January is named after Janus, the Roman god of doorways and of beginnings and endings.
He is represented with a two sided head, one looking ahead and the other always looking behind. He symbolically represented that Rome was the first real civilization, looking back at those primitive cultures before them. Some Roman coins showed him with and without beards, even occasionally with four heads.
John Boorman, 77, filmmaker (Deliverance, Excalibur), born Shepperton, England, 1933.
Jason Segel, 30, actor (Saving Sarah Marshall, “Freaks and Geeks,” “How I Met Your Mother”), born Los Angeles, CA, 1980
A.A Milne 1882, Winnie the Pooh,
Cary Grant 1904 Hollywood actor, born Bristol, England
Bobby Goldsboro 1941 American Country and Pop songwriter/singer
· January in the Northern Hemisphere is the seasonal equivalent to July in the Southern Hemisphere and vice versa.
· January 1st, 1776, the first American flag, the "Grand Union" was presented. Betsy Ross later added the stars in place of the Union Jack.
· Leap years exempted, January 1st always begins on the same day as October 1st.
· In leap years, January always begins on the same day as April and July.
· The Chinese floral emblem of January is the plum blossom
· January is National Soup Month in the United States.
350 – Generallus Magnentius deposes Roman Emperor Constans and proclaims himself Emperor.
474 – Leo II briefly becomes Byzantine emperor.
532 – Nika riots in Constantinople fail.
1126 – Emperor Huizong abdicates the Chinese throne in favour of his son Emperor Qinzong.
1486 – King Henry VII of England marries Elizabeth of York, daughter of Edward IV.
1520 – King Christian II of Denmark and Norway defeats the Swedes at Lake Åsunden.
1535 – Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro founded Lima, the capital of Peru.
1562 – Pope Pius IV reopens the Council of Trent for its third and final session.
1591 – King Naresuan of Siam kills Crown Prince Minchit Sra of Burma in single combat, for which this date is now observed marked as Royal Thai Armed Forces day.
1670 – Henry Morgan captures Panama.
1701 – Frederick I becomes King of Prussia.
1777 – Representatives of the New Hampshire Grants declare the independence of the Vermont Republic from Britain.
1778 – James Cook is the first known European to discover the Hawaiian Islands, which he names the "Sandwich Islands".
1788 – The first elements of the First Fleet carrying 736 convicts from England to Australia arrives at Botany Bay.
1861 – American Civil War – Georgia joins South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, and Alabama in seceding from the United States.
1871 – Wilhelm I of Germany is proclaimed the first German Emperor in the 'Hall of Mirrors' of the Palace of Versailles towards the end of the Franco-Prussian War. The empire was known as the Second Reich to Germans.
1884 – Dr. William Price attempts to cremate the body of his infant son, Jesus Christ Price, setting a legal precedent for cremation in the United Kingdom.
1886 – Modern field hockey is born with the formation of The Hockey Association in England.
1896 – The X-ray machine is exhibited for the first time.
1903 – President Theodore Roosevelt sends a radio message to King Edward VII: the first transatlantic radio transmission originating in the United States.
1911 – Eugene B. Ely lands on the deck of the USS Pennsylvania stationed in San Francisco harbor, marking the first time an aircraft landed on a ship.
1913 – A Greek flotilla defeats the Ottoman Navy in the Naval Battle of Lemnos during the First Balkan War, securing the islands of the Northern Aegean Sea for Greece.
1915 – Japan issues the "Twenty-One Demands" to the Republic of China in a bid to increase its power in East Asia.
1916 – A 611 gram chondrite type meteorite strikes a house near the village of Baxter in Stone County, Missouri.
1919 – World War I: The Paris Peace Conference opens in Versailles, France.
1919 – Ignacy Jan Paderewski becomes Prime Minister of the newly independent Poland.
1919 – Bentley Motors Limited is founded.
1941 – World War II: British troops launch a general counter-offensive against Italian East Africa.
1943 – Warsaw Ghetto Uprising: The first uprising of Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto.
1944 – The Metropolitan Opera House in New York City hosts a jazz concert for the first time. The performers are Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Lionel Hampton, Artie Shaw, Roy Eldridge and Jack Teagarden.
1944 – Soviet forces liberate Leningrad, effectively ending a three year Nazi siege, known as the Siege of Leningrad.
1945 – Liberation of the Budapest ghetto by the Red Army.
1955 – Battle of Yijiangshan occurred.
1958 – Willie O'Ree, the first African Canadian National Hockey League player, makes his NHL debut.
1967 – Albert DeSalvo, the "Boston Strangler," is convicted of numerous crimes and is sentenced to life in prison.
1969 – United Airlines Flight 266 crashes into Santa Monica Bay resulting in the loss of all 32 passengers and six crew members.
1974 – A Disengagement of Forces agreement is signed between the Israeli and Egyptian governments, ending conflict on the Egyptian front of the Yom Kippur War.
1977 – Scientists identify a previously unknown bacterium as the cause of the mysterious Legionnaires' disease.
1977 – Australia's worst rail disaster occurs at Granville, Sydney killing 83.
1978 – The European Court of Human Rights finds the United Kingdom government guilty of mistreating prisoners in Northern Ireland, but not guilty of torture.
1983 – The International Olympic Committee restores Jim Thorpe's Olympic medals to his family.
1990 – Washington, D.C. Mayor Marion Barry is arrested for drug possession in an FBI sting.
1991 – Eastern Air Lines goes out of business after 62 years, citing financial problems.
1993 – For the first time, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is officially observed in all 50 states.
1994 – The Cando event, a possible bolide impact in Cando, Spain. Witnesses claim to have seen a fireball in the sky lasting for almost one minute.
1997 – In north west Rwanda, Hutu militia members kill 3 Spanish aid workers, 3 soldiers and seriously wound one other.
1997 – Boerge Ousland of Norway becomes the first person to cross Antarctica alone and unaided.
1998 – Lewinsky scandal: Matt Drudge breaks the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky affair story on his website The Drudge Report.
2000 – The Tagish Lake meteorite impacts the Earth.
2002 – Sierra Leone Civil War is finally declared over.
2003 – A bushfire kills 4 people and destroys more than 500 homes in Canberra, Australia.
2005 – The Airbus A380, the world's largest commercial jet, is unveiled at a ceremony in Toulouse, France
2007 – The strongest storm in the United Kingdom in 17 years kills 14 people, Germany sees the worst storm since 1999 with 13 deaths. Hurricane Kyrill, causes at least 44 deaths across 20 countries in Western Europe. Other losses include the Container Ship MSC Napoli destroyed by the storm off the coast of Devon, England
Actually, reading this list I think I’m going to find something else to cheer me up......