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29th May 1953: Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reach summit of Mount Everest
29 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first people to reach the summit of Mount Everest. The two mountaineering pioneers were part of the ninth British Mount Everest expedition that had sought to reach the...
28th May 1987: West German amateur pilot lands a plane near Red Square
28 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
On the 28th May 1987, an eighteen year-old amateur pilot from Hamburg in West Germany illegally landed a private aircraft near Moscow’s Red Square. Mathias Rust had clocked up only 50 hours of flying time...
27th May 1703: The foundation of St Petersburg by Tsar Peter the Great
27 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
Peter the Great had become Tsar in 1682 and his rule is characterised by immense cultural and political changes in Russia that saw the country transformed into a modern world power. Keen to replace Sweden...
26th May 1897: Bram Stoker’s gothic horror novel Dracula published
26 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
On the 26th May 1897, Bram Stoker’s Gothic horror novel Dracula was first published. Although not the first vampire novel, Dracula was certainly responsible for defining modern ideas of vampires and for forever associating them...
25th May 1977: The first Star Wars film is released in cinemas
25 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
The first instalment of the Star Wars film series was released in cinemas in the United States of America. The iconic space opera was written and directed by the American filmmaker George Lucas. His directional...
24th May 1956: 1st Eurovision Song Contest takes place in Switzerland
24 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
On the 24th May 1956, the first Eurovision Song Contest took place in Lugano, Switzerland. It has since grown to be one of the most watched non-sporting events in the world. The idea for the...
23rd May 1618: Officials thrown from a window in the Second Defenestration of Prague
23 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
Two Catholic imperial officials and their secretary were thrown out of the window of the Bohemian Chancellery in the Second Defenestration of Prague. Prague had witnessed its first defenestration (literally ‘the act of throwing someone...
22nd May 1455: Wars of the Roses begin at the Battle of St Albans
22 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
The 22nd May 1455 marked the start of the Wars of the Roses, when the First Battle of St Albans was fought between Richard, Duke of York, and King Henry VI. The Wars of the...
21st May 1972: Laszlo Toth attacks and seriously damages Michelangelo’s Pietà statue
21 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
Hungarian-born geologist Laszlo Toth attacked and seriously damaged Michelangelo’s Pietà statue with a hammer. The Pietà is a marble sculpture that was created by Michelangelo between 1498 and 1499. It depicts the body of Jesus...
20th May 1873: Levi Strauss & Co. patent riveted blue jeans
20 May 2017 @ 03:05 am
On the 20th May 1873, Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis secured the patent for riveted blue jeans. The rivets strengthened the jeans, reducing the likelihood of tearing and making them perfect for manual labour. Strauss...