* 457 – Leo I becomes emperor of the Byzantine Empire.
* 1074 – Pandulf IV of Benevento is killed battling the invading Normans at the Battle of Montesarchio.
* 1301 – Edward of Caernarvon (later King Edward II of England) becomes the first English Prince of Wales.
* 1497 – The bonfire of the vanities occurs in which supporters of Girolamo Savonarola burn thousands of objects like cosmetics, art, and books in Florence, Italy.
* 1783 – American Revolutionary War: French and Spanish forces lift the Great Siege of Gibraltar.
* 1795 – The 11th Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified.
* 1807 – Napoleonic Wars: Battle of Eylau – Napoléon's French Empire begins fighting against Russian and Prussian forces of the Fourth Coalition at Eylau, Poland.
* 1812 – The strongest in a series of earthquakes strikes New Madrid, Missouri.
* 1819 – Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles leaves 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 defeats warlord Wube Haile Maryam of Semien.
* 1856 – The Kingdom of Awadh is annexed by the British East India Company and Wajid Ali Shah, the king of Awadh, is imprisoned and later exiled to Calcutta.
* 1856 – The colonial Tasmanian Parliament passes the second piece of legislation (the Electoral Act of 1856) anywhere in the world providing for elections by way of a secret ballot.
* 1863 – HMS Orpheus sinks off the coast of Auckland, New Zealand, killing 189.
* 1894 – The Cripple Creek miner's strike, led by the Western Federation of Miners, begins in Cripple Creek, Colorado.
* 1897 – Greco-Turkish War: The first full-scale battle takes place when the Greek expeditionary force in Crete defeats a 4,000-strong Ottoman force at Livadeia.
* 1898 – Émile Zola is brought to trial for libel for publishing J'Accuse.
* 1900 – Second Boer War: British troops fail in their third attempt to lift the Siege of Ladysmith.
* 1904 – A fire in Baltimore, Maryland destroys over 1,500 buildings in 30 hours.
* 1907 – The Mud March is the first large procession organized by the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS).
* 1935 – The classic board game Monopoly is invented.
* 1940 – The second full length animated Walt Disney film, Pinocchio, premieres.
* 1943 – Imperial Japanese naval forces complete 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.
* 1944 – World War II: In Anzio, Italy, German forces launch a counteroffensive during the Allied Operation Shingle.
* 1948 – Neil Harvey becomes the youngest Australian to score a century in Test cricket.
* 1948 – Sancheong-Hamyang massacre:Korean War
* 1962 – The United States bans all Cuban imports and exports.
* 1974 – Grenada gains independence from the United Kingdom.
* 1979 – Pluto moves inside Neptune's orbit for the first time since either was discovered.
* 1984 – Space Shuttle program: STS-41-B Mission – Astronauts Bruce McCandless II and Robert L. Stewart make the first untethered space walk using the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU).
* 1986 – Twenty-eight years of one-family rule end in Haiti, when President Jean-Claude Duvalier flees the Caribbean nation.
* 1990 – Dissolution of the Soviet Union: The Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party agrees to give up its monopoly on power.
* 1991 – Haiti's first democratically-elected president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, is sworn in.
* 1992 – The Maastricht Treaty is signed, leading to the creation of the European Union.
* 1995 – Ramzi Yousef, the mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, is arrested in Islamabad, Pakistan.
* 1999 – Crown Prince Abdullah becomes 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.