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Portuguese king and heir assassinated

On February 1, 1908, King Carlos I of Portugal and his eldest son, Luis Filipe, are assassinated by revolutionaries while riding in an open carriage through the streets of Lisbon, the Portuguese capital. Carlos ascended to the Portuguese throne in 1889 after the death of his father, King Louis I. The kingdom Carlos inherited was beset with political stagnation and financial troubles. Severe eco... Read more >

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Japanese begin evacuation of Guadalcanal

On this day, Japanese forces on Guadalcanal Island, defeated by Marines, start to withdraw after the Japanese emperor finally gives them permission. On July 6, 1942, the Japanese landed on Guadalcanal Island, part of the Solomon Islands chain, and began constructing an airfield. In response, the U.S. launched Operation Watchtower, in which American troops landed on five islands within the Solom... Read more >

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Oxford Dictionary debuts

On this day in 1884, the first portion, or fascicle, of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), considered the most comprehensive and accurate dictionary of the English language, is published. Today, the OED is the definitive authority on the meaning, pronunciation and history of over half a million words, past and present. Plans for the dictionary began in 1857 when members of London's Philologic... Read more >

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Ayatollah returns to Iran

On February 1, 1979, the Ayatollah Khomeini returns to Tehran, Iran, after 15 years of exile in Iraq and France and takes control of the Iranian Revolution. Khomeini, a leader of the Shiite branch of Islam, was expelled from Iran in 1964 after calling for the overthrow of the shah of Iran and the establishment of an Islamic state. He continued to incite his followers during his exile, and in Fe... Read more >