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Old Sunday, July 17, 2011
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Post British History Timeline

43 AD: Roman emperor Claudius invades Britain
50 AD: the Romans found Londinium in Britain
80 AD: the Romans invade Caledonia (Scotland)
122: Hadrian's Wall is built along the northern frontier to protect from the Barbarians
314 AD: British bishops are summoned to the council of Arles
350: the missionary Ninian establishes the church Candida Casa at Whithorn in Galloway, Scotland
410 AD: the Romans withdraw from Britain, and Britain disintegrates in clans of Celts (Britons, Angles, Picts, Scots) as well as Germanic people (Angles, Saxons, Jutes, etc)
450: Saxons invade England, while the rest is split among Welsh kingdoms of Rheged, Gododdin and Strathclyde
450: the Saxon invasion prompts Roman-British inhabitants of Britain to migrate to northern France (Brittany)
455: the Saxon leader Hengist takes over the kingdom of Kent and founds their capital at Canterbury
476: the Saxon leader Aelle founds the kingdom of Sussex (South Saxons)
503: most Scots leave Ireland and build the kingdom of Dalriada in Argyll on the west coast of Scotland
532: the Saxon Cerdic founds the kingdom of Wessex (West Saxons)
540: the monk Gildas writes the "De Excidio Britanniae"
544: Ciaran founds the monastery of Clonmacnoise in Ireland
550: the Saxon kingdoms of East Saxons (Essex) and Middle Saxons (Middlesex) are established
563: the Irish monk Columbanus founds the monastery of Iona off the coast of Scotland, soon to become the main center of the Columban school
590: England is divided among several kingdoms (Kent, Northumbria, Mercia, Wessex, etc)
597: Pope Gregory I dispatches Augustine to England with forty monks
See the timeline of Christianity
600: Taliesin and Aneirin write poems in old Welsh in Strathclyde
601: Augustine converts king Ethelbert of Kent and establishes the see of Canterbury with himself as its first archbishop
601: king Aethelbert of Kent promulgates the first English code of law
627: Pope Gregory I sends the Italian monk Paulinus to found the see of York and convert king Edwin of Northumbria
633: during the reign of the Saxon king Oswald conversion of Northumbria is completed
635: Cynegils, king of Wessex, converts to Christianity
635: Iona bishop Aidan founds a monastic community in the island of Lindisfarne off the coast of Scotland
664: the synod of Whitby brings the Celtic (English) church into conformity with Rome
664: Iona monk Wilfrid is appointed bishop of York
668: the monk Theodore of Tarsus is appointed archbishop of Canterbury
670: the Anglosaxons convert to Christianity
674: Benedict Biscop founds the monastery of Wearmouth in Northumbria
681: Benedict Biscop, a native Anglosaxon, founds the monastery of Jarrow in Northumbria
685: king Ine of Wessex conquers Sussex, Devon and Cornwall
685: the defeat of king Ecgfrid ends the domination of Northumbria over England
687: the Vikings (Danes) destroy the monastery of Whitbey in England
690: English missionary Willibrord evangelizes in Holland and Denmark
731: Bede of Jarrow (Northumbria) writes the "Ecclesiastical History of the English People"
757: the kingdom of Mercia dominates England under king Offa
793: Vikings (Danes) raid the monastery of Lindisfarne and destroy the monastery of Jarrow
825: the Saxon king Egbert III of Wessex conquers Kent and Mercia, thus reigning over all of England
830: "Historia Brittonum" by Nennius
831: Vikings (Norse) invade Ireland and found Dublin
834: Vikings (Danes) raid England
843: Kenneth MacAlpin unites the Scots and Picts in Scotland
865: the Vikings (Danes) invade East Anglia
867: the Vikings (Danes) under Ivarr the Boneless establish a kingdom in York, Northumbria
871: Alfred becomes king of Wessex
878: Wessex king Alfred defeats the Vikings (Danes)
896: Alfred occupies London and pushes the Danes outside Wessex and Mercia to the north of England
899: Alfred's son Edward becomes king of Wessex
90#: The "Beowulf" is written
910: Alfred's son Edward defeats the Danes and annexes to Wessex every town south of the river Humber
924: Edward's son Aethelstan becomes king of Wessex
927: Wessex king Aethelstan conquers most of England, except the five boroughs of Leicester, Lincoln, Nottingham, Derby and Stamford
937: Aethelstan defeats the Danes at the battle of Brunanburgh and establishes the kindgom of England
959: Edgar the Peaceful becomes the first king of a united England
968: Brian Boru expels the Vikings from Ireland
1000: 7 million people live in France, 7 million in Iberia, 5 million in Italy, 4 million in Germany, 2 million in Britain
1005: Malcolm II kills Kenneth III and becomes King of Scotlant
1013: the Danish chieftain Svend Forkbeard (Svend I) invades England
1016: the Danish king Canute (Knut) II defeats the Wessex king Edmund at the battle of Alney and annexes Mercia
1017: Edmund of Wessex dies and Canute annexes Wessex
1017: Canute converts to christianity
1028: Canute, already king of England and Denmark, conquers Norway
1034: king Duncan of Strathclyde conquers most of Scotland
1035: Canute dies, leaving Denmark and England to Hardacnut and Norway to Swein
1040: MacBeth kills Duncan and becomes King of Scotlant
1042: Hardacnut dies suddenly and Edward the Confessor, heir to both Wessex and Mercia, regains the throne of England to the Anglosaxons
1065: Westminster Abbey is inaugurated
