14 January, 1900 – Premiere of Giacomo Puccini's opera Tosca

The opera Tosca – a psychological drama of deceit and doubt composed by Giacomo Puccini, one of the greatest exponents of operatic realism – made its world premiere in Rome's Costanzi Theatre on this day in 1900.

15 January, 1759 – British Museum opened to the public

Established by an act of Parliament in 1753, the British Museum – which counts among its world-renowned antiquities and archaeological holdings the Elgin Marbles and the Rosetta Stone – opened to the public this day in 1759.

16 January, 1991– Beginning of Persian Gulf War

The Persian Gulf War, triggered by Iraq's occupation of Kuwait in August 1990, began on this day in 1991 with a U.S.-led air offensive against Iraq that continued until a cease-fire was declared on February 28.

17 January, 1893 – Hawaiian monarchy overthrown

Acting for Hawaiian sugar interests and their American allies, a committee led by Sanford Ballard Dole deposed Hawaiian Queen Liliuokalani this day in 1893 and installed a provisional government with Dole as president.

18 January, 1871 - German Empire established

The German Empire, forged as a result of diplomacy rather than an outpouring of popular nationalist feeling, was founded this day in 1871 in the aftermath of three successful wars by the North German state of Prussia.

19 January, 1966 – Rule in India transferred to Indira Gandhi

Following the sudden death of Indian Premier Lal Bahadur Shastri eight days earlier, Indira Gandhi became prime minister of India on this day in 1966, assuming the office first held by her father, Jawaharlal Nehru.

20 January, 2009- Barack Obama sworn in as president

On this day in 2009, Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th president of the United States, becoming the first African American to hold the office.