(Copyright 2004, Literary Liaisons, Ltd.  DO NOT REPRODUCE or distribute without permission.) 

For a more comprehensive list, including a Year by Year timeline, see our Research Guide.

July 1st. . .

1534--Frederick II, King of Denmark and Norway, born.

1690--William III of Great Britain defeated the forces of the Roman Catholic James II.

1782--Charles Watson Wentworth, English statesman and twice Prime Minister, died.

1804--George Sand, French romantic novelist who adopted a masculine pseudonym, born.

1837--The first Register of Births, Deaths and Marriages was begun in Britain.

1838--Charles Darwin presented a paper on his theory of evolution of the species to the Linnean Society in London.

1847--In the U.S. the first adhesive stamps went on sale.

1863--The Battle of Gettysburg began.

1860--Charles Goodyear, U.S. inventor of a commercial rubber, died.

1896--Harriet Beecher Stowe, U.S. author of Uncle Tom's Cabin, died.


July 2nd. . .

1489--Thomas Cranmer, Henry VIII's first reformed Archbishop of Canterbury, born.

1566--Nostradamus, French physician and astrologer, died.

1644--Oliver Cromwell's Roundheads defeated the Royalist Cavaliers at the Battle of Marston Moor near York.

1714--Christoph Gluck, German composer, born.

1776--Richard Henry Lee's resolution declaring the U.S. independent was passed by the Continental Congress.

1778--Jean Jacques Rousseau, French philosopher, died.

1843--Christian Friedrich Hahnemann, founder of homeopathy, died.

1850--Sir Robert Peel, English statesman and founder of the British police force, died.

1865--William Booth formed the Salvation Army.

1881--U.S. President James Garfield was shot by a disappointed office-seeker, Charles Guiteau, and died the following September.


July 3rd. . .

1608--French explorer, Samuel de Champlain founded Quebec.

1642--Marie de' Medici, Queen of France, died.

1728--Robert Adam, Scottish architect and designer, born.

1854--Leos Janacek, Czech composer, born.

1883--Franz Kafka, Austrian poet and playwright, born.

1898--Captain Joshua Slocum sailed into Newport, Rhode Island in his fishing boat Spray to become the first to sail around the world solo. It took him just over three years.

1863--The Battle of Gettysburg ended with the defeat of the Confederate Army.

1737--John Singleton Copley, American portrait painter, born.

1871--W.H. Davies, Welsh poet, born.

1878--George M. Cohan, American actor, playwright and songwriter, born.


July 4th. . .

1753--Jean Pierre Blanchard, French balloonist, born.

1761--Samuel Richardson, English novelist of Pamela, died.

1776--The American Congress voted for independence from Britain.

1804--Nathaniel Hawthorne, U.S. novelist of The Scarlet Letter, born.

1817--Work began on the Erie Canal.

1826--John Adams, 2nd U.S. president, and Thomas Jefferson, 3rd U.S. president, died. ALSO--Stephen Collins Foster, U.S. songwriter, born.

1829--The first regular horse-drawn buses went into service in London between Marylebone Road and Bank.

1831--James Monroe, 5th U.S. president, died.

1840--The Cunard Line began its first Atlantic crossing with the paddle steamer Britannia. The voyage would take 14 days.

1872--John Calvin Coolidge, 30th U.S. president, born.


July 5th. . .

1709--Etienne de Silhouette, the French minister of finance who gave his name to outline portraits, born.

1791--The first British ambassador to the U.S., George Hammond, was appointed.

1755--Mrs. Sarah Siddons, leading English actress of her day, born.

1817--The first gold coin sovereigns were issued in Britain.

1826--Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, who helped found Singapore, died.

1810--P.T. Barnum, U.S. showman, born.

1853--Cecil John Rhodes, English colonialist and financier who gained control of the South African diamond and gold mines, born.

1865--A 2 m.p.h. speed limit was imposed in Britain under the Locomotives and Highways Act, the first speed limit in the world covering steam-driven and petrol vehicles. There were only two cars in Britain at the time.

1888--Three match girls were fired at the Bryant and May match factory in London for giving Annie Besant information about working conditions.

1889--Jean Cocteau, French poet, born.


July 6th. . .

1189--Henry II, French-born King of England, died in Tours. His son, Richard I (the Lionheart), became king.

1535--Sir Thomas More, English Lord Chancellor, was executed on Tower Hill for refusing to accept Henry VIII as the head of the Church of England. He was later canonized for this act.

