1189 - Philip II of France and Richard I of England begin to assemble troops to wage the Third Crusade.
1287 - The treaty of San Agayz is signed. Minorca is conquered by King Alfons III of Aragon.
1525 - The Swiss Anabaptist Movement is born when Conrad Grebel, Felix Manz, George Blaurock, and about a dozen others baptize each other in the home of Manz's mother in Zürich, breaking a thousand-year tradition of church-state union.
1643 - Abel Tasman was the first European to reach Tonga.
1720 - Sweden and Prussia sign the Treaty of Stockholm.
1749 - The Verona Philharmonic Theatre was destroyed by fire. It was rebuilt in 1754.
1789 - The first American novel, The Power of Sympathy or the Triumph of Nature Founded in Truth, is printed in Boston, Massachusetts.
1793 - After being found guilty of treason by the French Convention, Louis XVI of France was executed by the guillotine.
1861 - American Civil War: Jefferson Davis resigns from the United States Senate.
1864 - The Tauranga Campaign starts during the Maori Wars.
1887 - Brisbane receives a daily rainfall of 465 millimetres (18.3 inches), a record for any Australian capital city.
1893 - The Tati Concessions Land, formerly part of Matabeleland, was formally annexed to the Bechuanaland Protectorate which is now Botswana.
1969 - An experimental underground nuclear reactor at Lucens Vad, Switzerland, released radiation into a cavern, which was then sealed.
1972 - Tripura becomes a full-fledged state in India.
1976 - Commercial service of Concorde begins with London-Bahrain and Paris-Rio routes.
1977 - President Jimmy Carter pardons nearly all American Vietnam War draft evaders, some of whom had emigrated to Canada.
1985 - Because January 20 had fallen on a Sunday, Ronald Reagan's public inaugural ceremony (for his second term as President) was moved to Monday, January 21. Due to bad weather, the ceremony was held indoors in the Rotunda of the United States Capitol.
1997 - Newt Gingrich becomes the first leader of the United States House of Representatives to be internally disciplined for ethical misconduct.
1999 - War on Drugs: In one of the largest drug busts in American history, the United States Coast Guard intercepts a ship with over 4,300 kg (9,500 lb) of cocaine on board.
2002 - The Canadian Dollar sets all-time low against the US Dollar (US$0.6179).
2004 - Canada: The residence of reporter Juliet O'Neill is searched by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) investigating leaks concerning the deportation of Maher Arar.
2004 - NASA's MER-A (the Mars Rover Spirit) ceases communication with mission control. The problem lies with Flash Memory management and is fixed remotely from Earth on February 6.
2005 - In Belmopan, Belize, the unrest over the government's new taxes erupts into riots.
2007 - Awashima Marine Park in Japan catches a video tape of the rare frilled shark.
2008 - Black Monday in worldwide stock markets. FTSE 100 had its biggest ever one-day points fall, European stocks closed with their worst result since 9/11, and Asian stocks drop as much as 15%.
2008 - The Eyak language in Alaska becomes extinct as its last native speaker dies.
2009 - Icelandic Police use tear gas for the first time since 1949 and a number of officers are injured as protests in the capital Reykjavík amid 2008–2009 Icelandic financial crisis.