What happened this week in history

Ken Livingstone EMN-150806-160509001
Ken Livingstone EMN-150806-160509001

In 1631 - Mumtaz Mahal died during childbirth. Her husband, Mughal emperor Shah Jahan I, spent the next 17 years building her mausoleum, the Taj Mahal.

1703 - Co-founder of Methodism John Wesley as born at Epworth.

1823 - Scottish chemist Charles Macintosh patented a waterproofing method later used on coats.

1837 - Charles Goodyear patented rubber.

1871 - One of the tallest weddings in history took place, when Mr and Mrs Martin Bates tied the knot. He was 7ft 2in and she was 7ft.

1885 - The Statue of Liberty arrived in New York City harbour, a gift of friendship from the people of France to the people of the United States, to mark the Centennial of the American Declaration of 
independence from Great 
Britain.

1939 - Convicted murderer Eugen Weidmann became the last person to be publicly guillotined in France, outside the Saint-Pierre prison in Versailles.

1940 - RMS Lancastria was attacked and sunk by the Luftwaffe near Saint-Nazaire, France. At least 3,000 were killed in Britain’s worst maritime disaster.

1944 - Iceland declared independence from Denmark and became a republic.

1950 - Dr Richard Lawler performed the first kidney transplant, in Chicago.

1961 - Principal dancer of the Kirov Ballet, Rudolf Nureyev, broke free from Russian embassy guards at a Paris airport and requested asylum in France.

1970 - The Range Rover was unveiled.

1974 - An IRA bomb 
exploded at the Houses of Parliament, causing extensive damage and injuring 11 people.

1987 - With the death of the last individual of the species, the Dusky Seaside Sparrow became extinct.

1991 - The South African Parliament repealed the 
Population Registration Act which required racial classification of all South Africans at birth.

2003 - Footballer David Beckham announced he was leaving Manchester United for Real Madrid.