1553--Edward VI, King of England, only legitimate son of Henry VIII, died of tuberculosis. Mary I (Bloody Mary) acceded to the throne, the first queen to rule England in her own right.

1685--The army of James, Duke of Monmouth, was defeated by James II at the Battle of Sedgemoor, the last battle to be fought on English soil.

1747--John Paul Jones, American naval commander, born in Scotland.

1832--Maximilian, Archduke of Austria and Emperor of Mexico, born.

1886--The first box numbers were used in classified advertising by the Daily Telegraph.

1893--Guy de Maupassant, French author, died.


July 7th. . .

1307--Edward I, King of England, died on his way to subdue a rebellion in Scotland.

1573--Giacomo da Vignola, Italian architect, died.

1752--Joseph Marie Jacquard, French silk weaver and loom inventor, born.

1816--Richard Brinsley Butler Sheridan, Irish-born playwright, died.

1814--Sir Walter Scott's historical novel Waverley was published.

1853--U.S. naval officer Matthew Perry sailed into the Japanese harbor of Uraga, opening the way for trade.

1854--Georg Simon Ohm, German physicist, died.

1860--Gustav Mahler, Austrian composer and conductor, born.

1898--The United States annexed Hawaii.


July 8th. . .

1497--Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama set sail from Lisbon in search of a sea route to India.

1621--Jean de la Fontaine, French poet and fabulist, born.

1709--Charles XII of Sweden was defeated by Peter the Great's army at Poltava, marking the end of the Swedish Empire.

1822--Percy Blythe Shelley, English poet, drowned off Leghorn while sailing his small schooner Ariel.

1836--Joseph Chamberlain, English politician and social reformer, born.

1838--Ferdinand Heinrich, Count von Zeppelin, German soldier and builder of dirigibles, born.

1839--John D. Rockefeller, U.S. multimillionaire and founder of the Standard Oil Company, born.

1851--Sir Arthur John Evans, English archeologist, born.

1882--Percy Grainger, Australian composer, born.


July 9th. . .

1440--Jan van Eyck, Flemish painter, died.

1553--Lady Jane Grey was proclaimed queen of England in succession to Edward VI. Her reign would last only thirteen days.

1797--Edmund Burke, British statesman and orator, died.

1816--Argentina formerly declared its independence from Spain.

1819--Elias Howe, U.S. inventor of the sewing machine, born.

1850--Zachary Taylor, 12th U.S. president, died.

1856--Nikola Tesla, American inventor, born in Yugoslavia.

1877--The first Wimbledon Lawn Tennis championship was held.

1887--The first paper napkins were introduced by stationery manufacturer John Dickenson at their annual dinner at the Castle Hotel, Hastings.

1901--Barbara Cartland, English queen of romantic novels, with over 500 books to her credit, born.


July 10th. . .

138AD--Hadrian, Roman emperor who built a wall across England's northern border to keep out the Scots, died.

1099--El Cid, Spanish hero, died.

1509--John Calvin, French theologian and Protestant reformer, born.

1792--Captain Frederick Marryat, English novelist, born.

1802--Robert Chambers, Scottish author and publisher, born.

1806--George Stubbs, English painter of animals, died.

1830--Camille Pissaro, French Impressionist painter, born.

1834--James McNeill Whistler, U.S. painter and etcher, born.

1851--Louis Jacques Daguerre, French photographic pioneer, died.

1871--Marcel Proust, French author of Remembrance of Things Past, born.

1890--Wyoming became the 44th state of the Union.


July 11th. . .

66BC--Nero, mentally unstable Roman emperor, was condemned to death by the Senate. He fled Rome and is believed to have committed suicide.

1274--Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland, born.

1657--Frederick I, first King of Prussia, born.

1754--Thomas Bowdler, English doctor and man of letters who produced his Family Shakespeare, born.

1767--John Quincy Adams, 6th U.S. President, born.

1776--Captain Cook set off from Plymouth on his third and final voyage.

1789--Lafayette presented his Rights of Man and the Citizen to the revolutionary National Assembly in France.

1804--U.S. vice-president Aaron Burr fought a duel with Alexander Hamilton, who was mortally wounded and died the following day.

1838--John Wanamaker, pioneer American merchant, born.


July 12th. . .

100BC--Gaius Julius Caesar, Roman general and dictator, born.

1543--Henry VIII married for the sixth and final time, taking Catherine Parr as his wife.

1705--Titus Oates, English Anglican priest responsible for the 'Popish Plot', died.

1730--Josiah Wedgwood, English pottery designer and manufacturer, baptized this day.

