What happened today, back in the day
1420 Henry V of England, heir apparent to the French throne, enters Paris.
1822 Dom Pedro is crowned Emperor of Brazil.
1834 Slavery is abolished in the Cape Colony, but slaves are apprenticed for four years to their former owners.
1872 The first Cape cabinet is formed, with John Molteno as premier.
1875 Samuel Edward Krune Mqhayi, a Xhosa poet, prose writer, and member of the Xhosa Bible revision board, is born in Gqumahashe (Victoria East). Among his poems is Nkosi Sikelel iAfrika, which has become the basis for our national anthem.
1880 The railway line between Durban and Pietermaritzburg is completed.
1884 American Old West: Near Frisco, New Mexico, deputy sheriff Elfego Baca holds off a gang of 80 Texan cowboys who want to kill him for arresting Charles McCarthy.
1913 Ford introduces moving assembly line.
1914 Rebel leader General Christiaan de Wet is captured near Vryburg while on his way to German South West Africa (Namibia).
1929 Bingo is invented.
1934 Using the assassination of Leningrad’s mayor as an excuse, Stalin begins the Great Purge of 1934-38 (the Great Terror). In the four-year-long political repression, 1.2 million people die, many in mobile gas vans.
1984 US boxer Greg Page KOs hometown favourite Gerrie Coetzee in 8th round to win WBA heavyweight title in Sun City.
1990 England is connected to mainland Europe for the first time since the Ice Age as engineers digging a tunnel under the English Channel break through the last rock layer and meet in the middle of the channel.
2016 The UN admits its peacekeepers caused the disastrous 2010 Haiti cholera epidemic.
2018 Violent demonstrations break out in Paris, France, by the yellow-vest movement.
2018 Egyptian actress Rania Youssef is charged for ‘inciting debauchery’ after wearing a see-through dress to the Cairo Film Festival.
2021 Tel Aviv is named the world’s most expensive city, ahead of Singapore and Paris, with Damascus the cheapest