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Phonograph invented by Thomas Alva Edison, William Blake is featured, and more from Britannica

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Encyclopaedia Britannica | On This Day
August 12
William Blake

FEATURED BIOGRAPHY

William Blake

British writer and artist

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Thomas Edison

FEATURED EVENT

1877

Phonograph invented by Thomas Alva Edison

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MORE EVENTS ON THIS DAY

Lauren Bacall
2014: American actress Lauren Bacall—who was known for her portrayals of provocative women who hid their soft core underneath a layer of hard-edged pragmatism—died at age 89. [Test your knowledge of women in classic cinema.]
Sue, a dinosaur fossil (Tyrannosaurus rex)
1990: The most complete and best-preserved skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus rex was found on South Dakota's Cheyenne River Sioux reservation, and it was nicknamed Sue, after Susan Hendrickson, the paleontologist who discovered the dinosaur fossil. [Sort fact from fiction in our quiz about dinosaurs.]
John Lennon
1966: During a press conference, John Lennon of the Beatles apologized for saying that his band was “more popular than Jesus now”; the comment had sparked protests and album burnings. [Sort fact from fiction in our quiz about the Beatles.]
Berlin Wall opening
1961: East Germany began construction of the Berlin Wall, which served as a symbol of the Cold War, separating East Berlin from West Berlin until 1989. [Read about five famous walls, including the Berlin Wall.]

ALSO BORN ON THIS DAY

1930

George Soros

American financier

1954

François Hollande

president of France

1762

George IV

king of United Kingdom

1887

Erwin Schrödinger

Austrian physicist

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