1831--Henry David Thoreau, U.S. author, born.

1845--The first performance of Pas de Quatre was staged at a Royal Command Performance for Queen Victoria in London.

1854--George Eastman, U.S. photographic pioneer, born.

1878--Cyprus was ceded to British administration by Turkey.

1895--Oscar Hammerstein II, U.S. lyricist and librettist, born.


July 13th. . .

1527--John Dee, English alchemist and mathematician, born.

1779--William Hedley, English locomotive engineer, born.

1793--Jean Paul Marat, French revolutionary leader, was stabbed to death by Charlotte Corday, a young patriot.

1793--John Clare, Northamptonshire poet, born.

1811--Sir George Gilbert Scott, English architect responsible for the Gothic revival, born.

1837--Queen Victoria moved into Buckingham Palace, the first monarch to live there.

1859--Sidney James Webb, English social reformer and leading member of the Fabian Society, born.

1863--Mary Emma Woolley, American educator and president of Mount Holyoke College, born.


July 14th. . .

1602--Cardinal Mazarin, French churchman who gave his name to the first printed bible, born.

1789--The state prison in Paris, the Bastille, was stormed and razed as the French Revolution began.

1816--Francisco de Miranda, South American soldier and revolutionist, died.

1858--Emmeline Pankhurst, English suffragette, who led the fight for women's suffrage in Britain by violent means, born.

1865--English climber Edward Whymper led the first climbers to reach the Matterhorn's summit.

1867--Alfred Krupp, German munitions manufacturer, died.

1867--Alfred Nobel demonstrated dynamite for the first time at a quarry in Redhill, Surrey.

1881--William H. Bonney, the American outlaw known as 'Billy the Kid', was shot dead by his former friend, Patrick Floyd Garrett.


July 15th. . .

1099--Jerusalem was captured by the Crusaders.

1573--Inigo Jones, English architect and theatre designer, born.

1606--Rembrandt, Dutch painter, born.

1685--James Scott, Duke of Monmouth and illegitimate son of Charles II, was beheaded for leading a rebellion against the new King James II.

1795--The Marseillaise written by Rouget de Lisle, was officially adopted as the French national anthem.

1857--The Massacre of Cawnpore took place at an Indian frontier station where British troops, women and children were massacred, their bodies thrown in a well.

1865--Alfred Harmsworth, Lord Northcliffe, British newspaper proprietor and pioneer of mass circulation, born in Ireland.

1869--Hippolyte Mege Mouries patented margarine in Paris.

1883--General Tom Thumb, dwarf promoted by P.T. Barnum, died.


July 16th. . .

1486--Andrea del Sarto, Florentine painter, born.

1557--Anne of Cleves, the fourth of Henry VIII's wives, died.

1661--The Bank of Stockholm issued the first banknotes in Europe.

1723--Sir Joshua Reynolds, English portrait painter who was elected first President of the Royal Academy, born.

1821--Mary Baker Eddy, U.S. religious leader who founded the Christian Science movement, born.

1827--Joseph Spode, English potter, died.

1867--Reinforced concrete was patented by Joseph Monier of Paris.

1872--Roald Amundsen, Norwegian explorer of the South Pole, born.

1885--Louis Pasteur treated a nine-year-old boy from Alsace for rabies, the first successful such treatment.


July 17th. . .

1453--The Hundred Years War between France and England ended with the defeat of the English at the Battle of Castillon.

1762--Peter III, Russian emperor, was murdered.

1763--John Jacob Astor, American capitalist, born in Germany.

1790--Adam Smith, Scottish economist and author of Wealth of Nations, died.

1790--Thomas Saint of London patented the first sewing machine, but it was never produced.

1793--Charlotte Corday was guillotined for murdering Marat, the French Revolutionary.

1821--Florida was formally ceded by Spain to the United States.

1841--The first edition of Punch was published in London.

1876--Maxim Litvinov, Soviet statesman, born.

1889--Erle Stanley Gardner, American lawyer and detective fiction writer who created 'Perry Mason', born.


July 18th. . .

64BC--Rome burned, destroying two-thirds of the city.

1610--Michelangelo, Italian painter, died as a result of a fever after being wounded in a fight.

1720--The Reverend Gilbert White, English naturalist, born.

1721--Jean Antoine Watteau, French painter, died from tuberculosis.

1762--Tsar Peter III of Russia was strangled by conspirators.

1792--John Paul Jones, Scottish-born American Naval officer, died.

