Famous Deaths on December 12

  • 884 Carloman, co-king of France (879, 882-884), dies
  • 1112 Tancred, monarch of Galilea/Edessa/Antioch, dies
  • 1204 Maimonides, [Moses Ben Maimon], Span/Egyptian rabbi, dies at 69
  • 1212 Geoffrey, Archbishop of York
  • 1263 Hakon IV, Gamli, King of Norway (1217-63), dies

Person of interestSelim II

1574 Selim II, Sultan of the Ottoman Empire (1566-74, dies of head injury after a fall at 50

Ottoman Sultan Selim II
Ottoman Sultan
Selim II
  • 1586 Stefan Batory, King of Poland (b. 1533)
  • 1600 John Craig, Scottish church reformer/James VI's court vicar, dies
  • 1677 Jacob Binckes/Benckes, Dutch admiral (Chatham), dies in battle
  • 1685 John Pell, English mathematician (b. 1610)
  • 1751 Henry St John, 1st Viscount Bolingbroke, English statesman and philosopher, dies at 73
  • 1754 Wu Jingzi, Chinese writer (b. 1701)
  • 1766 Johann Christoph Gottsched, German writer (b. 1700)
  • 1772 Johann Gottfried Seyfert, composer, dies at 41
  • 1777 Albrecht von Haller, Swiss experimental physiologist, biologist and author (Acadamy of Science), dies at 69
  • 1777 Reverend Benjamin Russen, executed at Tyburn England for rape

  • 1788 Joseph Gibbs, English composer and organist, dies at 88
  • 1789 John Ponsonby, Irish politician, dies at 76
  • 1790 Mikhail Shcherbatov, Russian philosopher and writer (b. 1733)
  • 1812 John Malchair, German-born English artist, violinist and composer, dies at 82
  • 1817 Emperor Tekle Giyorgis I of Ethiopia, (b. about 1751)
  • 1821 Phoebe Hessel, English woman who disguised herself as a man to serve in the British Army, probably to be with her lover, Samuel Golding, dies at 108
  • 1836 Giuseppe Farinelli, Italian composer, dies at 67
  • 1843 Willem I Frederik, King of Netherlands (1814-40), dies at 71
  • 1849 Marc Isambard Brunel, French-born English engineer (Thames Tunnel, father of Isambard Kingdom Brunel), dies at 80
  • 1858 Jacques Viger, French Canadian politician, 1st mayor of Montreal (1833-36), dies at 71
  • 1872 Willem Anne Schimmelpenninck van der Oye, Dutch politician, dies at 72
  • 1872 Edwin Forrest, American actor and philanthropist, dies at 66
  • 1877 Jose M de Alencar, Brazilian writer/minister of Justice, dies at 48
  • 1880 Michel Chasles, French mathematician (geometry), dies at 83
  • 1882 Robert Morris, 1st successful African American lawyer and abolitionist, dies at 59

Person of interestRobert Browning

1889 Robert Browning, English poet (Ring & Book), dies at 77

  • 1889 Viktor Bunyakovsky, Russian mathematician (b. 1804)

Person of interestJohn Thompson

1894 Sir John Thompson, fourth Prime Minister of Canada, dies of a sudden heart attack at 49

4th Prime Minister of Canada John Thompson
4th Prime Minister of Canada
John Thompson
  • 1912 Luitpold von Bayern, prince-regent of Bayern, dies at 91
  • 1913 Emperor Menelek II of Ethiopia (b. 1844)
  • 1914 Watkins Lewis Africa American lynched in Shrevport, Louisiana
  • 1920 Olive Schreiner, South Afr writer (Healing Imagination), dies at 75
  • 1920 Paul Lacôme, French composer, dies at 82
  • 1921 Henrietta Swan Leavitt, American astronomer (period-luminosity relation), dies at 53
  • 1922 John Wanamaker, American merchant (Wanamakers Department Store), pioneer in marketing and Postmaster General, dies at 84

  • 1923 Raymond Radiguet, French journalist/writer (Ball du Comte), dies at 20
  • 1926 Jean Richepin, French poet/writer (Contes sans morale), dies at 77
  • 1927 Heinrich Reitsch, composer, dies at 67
  • 1929 Charles Goodnight, American cattle baron (b. 1836)
  • 1932 Egon Richter, writer, dies
  • 1933 Theodore Moses Tobani, German composer, dies at 78
  • 1934 Thorleif Haug, Norwegian Nordic skier (b. 1894)
  • 1937 Alfred Abel, actor (Dr Mabuse, Metropolis), dies at 57
  • 1938 James McNeill, Irish politician, 2nd Governor-General of the Irish Free State, dies at 69
  • 1939 Douglas Fairbanks, American actor (The Mark of Zorro, 3 Musketeers, Robin Hood), dies from a heart attack at 56
  • 1941 Cesar Basa, Philippine Air Force and World War II hero (b. 1915)
  • 1946 Ben Carter, American actor (Crash Dive, Dark Alibi, Maryland), dies from diphtheria at 35

