1498 - Christopher Columbus reached the American mainland. He named it Santa Isla.
1714 - George, Elector of Hanover, became King George I of Great Britain, marking the beginning of the Georgian era.
1774 - English chemist Joseph Priestley announced his discovery of oxygen. He called it a ‘new species of air’.
1800 - The Acts of Union 1800 were passed, merging the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland into the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
1834 - Slavery was abolished in the British Empire as the Slavery Abolition Act 1833 came into force.
1893 - Henry Perky patented Shredded Wheat.
1912 - An airmail service opened between London and Paris.
1914 - Germany declared war on Russia.
1932 - Mars Bars went on sale for the first time.
1976 - Racing driver Niki Lauder was badly burned in an accident at the German Grand Prix.
1988 - Anglican bishops voted for the ordination of women at the Lambeth Conference.