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30th May

1431 Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake as a heretic at Doven, France.

1498 Christopher Columbus set sail on his third voyage to discover South America.

1536 King Henry VIII of England married his 3rd wife, Jane Seymour, 11 days after he had his 2nd wife, Anne Boleyn executed.

1846 * Peter Carl Fabergé, Russian goldsmith.

1908 * Mel Blanc, US cartoon voice-over specialist and the voice of Bugs Bunny.

1909 * Benny Goodman, bandleader, clarinettist and child prodigy.

1911 The first Indianapolis 500 motor race was won by Ron Harroun.

1922 The Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC, was dedicated by Chief Justice William Howard Taft.

1949 * Bob Willis, former England cricket captain and fast bowler.

1959 The first hovercraft designed by Sir Christopher Cockerell was launched.

1967 The King of Jordan and President Abdel Nasser of Egypt signed a joint defence agreement in case of a conflict with Israel.

1972 The Official IRA announces a ceasefire, but the Provisional IRA says it will continue fighting until the British leave Northern Ireland completely.

1990 The French Government banned imports of British beef and live cattle because of fears over BSE or "mad cow" disease.

1998 An earthquake in Northern Afghanistan (and subsequent aftershocks) killed an estimated 5,000 and injured at least 1,500. A quake on Feb. 4 in the same area had killed about 2,300.

2001 Former French Foreign Minister Roland Dumas was sentenced to six months in prison over the country's biggest political scandal in recent history.

xxxx * = Date of birth

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