Person of interestPeter Fraser

1950 Peter Fraser, British-born New Zealand statesman and 24th Prime Minister of New Zealand (1940-49), dies of a heart attack following hospitalization with influenza at 66

New Zealand Prime Minister Peter Fraser
New Zealand Prime Minister
Peter Fraser
  • 1951 Mildred Bailey, American jazz singer (b. 1907)
  • 1952 Bedřich Hrozný, Czech orientalist and linguist (b. 1879)
  • 1956 Lorenzo Perosi, composer, dies at 83
  • 1957 Robert Frank Kurka, composer, dies at 35
  • 1959 Russell Simpson, American actor (San Francisco, Abraham Lincoln), dies at 82
  • 1961 Daiun Sogaku Harada, Zen founder of Sanbo Kyodan lineage, dies at 91
  • 1962 Leo "Syd" Sailor, American actor (Arizona Days, Waterfront), dies from a heart attack at 67
  • 1963 Yasujiro Ozu, Japanese film director (b. 1903)
  • 1964 H I "Sailor" Young, cricketer (left-arm bowler Eng v Aust 1899), dies
  • 1965 Johnny Lee, American actor (Song of the South, The Amos 'n' Andy Show), dies from a heart attack at 67
  • 1968 Tallulah Bankhead, American stage and film actress (Lifeboat, They Knew What They Wanted), dies of pneumonia at 65
  • 1968 Walter Robins, cricketer (19 Tests for England 64 wkts), dies
  • 1970 Louis Zimmer, Flemish astronomer and clock maker (Jubelklok, Wonder Clock), dies at 82
  • 1970 Doris Blackburn, Australian politician (Member of the Australian Parliament for Bourke), dies at 81
  • 1971 David Sarnoff, American radio and television pioneer (RCA, NBC), dies at 80
  • 1971 Frank Wolff, actor (Erotic Illusion, Last Gun), commits suicide at 43
  • 1971 Jack Barnhill, Northern Ireland senator, assassinated
  • 1971 John A Emmens, art historian/poet (Dog of Pavlov), dies at 47
  • 1976 John "Jack" Cassidy, American singer and actor (Oscar-He & She, The Eiger Sanction), dies in a fire at 49
  • 1976 Vinko Zganec, Croatian ethnomusicologist (b. 1890)
  • 1977 Baroness Clementine Spencer-Churchill (nee Hozier), widow of Sir Winston, dies at 92
  • 1978 Clifton Chenier, American blues singer (Bayou Blues), dies at 53
  • 1978 Fay Compton, actress (Othello), dies at 74
  • 1980 Jean Lesage, politician, premier of Quebec (b. 1912)
  • 1985 Anne Baxter, American actress, and singer (The Razor's Edge, All About Eve), dies of a stroke at 62
  • 1985 Ian Stewart, Scottish keyboardist, road manager, and co-founder of the Rolling Stones, dies of a heart attack at 47
  • 1987 Louis de Meester, composer, dies at 83
  • 1987 Enrique Jorrín, Cuban musician and composer (b. 1926)
  • 1987 Truman "Pinky" Tomlin, American singer and actor (Sing While You're Able, With Love and Kisses), dies from a heart attack at 80
  • 1988 John Canning, NY Post managing editor, dies at 56
  • 1988 Anthony "Tony Pro" Provenzano, American Mafia figure (b. 1917)
  • 1991 Eleanor Boardman, actor (Crowd), dies in at 93
  • 1991 Ken Keltner, American baseball player (Cleveland Indians), dies at 75
  • 1991 Lex Karsemeijer, Dutch tenor/choral dir (Sweet 16, Pro Musica), dies
  • 1992 Bernard CJ Lievegoed, Dutch anthroposopher (Free College), dies at 87
  • 1992 Jasu Patel, cricketer (29 wkts for India, best 9-69 v Aust), dies
  • 1992 Suzanne Lilar, Belgian essayist, novelist and playwright (b. 1901)
  • 1993 Gerard "Ge" Nabrink, Dutch anarchist/NVSH-founder, dies at 90
  • 1993 Jeremiah Sullivan, actor (Soldier, Double-Stop), dies of AIDS at 58
  • 1993 Jozsef Antall, historian/premier of Hungary (1990-93), dies at 61
  • 1994 Antoine Pinay, French PM (1952)/foreign minister, dies at 102
  • 1994 Donna J. Stone, American poet, dies of heart failure at 61
  • 1994 Herman H Felderhof, radio-announcer/head (NRU/NOS Radio), dies at 83
  • 1994 John Edward Caulwell Hearne, writer, dies at 68
  • 1994 Stuart Allen Roosa, astronaut (Apollo 14), dies of pancreatitis at 46
  • 1995 Andrew Olle, broadcaster, dies at 48
  • 1995 David Lincoln Lightbown, politician, dies at 63
  • 1995 David Saul Marshall, diplomat lawyer/politician, dies at 97
  • 1995 James Altgens, JFK assassination photographer, dies at 76
  • 1995 Lindsay Oliver John Boynton, furniture historian, dies at 61
  • 1995 Mary Bruce, American tap dance teacher, dies at 95
  • 1995 Mohyedin Alempour, tajik artist/journalist, dies at 50
  • 1996 Gerald Ian Lacey, architect/town planner, dies at 70
  • 1996 Jack Perry, businessman, dies at 81
  • 1996 Jean-Pierre Guerlain, cosmetics pioneer, dies at 91
  • 1996 Michael Geoffrey Corcos, medical researcher, dies at 77
  • 1996 Vance Oakley Packard, writer (Hidden Perseuders), dies at 82

