1399: The Order of the Bath was constituted.

1521: Pope Leo X conferred the title of Defender of the Faith on Henry VIII. Twelve years later Henry broke with Rome to marry Anne Boleyn.

1844: Baked beans magnate HJ Heinz was born of German parents in Pittsburgh.

1899: The Boer War began between the British Empire and the Republics of the Orange Free State and the Transvaal.

1919: The first airline meals were served on a Handley-Page flight from London to Paris. They were pre-packed lunch boxes at three shillings each (15p).

1957: The Radio telescope at Jodrell Bank, Cheshire, planned by Sir Bernard Lovell, went into operation.

1958: The BBC TV sports programme Grandstand was first transmitted.

1973: The start of the Yom Kippur War in the Middle East.

1986: Nuclear weapons negotiations between Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev opened in a summit in Reykjavik. They ended in failure.

ON THIS DAY LAST YEAR: A "worrying" fall in the number of nurses working in the NHS had come about, analysis from an influential think tank found.

BIRTHDAYS: Sir Bobby Charlton, former footballer, 81; John Nettles, actor, 75; Alan Pascoe, former athlete, 71; David Morse, actor, 65; Dawn French, actress and comedienne, 61; Joan Cusack, actress, 56; Stephen Moyer, actor, 49; Emily Deschanel, actress, 42; Michelle Wie, golfer, 29.