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|<<||Selected anniversaries for January||>>|
|An archive of historical anniversaries that appeared on the Main Page|
2021 day arrangement
- 1068 – Having been pardoned by Eudokia Makrembolitissa, the regent of the Byzantine Empire, for attempting to usurp the throne, Romanos IV Diogenes married her to become Byzantine emperor.
- 1818 – Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus, a novel by the British author Mary Shelley, was first published anonymously in London.
- 1892 – The immigration station on Ellis Island (pictured) in New York Harbor opened, and would process almost 12 million immigrants to the United States over the course of its existence.
- 1957 – The revised Thai criminal code came into force, strengthening the law on lèse-majesté in Thailand to include insult, and treating it as a crime against national security.
- 2011 – A suicide bombing took place outside a Coptic Orthodox church in Alexandria, Egypt, following a New Year service, killing 23 people.
- 1777 – American Revolutionary War: American forces under the command of George Washington repulsed a British attack at the Battle of the Assunpink Creek near Trenton, New Jersey.
- 1941 – Second World War: Llandaff Cathedral (pictured) in Cardiff, Wales, was severely damaged by German bombing during the Cardiff Blitz.
- 1991 – Sharon Pratt Dixon was sworn in as the mayor of Washington, D.C., becoming the first African-American woman to hold the position.
- 2016 – Nimr al-Nimr, a prominent Shia cleric in Saudi Arabia, was executed by the Saudi government along with 46 other people.
- 1749 – The first issue of Berlingske, Denmark's oldest continually operating newspaper, was published.
- 1777 – American Revolutionary War: American forces under General George Washington defeated British troops at the Battle of Princeton (depicted).
- 1911 – A gun battle in the East End of London left two dead and sparked a political row over the involvement of Winston Churchill, then Home Secretary.
- 1961 – All twenty-five people on board Aero Flight 311 died in Finland's worst civilian air accident when the plane crashed near Kvevlax.
- 1798 – After his investiture as Prince of Wallachia, Constantine Hangerli (pictured) arrived in Bucharest to assume the throne.
- 1853 – Solomon Northup regained his freedom after having been sold into slavery in the American South; his memoir Twelve Years a Slave later became a national bestseller.
- 1912 – The Boy Scouts Association was incorporated throughout the British Empire by royal charter.
- 1951 – Korean War: Chinese and North Korean troops captured Seoul from United Nations forces.
- 2018 – A passenger train collided with a truck and derailed in the Free State, South Africa, killing 21 people and injuring 254 others.
- 1675 – Franco-Dutch War: French troops defeated Austrian and Brandenburg forces at the Battle of Turckheim in Alsace.
- 1757 – Louis XV of France survived an assassination attempt by Robert-François Damiens, who later became the last person in the country to be executed by being drawn and quartered.
- 1941 – Second World War: Australian and British troops defeated Italian forces in Bardia, Libya, the first battle of the war in which an Australian Army formation (pictured) took part.
- 1976 – The Troubles: In response to the killings of six Catholics the night before, South Armagh Republican Action Force gunmen killed ten Protestants in County Armagh, Northern Ireland.
- 1991 – Georgian troops attacked Tskhinvali, the South Ossetian capital, beginning the First South Ossetia War.
- 1449 – Four years before the Fall of Constantinople, Constantine XI Palaiologos, the last Byzantine emperor, assumed the throne.
- 1540 – King Henry VIII of England married his fourth wife, Anne of Cleves; the marriage was annulled six months later.
- 1907 – Italian educator Maria Montessori (pictured) opened her first school and day-care centre for working-class children in Rome, employing the philosophy of education that now bears her name.
- 1941 – During his State of the Union address, U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt presented his Four Freedoms as fundamental freedoms that all people ought to enjoy.
- 1953 – The first Asian Socialist Conference, an organisation of socialist political parties in Asia, opened in Rangoon with 177 delegates, observers and fraternal guests.
- 1797 – The first official Italian tricolour was adopted by the government of the Cispadane Republic.
- 1904 – The Marconi International Marine Communication Company specified CQD as the distress signal to be used by its operators.
