1701: Yale College in the United States received its charter.

1804: Hobart, Tasmania, was founded.

1888: The 555ft white marble Washington Monument, designed by Robert Mills, was opened.

1905: Sarah Bernhardt had the accident which was to blight her career. Playing Floria in Tosca, she had to jump from a parapet. Stagehands forgot the mattresses for her to land on, and she fell heavily on her right knee. Her leg was later amputated.

1940: Beatle John Lennon was born during an air raid in Liverpool.

1962: Uganda became independent.

1967: Revolutionary leader Che Guevara was captured in Bolivia and shot.

1974: German businessman Oskar Schindler, credited with saving 1,200 Jews from the Holocaust, died at the age of 66.

1990: Hundreds of Chinese people queued to buy Big Macs when McDonald's opened its first restaurant in Shenzhen.

2009: US president Barack Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples".

ON THIS DAY LAST YEAR: Scientists warned that dangerous lasers are being unwittingly bought by people who believe they are safe.

BIRTHDAYS: The Duke of Kent, 83; Brian Blessed, actor, 82; John Pilger, investigative journalist and film-maker, 79; Steve Ovett, former athlete, 63; David Cameron, Prime Minister/leader of the Conservative Party, 52; PJ Harvey, rock singer, 49; Sean Lennon, singer, 43; Mark Viduka, former footballer, 43; Nicky Byrne, pop star (Westlife), 40; Chris O'Dowd, actor, 39.