Today is the 302nd day of 2012. There are 64 days left in the year.
2011: The Commonwealth countries agree to change centuries-old rules of succession that put sons on the British throne ahead of any older sisters. So any hypothetical daughter of Prince William and Kate Middleton — now known as Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge — would have a prime place in history: the first princess to beat out any younger brothers and accede to the throne.
1836: The Federation of Peru and Bolivia is proclaimed.
1886: The Statue of Liberty, a gift from the people of France, is dedicated in New York Harbour by US President Grover Cleveland.
1916: Australian voters reject conscription for World War I by narrow margin.
1922: Fascism comes to Italy as Benito Mussolini takes control of the government.
1962: Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev announces he has ordered the withdrawal of Soviet missiles from Cuba.
1965: Pope Paul VI issues a decree absolving Jews of collective guilt for the crucifixion of Jesus Christ.
1971: House of Commons votes in favour of Britain's entry into European Common Market.
1974: Arab heads of state, including Jordan's King Hussein, issue declaration calling for creation of independent Palestinian state.
1989: More than 10,000 rally in protest of the government on the 71st anniversary of Czechoslovakia's independence; scores are beaten or detained.
1990: A coalition of noncommunist pro-independence parties wins the elections in Georgia, the last of the 15 Soviet constituent republics to hold such elections in 1990.
1998: Hurricane Mitch pauses over Honduras with 205 kph (120 mph) winds, sweeping away bridges, flooding neighbourhoods and killing hundreds of people.
2007: First lady Cristina Fernandez claims victory in Argentina's presidential election to become the first woman elected to the post.
2008: Former political prisoner Mohamed Nasheed defeats President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, Asia's longest-serving ruler, in the Maldives' first democratic presidential election.
Evelyn Waugh, British novelist (1903-1966); Ivan Turgenev, Russian writer (1818-1883); Auguste Escoffier, chef par excellence (1846-1935); Francis Bacon, British painter (1909-1992); Dr. Jonas Salk, U.S. doctor, developer of first polio vaccine (1914-1995); Bill Gates, US chairman of Microsoft (1955-); Julia Roberts, US. ctress (1967-); Ben Harper, rock singer (1969-).