1066: Edward the Confessor dies, leaving no Saxon heir, the Norwigian Harald III Harraade invades northern England and is defeated and killed at the battle of Stamford Bridge by Harold Godwinson of England, who is in turn defeated at the battle of Hastings by William of Normandy (the Conqueror), who thus ends the Anglo-Saxon rule of England and unites England and Normandy
1070: Lanfranc, an Italian lawyer, becomes Archbishop of Canterbury, establishing the primacy of the see of Canterbury over York
1072: William I the Conqueror invades Scotland
1078: William I orders the construction of the Tower of London
1086: the "Domesday Book" is compiled for taxation purposes
1087: William I the Conqueror dies and is succeeded as king of England by his son William II Rufus, while his other son Robert becomes duke of Normandy
1100: William Rufus is assassinated and is succeeded by Henry I, son of William the Conqueror, who fights with Pope Pasquale II on the issue of lay investiture (the king elects the bishops)
1107: the Concordat of London finds a compromise between Henry I and Pope Pasquale II on the issue of lay investiture (the king elects the bishops)
1106: Henry I defeats and captures his brother Robert, duke of Normandy
1113: the order of St John is founded
1114: Matilda (Maud), daughter of king Henry I of England, marries emperor Heinrich V
1124: David becomes King of Scotland and extends his reign
1129: emperor Heinrich V dies and empress Matilda marries Geoffrey the Handsome, Count of Anjou
1130: Geoffrey of Monmouth creates the myth of Arthur
1139: Matilda claims the throne of England
1141: Matilda is briefly queen of England before being usurped of the throne
1153: Henry of Anjou, son of Matilda and husband of Eleanor of Aquitaine, invades England,
1154: Henry II Plantagenet is crowned king of England, establishing the Plantagenet dynasty over England, Burgundy and Aquitaine
1154: an Englishman is elected Pope Adrian IV
1164: Henry II's constituion of Clarendon limits the authority of the Pope over English matters
1176: Henry II establishes the "common law" of England
1189: Richard I "Coeur de Lion", son of Henry II, becomes king of England and continues the rule of the Plantagenets
1189: the third Crusade is led by king Richard of England, king Philippe Auguste II of France, and emperor Friedrich Barbarossa
1194: King Richard the Lion-Hearted of England, taken prisoner upon the return from the Crusades, ackowledges hiself king Philippe Auguste II's vassal, thus losing all French possessions of the Plantagenets
1199: John Lackland, son of Henry II, becomes king of England
1200: the Jews are expelled from England
1203: Philippe Auguste II of France conquers Normandy and expels the English
1209: Cambridge University is founded
1214: pope Innocent III, the claimant Friedrich II and French king Philippe Auguste defeat German emperor Otto IV and English king John at the battle of Bouvines, and Friedrich II ascends to the throne of Germany
1215: king John I Lackland is forced by the English barons to sign the "Magna Carta", a constitution that grants rights to the nobility, the clergy and the townspeople
1216: Henry III becomes king of England
1265: Simon de Montfort, leader of the barons, summons popular representatives to Parliament
1272: Edward I becomes king of England
1283: the first mechanical clock in the world is installed in an English monastery (Dunstable)
1284: Edward I annexes Wales
1290: Edward I expells all Jews from England
1295: Edward I inaugurates the first representative parliament, the "Model Parliament", which features bishops, abbots, peers, knights and town representatives
1296: Edward I of England annexes Scotland
1306: Scottish king Robert Bruce rebels to the English
1307: Edward II becomes king of England
1314: Robert Bruce defeats Edward II at the battle of Bannockburn and regains Scotland's independence
1327: Edward II is deposed by the parliament and replaced with his son Edward III
1328: Charles IV, the last Capetian king of France dies, his daughter Jeanne is disqualified from occupying the French throne, and Edward III of England claims the French throne, whereas the French nobility chooses Philip of Valois
1333: Edward III invades Scotland
1334: the first gunpowder is manufactured in England
1337: Philippe VI of France and Edward III of England go to war over France ("Hundred Years' War")
1340: English knights and burgesses join in the House of Commons
1346: superior weaponry and strategy allows Edward III's much smaller English army of 16,000 to defeat Philip VI's larger French army of 80,000 at the Battle of Crecy in northern France during the "Hundred Years' War", thus accelerating the shift from knights on horseback to fire power
1348: the plague ("Black Death") reaches England (1.5 people will die, out of a population of 4 million)
1356: England captures the French king and one third of France at the battle of Poitiers
1364: Charles V liberates France from England
1371: Robert II, grandson of Robert Bruce, establishes the Stuart line on the Scottish throne
1381: the Oxford theologian John Wyclif denies that the substance of bread and wine are miraculously changed during the Eucharist
1381: Popular riots erupt against a new tax (the "Great Revolt")
1394: Richard II invades Ireland
1399: Henry Bollingbroke, the son of the richest man (John of Gaunt) overthrows Richard II and becomes king Henry IV
1401: Henry IV issues a statute legalizing the persecution of "heretics" (mainly Lollards)
