The Mercury



330 Byzantium becomes the capital of the Roman Empire. Renamed Nova Roma during a dedication ceremony, it is more popularly referred to as Constantin­ople.

868 A copy of the Diamond Sutra is printed in China, making it the oldest-known, dated printed book.

1310 Philip IV of France has 54 of the Knights Templar burned at the stake for heresy.

1891 Tsarevich Nicholas Alexandrov­ich of Russia (later Nicholas II) suffers a critical head injury in a sword attack by a Japanese policeman in a failed assassinat­ion attempt. 1893 Tour de France founder Henri Desgrange establishe­s world’s 1st bicycle world record, travelling 35.325 km/h.

1903 General Louis Botha lays the cornerston­e of the Dutch Reformed church in Bosman street, Pretoria.

1915 General Louis Botha, leading the South African troops allied with Britain, enters undefended Windhoek, the capital of German South West Africa, and marches north in pursuit of the retreating German forces.

1924 Daimler-Motoren-Gesellscha­ft and Benz & Cie begin their first joint venture (later merging into Mercedes-Benz)

1927 The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, home of the Oscars, is founded. 1943 US troops invade the Aleutian Islands in a bid to expel occupying Japanese forces. 1960 Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann is captured in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

1996 Eight climbers die on Mount Everest. 1997 Deep Blue defeats Garry Kasparov, becoming the first computer to beat a world-champion chess player.

2012 Chinese scientists transfer photons 97km using quantum teleportat­ion.

2015 A record price is paid for a work of art on auction when Picasso’s The Women of Algiers sells for $179.3 million at Christie’s, New York. 2020 The World Health Organizati­on warns “extreme vigilance” needed as many countries begin easing Covid-19 lockdowns | THE HISTORIAN

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