HIGHLIGHTS IN HISTORY ON THIS DATE
323 BC - Death of Alexander the Great, king of Macedonia, of malaria aged 33.
1381 - The Peasants' Revolt, a popular uprising led by Wat Tyler and sparked by the implementation of a poll tax, begins in Britain.
1835 - Batmania is suggested as named for proposed settlement which later becomes Melbourne.
1878 - The phonograph is demonstrated for the first time at the Royal Society of Victoria.
1886 - Mysterious death by drowning of Bavaria's "Mad" King Ludwig.
1893 - First women's golf tournament is played at Royal Lytham, England.
1917 - Fourteen German Gotha bombers carry out the first large-scale bombing raid by planes on London, killing 162.
1945 - Australian forces capture Brunei.
1951 - Death of Ben Chifley, Australian Labor prime minister (1945-49).
1956 - Last British troops leave Suez Canal base, turning the waterway over to Egypt after 74 years of operation.
1964 - South African anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela arrives on Robben Island to begin his life sentence, imposed the previous day.
1969 - Withdrawal of US combat troops from South Vietnam begins with pullout of unit fighting in Mekong Delta.
1971 - Australian woman Geraldine Brodrick gives birth to nine babies.
1983 - US spacecraft Pioneer 10 crosses the orbit of Neptune and becomes the first man-made object to leave the solar system.
1990 - East Germany begins final demolition of the Berlin Wall, knocking out concrete slabs all over the city to reopen streets sealed since the Cold War barrier was built in 1961.
1992 - The United Nations begins to demobilise most armies of the four Cambodian factions, but the Khmer Rouge refuses to comply.
1995 - France announces it will abandon its 1992 moratorium on nuclear testing and conduct eight more tests in the South Pacific between September and May.
1996 - World copper prices tumble after Sumitomo Corp of Japan says it has lost an estimated $US2.6 billion through unauthorised copper trades by one of its employees.
1997 - Timothy McVeigh, a 29-year-old army veteran, is sentenced to death for bombing a government building in Oklahoma City in 1995, killing 168 people.
2001 - Retired spy chief Sir David Spedding, once the real-life embodiment of James Bond's fictional boss M, dies. After nearly 30 years as a spy, Spedding was appointed in 1994 to head the service long known to thriller readers and the general public as MI6.
2005 - US pop star Michael Jackson is cleared of all charges in a sex abuse trial that threatened to destroy his career.
2008 - Three armed robbers stole two Pablo Picasso prints from a Sao Paulo art museum in a rapid strike in which the thieves bypassed more valuable works to grab the stolen pieces.
2011 - Libyan rebels break out toward Tripoli from the opposition-held port of Misrata 225 kilometres to the east, cracking a government siege as fighters across the country mount a resurgence in their four-month-old revolt against Muammar Gaddafi.
2012 - A military court convicts Tunisia's dictator in absentia for his role in the bloody suppression of demonstrations in the country's interior, ordering him to serve life in prison - the harshest sentence to date in a slew of cases against the ousted president who lives in exile in Saudi Arabia.
2013 - A proposal to build a massive rival to the Panama Canal across the middle of Nicaragua is overwhelmingly backed by politicians.
2015 - Indigenous advocate and co-founder of the national Landcare program Philip Toyne dies aged 67; Nepal says it needs $US8 billion over five years to restore the country after two earthquakes.
2016 - Microsoft agrees to buy LinkedIn for $US26.2 billion in its biggest-ever deal.
2017 - Several employees of Crown Resorts, including Australians, are detained in China and charged with the illegal promotion of gambling.
Richard Barnfield, English poet (1574-1627); Thomas Arnold, English educator-historian (1795-1842); William Butler Yeats, Irish poet (1865-1939); Fernando Pessoa, Portuguese writer (1888-1935); Basil Rathbone, British actor (1892-1967); Slim Dusty, Australian country singer (1927-2003); Malcolm McDowell, British actor (1943-); Ban Ki-moon, former UN Secretary General (1944-); Red Symons, Australian musician and TV personality (1949-); Dennis Locorriere, US singer of Dr Hook fame (1949-); Richard Thomas, US actor (1951-); Stellan Skarsgard, Swedish actor (1951-); Tim Allen, US actor-comedian (1953-); Ally Sheedy, US actor (1962-); Steve-O, American stunt performer (1974 -); Elli Overton, Australian swimmer (1974-); Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen, US actresses (1986-); Kodi Smit-McPhee, Australian actor, (1996 - ).
Thought For Today:
One is easily fooled by that which one loves - Moliere, French actor-playwright (1622-1673).