What happened today, back in the day
1487 The German Beer Purity Law is passed, stating beer should be brewed from only three ingredients – water, malt and hops.
1782 A provisional peace treaty is signed between Great Britain and the US, heralding the end of America’s War of Independence.
1786 The Grand Duchy of Tuscany becomes the first state to abolish the death penalty.
1835 Author Samuel Clemens is born in Missouri. He writes novels under the name Mark Twain, including The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and The Prince and the Pauper.
1838 Mexico declares war on France (this war is called the Pastry War because the ransacking of a bakery was the touch-point, but it was mostly about Mexican debt.
1872 The first international football match, between Scotland and England, is played.
1876 Archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann finds ‘the Mona Lisa of prehistory’ – the gold Mask of Agamemnon – at Mycenae, Greece.
1942 A Japanese destroyer squadron beats a US cruiser fleet in the Battle of Tassafaronga.
1954 Ann Hodges is bruised by a meteorite at Sylacauga, Alabama, while napping.
1980 Angenor de Oliveira, known as Cartola, was a Brazilian singer, composer and poet considered to be a major figure in the development of samba, dies in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Cartola composed, alone or with partners, more than 500 songs.
1982 Michael Jackson’s Thriller is released. It becomes the best-selling record in history.
1994 Fire ravages the cruise ship Achille Lauro off Somalia. It sinks two days later.
2006 Chiliboy Ralepelle becomes the first black captain of the Springboks.
2006 South Africa legalises same-sex marriage, making us the fifth country in the world and the first in Africa to do so.
2017 The world’s longest-lasting rainbow is seen for 8 hrs 58 min in Taiwan.
2021 Barbados becomes a republic, removing Queen Elizabeth II as head of state.
2021 Mexican drug lord, El Chapo’s wife, Emma Coronel Aispuro is sentenced to three years in the US for helping run her husband’s drug cartel and aid his escape from prison