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1941 – Bismarck is sunk

27 May

Three days after sinking the British Battlecruiser Hood, the German Battleship Bismarck is pounded to a wreck by the British Battleships King George V and Rodney, forcing the crew of Bismarck to scuttle their ship.

Continue reading “1941 – Bismarck is sunk”

1941 – Battle of the Denmark Strait

24 May

A Second World War naval battle between the British battleship HMS Prince of Wales and the battlecruiser HMS Hood and the German battleship Bismarck and the heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen, both of which were attempting to break out into the North Atlantic to attack Allied merchant shipping.

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1824 – The National Gallery

10 May

The National Gallery in London opens to the public on this day in 1824.

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1808 – Outbreak of the Peninsular War

2 May

The people of Madrid rise up in rebellion against French occupation. Francisco de Goya later memorialises this event in his painting The Second of May 1808. Continue reading “1808 – Outbreak of the Peninsular War”

1915 – The Battle of Gallipoli begins

25 April

The invasion of the Turkish Gallipoli Peninsula by Australian, British, French and New Zealand troops begins with landings at ANZAC Cove and Cape Helles.

1715 – The Yamasee War begins

14 April

The Yamasee War (1715–1717) was a conflict between British settlers of South Carolina and various Native American tribes, including the Yamasee and others. Some of the Native American Indian groups played a minor role while others launched attacks throughout South Carolina in an attempt to destroy the colony. Continue reading “1715 – The Yamasee War begins”

1606 – The Union Flag is adopted

April

The precursor to the ‘Union Jack’, the Union Flag is adopted in this year as a consequence of the personal union of the crowns of England and Scotland.

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1770 – William Wordsworth, English poet is born

7 April

William Wordsworth (7 April 1770 – 23 April 1850) was a major English Romantic poet who, with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, helped to launch the Romantic Age in English literature with their joint publication Lyrical Ballads (1798). Continue reading “1770 – William Wordsworth, English poet is born”

1841 – William Henry Harrison dies of pneumonia

4 April

William Henry Harrison (9 February 1773 – 4 April 1841) was the ninth President of the United States (1841), an American military officer and politician, and the last President born as a British subject. He was also the first president to die in office. Continue reading “1841 – William Henry Harrison dies of pneumonia”

1909 – Construction of the ill fated RMS Titanic begins

31 March

The name Titanic was derived from Greek mythology and meant gigantic. Built in Belfast, Ireland, in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (as it was then known), the RMS Titanic was the second of the three Olympic-class ocean liners—the first was the RMS Olympic and the third was the HMHS Britannic. They were by far the largest vessels of the British shipping company White Star Line’s fleet, which comprised 29 steamers and tenders in 1912. The three ships had their genesis in a discussion in mid-1907 between the White Star Line’s chairman, J. Bruce Ismay, and the American financier J. P. Morgan, who controlled the White Star Line’s parent corporation, the International Mercantile Marine Co. (IMM). Continue reading “1909 – Construction of the ill fated RMS Titanic begins”

1625 – Charles I becomes King of England, Scotland and Ireland

27 March

Charles I (19 November 1600 – 30 January 1649) was monarch of the three kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland from this day in 1625 until his execution in 1649. Continue reading “1625 – Charles I becomes King of England, Scotland and Ireland”

1917 – World War I: First Battle of Gaza

26 March

The First Battle of Gaza was fought on this day in 1917 during the first attempt by the Egyptian Expeditionary Force (EEF) to invade the south of Palestine in the Ottoman Empire during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of the First World War. Fighting took place in and around the town of Gaza on the Mediterranean coast when infantry and mounted infantry from the Desert Column, a component of the Eastern Force, attacked the town. Late in the afternoon, on the verge of capturing Gaza, the Desert Column was withdrawn due to concerns about the approaching darkness and large Ottoman reinforcements. This British defeat was followed a few weeks later by the even more emphatic defeat of the Eastern Force at the Second Battle of Gaza in April 1917. Continue reading “1917 – World War I: First Battle of Gaza”

1878 – The British frigate HMS Eurydice sinks, killing more than 300

24 March

HMS Eurydice was a 26-gun Royal Navy corvette which was the victim of one of Britain’s worst peace-time naval disasters when she sank in 1878. Continue reading “1878 – The British frigate HMS Eurydice sinks, killing more than 300”

1963 – The Beatles’ first album, Please Please Me, is released in the United Kingdom

22 March

Please Please Me is the debut studio album by the English rock band the Beatles. Parlophone rush-released the album on this day in 1963 in the United Kingdom to capitalise on the success of the singles “Please Please Me” and “Love Me Do”. Continue reading “1963 – The Beatles’ first album, Please Please Me, is released in the United Kingdom”

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