and brother of Richard the Lionheart. Though generally regarded a weak king, he was responsible for granting the Great Charter of English liberties, the Magna Carta
802 years ago
19 Oct
1739
England launched the "War of Jenkins' Ear" after Captain Jenkins informed Parliament that the Spaniards had cut off his ear and pillaged his shipEngland launched the "War of Jenkins' Ear" after Captain Jenkins informed Parliament that the Spaniards had cut off his ear and pillaged his ship
279 years ago
19 Oct
1741
English actor David Garrick made his stage debut as Richard IIIEnglish actor David Garrick made his stage debut as Richard III
277 years ago
19 Oct
1745
Anglo-Irish poet, wit and satirist Jonathan Swift, best known for his masterpiece, Gulliver’s Travels, diedAnglo-Irish poet, wit and satirist Jonathan Swift, best known for his masterpiece, Gulliver’s Travels, died
273 years ago
19 Oct
1781
The American War of Independence ended as Lord Cornwallis surrendered to General Washington at Yorktown, VirginiaThe American War of Independence ended as Lord Cornwallis surrendered to General Washington at Yorktown, Virginia
237 years ago
19 Oct
1784
English poet and essayist Leigh Hunt was bornEnglish poet and essayist Leigh Hunt was born
234 years ago
19 Oct
1813
Napoleon was defeated by the Allies at the Battle of the Nations at LeipzigNapoleon was defeated by the Allies at the Battle of the Nations at Leipzig
205 years ago
19 Oct
1845
Wagner’s opera Tannhauser was first performed at Dresden, GermanyWagner’s opera Tannhauser was first performed at Dresden, Germany
173 years ago
19 Oct
1856
The first efficient working prototype of the internal combustion engine was produced by the Fonderia del Pignone company in Florence, ItalyThe first efficient working prototype of the internal combustion engine was produced by the Fonderia del Pignone company in Florence, Italy
162 years ago
19 Oct
1862
French photographic pioneer Auguste Lumiere was born. With his younger brother Louis, he invented an early motion-picture camera and projector called the CinematographeFrench photographic pioneer Auguste Lumiere was born. With his younger brother Louis, he invented an early motion-picture camera and projector called the Cinematographe
156 years ago
19 Oct
1863
Alfred Nobel was granted his first patent, a Swedish patent for the preparation of nitroglycerin. He followed this in 1868 with a patent for dynamite which was safer to handleAlfred Nobel was granted his first patent, a Swedish patent for the preparation of nitroglycerin. He followed this in 1868 with a patent for dynamite which was safer to handle
155 years ago
19 Oct
1872
The Holtermann Nugget, a slab of slate weighing 235.14kg, was found in New South Wales, Australia. It contained 82.11kg of gold, the largest mass of gold ever foundThe Holtermann Nugget, a slab of slate weighing 235.14kg, was found in New South Wales, Australia. It contained 82.11kg of gold, the largest mass of gold ever found
146 years ago
19 Oct
1874
Mary Walsh and Charles Colton were married over Cincinnati in the first wedding to take place in a hot air balloonMary Walsh and Charles Colton were married over Cincinnati in the first wedding to take place in a hot air balloon
144 years ago
19 Oct
1897
U.S. industrialist George Mortimer Pullman, inventor of the Pullman sleeping car for use on trains, diedU.S. industrialist George Mortimer Pullman, inventor of the Pullman sleeping car for use on trains, died
121 years ago
19 Oct
1899
Guatemalan author Miguel Asturias was born. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1967Guatemalan author Miguel Asturias was born. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1967
119 years ago
19 Oct
1901
Brazilian aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont successfully piloted an airship around the Eiffel Tower. The 30-minute trip made him an international celebrityBrazilian aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont successfully piloted an airship around the Eiffel Tower. The 30-minute trip made him an international celebrity
117 years ago
19 Oct
1915
Italy and Russia declared war on Bulgaria during the First World WarItaly and Russia declared war on Bulgaria during the First World War
103 years ago
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19 Oct
1931
English novelist John Le Carré was born. In the 1950s and early 60s, Le Carré, real name David Cornwell, worked for British intelligence services MI5 and MI6, leaving to write…English novelist John Le Carré was born. In the 1950s and early 60s, Le Carré, real name David Cornwell, worked for British intelligence services MI5 and MI6, leaving to write full-time following the success of his third novel, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold. Other well known works include Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, The Tailor of Panama, and The Constant Gardener
87 years ago
19 Oct
1934
General Yakubu Gowon born. Nigerian head of state from 1966 to 1975 when he was overthrown in a military coupGeneral Yakubu Gowon born. Nigerian head of state from 1966 to 1975 when he was overthrown in a military coup
84 years ago
19 Oct
1935
The League of Nations imposed sanctions against Italy following its invasion of EthiopiaThe League of Nations imposed sanctions against Italy following its invasion of Ethiopia
83 years ago
19 Oct
1937
Lord Rutherford, New Zealand-born physicist, died. Awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1908, he is regarded as the founder of modern atomic theoryLord Rutherford, New Zealand-born physicist, died. Awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1908, he is regarded as the founder of modern atomic theory
81 years ago
19 Oct
1943
In World War Two the Moscow Conference of Foreign Ministers began, aimed at improving allied relations with the Soviet UnionIn World War Two the Moscow Conference of Foreign Ministers began, aimed at improving allied relations with the Soviet Union
75 years ago
19 Oct
1943
Streptomycin, the first antibiotic cure for tuberculosis, was first isolated by graduate student Albert Schatz at Rutgers University in New JerseyStreptomycin, the first antibiotic cure for tuberculosis, was first isolated by graduate student Albert Schatz at Rutgers University in New Jersey
75 years ago
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19 Oct
1952
Alain Bombard, a 27-yr-old French biologist and physician, left the Canary Islands in a 15ft inflatable boat and crossed the Atlantic in 65 days, demonstrating that a shipwrecked…Alain Bombard, a 27-yr-old French biologist and physician, left the Canary Islands in a 15ft inflatable boat and crossed the Atlantic in 65 days, demonstrating that a shipwrecked person could survive without provisions
66 years ago
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