February 16

Published in On this Day listing

  • 1919 Mark Sykes (39), diplomat and co-author of the Sykes–Picot Pact, which carved out the post-First World War Ottoman Empire between Britain and France, died in Paris, a victim of the Spanish ’flu pandemic.
  • 1886 ‘I decided some time ago that if Gladstone went for Home Rule, the Orange Card was the one to play. Please God it may turn out the ace of trumps and not the two’—Lord Randolph Churchill in a letter to Lord Justice Fitzgibbon, a fortnight after W. E. Gladstone had formed his third administration, with a Home Rule bill high on the agenda.

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