  • 1996 Larry Gates, American actor (Guiding Light, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Body Snatchers), dies of leukemia at 81
  • 1997 Yevgeniy Landis, Russian mathematician (b. 1921)
  • 1998 Marco Denevi, Argentine writer (b. 1922)
  • 1998 Mo Udall, American politician (b. 1922)
  • 1998 Lawton Chiles, U.S. Senator from Florida (1971-89) and Governor of Florida (1991-98), dies at 68
  • 1999 Paul Cadmus, American artist (b. 1904)
  • 1999 Joseph Heller, American author (Catch-22), dies at 76
  • 2000 George Montgomery, American actor (b. 1916)
  • 2001 Jean Richard, French actor (b. 1921)
  • 2002 Dee Brown, American author (b. 1908)
  • 2002 Brad Dexter [Boris Milanovich], American actor (Macao, The Magnificent Seven), dies of emphysema at 85
  • 2002 Jay Wesley Neill, American convicted murderer (b. 1965)
  • 2003 Heydər Əliyev, President of Azerbaijan (b. 1923)
  • 2003 Joseph Anthony Ferrario, American Roman Catholic Diocese of Honolulu (1982-1993), dies at 77
  • 2003 Keiko, orca (killer whale), star of Free Willy (b. 1976)
  • 2005 Gebran Tueni, Lebanese politician (b. 1957)
  • 2005 Annette Vadim, Danish actress (b. 1936)
  • 2005 Robert F. Newmyer, American film producer (b. 1946)
  • 2006 Paul Arizin, American basketball player (b. 1928)

Person of interestPeter Boyle

2006 Peter Boyle, American actor, dies of multiple myeloma at 71

  • 2006 Kenny Davern, American jazz clarinetist (b. 1935)
  • 2006 Raymond P. Shafer, 38th Governor of Pennsylvania (b. 1917)
  • 2006 Al Shugart, pioneering American computer engineer and co-founder of Seagate Technology (b. 1930)
  • 2006 Lucien Goethals, Belgian composer, dies at 75
  • 2007 Ike Turner, American singer, former husband of Tina Turner (b. 1931)
  • 2008 Avery Dulles, Roman Catholic Cardinal, heologian (b. 1918)
  • 2008 Van Johnson, American actor (Brigadoon) always wore red socks, dies at 92
  • 2008 Tassos Papadopoulos, Cypriot former president (b. 1934)
  • 2010 Peter Pagel, German footballer (b. 1956)
  • 2010 Tom Walkinshaw, former racing driver and Formula 1 team owner (b. 1946)
  • 2013 Audrey Totter, American actress (Carpetbaggers, Set-Up, The Unsuspected), dies from a stroke at 95
  • 2013 Tom Laughlin, American actor and director (Billy Jack), dies of complications from pneumonia at 82
  • 2016 Jim Lowe, American DJ (WNEW) "King of Trivia", dies at 93
  • 2016 Walter Swinburn, English jockey (The Derby winner, 1981), dies after falling from a window at 55
  • 2017 Pat DiNizio, American rock vocalist (The Smithereens), dies from ill health at 62