Today In History, 8 February: What Happened On This Day

What happened today in history (8 February): Dr. Zakir Husain, Jagjit Singh, Mohammad Azharuddin were born, Mary Queen of Scots was executed, NASDAQ established, Taxi Driver premiered, and more.
This day in history (8 Feb): Birth Anniversary of Dr. Zakir Husain and Jagjit Singh
This day in history (8 Feb): Birth Anniversary of Dr. Zakir Husain and Jagjit Singh

Today in History, 8 February: The second week of the second month of 2023 has begun. February is known as the month of love, but many pivotal events in history also occurred during this month. 

So take a break from adhering to the Valentine's Week rules and take a look at the historical significance of today, 8 February.

The significance of 8th February isn’t just limited to "Propose Day." Many important events transpired on February 8.

Dive in to know what major events happened on this day (Feb. 8) in sports, politics and art, along with famous birthdays and deaths in world history.

Related: Today in History, 6 February

Historical Events On This Day

  • In 1587, Mary, Queen of Scots and a cousin of Queen Elizabeth I of England, was beheaded for plotting the assassination of her cousin.
  • In 1904, the Russo-Japanese attack began with the Battle of Port Arthur after a surprise torpedo attack by the Japanese.
  • In 1955, the Jagirdari system of land tenancy was abolished by the Government of Sindh, and 1 million acres of land were distributed among landless peasants.
  • In 1960, Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom issued an Order-in-Council stating that she and her family would be known as the House of Windsor and that her descendants would take the name "Mountbatten-Windsor".
  • In 1971, the US NASDAQ, the world’s first electronic stock exchange, was launched.
  • In 2014, the first McDonald’s restaurant, often viewed as a symbol of American capitalism, was opened in communist-governed Vietnam.

Sports Events Today

  • In 1994, Indian cricket all-rounder Kapil Dev set the world record for the most test cricket wickets with 432. Muttiah Muralitharan of Sri Lanka currently holds the record with 800 wickets.
  • In 1948, Canada beat Switzerland 3-0 to win the Olympic ice hockey title at the St. Moritz Winter Olympics.

Art and Culture Events Today

  • In 1915, The Birth of a Nation, one of the most controversial yet influential films in history, known for its blatant racism and positive depiction of the Ku Klux Klan, premiered.
  • In 1926, the Disney Brothers Cartoon Studios was renamed Walt Disney Studios.
  • In 1960, the Hollywood Walk of Fame was established.
  • In 1976, Martin Scorsese’s iconic film Taxi Driver, a morbid tale of loneliness and destiny starring Robert De Niro as a Vietnam War veteran determined to assassinate the US President, premiered.

Notable Deaths On This Day

Sr No

Death Year




Mary Queen of Scotland from 1542-67, the first woman to rule Scotland and became known for her controversial decisions that eventually led to her confinement and execution



Peter the Great, Tsar of Russian from 1682 to 1725 who revolutionized the country and transformed it into a powerful and modern empire



John von Neumann, Hungarian-American mathematician who pioneered the modern computer, game theory and nuclear deterrence



William Lyons, English motorcylcle enthusiast who co-founded the automobile company Jaguar



Kalpana Dutt, Indian independence revolutionary who participated in the Chittagong armoury raid

Famous Birthdays On This Day

Sr No

Birth Year




Jules Verne, French novelist, poet and playwright who’s best known for his popular fantasy books like Around the World in Eighty Days and Journey to the Center of the earth



Dmitri Mendeleev, Russian chemist and inventor who devised the periodic table of elements



Dr. Zakir Husain, Indian politician, statesman, freedom fighter and educationist who served as the President of India from 1967 to 1969 and also co-founded the renowned educational institution Jamia Milia Islamia



Tunku Abdul Rahman, Malaysian statesman and lawyer who served as the first Prime Minister of the country and is regarded as the founding father of Malaysia



James Dean, American actor regarded an cultural icon of teenage disillusionment and social estrangement thanks to his hard-hitting drama films like Rebel Without a Cause and East of Eden



John Williams, American music conductor, pianist, and trombonist who is considered the greatest film composer ever due to his iconic and instantly recognizable scores of Star Wars, Superman, Indiana Jones and Jurassic Park



Jagjit Singh, Indian musician, composer and singer who reinvigorated the Indian classical art music consisting of poetry, the Ghazal



John Grisham, American criminal lawyer-turned-author known for his popular legal thriller novels, many of whom have been adapted into hit Hollywood movies, like A time to Kill, The Firm and The Pelican Brief



Mohammad Azharuddin, Indian cricketer and former national team captain



Big Show, American professional wrestler and actor known for his imposing physique

Related | Today in History (6 February)

Related | Today in History (7 February)

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