1817--Jane Austen, English novelist of Pride and Prejudice, died.

1811--William Makepeace Thackeray, English novelist and poet, born in India.

1877--Edison carried out his first successful experiment in recording and storing the human voice.

1892--Thomas Cook, English travel agent and pioneer of the package holiday, died.


July 19th. . .

1545--The Mary Rose, part of Henry VIII's battle fleet, keeled over in the Solent, killing 700 people.

1553--Henry's daughter, Mary, became Queen of England with the imprisonment of Lady Jane Grey.

1814--Samuel Colt, U.S. inventor of hte six-shot revolver, born.

1821--George IV was crowned King of Great Britain.

1834--Edgar Degas, French Impressionist painter, born.

1837--Brunel's Great Western steamship was launched at Bristol.

1843--Brunel's Great Britain, the first all-metal liner, was launched from Wapping Dock.

1848--At a convention in Seneca Falls, New York State, female rights campaigner, Amelia Bloomer, introduced 'bloomers'.

1860--Lizzie Borden, alleged U.S. axe murderer of her father and stepmother, born.

1865--Charles Horace Mayo, U.S. surgeon and one of the three brothers who founded the Mayo Clinic, born.


July 20th. . .

1304--Francesco Petrarch, Italian poet, born.

1588--The Spanish Armada set sail from Corunna after its initial setback due to a storm.

1837-- Euston, the first railway station in London, opened.

1844--John Sholto Douglas, eighth Marquis of Queensbury, patron of boxing who gave his name to the rules, born.

1871--The Football Association proposed that there should be an FA Challenge Cup competition.

1875--Professional football was legalized in England.

1873--Alberto Santos-Dumont, Brazilian aviation pioneer, born.


July 21st. . .

1403--Sir Henry 'Hotspur' Percy was killed in battle while trying to overthrow King Henry IV.

1588--The British fleet under Sir Francis Drake attacked the Spanish Armada in the English Channel.

1620-- Jean Piccard, French astronomer, born.

1796--Robert Burns, Scotland's national poet, died, aged 37.

1798--Napoleon defeated the Mamelukes at the Battle of the Pyramids.

1816--Paul Julius von Reuter who formed a company to transmit commercial information, born in Germany.

1856--The Illinois Central Railroad began operating wood-burning trains on its lakefront line in Chicago.

1861--Confederate troops won the Civil War's first Battle of Bull Run near Manassas, Virginia.

1899--Ernest Hemingway, U.S. novelist and short-story writer, born.


July 22nd. . .

1284--According to legend, this is the day the Pied Piper appeared in Hamelin, Brunswick to rid the town of rats.

1478--Philip I, King of Spain, born.

1784--Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel, German astronomer and mathematician, born.

1818--Thomas Stevenson, son of Scottish engineer Robert Stevenson and father of writer Robert Louis Stevenson, born.

1822--Gregor Johann Mendel, Austrian monk and botanist, born.

1844--The Rev. William Archibald Spooner, Anglican clergyman and warden of New College, Oxford, born.

1846--Alfred Percival Graves, Irish poet and songwriter, born.

1890--Rose Kennedy, U.S. matriarch and wife of Senator Joseph Kennedy, born.

1898--Stephen Vincent Benet, U.S. poet and short story writer, born.


July 23rd. . .

1757--Domenico Scarlatti, Italian composer, died.

1816--Charlotte Cushman, American tragic actress and the first member of the profession to be inscribed in the Hall of Fame, born.

1823--Coventry Patmore, English poet, born.

1834--James, Cardinal Gibbons, Archbishop of Baltimore and writer, born.

1865--William Booth founded the religious movement, which thirteen years later, became known as the Salvation Army.

1875--Isaac Merritt Singer, U.S. sewing machine inventor, died.

1885--Ulysses Simpson Grant, American general and 18th U.S. president, died.

1888--Raymond Chandler, U.S. novelist, born.


July 24th. . .

1701--Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, administrator in French North America founded the fur trading post that would become the city of Detroit.

1704--Admiral Sir George Rooke captured Gibraltar from the Spaniards.

1775--Eugene Francois Vidocq, French petty thief who eventually organized the world's first detective force, born.

1783--Simon Bolivar, South American liberator, born.

1797--Admiral Nelson received the wound that led to the loss of his right arm.

1802--Alexandre Dumas pere, French author of The Three Musketeers, born.

1824--The first public opinion poll was conducted in Wilmington, Delaware on voting intentions.

1862--Martin van Buren, 8th U.S. president, died.

