The part of English law that is derived from custom and judicial precedent rather than statutes; or when referring to a marriage, one unrecognised by the church or civil authorities.
Fact of the Day
One in 10 fatal accidents in 16th-century England involved animals
Quote of the Day
"Nobody is healthy in London. Nobody can be. "
~ Jane Austen (Emma)
On This Day
350 General Magnentius deposes Roman Emperor Constans and proclaims himself Emperor.
1486 The Houses of York and Lancaster were united when Henry VII married Elizabeth of York (the eldest daughter of Edward IV).
1562 The Council of Trent was reconvened for its final time. It set out Catholicism's response to the Reformation.
1778 Captain James Cook became the first European to visit the Hawaiian Islands, which he named the Sandwich Islands.
1788 11 British ships with 800 convicts landed at Botany Bay, Australia, intending to found the first penal colony. They moved to a more suitable location eight days later.
1871 Wilhelm I was proclaimed German Emperor, 170 years to the day after Frederick I crowned himself King in Prussia.
1904 Hollywood's quintessential leading man, Cary Grant, was born in Bristol, as Archibald Leach.
1919 The Paris Peace Conference began. It resulted, among other things, in the Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations.
1936 Rudyard Kipling, Nobel Prize winner and author of The Jungle Book died. His ashes are buried in Poets' Corner, Westminster Abbey.