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On This Day ... the 17th October.

17th October 2014


Except for birthdays that fall on the 17th October and those people celebrating some kind of anniversary, the day may slip by unnoticed except for the fact that today, it falls on the ever popular week day Friday.  

However, if we look back over time and the multitude of previous 17th Octobers available to us then the day gets a little bit more exciting.

The very earliest entry found is on the History Orb website stating that on this day in 539 BC, King Cyrus The Great of Persia marched into the city of Babylon, releasing the Jews from almost 70 years of exile and making the first Human Rights Declaration. A bit later we see that in 1651 Charles II departs rather quickly from England in response to losing to Cromwell and, more recently, on the 17th October, 1860 Prestwick Golf Club held the First British Golf Open.

The BBC site reminds us that other notable and visibly striking images from this day include the black athletes silent protest at the Mexico Olympics in 1968; the Hatfield rail crash in 2000 and the Queen being welcomed by Pope Jean Paul at the Vatican in 1980.

We lost some notable figures on this day that included composer Chopin in 1849; English silent film actor John Stuart in 1979 and Four Tops singer Levi Stubbs in 2008. However, looking on the positive side we did gain Wycliffe Jean on this day in 1968; Jeanine Deckers aka The Singing Nun in 1933 and all round nice guy and Cheers bar regular George (NORM!) Wendt in 1948.

So if you’re not celebrating anything or you feel that today is a bit of a ‘nothing day’ then history will always provide ample opportunity to say that:

On this day, something poignant or amazing happened.

Jason Smith

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