1883--Captain Matthew Webb, English Channel swimmer, drowned while trying to swim the rapids above Niagara Falls.


July 25th. . .

1554--Mary I of England married Philip II of Spain.

1581--The Netherlands declared their independence from Spain.

1834--Samuel Taylor Coleridge, English poet who wrote 'The Rime of the Ancient Mariner', died.

1843--Charles Macintosh, Scottish chemist who invented waterproof clothing, died.

1848--Arthur James Balfour, 1st Earl, and British Prime Minister, born.

1865--Dr. James (Jane) Barry, the first woman doctor because she masqueraded as a man, died.

1870--Maxfield Parrish, American artist, born.

1887--Henry Mayhew, founder of Punch, died.


July 26th. . .

1745--The first recorded women's cricket match took place at Gosden Common near Guildford.

1782--John Field, Irish pianist and composer, born.

1788--New York became the 11th state of the Union.

1796--Jean Baptiste Camille Corot, French landscape painter, born.

1845--The Great Britain sailed from Liverpool on her maiden voyage, the first iron ship designed by Brunel.

1856--George Bernard Shaw, Irish-born journalist and playwright, born.

1847--Liberia became the first African colony to become an independent state.

1875--Carl Gustav Jung, Swiss psychologist and psychiatrist who was the founder of analytical psychology, born.


July 27th. . .

1689--John Graham of Claverhouse was mortally wounded at the battle of Killiecrankie as he led the Jacobites against King William's army.

1778--The first battle of Ushant took place between the British and French fleets with no clear victory for either side.

1824--Alexandre Dumas fils, French playwright of Camille, born.

1844--John Dalton, English chemist and physicist, died.

1867--EnriqueGranados, Spanish pianist and composer, born.

1870--Hilaire Belloc, English author of The Bad Child's Book of Beasts, born.

1866--After two previous attempts, a transatlantic cable was successfully completed.


July 28th. . .

1540--Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex and Chancellor to King Henry VIII, was accused of being a heretic and traitor. He was executed this day without a hearing. Henry wed Catherine Howard this same day.

1586--The first potatoes arrived in Britain from Columbia.

1655--Cyrano de Bergerac, French poet and soldier, died.

1741--Antonio Lucio Vivaldi, Italian priest, composer and violinist, died.

1750--Johann Sebastian Bach, German composer, died.

1794--Maximilien de Robespierre, revolutionary leader of the Jacobins, went to the guillotine.

1796--Jean Baptiste Corot, French landscape painter, born.

1821--Peru declared its independence from Spain.

1858--Fingerprints were used for the first time as a means of identification by William Herschel of the Indian Civil Service.

1866--Beatrix Potter, English children's author and illustrator, born.

1887--Marcel Duchamp, French painter, born.


July 29th. . .

1565--Mary, Queen of Scots, married her cousin, Lord Darnley.

1588--Sir Francis Drake, finished playing bowls before putting to sea to face the Spanish Armada.

1801--George Bradshaw, English publisher and originator of railway guides, born.

1805--Alexis Henri de Tocqueville, French historian and politician, born.

1833--William Wilberforce, English campaigner for the abolition of the slave trade in the British Empire, died.

1854--Robert Schumann, German composer who went insane, threw himself into the Rhine. He died two years later on this day in 1856.

1869--Booth Tarkington, American novelist and playwright, born.

1890--Vincent van Gogh, Dutch painter, died, two days after shooting himself.


July 30th. . .

1511--Giorgi Vasari, Italian painter, architect and art historian, born.

1718--William Penn, English Quaker who founded Pennsylvania, died.

1763--Samuel Rogers, English poet who declined the laureateship in 1850 on account of his age, born.

1771--Thomas Gray, English poet who wrote 'Elegy in a Country Churchyard', died.

1818--Emily Bronte, English novelist of Wuthering Heights, born.

1863--Henry Ford, U.S. motor car engineer, born.


July 31st. . .

1498--Columbus had changed from a parallel course with the mainland, which led him to the discovery of Trinidad.

1556--St. Ignatius Loyola, founder of the Jesuit Order, died.

1718--John Canton, English scientist who was the first to make artificial magnets, born.

1796--Jean Gaspard Deburau, French actor and mime, born in Bohemia.

1800--Friedrich Wohler, German chemist, born.

1803--John Ericsson, American engineer and inventor who designed warships for the American Navy, born in Sweden.

1875--Andrew Johnson, 17th U.S. President, died.

1886--Franz Liszt, Hungarian pianist and composer, died.