April 07, 2005
Today in history—April 7
529: Emperor Justinian I issues the first edition of the Codex, the first part of the Corpus Iuris Civilis.
1348: With a bull beginning, Karolus, Dei gracia Romanorum rex semper augustus et Boemi rex, Charles I of Bohemia creates the Charles University of Prague, the oldest Czech university.
1655: Fabio Chigi, who got his doctorate in law from the University of Siena, becomes Pope Alexander VII.
1739: Celebrated English highwayman Richard "Dick" Turpin is hanged for horse-stealing at York.
1795: France adopts the "meter" as a measure of distance. Experts immediately declare that American industry will be left behind if it does not adopt the metric system.
1827: One of the world’s great unsung benefactors, John Walker, invents the match.
1891: The same day that showman P.T. Barnum dies at Bridgeport, Connecticut, future toy titan Ole Kirk Christiansen is born at Filskov, Denmark. If you’re a parent, you’ll have stepped on many of his Lego blocks.
1908: Barrister Herbert Henry Asquith, later 1st Earl of Oxford and Asquith, takes office as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom with the largest Liberal majority in the party's history. It will be their last.
1922: The U.S. Department of the Interior signs the contract to lease oil reserves at Teapot Dome, Wyoming, to the Sinclair Oil Co.
1944: German Chancellor Gerhard Fritz Kurt Schröder, who will take his law degree at the University of Göttingen before turning to politics, is born at Mossenberg, Germany.
1969: The Internet is born, as "Request for Comments 1" is issued by the Advanced Research Projects Agency.
1998: Travelers Group and Citicorp announce a planned merger that will create the world’s biggest financial institution. The best name they can come up with is "Citigroup."
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