1413: Henry V succeeds his father to the throne of England
1415: Henry V of England allies with Burgundy, defeats the French at the battle of Agincourt, takes prisoner the duke of Orleans and proceeds to reconquer Normandy from France
1420: England seizes northern France
1422: Henry VI becomes king of England
1429: the French army, led by Jeanne d'Arc, triumphs at Orleans
1431: the English burn Jeanne d'Arc at the stakes
1431: Henry VI of England is crowned king of France in Paris
1450: Jack Cade's popular rebellion of peasants and workers against taxes and oppression
1452: Henry VI of England goes mad
1453: France expels the English (end of the "Hundred Years' War" with English defeat)
1455: The royal houses of York and Lancaster fight a civil war ("War of the Roses") to succeed the mad Henry VI
1461: Edward IV of York deposes Henry VI Lancaster and lets Richard Neville run the country on his behalf
1471: Edward IV defeats Margaret of Anjou while both the renegade Richard Neville and Henry VI are murdered by his men
1483: Edward IV dies and his brother Richard becomes regent for the infant princes, but then crowns himself as Richard III and murdering both of Edward IV's children
1485: Henry VII Tudor of Lancaster, supported by Charles VIII of France, defeats and kills Richard III of York, ending the Yorkist dynasty and inaugurating the Tudor dynasty on the throne of England
1486: Henry VII marries Elizabeth of York, thus uniting houses of York and Lancaster
1496: the Italian explorer John Cabot sails from England to Canada (thinking he has reached Asia) on behalf of the king of England
1497: John Cabot discovers Newfoundland
1497: Henry VII defeats the last pretender to the throne and restores peace to the kingdom
1509: Henry VIII becomes king of England
1518: Thomas More publishes "Utopia"
1529: Henry VIII accepts the Protestant Reformation
1533: Henry VIII marries Anne Boleyn and is excommunicated by Pope Clement VII
1534: Henry VIII declares himself supreme head of the Church of England
1535: Thomas More is beheaded in Tower of London for refusing to submit to Henry VIII
1536: Henry VIII directs the dissolution of the English monasteries under the direction of Thomas Cromwell
1540: Thomas Cromwell is executed
1544: Henry VIII and emperor Karl V invade France
1553: Mary I, daughter of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon, becomes queen of England and returns England to Catholicism, while hundreds of Protestants are burned at the stakes
1558: Elizabeth I, daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, becomes queen of England and England becomes Protestant again and Catholics are persecuted
1563: The Anglican Church is officially founded (on predestination and thr redeeming power of faith alone)
1567: Mary Stuart of Scotland is deposed and her son James VI becomes king of Scotland
1576: the first British theater opens in London
1580: Francis Drake sails around the world
1586: Francis Drake sails to the West Indies
1587: England executes Mary Stuart, former queen of Scotland and heir to the English throne, the for conspiring against queen Elizabeth I
1587: Francis Drake destroys the Spanish fleet at Cadiz
1588: Philip II of Spain declares war against Elizabeth I of England to protect Spanish possessions in America from English buccaneers, but the Spanish Armada is defeated by the English fleet of Francis Drake
1592: the British Parliament defines the statute mile as 8 furlongs, 80 chains, 320 rods, 1760 yards or 5280 feet
1599: the East India Company is established
1601: James Lancaster leads the first British cargo to the East Indies (the trip takes 14 months one way) and establishes a British factory at Bantam
1603: James VI of Scotland becomes king James I of England
1607: John Smith founds the colony of Virginia
1609: England conquers the Bermudas in America
1614: the Scottish mathematician John Napier coins the word "logarithm" and publishes the first logarithmic table
1618: after the "Defenestration of Prague", England enters the "Thirty Years' War" against the Habsburg empire
1620: English pilgrims aboard the "Mayflower" land at Plymouth Rock on Cape Cod, Massachusetts
1620: Francis Bacon publishes the "Novum Organon" to argue that truth should be found via empirical observation
1621: Thomas Archer publishes the first periodical pamphlet (predecessor of the newspaper)
1625: Charles I, King of England (to 1649); Charles I marries Henrietta Maria, sister of Louis XIII of France; dissolves Parliament which fails to vote him money
1628: John Felton assassinates George Villiers, the duke of Buckingham
1630: England signs peace treaties with France and Spain and abandons the "Thirty Years' War"
1642: a civil war opposes king Charles I and the Parliament
1645: Oliver Cromwell's New Model Army defeats king Charles I
1648: the "Peace of Westphalia" ends the Thirty Years' War
1649: Cromwell crushes a Catholic uprising in Ireland
1649: the Diggers promulgate a vision of a society free from private property and commerce
1649: Charles I is executed and Cromwell declares the Commonwealth (the monarchy is suspended)
1651: Cromwell defeats Scotland
1651: Thomas Hobbes publishes the "Leviathan"
1653: When the parliament fails to approve reforms by one vote, Cromwell aboliushes parliament and has himself nominated Lord Protector of England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland
1655: Britain conquers Jamaica from Spain
1658: Oliver Cromwell dies
.