- 1939 – The French physicist Marguerite Perey identified francium, the last element first discovered in nature, rather than by synthesis.
- 1978 – An article entitled "Iran and Red and Black Colonization" was published in the newspaper Ettela'at attacking Ruhollah Khomeini, then in exile in Iraq.
- 1993 – The Fourth Republic of Ghana was inaugurated with Jerry Rawlings (pictured), the country's former military ruler, as president.
- 1697 – Scottish student Thomas Aikenhead became the last person in Great Britain to be executed for blasphemy.
- 1735 – George Frideric Handel's opera Ariodante premiered at the Covent Garden Theatre (pictured) in London.
- 1981 – In Trans-en-Provence, France, a local farmer reported a UFO sighting claimed to be "perhaps the most completely and carefully documented sighting of all time".
- 2011 – Jared Lee Loughner opened fire at a public meeting held by U.S. representative Gabby Giffords in Tucson, Arizona, killing six people and injuring twelve others.
- 1909 – Ernest Shackleton, leading the Nimrod Expedition, planted the British flag (pictured) 97.5 nautical miles (180.6 km; 112.2 mi) from the South Pole, the farthest south explorers had reached at the time.
- 1917 – First World War: Troops of the British Empire defeated Ottoman forces at the Battle of Rafa on the Sinai–Palestine border in present-day Rafah.
- 1996 – First Chechen War: Chechen separatists launched raids in the city of Kizlyar, Dagestan, which turned into a massive hostage crisis involving thousands of civilians.
- 2011 – In poor weather conditions, Iran Air Flight 277 crashed near Urmia Airport, Iran, killing 78 people.
- 236 – Pope Fabian, said to have been chosen by the Holy Spirit when a dove landed on his head, began his papacy.
- 1776 – Common Sense, a pamphlet by Thomas Paine denouncing British rule in the Thirteen Colonies, was published.
- 1901 – The first great gusher (pictured) of the Texas oil boom was discovered in the Spindletop oil field near Beaumont.
- 1946 – The first session of the United Nations General Assembly convened at the Methodist Central Hall in London with representatives from 51 member states.
- 1966 – India and Pakistan signed the Tashkent Declaration to end the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965.
- 1654 – Arauco War: The Mapuche-Huilliche of southern Chile defeated a slave-hunting Spanish army at the Battle of Río Bueno.
- 1787 – German-born British astronomer William Herschel discovered two Uranian moons, later named Oberon and Titania by his son.
- 1912 – Immigrant textile workers in Lawrence, Massachusetts, went on strike in response to a pay cut corresponding to a new state law shortening the working week.
- 1946 – The People's Republic of Albania was proclaimed, with Enver Hoxha as the country's de facto head of state.
- 1986 – The Gateway Bridge (pictured) in Brisbane, Australia, opened as the largest prestressed-concrete, single-box bridge in the world.
- 475 – Basiliscus became Byzantine emperor after Zeno was forced to flee Constantinople.
- 1808 – John Rennie's scheme to defend St Mary's Church (pictured) in Reculver from coastal erosion was abandoned in favour of demolition, despite the church being an exemplar of Anglo-Saxon architecture.
- 1916 – Oswald Boelcke and Max Immelmann became the first German aviators to be awarded the Pour le Mérite, Germany's highest military honour.
- 1967 – Seventy-three-year-old psychology professor James Bedford became the first person to be cryonically preserved with intent of future resuscitation.
- 2007 – Comet McNaught reached perihelion, becoming the brightest comet in over 40 years, with an apparent magnitude of −5.5.
- 1435 – Pope Eugene IV promulgated the papal bull Sicut dudum, forbidding the enslavement of the native Guanche of the Canary Islands by the Spanish.
- 1884 – Welsh physician William Price was arrested for attempting to cremate his deceased infant son; he was acquitted in the subsequent trial, which eventually led to the legalisation of cremation in the United Kingdom.
- 1953 – An article published in Pravda accused nine eminent doctors in Moscow of taking part in a plot to poison members of the top Soviet political and military leadership.
- 1968 – American singer Johnny Cash (pictured) recorded his landmark album At Folsom Prison live at Folsom State Prison in California.
