On This Day

What Happened in May 1753

Historical Events

Historic Publication

May 1 Publication of Species Plantarum by Carolus Linnaeus, and the formal start date of plant taxonomy adopted by the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature

  • May 6 French King Louis XV observes transit of Mercury at Mendon Castle
  • May 9 King Louis XV disbands French parliament
  • May 29 Joseph Haydn's first opera "Krumme Teufel" (The Limping Devil) premieres in Vienna

Famous Birthdays

  • May 8 Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, Spanish Catholic priest, and leader of Mexican independence, born in Pénjamo, Guanajuato, Viceroyalty of New Spain (d. 1811)

Phillis Wheatley

May 8 Phillis Wheatley, American poet who was both the second published African-American poet and first published African-American woman, born in West Africa (d. 1784)

  • May 12 Giovanni Battista Viotti, Italian violonist and composer, born in Fontanetto Po, Savoia, Kingdom of Sardinia (d. 1824)
  • May 13 Lazare Carnot, French politician, engineer and mathematician known as the Organizer of Victory in the French Revolutionary Wars, born in Nolay, Côte-d'Or (d. 1823)
  • May 24 Oliver Cromwell, decorated African American soldier who served with Washington in US War of Independence, born in Burlington, New Jersey
  • May 31 Pierre-Victurnien Vergniaud, French politician and police leader, born in Limoges, France (d. 1793)

Famous Deaths

  • May 26 Willem Maurits, Dutch count of Nassau and governor of Zeeuws-Flanders, dies at 73