Today in history: Apr 27
1521: Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan was killed by natives in the Philippines.india Updated: Apr 27, 2006 12:12 IST
• 1521: Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan was killed by natives in the Philippines. Though he was killed in the Philippines, his ships continued westward to Spain, and accomplished the first circumnavigation of the world under the Basque navigator Juan Sebastian del Cano.
• 1759: Birth of Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797), English writer, who advocated educational and social equality for women and the author of the celebrated A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (She was the mother of the writer Mary Shelley).
• 1822: Birth of Ulysses S Grant (1822-85), US general, commander of the Union armies during the late years (1864-65) of the American Civil War and 18th president of the United States (1869-77). His Personal Memoirs sold more than 300,000 copies, provided President Grant’s family with $450,000 in royalties — the biggest payment for any book at that point in history. His memoir is now considered one of the greatest military memoirs ever written by an American.
• 1959: Commander Cawas Manekshaw Nanavati of the Indian Navy shot dead Prem Ahuja the paramour of his British wife Sylvia. This was the start of the most sensational crime story ever in India. Public opinion and sentiment was strongly in favour of Nanavati and the defence portrayed the crime as an accident rather than a premeditated murder. So great was the sympathy factor that in an amazing verdict the nine member jury at the Sessions Court in Bombay declared him not guilty by a eight-to-one majority. Terming the verdict as 'perverse' the judge held Nanavati guilty. (The case eventually led to the demise of the jury system of trial in India).
• 1992: The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was proclaimed in Belgrade by the Republic of Serbia and its ally, Montenegro. On the same day Russia and 12 other former Soviet republics were allowed entry into the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.