Birthdays in History on August 20

  • 1377 Shahrukh Mirza, Ruler of Persia and Transoxonia (1405-47), born in Samarkand, Uzbekistan (d. 1447)
  • 1517 Antoine Perrenot de Granvelle, Spanish cardinal and viceroy of Naples (1571-75), born in Besançon, France (d. 1586)
  • 1526 Peter Opmeer, Dutch church historian and humanist (Historia Martyrum) (d. 1595)
  • 1625 Thomas Corneille, French playwright (Timocrates), born in Rouen, France (d. 1709)
  • 1632 Louis Bourdaloue, French Jesuit preacher, born in Bourges, France (d. 1704)
  • 1637 Cornelis Van Aerssen, Dutch governor of Suriname (1638-88), born in The Hague, Netherlands (d. 1688)
  • 1665 Bernardus Smijtegelt, Dutch vicar (Gekrookte Reed), born in Goes, Netherlands (d. 1739)
  • 1702 Stepan F graaf Apraksin, Russian general-fieldmarshal (d. 1758)
  • 1710 Thomas Simpson, English mathematician (rule of Simpson), born in Sutton Cheney, Leicestershire (d. 1761)
  • 1719 Charles-François de Broglie, French soldier and diplomat, marquis de Ruffec, born in Paris (d. 1791)
  • 1719 Christian Mayer, Czech Catholic priest and astronomer, born in Modřice, Moravia (d. 1783)
  • 1764 Charles F Bentinck, Dutch minister of Colonies
  • 1778 Bernardo O'Higgins, Chillán, Chile, South American independence leader who freed Chile from Spanish rule (1817-1823 Supreme Director of Chile)

Fabian Gottlieb von BellingshausenFabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen (1779-1852)

Russian explorer who discovered the continent of Antarctica, born in Osel, Estonia

  • 1779 Jöns Jakob Berzelius, Swedish chemist, born in Linköping, Sweden (d. 1848)
  • 1785 Oliver Hazard Perry, American Naval hero (Battle of Lake Erie), born in South Kingstown, Rhode Island (d. 1819)
  • 1799 Heinrich von Gagern, German liberal politician, born in Bayreuth, Bavaria, Germany (d. 1880)
  • 1802 Cadwalader Ringgold, American Commander (Union Navy), born in Washington County, Maryland (d. 1867)
  • 1811 Gilman Marston, American Brigadier General (Union Army) and politician (R-NH), born in Orford, New Hampshire (d. 1890)
  • 1824 Absalom Baird, American Brevet Major General (Union Army), born in Rockland, Maine (d. 1905)
  • 1832 Thaddeus S. C. Lowe, American aeronaut and inventor, born in Jefferson Mills, Coos County, New Hampshire (d. 1913)

Benjamin HarrisonBenjamin Harrison (1833-1901)

23rd President of the United States (Republican: 1889-93), born in North Bend, Ohio

  • 1842 Juliaan de Vriendt, Flemish painter, born in Ghent, Belgium (d. 1935)
  • 1845 Albert Chmielowski, Polish Catholic Saint, born in Igołomia, Małopolskie, Congress Poland (d. 1916)
  • 1847 Bolesław Prus, Polish writer (The Outpost), born in Hrubieszów, Congress Poland (d. 1912)
  • 1855 Innokenti F Annenski, Russian poet and interpreter (Laodania), born in Omsk, Russian Empire (d. 1909) [NS Sept 1]
  • 1856 Jakub Bart-Ćišinski, Sorbian writer, born in Panschwitz-Kuckau, Germany (d. 1909)
  • 1860 Raymond Poincaré, French president and Prime Minister (1912), born in Bar-le-Duc, France (d. 1934)
  • 1873 Eliel Saarinen, Finnish-American architect (GM Tech Institute, Mich), born in Rantasalmi, Finland (d. 1950)
  • 1881 Edgar Albert Guest, English-American poet and newspaperman, born in Birmingham, England (d. 1959)
  • 1885 Dino Campana, Italian poet (Canti orfici), born in Marradi, Italy (d. 1932)
  • 1886 Paul Tillich, German-American theologist (Die sozial Entscheidung), born in Starzeddel, Brandenburg, Germany (d. 1965)
  • 1890 H. P. Lovecraft, American horror writer (At the Mountains of Madness, Weird Tales), born in Providence, Rhode Island (d. 1937)
  • 1897 Tarjei Vesaas, Norwegian poet and author (Det Store Spelet), born in Vinje, Telemark, Norway (d. 1970)
  • 1898 Gerard Kraus, Dutch psychiatrist and director Santpoort (Insanity in Netherlands) (d. 1956)
  • 1898 Leopold Infeld, Polish nuclear physicist (Whom the God's Love), born in Kraków, Poland (d. 1968)
  • 1898 Vilhelm Moberg, Swedish author (The Emigrants) and historian, born in Moshultamåla, Sweden (d. 1973)
  • 1899 Hanns Lilje, German Lutheran bishop and antifascist (Church und Welt), born in Hanover, Germany (d. 1977)

