The almanac

By United Press International
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Today is Saturday, Jan. 18, the 18th day of 2014 with 347 to follow.

The moon is waning. The morning stars are Mars, Saturn and Venus. The evening stars are Jupiter, Mercury, Neptune and Uranus.


Those born on this date are under the sign of Capricorn. They include French philosopher Montesquieu in 1689; English physician Peter Roget, who compiled "Roget's Thesaurus," in 1779; American orator and statesman Daniel Webster in 1782; English author A.A. Milne, who wrote "Winnie the Pooh," in 1882; comedian Oliver Hardy of the Laurel and Hardy movie team, in 1892; actors Cary Grant in 1904 and Danny Kaye in 1913; American inventor Ray Dolby and filmmaker John Boorman (age 81), both in 1933; former Northern Ireland politician and Nobel Peace Prize laureate John Hume in 1937 (age 77); former baseball star Curt Flood in 1938; singers David Ruffin and Bobby Goldsboro (age 73), both in 1941; and actors Kevin Costner in 1955 (age 59) and Jesse L. Martin in 1969 (age 45).


On this date in history:

In 1778, James Cook became the first European to reach the Hawaiian Islands. He called them the "Sandwich Islands."

In 1871, William of Prussia was declared the first German emperor.

In 1943, Moscow announced the 16-month Nazi siege of Leningrad had been lifted.

In 1966, Indira Gandhi became prime minister of India.

In 1983, the International Olympic Committee restored Jim Thorpe's Olympic medals to his family. They had been rescinded for Thorpe's having played professional baseball. He won gold medals in 1912 in the pentathlon and decathlon.

In 1990, Washington Mayor Marion Barry was arrested in an FBI sting at a downtown hotel and charged with buying and smoking crack cocaine.

In 1996, Lisa Marie Presley, the daughter of Elvis Presley, filed for divorce from Michael Jackson after 20 months of marriage, citing irreconcilable differences.

In 1997, Norwegian Borge Ousland completed a 1,675-mile trek across Antarctica. It was the first time anyone traversed the continent alone.

In 2007, Venezuelan lawmakers voted to allow President Hugo Chavez to rule by decree for 18 months.

In 2010, Mehmet Ali Agca, who shot Pope John Paul II in 1981 and was later forgiven by the pontiff, was released from a Turkish prison.


In 2011, a suicide bomber detonated his explosives-laden vest in a group of police recruits in Tikrit, Iraq, killing at least 60 people and wounding 150 others.

In 2013, Algerian forces freed more than 600 hostages held by Islamic militants at a gas plant in In Amenas.

A thought for the day: "Don't compare yourself with anyone in this world. If you do so, you are insulting yourself." -- Bill Gates.

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