1659: England and France defeat Spain
1660: Charles II resumes the monarchy (end of the Commonwealth)
1662: Founding of the Royal Society of Science
1664: England seizes New Amsterdam from the Dutch and changes its name to New York
1665: the plague reaches London
1666: the fire of London burns the oldest part of the city, including St Paul's cathedral
1666: Isaac Newton develops calculus
1668: England, Netherlands and Sweden form the "Triple Alliance" against France
1670: Hudson's Bay Company is founded
1675: the Royal Observatory opens at Greenwich
1677: William III, king of the Netherlands, marries Mary, heir to the English throne
1679: petitioners ("Whigs") call for a new Parliament while royalists ("Tories") side with king Charles II
1685: Charles II dies and his Catholic brother James II becomes king of England and of Scotland
1687: James II issues the "Declaration of Liberty of Conscience" but favors Catholicism and insists on the divine rights of the royalty
1687: Isaac Newton publishes the "Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica"
1688: England (mainly the Protestants) rise up against James II the Catholic king and drive him into exile ("English revolution"), while William III of Orange is invited to replace him with a constitutional monarchy and the king subject to the laws of the Parliament ("Glorious Revolution")
1689: The Parliament issues the "Bill of Rights", thus establishing a constitutional monarchy under William III
1689: France invades Germany's League of Augsburg and starts the Eight-year War (England, Netherlands, Austria, Spain and Savoy ally with Germany), the beginning of a century of war between France and Britain
1690: the philosopher John Locke publishes "Two Treatises of Government" and founds "liberalism" (people have rights, government has the duty to protect their rights, three branches of government for "checks and balances", separation of church and state, rule of the majority)
1690: the British found Calcutta in India
1694: the Bank of England is founded
1695: the "LIberty of Unlicensed Printing" removes government control from the press (freedom of the press)
1697: the treaty of Ryswick ends the Eight-year war (no winner)
1702: king William III forms an alliance between England, the Netherlands and Austria against Spain and France ("War of the Spanish Succession") to defend the archduke Karl of Austria's claim of the Spanish throne against king Philip II of Spain
1702: William III dies and is succeeded by his sister-in-law Anne Stuart
1704: England captures Gibraltar from Spain
1707: the kingdoms of England and Scotland are formally united in Great Britain (Queen Anne Stuart becomes the first ruler of Great Britain)
1709: the Copyright Act shifts ownership from printers to authors
1711: Joseph Addison and Richard Steele found the "Spectator", the first magazine
1713: Britain and France sign a peace treaty ("Treaty of Utrecht") that hands most of Canada to Britain and leaves Britain as the dominant in force in north America, while Spain surrenders the Spanish Netherlands (Belgium) and southern Italy to Austria and Gibraltar to Britain
1714: Queen Anne Stuart dies and is succeeded by George I, first king of the Hannover house
1721: Robert Walpole is Britain's first prime minister
1737: an English carpenter, John Harrison, invents the marine chronometer to measure longitude and latitude
1738: John and Charles Wesley found the Methodist movement
1739: Britain and Spain go to war, but Britain fails to occupy Panama, Chile and Colombia
1741: Lewis Paul opens the first cotton mill
1751: by capturing the town of Arcot from the French, Britain becomes the leading colonial power in India
1752: Britain adopts the Gregorian calendar
1756: Britain and Prussia declare war against France, Austria and Russia ("Seven Years' War")
1757: at the battle of Plassey the East India company defeats France and gains access to Bengal
1757: James Watt makes the steam engine practical
1758: Britain attacks French Canada, its first large-scale war of conquest outside Europe
1759: Britain seizes Quebec from France
1759: the British Museum is inaugurated
1763: the treaty of Paris ends the Seven Years' War, with Britain annexing the French possessions of Canada and India
1766: James Christie opens his London auction house, the world's first fine art auctioneer
1768: Philip Astley founds a traveling show of acrobats and jugglers, and launches the revival of the circus
1770: James Cook lands in Australia and claims it for Britain
1770: the Encyclopedia Britannica is published in Edinburgh
1773: American colonists stage an uprising against British rule ("Boston Tea Party")
1773: Warren Hastings, governor of Bengal (India), establishes a monopoly on the sale of opium
1774: Britain assigns Ohio to Quebec/Canada and recognizes Catholicism as the religion of Quebec/Canada
1776: the American colonies ratifies the Declaration of Independence
1776: Adam Smith publishes "The Wealth of the Nations", the manifesto of capitalism
1779: John Wilkinson builds the first cast-iron bridge, the first large cast-iron structure
1780: War erupts between Holland and Britain
1781: a seventh planet, Uranus, is discovered by William Hershel
1783: Britain recognises the independence of the United States of America
1784: The treaty of Paris grants Britain the rights to trade in Indonesia
1785: the "Daily Universal Register" (later "The Times") is founded
1786: William Jones discovers similarities between Sanskrit and Greek and Latin
1787: Robert Peel builds an integrated cotton spinning, weaving and printing factory
1790: at the height of the British slave trade, one slave vessel leaves England for Africa every other day
1791: Thomas Paine publishes "Rights of Man"
1792: Mary Wollstonecraft publishes "Vindication of the Rights of Women"