Salvatore QuasimodoSalvatore Quasimodo (1901-1968)

Italian poet, critic and translator (Nobel 1959), born in Modica, Italy

  • 1902 Ernest Marke, Sierra Leonean seaman and club owner (d. 1995)
  • 1904 Jaap [Jacobus Albertus Wilhelmus] Burger, Dutch politician and chairman (PvdA), born in Willemstad, Netherlands (d. 1986)
  • 1905 Jean Gebser, German-born author, linguist, and poet, born in Poznań, Poland (d. 1973)
  • 1907 Stanley Devon, British photographer (British press photographer of the year 1948, 50) (d. 1995)
  • 1908 John Reginald Bevins, British Conservative politician, born in Liverpool, Lancashire (d. 1996)
  • 1908 Kingsley Davis, American sociologist and demographer (coined the term "population explosion"), born in Tuxedo, Texas (d. 1997)
  • 1910 Eero Saarinen, Finnish-American architect (IBM Building, MIT Chapel), born in Kirkkonummi, Finland (d. 1961)
  • 1912 Philip Kapleau, American Zen teacher and founder (Rochester Zen Center in New Haven), born in New Haven, Connecticut (d. 2004)

Jacqueline SusannJacqueline Susann (1918-1974)

American author (Valley of the Dolls), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

  • 1922 Tetsuzo Akutsu, Japanese surgeon who built the first artificial heart, born in Japan (d. 2007)
  • 1931 Bernhard "Bernd" Becher, German artist and photographer (industrialist builder 19th/20th), born in Siegen, Germany (d. 2007)
  • 1932 Vasily Aksyonov, Soviet-Russian novelist (The Burn), born in Kazan, Soviet Union (d. 2009)
  • 1933 Don Fuqua, American Democratic politician (Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Florida), born in Jacksonville, Florida
  • 1933 George J. Mitchell, American lawyer and politician (Senate Majority Leader 1989-95), born in Waterville, Maine
  • 1935 Dulcie September, South African teacher and anti-apartheid political activist, born in Athlone, Western Cape, South Africa (d. 1988)
  • 1935 Ron Paul, American physician, author and politician (US Representative from Texas, 1975-77, 1979-85, 1997-2013; 3-time presidential candidate - 1988, 2008, 2012), born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • 1936 Hideki Shirakawa, Japanese chemist (Nobel Prize 2000 - discovery and development of conductive polymers), born in Tokyo
  • 1937 Corrie Moret-de Jong, Dutch politician (CDA)
  • 1938 Alain Vivien, French Socialist Party politician (MILS, French Mission Interministérielle pour la Lutte contre les Sectes Chairman 1998-2002), born in Melun, France
  • 1938 Jean-Loup Chrétien, French cosmonaut (T-6, TM-7, STS 86), born in La Rochelle, France
  • 1940 Rubén Hinojosa, American politician (Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Texas), born in Edcouch, Texas

Slobodan MiloševićSlobodan Milošević (1941-2006)

President of Serbia (1991-97) and Yugoslavia (1997-2000), born in Pozarevac, Yugoslavia

  • 1941 William H. Gray III, American politician (Rep-D-PA, 1978-1991), born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana (d. 2013)

Rajiv GandhiRajiv Gandhi (1944-1991)

Prime Minister of India (1984-89), born in Bombay, British India

  • 1946 N.R. Narayana Murthy, Indian industrialist and co-founder (Infosys), born in Shidlaghatta, Kolar district, India
  • 1951 Greg Bear, American sci-fi author (2 Hugos, Eon, Eternity), born in San Diego, California (d. 2022)
  • 1951 Svetlana Oktyabrevna Omelchenko, Russian cosmonaut
  • 1960 Sally Yates, American lawyer and Acting Attorney General (Jan 2017), born in Atlanta, Georgia
  • 1961 Greg Egan, Australian science fiction and hard science author, born in Perth, Australia
  • 1962 Steve Daines, American politician (Senator-R-Montana 2015-), born in Los Angeles, California
  • 1975 Marcus Mastin, American author, born in Carthage, New York
  • 1975 Marianne Garvey, American reporter
  • 1994 Miracle the white buffalo, an extremely rare white, non-albino buffalo calf, born in Janesville Wisconsin
  • 2003 Prince Gabriel of Belgium, second child of King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium, born in Erasmus Hospital, Anderlecht, Brussels, Belgium