William the Conqueror set sail to begin the Norman conquest of England. The Norman conquest would go on to be the advent of the United Kingdom as we know it today.
Pope Urban VII died just 13 days after taking his position, making his the shortest papacy in history.
French scholar Jean-François Champollion finished deciphering the Rosetta Stone and revealed his findings to the rest of the world.
The world’s first public railway using steam locomotive, the Stockton and Darlington Railway, is opened in north-east England.
The massive steam ship SS Arctic is sunk in the Atlantic Ocean with 300 people on board. While not the most famous, this marks the first great disaster in the Atlantic Ocean.
Albert Einstein published his paper “Does the Inertia of a Body Depend Upon Its Energy Content?” in a German physics journal, introducing the equation E=mc² to the scientific community.
The People’s Republic of China approved the design of the current Chinese flag.
Rachel Carson’s book “Silent Spring” inspired the United States government to found the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The Google search engine retroactively claims this day to be its birthday.
The Swedish-designed SMART-1 moon satellite was launched by the European Space Agency.
The Nasa Dawn probe was launched with the mission of observing the protoplanets Vesta and Ceres. It is currently orbiting the latter target, the dwarf-planet Ceres.