1793: the first British settlers arrive in Australia
1796: After France invades Holland, Holland surrenders Melaka/Malacca, Sri Lanka and the Cape of Good Hope to Britain
1796: Edward Jenner discovers the principle of vaccination and produces a smallpox vaccine
1798: Malthus publishes the "Essay on Population"
1798: admiral Horatio Nelson defeats the French navy at Aboukir Bay in Egypt
1800: Ireland is formally united to England
1801: Britain's population is 10.7 million and London's population is 959,000
1802: a steam-powered coach built by Richard Trevithick successfully completes the journey from Cornwall to London
1802: Britain and France sign the peace of Amiens, recognizing Britain's conquest of French, Dutch and Spanish colonies
1803: Britain declares war on Napoleon
1803: English chemist John Dalton proposes that matter is composed of atoms
1804: Richard Trevithick builds the first locomotive (it rode a track of 16kms in 4 hours, at the speed of 4 km/h)
1805: Horace Nelson is killed in combat but destroys the French and Spanish fleets at the Battle of Trafalgar
1805: Horace Nelson is the first commoner in the history of Britain to be given a state funeral
1807: Britain outlaws the slave trade
1812: the USA declares war on Britain
1813: American ships defeat British ships
1814: British troops storm Washington and burn the Capitol and the White House
1814: George Stephenson builds his first locomotive engine
1814: Britain purchases the Cape Colony in South Africa from Holland and rules over the Boers (descendants of the Dutch colonists)
1815: Andrew Jackson, helped by the French pirate Jean Lafitte, defeats the British army at the battle of New Orleans
1815: Napoleon is defeated at Waterloo
1815: Ceylon is occupied by the British, who ferry Tamil workers from India
1816: Nepal becomes a British protectorate
1816: Francis Ronalds invents the telegraph
1819: The "Savannah" completes the first transatlantic crossing by a steamboat
1819: Stamford Raffles buys an island from the sultan of Johore and founds the British settlement of Singapore
1821: Sierra Leone, Gambia and the Gold Coast are combined to form British West Africa
1821: Britain adopts the gold standard
1821: Giovanni Belzoni organizes a display of Egyptian antiquities in London
1822: The first dinosaur fossil is found by Gideon Mantell, the Iguanodon
1823: rugby is invented at Rugby school
1824: Pierce Egan starts the first sporting journal
1824: William Buckland provides the first description of a dinosaur, the Megalosaurus
1825: Britain inaugurates the first public railway in the world (Stockton-Darlington railway)
1826: Malacca, Penang and Singapore join in a British colony
1827: France, Britain and Russia help the Greek uprising against the Ottomans, the fleet of the Ottomans and of Mehemet Ali is sunk at Navarino, and the expansion of Ali's Egyptian empire is halted
1829: George Stephenson builds the first steam locomotive train
1830: the railway Liverpool - Manchester opens using Stephenson's locomotive "Locomotion"
1830: the Whigs come to power
1831: Michael Faraday discovers electromagnetic induction and invents the transformer
Dec 1831: The ship "Beagle" begins a five-year trip to chart the waters of South America carrying biologist Charles Darwin as a guest
1832: the Great Reform Bill grants voting rights to the middle class (but only 1.8% of the adult population is allowed to vote)
1833: Slavery is abolished
1834: Britain abolishes slavery in the Cape colony (South Africa)
1835: Manchester, the most industrial city in the world, has a population of 300,000 and 100,000 people are workers
1836: South Australia becomes a province of the British Empire
1837: Victoria becomes queen of England
1838: the Boers leave the Cape colony, defeat the Zulus at the battle of Blood River and found the Natal colony (the "Great Trek")
1838: the ticket is introduced to ride trains
1838: British troops are defeated in Afghanistan
1839: A Chinese attempt at suppressing the illicit British trade in opium causes the Opium war
1839: the port of Aden in Arabia is occupied by the British
1839: Scottish blacksmith Kirkpatrick Macmillan invents the bicycle
1840: the first postal stamp is introduced (the "black penny"
1841: Russia, Britain, France, Austria and Prussia at the Straits Convention agree to ban all warships from the Ottoman straits, thus confining the southern Russian fleet to the Black Sea
1842: under the Treaty of Nanjing, China cedes the island of Hong Kong to Britain
1843: the first Christmas postcard is printed (in London)
1843: Britain annexes the Natal colony of the Boers in South Africa, and the Boers move again founding the Orange Free State in the interior and the Transvaal in the north
1845: Youstol Dispage Fromscaruffi dies
1845: British policies cause a famine in Ireland that will kill a million people
1845: an eight planet, Neptune, is discovered mathematically by John Adams
1851: gold is discovered in Australia
1851: the first Universal Exhibition is held in London
1851: London's population is 2,363,000
1851: 50% of the British population lives in the countryside
1852: the Royal Observatory introduces a uniform time standard for the whole of Britain
1853: In the Crimean war Britain, France and the Ottoman Empire fight Russia
1855: Joshua Stoddard introduces a steam-powered organ called the "calliope"
1855: Henry Bessemer invents the Bessemer converter for mass-producing steel
1857: Persia surrenders to Britain all rights over Afghanistan
1858: Power on the Indian colony is transferred to the British government
1858: a telegraph wire is laid at the bottom of the ocean between Ireland and Canada
1859: Charles Darwin publishes "The Origin Of Species"
1862: Bahadur Shah II dies, the Mogul dynasty ends and India becomes a British colony
