Highlights in history on this date:
1652 - Dutch defeat English fleet off Dungeness, England.
1718 - Sweden's "warrior king" Charles XII dies at Fredrikshald in Norway after being hit by a bullet in the head.
1782 - Americans and British sign preliminary peace articles in Paris, ending American Revolutionary War.
1818 - Australia's first lighthouse goes into service at South Head, Sydney.
1833 - Eight people die when brig Ann Jamieson explodes while moored at King's Wharf, Sydney.
1900 - Death of Irish-born author Oscar Wilde.
1901 - Death of Australian explorer Edward John Eyre.
1913 - Actor Charlie Chaplin makes film debut in Hollywood's Making a Living.
1934 - Moroccan Nationalist movement is founded.
1939 - The Soviet Union invades Finland.
1949 - Chinese Communists capture city of Chungking.
1962 - U Thant of Burma is elected UN Secretary-General, succeeding the late Dag Hammarskjold.
1964 - Soviet Union launches spacecraft toward Mars in apparent race with US Mariner 4.
1966 - The former British colony of Barbados gains independence.
1967 - Aden, South Yemen and Protectorate of South Arabia gain independence from Britain.
1975 - Four Timorese parties proclaim independence of the territory and its integration with Indonesia.
1981 - The US and the Soviet Union open negotiations in Geneva aimed at reducing nuclear weapons in Europe.
1989 - Terrorists kill West German banker Alfred Herrhausen.
1992 - The European Community agrees to speed up expulsions of bogus asylum seekers, and turns down an appeal by Germany to share the influx of refugees.
1994 - Flames roar through the cruise ship Achille Lauro off Somalia. The ship, which was hijacked by PLO terrorists in 1985, sinks two days later.
1995 - President Bill Clinton becomes the first US chief executive to visit Northern Ireland.
1997 - The UN mission in Haiti officially ends.
1999 - The opening of a 135-nation trade gathering in Seattle is disrupted by at least 40,000 demonstrators, some of whom clash with police.
2005 - Ugandan-born John Sentamu, a leading campaigner against racism, is formally inaugurated as Britain's first black archbishop.
2008 - The space shuttle Endeavour returns to Earth after a nearly 16-day mission to repair and upgrade the international space station.
2010 - British police make 153 arrests during student demonstrations in London against proposed university tuition hikes.
2011 - The Queensland parliament passes the Civil Partnership Bill, allowing same-sex couples to enter into legally-recognised civil unions.
2013 - Paul Walker, star of The Fast and the Furious movie franchise, dies in a car crash in Los Angeles, aged 40.
2015 - Around 150 world leaders attend the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris, aiming for a global deal on limiting greenhouse gas emissions.
2016 - A group of about 30 angry protesters bring federal parliament's question time to a halt as they glue their hands to the rails at Parliament House, chanting from the public gallery in support of asylum seekers.
2017 - A parliamentary committee reveals the unreasonably high cost of regional airfares is adversely affecting people who live in outback areas, impeding tourism development and business growth.
2018 - Jeff Horn takes boxing icon Anthony Mundine out in just 96 seconds in the first round of the River City Rumble in Brisbane.
Jonathan Swift, English satirist (1667-1745); Mark Twain, US author (1835-1910); Sir Winston Churchill, British statesman (1874-1965); Dick Clark, US pop music personality (1929-2012); Ridley Scott, British film director (1937-); David Mamet, US playwright (1947-); Mandy Patinkin, US actor (1952-); June Pointer, US singer (1954-2006); Billy Idol, US singer (1955-); Ben Stiller, US actor-director (1965-); Kate Fischer, Australian actress (1973-); Phillip Hughes, Australian cricketer (1988-2014).
Thought For Today:
The real problem is what to do with the problem solvers after the problems are solved - Gay Talese, American author and journalist.