457 Leo I became emperor of the Byzantine Empire.
1074 Pandulf IV of Benevento was killed battling the invading Normans at the Battle of Montesarchio.
1238 The Mongols burned the Russian city of Vladimir.
1301 Edward of Caernarvon (later King Edward II of England) became the first English Prince of Wales.
1478 Sir Thomas More, English statesman, humanist, and author, was born (d 1535).
1497 – The bonfire of the vanities occurred in which supporters of Girolamo Savonarola burned thousands of objects including cosmetics, art, and books in Florence.
1795 The 11th Amendment to the United States Constitution was ratified.
1804 – John Deere, American manufacturer (Deere & Company), was born (d. 1886).
1807 Battle of Eylau – Napoléon’s French Empire began fighting against Russian and Prussian forces of the Fourth Coalition at Eylau, Poland.
1812 – Charles Dickens, English novelist, was born (d. 1870).
1819 Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles left Singapore after just taking it over, leaving it in the hands of William Farquhar.
1842 Battle of Debre Tabor: Ras Ali Alula, Regent of the Emperor of Ethiopia defeated warlord Wube Haile Maryam of Semien.
1856 The Kingdom of Awadh was annexed by the British East India Company after a peaceful abdication of Wajid Ali Shah, the king of Awadh.
1856 – The colonial Tasmanian Parliament passed the first piece of legislation (the Electoral Act of 1856) anywhere in the world providing for elections by way of a secret ballot.
1863 The Royal Navy’s steam corvette HMS Orpheus, bringing supplies and reinforcements for the land wars, hit the Manukau Harbour bar and sank. Of the 259 aboard, 189 died, making it New Zealand’s worst maritime disaster.
1867 Laura Ingalls Wilder, American author, was born (d. 1957).
1870 Alfred Adler, Austrian psychologist was born (d. 1937).
1898 Émile Zola was brought to trial for libel for publishing J’Accuse.
1901 Arnold Nordmeyer, New Zealand politician, was born (d. 1989).
1904 A fire in Baltimore destroyed more than 1,500 buildings in 30 hours.
1907 The Mud March, the first large procession organised by the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS).
1922 Hattie Jacques, English actress, was born (d. 1980).
1943 Imperial Japanese naval forces completed the evacuation of Imperial Japanese Army troops from Guadalcanal during Operation Ke, ending Japanese attempts to retake the island from Allied forces in the Guadalcanal Campaign.
1956 Mark St. John, American musician (Kiss), was born (d. 2007).
1962 Garth Brooks, American singer, was born.
1962 Eddie Izzard, British actor and comedian, was born.
1962 – David Bryan, American musician (Bon Jovi), was born.
1962 The United States banned all Cuban imports and exports.
1967 – Bushfires in southern Tasmania claimed 62 lives and destroy 2,642.7 square kilometres (653,025.4 acres) of land.
1974 Grenada gained independence from the United Kingdom.
1979 Pluto moved inside Neptune‘s orbit for the first time since either was discovered.
1984 STS-41-B Mission – Astronauts Bruce McCandless II and Robert L. Stewart made the first untethered space walk using the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU).
1986 Twenty-eight years of one-family rule ended in Haiti, when PresidentJean-Claude Duvalier fled.
1990 The Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party agreed to give up its monopoly on power.
1991 Haiti‘s first democratically elected president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, was sworn in.
1991 – The IRA launched a mortar attack on 10 Downing Street during a cabinet meeting.
1992 – The Maastricht Treaty was signed, leading to the creation of the European Union.
1995 Ramzi Yousef, the mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, was arrested in Islamabad, Pakistan.
1999 – Crown Prince Abdullah became the King of Jordan on the death of his father, King Hussein.
2009 Bushfires in Victoria left 173 dead in the worst natural disaster in Australia’s history.
2012 – President Mohamed Nasheed of the Republic of Maldives resigned, after 23 days of anti-governmental protests calling for the release of Chief Judge unlawfully arrested by the military.
2013 – At least 53 people were killed when a bus and truck collided near Chibombo, Zambia.
2014 – The opening ceremony for the 2014 Winter Olympics is held in the Russian city of Sochi.
2014 – Over 350 people were injured in the anti-government unrest in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
2016 – North Korea launched Kwangmyŏngsŏng-4 into outer space.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.