- 2001 – The first of two large earthquakes struck El Salvador, killing at least 944 people and destroying over 100,000 homes.
- 1907 – An earthquake registering 6.2 Mw struck Kingston, Jamaica (damage pictured), resulting in approximately 1,000 deaths.
- 1933 – The England cricket team employed bodyline tactics against Australia during a Test match at the Adelaide Oval, the peak of a major controversy in the sport.
- 1943 – Winston Churchill, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Charles de Gaulle, and Henri Giraud met in Casablanca to plan the Allies' European strategy for the next phase of World War II.
- 1953 – Josip Broz Tito was inaugurated as the first president of Yugoslavia.
- 1867 – In Regent's Park, London, the ice on the lake broke (depicted), plunging skaters into the water and causing 40 deaths from drowning or hypothermia.
- 1934 – At least 10,700 people died when an earthquake registering 8.0 Mw struck Nepal and the Indian state of Bihar.
- 1951 – Ilse Koch, the wife of the commandant of the Buchenwald and Majdanek concentration camps, was sentenced to life imprisonment by a West German court.
- 1981 – The American serial police-procedural television show Hill Street Blues aired its pilot episode, "Hill Street Station".
- 1991 – Queen Elizabeth II signed letters patent instituting the Victoria Cross for Australia; the country became the first Commonwealth realm with a separate Victoria Cross award in its honours system.
- 1862 – A pumping engine at a colliery in New Hartley, England, broke and fell down the shaft, trapping miners below and resulting in 204 deaths.
- 1942 – World War II: During the Battle of Bataan, U.S. Army sergeant Jose Calugas (pictured) organized a squad of volunteers to man an artillery position under heavy fire, which later earned him the Medal of Honor.
- 1964 – The musical Hello, Dolly! opened at the St. James Theatre on Broadway, and went on to win ten Tony Awards, a record that stood for 37 years.
- 2018 – In Mrauk U, Myanmar, police fired into a crowd protesting the ban of an event to mark the anniversary of the end of the Kingdom of Mrauk U, resulting in seven deaths and twelve injuries.
- 1377 – Gregory XI, the last Avignon pope, entered Rome after a four-month journey from Avignon, returning the papacy to its original city.
- 1893 – Lorrin A. Thurston and the Citizens' Committee of Public Safety led the overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom and the government of Queen Liliʻuokalani.
- 1946 – The United Nations Security Council (chamber pictured), the organ of the United Nations charged with the maintenance of international peace and security, held its first meeting at Church House, Westminster.
- 2002 – Mount Nyiragongo in the Democratic Republic of the Congo began erupting, killing hundreds and leaving about 120,000 people homeless in the nearby town of Goma.
- 1535 – Francisco Pizarro founded Ciudad de los Reyes (present-day Lima, Peru) as the capital of the lands conquered for the Spanish crown.
- 1871 – A number of previously independent states unified to form the German Empire, with Wilhelm I (pictured) as its emperor.
- 1915 – Japanese prime minister Ōkuma Shigenobu issued the Twenty-One Demands to China in a bid to increase Japan's power in East Asia.
- 1943 – World War II: In Operation Iskra, the Red Army established a narrow land corridor to Leningrad, partially easing the protracted German siege.
- 1419 – Hundred Years' War: The Siege of Rouen ended with English troops capturing the city from Norman French forces.
- 1795 – The Batavian Republic was established the day after William V (pictured) fled the Dutch Republic as a result of the Batavian Revolution in Amsterdam.
- 1915 – World War I: The first major attack of the German bombing campaign against Britain took place when Zeppelins bombed several towns in Norfolk.
- 1996 – A tank barge and a tug grounded on a beach in Rhode Island, U.S., spilling an estimated 828,000 U.S. gallons (3,130,000 l) of home heating oil.
- 2007 – Turkish-Armenian journalist and human-rights activist Hrant Dink was assassinated by a Turkish nationalist in Istanbul.
- 1265 – Simon de Montfort summoned local representatives to the Palace of Westminster to attend a parliament, considered the forerunner of the House of Commons of England.
