The moon is full. This being the second full moon of the month, it's known as a "blue moon."
The morning stars are Venus, Jupiter and Saturn.
The evening star is Mars.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Sagittarius. They include Italian Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio in 1508; Irish satirist Jonathan Swift in 1667; novelist Mark Twain (Samuel Langhorne Clemens) in 1835; British statesman Sir Winston Churchill in 1874; actor Efrem Zimbalist Jr. in 1923 (age 78); Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman elected to Congress, in 1924 (age 77); actor Richard Crenna in 1927 (age 74); producer/TV music show host Dick Clark in 1929 (age 72); Watergate participant G. Gordon Liddy in 1930 (age 71); 1960s radical Abbie Hoffman in 1936; actor Robert Guillaume, filmmaker Ridley Scott and singer Paul Stookey, all in 1937 (age 64); playwright David Mamet in 1947 (age 54); singer/actor Mandy Patinkin in 1952 (age 49); rock singer Billy Idol in 1955 (age 46); and actor Ben Stiller in 1965 (age 36).
On this date in history:
In 1731, a series of earthquakes struck China. More than 100,000 people died.
In 1782, preliminary peace articles formally ending the American Revolutionary War were signed in Paris.
In 1939, the Russo-Finnish War started after the Soviet Union failed to obtain territorial concessions from Finland.
In 1975, Israel pulled its forces out of a 93-mile-long corridor along the Gulf of Suez as part of an interim peace agreement with Egypt.
In 1988, the Soviet Union stopped jamming broadcasts of Radio Free Europe for the first time in 30 years.
In 1989, rebel armed forces launched a fifth major coup attempt against Philippine President Corazon Aquino.
Also in 1989, Czechoslovakia announced an end to travel restrictions and said it planned to dismantle some of the fortifications along the Austrian border.
In 1990, President Bush offered to send Secretary of State Baker to Baghdad and to receive Iraq's foreign minister in Washington, D.C., in a bid for a diplomatic solution to the Persian Gulf crisis.
Also in 1990, the three Baltic republics -- Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia -- held an historic joint parliamentary session to plot their common course.
In 1992, Sen. Packwood, R-Ore., facing an Ethics Committee investigation of sexual harassment allegations, entered an alcohol-treatment facility.
In 1993, Israeli and Palestinian leaders met in the Gaza Strip in an effort to end violence that threatened the peace accord.
In 1997, the government of Prime Minister Vaclav Klaus of the Czech Republic resigned. Klaus's Civic Democratic Party had been accused of accepting contributions from foreign sources.
A thought for the day: Irish satirist Jonathan Swift wrote, "I never saw, heard, nor read that the clergy were beloved in any nation where Christianity was the religion of the country. Nothing can render them popular but some degree of persecution."