July 31st is the 212th day of the year (213th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 153 days remaining until the end of the year.
1201 – John Komnenos the Fat briefly seized the throne of the Byzantine Empire from Alexios III Angelos, but he was caught that night and executed.
1777 – The Second Continental Congress passed a resolution allowing French nobleman the Marquis de Lafayette to enter the American revolutionary forces as a major general.
1954 – A team of Italian climbers became the first to reach the summit of K2, the world’s second-highest mountain.
1975 – The Troubles: In a botched paramilitary attack, three members of the popular Miami Showband and two Ulster Volunteer Force gunmen were killed in County Down, Northern Ireland.
1991 – Soviet Special Purpose Police Unit troops killed seven Lithuanian customs officials in Medininkai in the most serious attack of their campaign against Lithuanian border posts.
Billionaire Mark Cuban turns 60
Action Star Wesley Snipes turns 56
Harry Potter Author J.K. Rowling turns 53
Actor Dean Cain turns 52
Actress Emilia Fox turns 44