- 1877 – The Constantinople Conference concluded with the Great Powers declaring the need for political reforms, which the Ottoman Empire refused to undertake and later resulting in the Russo-Turkish War.
- 1969 – Bengali student activist Amanullah Asaduzzaman was shot and killed by East Pakistani police, an event that led to the Bangladesh Liberation War.
- 2009 – During a national financial crisis, thousands of people protested (pictured) at the Icelandic parliament in Reykjavík.
- 763 – The Abbasid Caliphate crushed the Alid revolt when one of the rebel leaders was mortally wounded in battle near Basra, in what is now Iraq.
- 1326 – King Edward II of England issued a royal charter confirming Adam de Brome's foundation of Oriel College, Oxford.
- 1941 – World War II: Sparked by the murder of a German officer on the previous day in Bucharest, Romania, members of the Iron Guard began a rebellion and pogrom.
- 1981 – The DeLorean Motor Company completed the first production car of the DMC DeLorean (example pictured).
- 2011 – Demonstrations in Tirana to protest the alleged corruption of the Albanian government led to the killings of three demonstrators by the Republican Guard.
- 565 – Eutychius, Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, was arrested after he refused Byzantine emperor Justinian I's order to adopt the tenets of the Aphthartodocetae, a sect of non-Chalcedonian Christians.
- 1689 – The Convention Parliament met to decide the fate of the English throne after James II, the last Catholic monarch, had fled to France as a result of the Glorious Revolution.
- 1905 – Russian Revolution: Unarmed demonstrators, led by Russian Orthodox priest Georgy Gapon, were massacred by the Imperial Guard outside the Winter Palace in Saint Petersburg.
- 1970 – The Boeing 747, the world's first wide-body commercial airliner, entered service for Pan Am on the New York–London route.
- 2006 – Evo Morales (pictured) was inaugurated as President of Bolivia, becoming the country's first democratically elected indigenous leader.
- 1570 – James Hamilton killed James Stewart, 1st Earl of Moray, in the first recorded assassination of a head of government using a firearm.
- 1870 – American Indian Wars: The United States Army massacred a friendly band of Piegan Blackfeet in the Montana Territory, resulting in about 200 deaths.
- 1909 – Two men committed an armed robbery in Tottenham, London, and led police on a two-hour tram chase (illustration shown), ending in the perpetrators' suicides.
- 1942 – World War II: Japan began its invasion of the island of New Britain in the Australian Territory of New Guinea.
- 1993 – The first version of Mosaic, created by Marc Andreessen and Eric Bina, was released, becoming the first popular web browser and Gopher client.
- 914 – The Fatimid Caliphate began their first invasion of Egypt, against the Abbasids, which eventually ended in failure.
- 1848 – James W. Marshall (pictured) discovered gold at Sutter's Mill in Coloma, California, leading to the California Gold Rush.
- 1978 – The Soviet nuclear-powered satellite Kosmos 954 burned up during atmospheric reentry, scattering radioactive debris across Canada's Northwest Territories.
- 1990 – Japan launched the Hiten spacecraft, the first lunar probe launched by a country other than the Soviet Union or the United States.
- 2011 – A North Caucasian jihadist carried out a suicide bombing at Moscow's Domodedovo Airport, killing 37 people.
- 1573 – Sengoku period: Takeda Shingen's forces defeated those of Tokugawa Ieyasu at the Battle of Mikatagahara (depicted), north of Hamamatsu in present-day Japan's Mikawa Province.
- 1792 – Thomas Hardy founded the London Corresponding Society to seek a "radical reform of parliament", later influencing the reform movements of early 19th-century England.
- 1971 – Idi Amin seized power from Ugandan president Milton Obote in a coup d'état, beginning eight years of military rule.
- 1993 – Five people were shot by Pakistani national Mir Aimal Kansi outside the Central Intelligence Agency headquarters in Langley, Virginia, resulting in two deaths.
- 2010 – Ethiopian Airlines Flight 409, en route to Addis Ababa, crashed into the Mediterranean Sea shortly after takeoff from Beirut, Lebanon, killing all 90 people on board.
- 1564 – Livonian War: A Lithuanian surprise attack resulted in a decisive defeat of numerically superior Russian forces.
