1431 – In Rouen, France, the politcally motivated trial for heresy began against the teenaged Joan of Arc. Rouen was the main location of the English occupation, and they held the girl responsible for the coronation of the Dauphin, over the English claimant. She would be found guilty and executed in May.
1822 – The Prince of Portugal, Pedro, was living in Brazil and due to recent revolts, was being summoned back to Portugal by his father and the governing body. He was seen as a leader to the Brazilian people, and sympathetic to their independance. He was presented today with a petition with 8,000 signatures asking him not to leave. He stayed and was later named the first Emperor of Brazil.
1848 – Princess Frederica of Hanover is born to King George V of Hanover and Queen Marie. She was also styled Her Royal Highness in Britain, as he was a male-line great granddaughter of British King George III. Her family moved to Austria after her fathers deposition, but also spent time in England, where she was married, and lived part of the year with her husband. She was widely known for her charitable works, including homes for poor women, and for the blind.
1982 – A not-so-dead royal birthday today, with Her Royal Highness Catherine, The Duchess of Cambridge being born today. She is the wife of Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, son of the Prince of Wales, Charles, and third in line to the throne of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth Countries. Catherine gave birth to the couple’s first child, Prince George, in summer 2013, and her second pregnancy was announced in September of 2014.
1514 – The formidable Anne, Duchess of Brittany in her own right, died in Blois at age 36 from kidney stones. She had been Queen consort of France twice, as the wife to Charles VIII and Louis XII. She had done everything in her power to keep Brittany autonomous from France, but was unsuccessful, because after her death, her daughter with Charles, Claude, became Duchess of Brittany and was married to the French heir, Francis.
1873 – The deposed Emperor Napoleon III of France died in exile in England. He had been a President of the Second French Republic, until he staged a coup and was declared Emperor. He would actually rule for 18 years, until the monarchy was overthrown for the last time, and he was exiled.
1878 – The first King of a united Italy in 1200 years, Victor Emmanuel II died in Rome at age 57. He started as the King of Sardinia, but was able to conquer the other Kingdoms in the Wars of Italian Unification. He was called the Father of the Fatherland by Italians and was succeeded by his son, Umberto I.