What happened on this day December 13th

On This Day - December 13th

It's beginning to look a lot like... the perfect day to learn some facts! But, in the spirit of the holiday season, let's focus on December. In fact, let's focus on this very day! Here are some of the most important things to know about December 13th.

On this day

facts about sir francis drake

Francis Drake set sail.

In 1577, famed explorer Francis Drake first set sail from a port in England to circumnavigate the world for three years – on board his Pelican – not a bird, the name of his boat! He’d later rename it to the Golden Hind.

interesting facts about New Zealand

New Zealand was spotted for the first time.

In 1642, Dutch explorer Abel Tasman spotted the South Island of what we now know today as New Zealand. Originally, he called it Staten Landt. However, the name was changed a year later to Nieuw Zeeland. The name’s stuck, albeit the spelling has changed a little!

International Court of Justice

The International Court of Justice was established.

In 1920, the League of Nations established the International Court of Justice. The court was established in The Hague – and to this day, it’s depended on for a variety of important legal decisions.

the EU

New members joined the EU.

In 2002, the European Union announced that Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Estonia, Latvia, Malta, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia would become members. They officially became members on May 1st, 2004.

Saddam Hussein

Saddam Hussein was captured.

In 2003, fallen Iraqi President Saddam Hussein was captured near his home town of Tikrit. He was captured during Operation Red Dawn by US forces. He would eventually be hanged for war crimes, in an event that helped to end US President George W. Bush’s “War on Terror.”

Special Days Falling on December 13th

December 13th may not seem like much of a day for celebration, but, according to various people all over the world, it is a pretty important date! Here are some of the reasons why.
Flag of Malta

Malta Republic Day

Malta Republic Day, known nationally to many as "Jum ir-Repubblika" is celebrated across Malta every December 13th. It is an official holiday, meaning that schools and plenty of businesses are closed so that everyone can celebrate! The date marks the anniversary of Malta's republic coming into effect. Many people call it Freedom Day, too!

St. Lucia of Syracuse

St. Lucia National Day

Across Sweden and Norway, people celebrate the national day of their patron saint, St. Lucia – taking into account the fascinating life she led on the way to sainthood. St. Lucia of Syracuse, as she was known, was a tongue martyr who died tragically during persecution of Christian followers across the Roman Empire.

Horse Facts

National Horse Day

Time to saddle up! National Horse Day is celebrated annually on December 13th. It's a day to remember and honor the economic, historic, and cultural contributions that horses have made over the centuries and millennia! Whether you love horses or not, you cannot deny how important they have been and remain for people all over the world. If you have a horse of your own, give them a veggie treat or two and show them how much you love them!

This page was last modified on December 10, 2023. Suggest an edit