- 1841 – Commodore Gordon Bremer took formal possession of Hong Kong Island for the United Kingdom at Possession Point.
- 1945 – Audie Murphy (pictured) engaged in action at the Colmar Pocket that won him a Medal of Honor and made him one of the most famous and decorated U.S. soldiers of World War II.
- 1972 – JAT Flight 367 exploded in mid-air over Czechoslovakia; the only survivor of the 28 on board, flight attendant Vesna Vulović, fell 10,160 m (33,330 ft), setting the record for surviving the highest fall without a parachute.
- 2001 – An earthquake in the Indian state of Gujarat killed at least 13,000 people, injured another 167,000 and destroyed nearly 400,000 homes.
- 1785 – The University of Georgia, one of the oldest public universities in the United States, was founded.
- 1820 – A Russian expedition led by naval officers Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev became the first explorers to sight the coast of Antarctica.
- 1945 – The Soviet Red Army liberated about 7,000 prisoners left behind by the Nazis in Auschwitz concentration camp (entrance pictured), in present-day Oświęcim, Poland.
- 1980 – Assisted by Canadian government officials, six American diplomats who had avoided capture in the Iran hostage crisis escaped to Zürich, Switzerland.
- 2010 – Porfirio Lobo Sosa became the new President of Honduras, ending the constitutional crisis that had begun in 2009 when Manuel Zelaya was forcibly removed from office.
- 1069 – Robert de Comines, Earl of Northumbria, was killed in Durham, causing William the Conqueror to embark on a campaign to subjugate northern England.
- 1393 – King Charles VI of France was nearly killed when several dancers' costumes caught fire during a masquerade ball.
- 1813 – The novel Pride and Prejudice by English author Jane Austen (portrait shown) was published, using material from an unpublished manuscript that she originally wrote between 1796 and 1797.
- 1933 – Choudhry Rahmat Ali published a pamphlet in which he called for the creation of a Muslim state in north-western India that he termed "Pakstan".
- 1964 – An unarmed U.S. Air Force T-39 Sabreliner on a training mission was shot down over Erfurt, East Germany, by a Soviet MiG-19, killing all three aboard.
- 1856 – Queen Victoria introduced the Victoria Cross, originally to recognise acts of valour by British military personnel during the Crimean War.
- 1891 – Liliʻuokalani (pictured), the last monarch and only queen regnant of the Hawaiian Kingdom, ascended the throne.
- 1944 – World War II: At least 38 civilians were killed and about a dozen others injured when the Polish village of Koniuchy was attacked by a Soviet partisan unit with a contingent of Jewish partisans.
- 1991 – The first major ground engagement of the Gulf War began with Iraq's invasion of the Saudi Arabian city of Khafji, which would be recaptured three days later by Coalition forces.
- 2006 – India's Irfan Pathan became the only bowler to take a Test cricket hat-trick in the opening over of a match.
- 1661 – Two years after his death, Oliver Cromwell's remains were exhumed for a posthumous execution and his head was placed on a spike above Westminster Hall in London, where it remained until 1685.
- 1835 – Richard Lawrence became the first person to attempt to assassinate a sitting U.S. president when he failed to kill Andrew Jackson at the U.S. Capitol (assassination attempt pictured) and was subdued by the crowd.
- 1945 – World War II: Allied forces liberated more than 500 prisoners of war from a Japanese POW camp near Cabanatuan in the Philippines.
- 2000 – Kenya Airways Flight 431 crashed into the Atlantic Ocean near Ivory Coast shortly after takeoff, killing 169 on board.
- 1208 – King Sverker II of Sweden was defeated at the Battle of Lena by Prince Eric, who succeeded to the throne.
- 1862 – American astronomer Alvan Graham Clark first observed the faint white dwarf companion of Sirius (both stars pictured), the brightest star in the night sky.
- 2000 – Alaska Airlines Flight 261, experiencing problems with its horizontal stabilizer system, crashed in the Pacific Ocean off Anacapa Island, California, killing all 88 people on board.
- 2010 – James Cameron's Avatar became the first film to earn over US$2 billion worldwide.