1863: the Salvation Army is founded
1863: the sport of football is inaugurated
1863: the London subway opens
1864: James Clerk Maxwell unifies electricity and magnetism in his equations of the electromagnetic field
1864: all the major power agree at the Geneva convention on rules for the treatment of prisoners of war
1865: William Booth founds the East London Christian Mission (later renamed "Salvation Army")
1867: British North America becomes the Dominion of Canada, a federation of Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick
1867: industrial workers are entitled to vote
1868: Benjamin Disraeli (a Jew converted to Christianity) becomes prime minister of Britain
1871: Arthur Sullivan and William Gilbert produce their first operetta
1872: the Ariel, the first high-wheel bicycle (or "ordinary"), is manufactured in Britian
1874: Disreali becomes prime minister
1875: The British government purchases shares in the Suez Canal, borrowing money from the Rothschilds
1876: Disraeli makes queen Victoria empress
1877: Britain occupies South Africa
1877: A tennis tournament is held at Wimbledon for the first time
1879: Zulu warriors armed with spears massacre the British army at the battle of Isandhlwana
1880: Borneo becomes a British protectorate
1882: Britain occupies Egypt
1884: an international "meridian" conference decides to divide the Earth in 24 time zones, starting with Greenwich's meridian
1884: under a new reform 12.1% of the adult population is allowed to vote
1884: agricultural laborers are entitled to vote
1885: Burma becomes a province of British India
1885: the Canadian Pacific railway is completed
1891: 28% of the British population lives in the countryside
1892: Britain tonnage and seatrade exceeds the rest of the world together
1893: New Zealand is the first country to grant women the right to vote
1894: Uganda becomes a protectorate
1895: Lord Kelvin declares that "heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible"
1895: Britain controls two thirds of Chinese foreign trade
1895: "The Empire of India Exhibition" opens in London
1896: the electron is discovered
1897: Joseph-John Thompson discovers that electricity is due to the flow of invisible negatively charged particles called electrons
1897: Marcus Samuel founds the Shell Transport and Trading Company
1898: at the Battle of Omdurman (Sudan) British troops massacre thousands of Sudanese tribesmen
1898: Britain occupies Sudan
1899: Britain invades the republics of the Transvaal and the Orange Free State in South Africa, founded by the Boers (the "Boer war")
1899: general Kitchener creates "concentration camps" in South Africa for the families of the Boer rebels (26,000 prisoners die), while the Boers engage in guerrilla warfare, and defend trenches with long-distance rifles
1900: Arthur Evans discovers the ruins of Knossos, Crete
1901: Queen Victoria dies
1901: Britain's population is 37.1 million
1901: the British colonies of Australia become the Federated Commonwealth of Australia
1901: Nigeria becomes a British protectorate
1902: Japan signs the London treaty with Britain that recognizes Japan's rights in Korea and Britain's rights in China
Mar 1902: Richard Pearse in New Zealand flies his home-made airplane for 91 meters
1903: the suffragette movement (Women's Social and Political Union) is founded
1904: British troops occupy Tibet
1905: Britain apologizes to the Boers of South Africa for the war and grants independence to the Transvaal and the Orange Free State
1906: the Liberal party, representing financiers and entrepreneurs, comes into power
1907: New Zealand becomes a self-governing dominion of the British empire
1907: Britain and Russia negotiate the status of Persia, Tibet and Afghanistan
1908: Britain and Germany engage in a "naval race"
1908: Margaret Murray performs autopsy on an Egyptian mummy
1909: Lloyd George's reforms tax land to pay for sickness, invalidity and unemployment insurance
1910: Transvaal, Orage Free State, Natal and Cape unite in the Union of South Africa
1911: the New Zealand scientist Ernest Rutherford discovers that the atom is made of a nucleus and orbiting electrons
1911: Britains holds a conference on imperial defense
1911: universal health care is introduced
1911: a Parliament Act weakens the House of Lords
1912: a minimum wage is introduced
1912: The "Titanic" sinks in the Atlantic ocean
1912: Britain and France sign a naval treaty to fend off the threat of the German navy
1914: World War I breaks out in the Balkans, pitting Britain, France, Italy, Russia, Serbia, USA and Japan against Austria, Germany and Turkey
1914: The British government purchases part of Anglo-Persian Oil, only the second time the British government has purchased a private company
1914: Cyprus is annexed by Britain after four centuries of Ottoman rule
1914: end of the British gold standard
1914: Egypt becomes and British protectorate
1914: Britain occupies the German colonies of West Africa
1916: The Lucknow Pact unites the Congress and the League in their fight for independence from Britain
1916: Britain introduces daylight saving time to save energy
1916: Britain and France agree to partition the Middle East
1917: the "Balfour Declaration" by the British government promises a Jewish homeland in Palestine
1917: Edwin-Samuel Montagu is appointed secretary of state for India and champions India's independence
1917: Britain conquers Iraq
1918: Civil war erupts between the Red Army of the Bolsheviks and the Mensheviks (helped by Britain and the USA)
1918: universal male suffrage
1918: Britain conquers Syria and Palestine from the Ottomans
1918: the first world war ends: 2 million Russians, 1.8 million Germans, 1.3 million French, 1.1 million Austro-Hungarians, 0.9 million Britons, 0.6 million Turks and 0.5 million Italians are dead.
