It was on this day in 1633 that Galileo said that the Earth was the center of the Universe. He didn’t actually believe this, but rather the Catholic Inquisition had found him guilty of heresy for teaching that the Earth revolved around the Sun and his recantation was part of the sentence. He was also put under house arrest for the rest of his life, and all of his writings (past and future) were forbidden to be published. This ban would be in effect until 1718, when the Church allowed some of his books to be re-published. The rest of his manuscripts were removed from the Index of Prohibited Books by 1835.
The first thing that Wiki mentions happening on this day is “217 BC – Battle of Raphia: Ptolemy IV Philopator of Egypt defeats Antiochus III the Great of the Seleucid kingdom” and the most recent are from 2004: “Washington Metro train collision: Two Metro trains collide in Washington, D.C., USA, killing 9 and injuring over 80” and “Eastman Kodak Company announces that it will discontinue sales of the Kodachrome Color Film, concluding its 74-year run as a photography icon.”
A few other things that also happened on this day are:
1898 – US Marines land in Cuba during the Spanish-American War.
1940 – France surrenders to Germany.
1941 – Germany invades the Soviet Union.
1944 – President FDR signs the GI Bill into law.
1970 – Voting age in the US is lowered to 18.
Wishes for a happy birthday go out to Donald Faison, Bobby Gillespie, Cyndi Lauper, Lindsay Wagner, Todd Rundgren, Meryl Streep, Kris Kristofferson, and David Lander.