On This Day…

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180 – 6 inhabitants of Carthage, North Africa executed for being Christians. Earliest record of Christianity in this part of the world.

1203 – Siege of Constantinople begins during the fourth Crusade, Crusaders aboad a Venetian fleet attack the city

1762 – Catherine II becomes tsarina of Russia following the murder of Peter III

1918 – The Romanov royal family and several of their retainers are executed by a Bolshevik firing squad in the basement of Ipatiev House, in Yekaterinburg, Siberia

1936 – Spanish generals Francisco Franco and Emilio Mola lead a right-wing uprising, starting the Spanish Civil War

1945 – Potsdam Conference: Harry Truman, Joseph Stalin and Winston Churchill hold 1st post-World War II meeting

1950 – Suppression of Communism Act comes into force in South Africa

1964 – ANC leader Nelson Mandela, recently sentenced to life imprisonment, is awarded the Joliot Curie Gold Medal for Peace

1974 – John Lennon is ordered to leave US in 60 days

1995 – Forbes Magazine announces Bill Gates is the richest man in world with a net worth of $12.9 billion dollars

2013 – 7 people are killed by a car bomb in Damascus, Syria

2014 – Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is shot down over Eastern Ukraine by a Buk surface-to-air missile launched from pro-Russian separatist-controlled territory, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew on board

2016 – 17 works by Swiss architect Le Corbusier included in UNESCO World Heritage sites list as “an Outstanding Contribution to the Modern Movement”

2018 – Barack Obama gives speech honoring Nelson Mandela and warning of “strongman politics” in Johannesburg, South Africa

2019 – Mexican drug cartel head Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán sentenced to life in prison plus 30 years in New York

2020 – India becomes the third country to record 1 million cases of COVID-1, 56% concentrated in Maharashtra, Delhi and Tamil Nadu

Film & TV:

1959 – “North by Northwest” directed by Alfred Hitchcock and starring Cary Grant and Eva Marie Saint premieres in Los Angeles

Music:

1717 – George Frideric Handel’s “Water Music” premieres on the river Thames in London

Sport:

1976 – 21st modern Olympic games opens in Montreal: 25 African teams (later rising to 33 nations) boycott the games due to New Zealand playing rugby in apartheid South Africa

Via Britannica / On This Day