On July 18:
390 BC Roman-Gaulish Wars: Battle of the Allia – a Roman army was defeated by raiding Gauls, leading to the subsequent sacking of Rome.
64 Great fire of Rome: a fire began to burn in the merchant area of Rome.
1290 King Edward I of England issued the Edict of Expulsion, banishing all Jews (numbering about 16,000) from England; this was Tisha B’Av on the Hebrew calendar, a day that commemorates many Jewish calamities.
1334 The bishop of Florence blessed the first foundation stone for the new campanile (bell tower) of the Florence Cathedral, designed by the artist Giotto di Bondone.
1389 Kingdoms of France and England agreed to the Truce of Leulinghem, inaugurating a 13 year peace; the longest period of sustained peace during the Hundred Years War.
1656 Polish-Lithuanian forces clashed with Sweden and its Brandenburg allies in the start of the Battle of Warsaw.
1670 Giovanni Bononcini, Italian composer, was born (d. 1747).
1811 William Makepeace Thackeray, English author, was born (d. 1863).
1848 W. G. Grace, English cricketer, was born (d. 1915).
1855 New Zealand’s first postage stamps were issued. The adhesive, non-perforated stamps for the prepayment of postage were the famous ‘Chalon Head’ design that portrayed a full-face likeness of Queen Victoria in her coronation robes.
1857 Louis Faidherbe, French governor of Senegal, arrived to relieve French forces at Kayes, effectively ending El Hajj Umar Tall’s war against the French.
1862 First ascent of Dent Blanche, one of the highest summits in the Swiss Alps.
1863 American Civil War: Battle of Fort Wagner/Morris Island – the first formal African American military unit, the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, failed in their assault on Confederate-held Battery Wagner.
1867 Margaret Brown, American activist, philanthropist, and RMS Titanic passenger, was born (d. 1932).
1887 Vidkun Quisling, Norwegian soldier, politician and convicted traitor, was born (d. 1945).
1908 Mildred Lisette Norman, American peace activist, earned the moniker Peace Pilgrim, was born (d. 1981).
1909 Andrei Gromyko, Soviet diplomat and President, was born (d. 1989).
1909 – Mohammed Daoud Khan, President of Afghanistan, was born (d. 1978).
1914 The U.S. Congress formed the Aviation Section, U.S. Signal Corps, giving definite status to aircraft within the U.S. Army for the first time.
1918 Nelson Mandela, President of South Africa, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, was born.
1923 Jerome H. Lemelson, American inventor, was born (d. 1997).
1925 Adolf Hitler published his personal manifesto Mein Kampf.
1936 In Spanish Morocco, military rebels attempted a coup d’état against the legitimacy of the Spanish government, this led to the Spanish Civil War.
1937 Hunter S. Thompson, American journalist and author, was born (d. 2005).
1942 Bobby Susser, American songwriter and record producer, was born.
1942 World War II: the Germans test flew the Messerschmitt Me-262 using only its jet engines for the first time.
1944 World War II: Hideki Tojo resigned as Prime Minister of Japan due to numerous setbacks in the war effort.
1950 Glenn Hughes, American singer (Village People), was born (d. 2001).
1957 Sir Nick Faldo, English golfer, was born.
1963 Martín Torrijos Espino, former President of Panama, was born.
1965 Russian satellite Zond 3 launched.
1966 Gemini 10 launched.
1968 The Intel Corporation was founded in Santa Clara, California.
1971 Sarah McLeod, New Zealand actress, was born.
1976 Nadia Comăneci became the first person in Olympic Games history to score a perfect 10 in gymnastics at the 1976 Summer Olympics.
1982 268 campesinos were slain in the Plan de Sánchez massacre in Ríos Montt’s Guatemala.
1984 McDonald’s massacre James Oliver Huberty opened fire, killing 21 people and injuring 19 others before being shot dead by police.
1984 Beverly Lynn Burns became first female Boeing 747 airline captain.
1986 A tornado was broadcast live on KARE television when the station’s helicopter pilot made a chance encounter.
1992 The ten victims of the La Cantuta massacre disappeared from their university in Lima.
1994 The bombing of the Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina (Argentinian Jewish Communal Center) in Buenos Aires killed 85 people (mostly Jewish) and injures 300.
1995 The Soufriere Hills volcano erupted. Over the course of several years, it devastates the island, destroying the capital and forcing most of the population to flee.
1996 Storms provoked severe flooding on the Saguenay River.
1996 Battle of Mullaitivu. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam captured the Sri Lanka Army’s base, killing over 1200 Army soldiers.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia