In 1672, the first public concert was held in London. The musicians performed behind a curtain, while patrons ate cakes and drank ale.
1816 -English Poet Percy Bysshe Shelley (24) married his second wife, Mary Godwin (19), daughter of early feminist writer Mary Wollstonecraft and author of Frankenstein.
1879 - Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance was performed for the first time, in Paignton, Devon.
1887 - A petition to Queen Victoria was handed to the Home Secretary. It carried the signatures of one million women campaigning to close public houses on Sundays. The campaign succeeded, but protesting drinkers soon brought down the Government.
1916 - Gregory Rasputin was murdered by relatives of Czar Nicholas II, who feared the monk had come to have too much influence over affairs of state.
1916 - The last coronation in Hungary was performed for King Charles IV and Queen Zita.
1919 - Lincoln’s Inn, one of the four legal societies in London, admitted the first female bar student.
1922 - The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was formed.
1954 - Chris Chataway became the first recipient of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award.
1962 - Fire destroyed the Nashville home of singer Brenda Lee. Her dog died in the blaze.
1963 - Karol Wojtyla became Archbishop of Krakow; he went on to become Pope John Paul II.
1994 - People in Manchester and Darlington were thrown from their beds during an earth tremor.
1998 - Two skiers were found alive, 16 hours after being caught in an avalanche in the Scottish highlands.
1999 - British Airways announced the London Eye would not be opening the following day, after it failed safety checks. The wheel would turn for New Year’s Eve, but would not be able to carry the proposed 250 inaugural passengers.
2006 - Former President of Iraq Saddam Hussein was executed.