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Here is what I saw at the end of the page when I did a Google search on Edmund Burke …
This functionality is available in Google News. I did not see it immediately in Google Book Search, although book content is contributing to the timeline.
I tried a few names, but it only comes up for some. In my few attempts they seemed to be pre-20th Century names.
As Google develops richer book/magazine indexes and retrospective news indexes, it will be interesting to see what services are built over these resources.
There is a qualifying note: “Dates associated with search results are estimated and are determined automatically by a computer program.”