Today is Friday, February 29, the 60th day of 2008. There are 306 days left in the year. This is a Leap Year Day.
Highlights in history on this date:
46 B.C. - An additional day of the year is first added every four years in February, with the introduction of the Julian calendar.
468 - St. Hilarius, the 46th Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, dies.
1528 - Patrick Hamilton is burnt at the state for heresy. It is said his death did more for the Scottish Reformation than the continuation of his life could have done.
1720 - Ulrica, Queen of Sweden, abdicates in favour of husband Frederick I, Prince of Hesse-Cassel.
1808 - French forces take Barcelona.
1832 - New Grenada, in South America, proclaims constitution providing for Republic form of government.
1872 - Young revolutionary attempts to assassinate Britain's Queen Victoria.
1892 - Britain and United States sign treaty on Bering Sea seal fishery.
1916 - German order for sinking armed merchantmen at sight goes into effect in World War I.
1920 - Czechoslovak Constitution is adopted.
1928 - US Colonel Harry L Stimson arrives in Manila to take over as Gov. General of Philippines.
1932 - Nazi revolt begins in Finland.
1944 - US troops invade the Admiralty Islands in Pacific in World War II.
1952 - Edgar Faure's ministry falls in France, and Antoine Pinay forms cabinet.
1956 - Pakistan becomes an Islamic republic.
1960 - Massive earthquake strikes Agadir, Morocco; Hugh Hefner, publisher of Playboy magazine, opens the first Playboy Club in Chicago.
1964 - US President Johnson dispels reports that the US was planning an extension of the war in South Vietnam.
1968 - The US President's National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders issues a report about the racial and social problems plaguing the nation.
1972 - South Korea completes the first phase of the withdrawal of part of its 48,000-man force from South Vietnam when the last contingent of a marine brigade landed at the port of Pusan.
1976 - Danish Parliament orders the razing of Christiania, a 'free city' in the centre of Copenhagen. The community, which owed its origins to the 1971 evacuation of army barracks in the area, was viewed as a refuge for militant groups, squatters and drug addicts.
1980 - Protestant gunmen kill Roman Catholic man and wound another in hit-and-run attack in Belfast, Ireland.
1984 - In gulf war, Iran says it shelled Basra and Iraq says it destroyed 50 Iranian boats.
1988 - New round of "war of the cities" starts in Iran-Iraq war.
1992 - An ethnic war in the central-eastern Nigerian state of Taraba continues, already killing 5,000 people since October 1991. Feuding between the Tivs, a fishing people, and the Jukuns, a farming community, has flared on and off over the issue of political power since 1959.
1996 - The US Senate confirms four-star Army general, Barry R. McCaffrey, to serve as the 'drug czar' of the Office of National Drug Control Policy.
2000 - Israel releases the memoirs of Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann, in which the overseer of the Holocaust minimizes his own role, but describes in pedantic detail the workings of the Nazi death machine. Eichmann was executed in 1962 by Israel.
2004 - Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide resigns and flies into exile after an uprising sends the country into chaos.
Gioacchino Antonio Rossini, Italian composer (1792-1868); Michelle Morgan, French actress (1920--); Ja Rule, US rapper (1976--).
Thought For Today:
Leap Year is when February has a day that's even rarer than a day in June --Anonymous.