1918: At the end of the war the British army has 8.5 people, of which 5.7 are from Britain, 1.4 from India, 630,000 from Canada, 420,000 from Australia, 136,000 from South Africa and 129,000 from New Zealand plus about 300,000 Egyptian, black African and Chinese laborers
1919: the IRA is formed in Ireland to fight British rule
1919: Race riots in Liverpool and Cardiff
1919: British troops massacre 379 peaceful demonstrators in Amritsar (Punjab), the beginning of large-scale riots in India
Nov 1919: Ross Smith flies from England to Australia via Egypt, India and Singapore
1919: Afghanistan gains independence from Britain
1920: Palestine becomes a British protectorate
1920: The airline Qantas is founded to link the settlements of Australia
1920: European countries control almost 90% of the Earth's surface
1920: Arthur Eddington suggests that nuclear fusion fuels the sun
1921: Abdullah, son of Sharif Hussein, establishes the principality of Transjordan under British protectorate
1921: Unemployment reaches 17% in Britain
1921: The indenture system is abolished
1921: 156,000 British citizens rule over 306 million Indian subjects
1921: Ireland becomes independent except for northern Ireland that remains British
1922: Gandhi is imprisoned following terrorist acts against the British
1922: the "British Broadcasting Company" (BBC) begins broadcasting
1922: Egypt declares its independence
1922: Faysal, son of Sharif Hussein, establishes the kingdom of Iraq under British protectorate
1923: Britain recognises Nepal's independence
1924: first Labour government
1924: The British Empire Exhibition is held at Wembley
1925: Edwin Hubble discovers the first galaxy outside the Milky Way (Andromeda), 2 million years away from the Earth
1927: oil fields are discovered near Karkuk in Iraq and king Faysal grants oil rights to the British
1928: universal female suffrage
1928: Scottish biologist Alexander Fleming discovers penicillin, the first antibiotic
1929: the world's stock markets crash
1929: Edwin Hubble discovers that galaxies recede from one another and that the universe is expanding in all directions
1930: Gandhi unleashes "civil disobedience" against the British
1930: Britain, Japan, France, Italy and the USA sign the London Naval Treaty, an agreement to reduce naval warfare
1931: South Africa becomes independent
1931: Canada declares its independence
1931: EMI opens the largest recording studio in the world at Abbey Road in London
1932: Iraq becomes independent under the rule of King Faisal
1932: A regular flight is inaugurated between London and Cape Town (with five stops en route)
1933: King George V broadcasts a speech on the radio to the entire British Empire
1934: whites introduce "apartheid" in South Africa
1934: the Penguin publishing company is founded
1935: Robert Watson-Watt builds the first radar
1936: John Maynard Keynes' "The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money" claims that government spending is required to end economic recessions
1936: the "Queen Mary" transatlantic linear travels from Southampton to New York in four days
1938: the IRA carries out the first bombings in Britain
1938: Britain debuts the "Empire Flying Boat", a plane that can carry 18 passengers
1939: England declares war to Hitler's Germany
1940: Germany bombs England and Churchill becomes prime minister
1941: during World War II, Britain and the Soviet Union invade Iran and Reza is forced to abdicate in favor of his son Reza Pahlavi II
1945: Germany surrenders
1945: At the Yalta conference the Soviet Union, Britain and the USA partition Europe in spheres of influence
1946: Jewish terrorists, led by Menachem Begin, bomb and destroy the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, the British military and civilian headquarters
1946: Churchill delivers in the USA the "Iron Curtain" speech, virtually opening the "Cold War" against the Soviet Union
1946: Transjordan becomes independent
1946: Britain and the Soviet Union withdraw from Iran
1947: India and Pakistan become indepedent
1947: New Zealand becomes an independent country
1947: Dennis Gabor invents the hologram
1948: The Federation of Malaysia is born under British rule
1948: Ceylon becomes independent
1948: Burma becomes independent
1948: Israel becomes independent
1950: the first World Championship for drivers ("Formula One") is held, the first race being the British grand prix on the Silverstone circuit
1952: Elizabeth II becomes queen of Britain
Oct 1952: Britain explodes its first atomic bomb (Trimouille Island)
1953: Francis Crick and James Watson discover the double helix of the DNA
1953: New Zealand's Edmund Hillary and Nepal's Tenzing Norgay are the first explorers to reach the summit of Mount Everest
1954: Anglo-Persian Oil changes name in British Petroleum
1955: Greek Cypriots (EOKA) start fighting for unification with Greece
1955: Britain signs the anti-Soviet Baghdad Pact with Iran, Iraq, Pakistan and Turkey
1956: Britain grants Sudan full independence
Nov 1956: Britain, France and Israel attack Egypt, and the English pound collapses
1957: Malaysia becomes independent
1959: the British Motor Corporation introduces the "Mini"
1960: Cyprus becomes independent under president Makarios
1960: Nigeria becomes independent
1961: Kuwait becomes independent under the protection of Britain
1961: Amnesty International is founded by British lawyer Peter Benenson to promote human rights worldwide
1962: the Beatles debut
1962: Uganda becomes independent
1963: Kenya becomes independent
1963: The British government is rocked by the Profumo scandal
1964: Zambia becomes independent
1965: Rhodesia declares its independence
