January 16

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27 BC – Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus is granted the title Augustus by the Roman Senate, marking the beginning of the Roman Empire. 1412 – The Medici family is appointed official banker of the Papacy. 1547 – Ivan the Terrible becomes Czar of Russia. 1556 – Philip II becomes King of Spain. 1786 – Virginia […]

January 12

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1866 – The Royal Aeronautical Society is formed in London. 1908 – A long-distance radio message is sent from the Eiffel Tower for the first time. 1932 – Hattie Caraway becomes the first woman elected to the United States Senate. Hattie Ophelia Wyatt Caraway was an American political figure who became the first woman elected […]

January 11

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532 – Nika riots in Constantinople: A quarrel between supporters of different chariot teams-the Blues and the Greens-in the Hippodrome escalates into violence. 630 – Conquest of Mecca: The prophet Muhammad and his followers conquer the city, Quraysh surrender. 1693 – A powerful earthquake destroys parts of Sicily and Malta. 1759 – In Philadelphia,
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January 10

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49 BC – Julius Caesar crosses the Rubicon, signaling the start of civil war. AD 9 – The Western Han dynasty ends when Wang Mang claims that the divine Mandate of Heaven called for the end of the dynasty and the beginning of his own, the Xin dynasty. 1645 – Archbishop William Laud is beheaded […]

January 9

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475 – Byzantine Emperor Zeno is forced to flee his capital at Constantinople, and his general, Basiliscus gains control of the empire. 1150 – Wanyan Liang and other court officials murder Emperor Xizong of Jin. Wanyan Liang succeeds him as emperor. 1349 – The Jewish population of Basel, believed by the residents to be the […]

January 8

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307 – Jin Huidi, Chinese Emperor of the Jin dynasty, is poisoned and succeeded by Jin Huaidi. 1297 – François Grimaldi, disguised as a monk, leads his men to capture the fortress protecting the Rock of Monaco, establishing his family as the rulers of Monaco. 1454 – The papal bull Romanus Pontifex awards the Kingdom […]

January 5

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1066 – Edward the Confessor dies childless, sparking a succession crisis that will eventually lead to the Norman conquest of England. 1757 – Louis XV of France survives an assassination attempt by Robert-François Damiens, the last person to be executed in France by drawing and quartering, the traditional and gruesome form of capital punishment used […]

January 4

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46 BC – Julius Caesar fights Titus Labienus in the Battle of Ruspina. 1847 – Samuel Colt sells his first revolver pistol to the United States government. 1853 – After having been kidnapped and sold into slavery in the American South, Solomon Northup regains his freedom; his memoir Twelve Years a Slave later becomes a […]

January 3

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1521 – Pope Leo X excommunicates Martin Luther in the papal bull Decet Romanum Pontificem. 1749 – Benning Wentworth issues the first of the New Hampshire Grants, leading to the establishment of Vermont. 1749 – The first issue of Berlingske, Denmark’s oldest continually operating newspaper, is published. 1777 –  George Washington defeats
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December 20

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69 – General Vespasian’s troops occupy Rome after defeating the Emperor Vitellius 1046 – Synod of Sutri: German King Henry III removes Popes Gregory VI 1192 – Richard the Lionhearted captured in Vienna 1606 – Virginia Company settlers leave London to establish Jamestown, Virginia 1669 – First jury trial in Delaware; Marcus Jacobson
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