It was on this day in 1588 that over 150 ships…carrying 8,000 sailors and 18,000 soldiers…began to leave Lisbon and headed towards the English Channel. (It would take two days for all the ships to leave the port.) The King of Spain had been given the Pope’s blessing to invade England and this attack force was hoping to accomplish exactly that. However, bad weather would hamper the voyage and it would take until the end of July before the fleet engaged any enemies. And that was just the start of their troubles: the British navy…commanded by Francis Drake…took a devastating toll on the Spanish Armada, with only 67 ships and about 10,000 men returning to Spain.
The first notable event that Wiki says happened on this day is “585 BC – A solar eclipse occurs, as predicted by Greek philosopher and scientist Thales, while Alyattes is battling Cyaxares in the Battle of the Eclipse, leading to a truce. This is one of the cardinal dates from which other dates can be calculated” and the most recent is “2008 – The first meeting of the Constituent Assembly of Nepal formally declares Nepal a republic, ending the 240-year reign of the Shah dynasty.”
A few other things that also happened on this day are:
1892 – The Sierra Club is formed.
1934 – The first quintuplets to survive infancy are born.
1964 – The PLO is formed.
2002 – Ice deposits are discovered on Mars.
Happy birthday to Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Sondra Locke, John Fogerty, Rudy Giuliani, and Gladys Knight.