1965: Mary Quant launches the mini-skirt
1966: Botswana becomes independent
1967: Aden becomes independent
1967: Homosexuality and abortion are legalized
1967: The first "automatic teller machines" is deployed by Barclays Bank
1966: the British withdraw from Aden and marxists take over (South Yemen)
1968: the British withdraw from the Gulf and the United Arab Emirates are created
1969: the IRA begins a campaign of terrorism in Northern Ireland that will kill more than 2.000 people
1969: The "Monty Python's Flying Circus" comedy show debuts on tv
1969: Britain abolishes the death penalty
1971: the first Hard Rock Cafe` opens in London
1971: serial killer Harold Shipman begins a killing spree that will kill hundreds of people
1972: The first video-cassette recorder (VCR) is introduced by Phillips
1973: Britain joins the European Union
1975: the first oil is piped ashore from the North Sea
1975: Six economic powers meet in Paris (USA, Japan, Germany, France, Britain and Italy) forming the G6
1976: punk-rock
1976: the supersonic airplane Concorde, built by France and Britain, begins service
Jul 1978: Louise Brown is the first baby born through human in vitro fertilization, a technique invented by Robert Edwards
1979: Margaret Thatcher of the Conservative Party becomes Britain's prime minister and begins a program of privatization
1981: Racial riots at Brixton, London
1981: Lady Diana Spencer marries Prince Charles, heir to the throne
1982: Britain defends the Falkland Islands from an Argentinian invasion
1984: Alec Jeffreys invents the DNA fingerprint that can identify an individual
1985: 39 Italian football fans are killed by British hooligans at the Liverpool stadium
1987: the Montreal Protocol limits the use of substances that damage the ozone layer
1988: Colin Pitchfork becomes the first man to be convicted of murder on the basis of DNA fingerprint evidence
1989: 96 football fans died at the Liverpool stadium
1990: Margaret Thatcher resigns
1990: Mary Robinson is elected the first female President of Ireland
1990: Tim Berners-Lee of CERN invents the Internet protocol HTTP and the hypertext language HTML (i.e., the World Wide Web)
1991: Britain fights alongside the USA against Iraq
1994: the "Chunnel" between Britain and France opens
1996: the "mad cow disease" spreads in Britain and millions of cows have to be slaughtered
1997: Britain cedes Hong Kong back to China
1997: Tony Blair of the Labour Party is elected prime minister, the youngest prime minister since Lord Liverpool in 1812
1997: Joanne Kathleen Rowling publishes the first Harry Potter book, destined to become a world-wide phenomenon
1997: British biologist Ian Wilmut clones a sheep, Dolly.
1997: Lady Diana dies in a mysterious car accident
1998: Britain and northern Ireland agree on a solution for autonomy
1999: Scotland inaugurates its own Parliament
1999: NATO bombs Serbia to stop repression against ethnic Albanians in Kosovo
2000: the serial killer Harold Shipman, a doctor, is sentenced to life in prison for murdering 15 patients while working at a hospital, but is suspected to have killed between 215 and 260 people over a 23-year period, mainly elderly women, by lethal injection.
2000: Youstol Dispage Fromscaruffi dies
2000: Eva Morris dies at 115, the oldest British person of all times
2000: British and American biologists decipher the entire human DNA
2001: Britain fights alongside the USA against Afghanistan
2003: British Airways retires the supersonic jet Concorde
2003: Tony Blair and George W Bush order the invasion of Iraq to depose Saddam Hussein
2003: Tony Blair admits that Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction (which was the reason to invade Iraq)
2004: manufacturing accounts for only 18% of the British economy
2004: There are 1.8 million Muslims in Britain
2004: the unemployment rate plunges to 4.7%, the lowest in 30 years
2005: the price of oil reaches an all-time record
2005: Tony Blair is reelected and becomes the first Labour politician to be prime minister for three terms
2005: Four Pakistani suicide bombers kill 55 people in London
2005: the IRA (Irish Republican Army) gives up its armed struggle for a united Ireland
2006: Royal Dutch Shell posts the largest profit of any company in British history
2007: explosives-rigged cars are found in London
Jan 2007: Australian hacker Julian Assange launches the website WikiLeaks
2007: Joanne Kathleen Rowling's "Harry Potter" books have sold over 300 million copies worldwide
2007: crash of the stock markets worldwide, triggered by the crisis of USA sub-prime mortgage lenders
2005: Tony Blair resigns and is succeeded by Gordon Brown
2007: Britain has plutonium for 17,000 nuclear bombs
2008: Indian car manufacturer Tata buys Jaguar
2008: The British economy goes into a recession after 16 years of growth
sep 2008: Crash of the stock markets worldwide, triggered by the collapse of USA banks
oct 2008: The British economy shrinks for the first time in 16 years and the pound has its biggest one-day drop against the dollar since 1971 on Oct 24
december 2008: The London stock market loses 31% in 2008, the worst loss in 24 years
december 2008: The population of Britain is 61.4 million, the biggest increase in population in almost 50 years
september 2009: The British stock market posts the best three months in 25 years
may 2010: The Conservatives win elections, ending 13 years of Labour rule, and David Cameron becomes Britain's new prime minister, the youngest since 1812
jun 2010: A gunman kills 12 people in England
nov 2010: Unable to pay its debt, Ireland applies for a loan from the European Union
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