Birthdays in History on February 17

  • 1490 Charles de Bourbon, officer/governor (Lombardy)
  • 1519 Francis, Duke of Guise, French soldier and politician (d. 1563)
  • 1581 Fausto Poli, Italian Catholic priest (d. 1653)
  • 1583 J Henry Alting, Dutch theologist
  • 1646 Pierre Le Pesant, sieur de Boisguilbert, French economist (d. 1714)
  • 1699 Hans Georg Wenzeslaus von Knobelsdorff, German architect (Sanssouci)
  • 1718 Matthew Tilghman, American Continental Congressman (d. 1790)
  • 1723 Tobias Mayer, "method of lunars" for longitude determination
  • 1740 Horace B de Saussure, Swiss physicist/geologist
  • 1752 Friedrich M Klinger, German playwright (Wirrwarr)
  • 1754 Nicolas Baudin, French explorer (d. 1803)
  • 1758 John Pinkerton, Scottish historian
  • 1774 Raphaelle Peale, US, painter (After the Rain-1823)
  • 1781 René-Theophile-Hyacinthe Lannec, France, inventor (stethoscope)
  • 1796 Philipp Franz von Siebold, German physician (d. 1866)
  • 1804 Samuel Read Anderson, Brigadier General (Confederate Army), (d. 1883)
  • 1816 Haller Nutt, Southern Plantation owner (d. 1864)
  • 1820 Elzéar-Alexandre Taschereau, Catholic cardinal (d. 1898)
  • 1824 William Farrar "Baldy" Smith, Mjr Gen (Union volunteers), (d. 1903)
  • 1836 Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer, Spanish poet (d. 1870)
  • 1837 Francis Jay Herron, Major General (Union volunteers), (d. 1902)
  • 1837 Sam[uel] van Houten, Dutch (lib) minister (child labor laws)
  • 1844 A Montgomery Ward, found mail-order business (Montgomery Ward)
  • 1848 Louisa Lawson, Australian suffragist and writer (d. 1920)
  • 1849 Selwyn Image, Bodiam Sussex, painter
  • 1854 Friedrich A Krupp, German arms manufacturer
  • 1855 Otto Liman von Sanders, German general in Turkey (WW I)
  • 1857 Samuel Sidney McClure, Irish-American newspaper editor/publisher
  • 1861 Princess Helena, Duchess of Albany (d. 1922)
  • 1862 Mori Ōgai, Japanese novelist and poet (d. 1922)
  • 1863 Fyodor Sologub, Russian symbolist novelist and poet (d. 1927)
  • 1864 Andrew Barton "Banjo" Paterson, NSW Australia, poet (Waltzing Matilda)
  • 1864 Jozef Murgaš, Slovak inventor (d. 1929)
  • 1867 William Cadbury, England, chocolate manufacturer (Cadbury)
  • 1870 Louis de Raet, Belgian economist/founder (Flemish People's Party)
  • 1874 Thomas J Watson, US, representative/founder (IBM)
  • 1877 Henri Vandeputte, Belgian author/poet (L'homme Jeune)
  • 1877 Isabelle Eberhardt, Swiss explorer and writer (d. 1904)
  • 1877 André Maginot, French politician (d. 1932)
  • 1879 Dorothy Canfield Fisher, US, novelist (Book-of-Month-Club)
  • 1880 Alvaro Obregon, general/president Mexico (1920-24)
  • 1884 Arthur Vanderpoorten, Flemish minister of Internal affairs (1940)
  • 1888 Otto Stern, German/US physicist (Stern-Gerlach-experiment, Nobel 1943)
  • 1888 Ronald Aburthnott Knox, English priest/writer (Viaduct Murder)
  • 1889 H[aroldson] L Hunt, Texas oil multi-millionaire
  • 1891 Georg Britting, writer
  • 1892 Theodor Plievier, German writer (Des Kaisers Kulis, Stalingrad)
  • 1903 Johannes Linthorst Homan, director of the queen in Groningen
  • 1904 Albert Kuyle, [Louis Kuitenbrouwer], Dutch writer (Jesus' Robe)
  • 1904 Hans Morgenthau, German political philosopher (d. 1980)
  • 1906 Galo Plaza Lasso, President of Ecuador (1948-52), head of OAS (1968-75)
  • 1907 Charles B Timmer, Dutch translator/writer (Russia Black on White)
  • 1912 Andre Norton, American author (d. 2005)
  • 1914 Albert Westerlinck, [Jose J M Aerts], Flemish literary
  • 1914 Per-Jakez Helias, writer/teacher
  • 1917 Abdur Rahman Badawi, Egyptian philosopher (d. 2002)
  • 1917 Guillermo González Camarena, Mexican inventor (d. 1965)
  • 1918 Charles A Hayes, (Rep-D-IL, 1983- )
  • 1918 Olive Gibbs, peace campaigner
  • 1920 Colin Franklin, doctor
  • 1920 Trevor Oswald Ling, religious studies professor
  • 1922 Enrico Banducci, American nightclub owner (d. 2007)
  • 1923 Alden Winship Clausen, Hamilton Ill, banker (President of World Bank)
  • 1924 Gevork Vartanian, Iran, Soviet intelligence agent (Operation Long Jump), (d. 2012)
  • 1929 Chaim Potok, American novelist (Promise), born in NYC, New York
  • 1930 Ruth Rendell, English thriller writer (Inspector Wexford novels), born in South Woodford, Essex
  • 1933 Craig Thomas, (Rep-R-Wyoming)
  • 1938 Mary Frances Berry, educator/head (US Commission on Civil Rights)
  • 1942 Huey Newton, Black Panther leader
  • 1944 Bernie Grant, British politician (Labour)
  • 1945 Willie J L Swildens-Rozendal, Dutch MP (PvdA)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1955 Mo Yan, Chinese novelist and nobel laureate (Red Sorghum Clan, The Republic of Wine), born in Gaomi, Shandong, China

Novelist Mo Yan
Novelist
Mo Yan
  • 1959 Aryeh Deri, Israeli rabbi and politician
  • 1968 Bryan Cox, National Football League player
  • 1978 Jacob Wetterling, American kidnapping victim
  • 1988 Natascha Kampusch, Austrian kidnapping victim