Birthdays in History on December 18

  • 1418 Albert VI, Archduke of Austria, born in Vienna, Austria (d. 1463)
  • 1507 Ōuchi Yoshitaka, Japanese warlord (d. 1551)
  • 1602 Simonds d'Ewes, English antiquarian and politician (d. 1650)
  • 1610 Charles Du Fresne Du Cange, French scholar and philologist
  • 1620 Heinrich Roth, German Sanskrit scholar (d. 1668)
  • 1633 Adriaen Melar, Flemish engraver, baptized
  • 1633 Willem van de Velde the Young, Dutch seascape painter, baptized
  • 1635 Antonius Matthaeus, Dutch lawyer and historian
  • 1661 Christopher Polhem, Swedish scientist and inventor (d. 1751)
  • 1662 James Douglas, 2nd Duke of Queensberry, Scottish politician (d. 1711)
  • 1725 Johann Salomo Semler, German historian and Bible commentator (d. 1791)
  • 1760 Knud Lyne Rahbek, Danish literary figure (Om sku skuespillerkunsten) (d. 1830)

Joseph GrimaldiJoseph Grimaldi (1778-1837)

English pantomimist and the "greatest clown in history", born in London

  • 1803 William Allen, American politician (Rep, Governor of Ohio 1874-76), born in Edenton, North Carolina (d. 1879)
  • 1811 Alexander Sandor Asboth, Hungarian-American Brevet Major General (Union Army), born in Keszthely, Hungary (d. 1868)
  • 1816 Alfred Elzey Jones, Major General (Confederate Army), (d. 1871)
  • 1819 Yakov Petrovich Polonsky, Russian Romantic poet (Stichotvorenija), born in Ryazan, Russia (d. 1898)
  • 1825 Charles Griffin, American Major General (Union Army), born in Granville, Ohio (d. 1867)
  • 1826 Alexandre Chatrian [wrote as Erckmann-Chatrian jointly with Émile Erckmann], French writer (L'ami Fritz), born in Abreschviller, France (d. 1890)
  • 1826 Mercer Brooke John, (Confederate Navy), (d. 1906)
  • 1835 George Dashiell Bayard, American Brigadier General (Union Army), born in Seneca Falls, New York (d. 1862)
  • 1835 Lyman Abbott, American theologian and author, born in Roxbury, Massachusetts (d. 1922)
  • 1837 Adolf Daens, Flemish priest, politician and founder of the Daensist movement, born in Aalst, Belgium (d. 1907)
  • 1844 Lujo [Ludwig J von] Brentano, German economist
  • 1856 Graciano López Jaena, Filipino journalist (La Solidaridad), orator, social reformist, and national hero, born in Jaro, Captaincy General of the Philippines, Spanish Empire (d. 1896)

J. J. ThomsonJ. J. Thomson (1856-1940)

English physicist who discovered the electron (Nobel 1906), born in Manchester, England

Franz FerdinandFranz Ferdinand (1863-1914)

Archduke of Austria whose assassination in 1914 led to declarations of war in WWI, born in Graz, Austria

  • 1867 Antoon van Welie, Dutch painter, born in The Hague, Netherlands (d. 1956)
  • 1870 Saki [Hector Hugo Munro], British writer (Reginald, When William Came), born in Akyab, British Burma (d. 1916)
  • 1873 Francis Burton Harrison, American political figure (d. 1957)

Joseph StalinJoseph Stalin (1878-1953)

Dictator and General Secretary of the Soviet Union (1922-53), born in Gori, Tiflis Governorate, Russian Empire

  • 1879 Paul Klee, Münchenbuchsee Switzerland, Swiss-German abstract painter (Twittering Machine)
  • 1888 Robert Moses, American Parks official (oversaw rebuilding of Long Island & NYC parks & roads), born in New Haven, Connecticut (d. 1981)
  • 1890 Edwin Howard Armstrong, American radio pioneer inventor (FM), born in NYC, New York (d. 1954)
  • 1897 Fernand J. Collin, Belgian economist and banker
  • 1898 Jacob Kruijt, Dutch sociologist
  • 1907 Christopher Fry, English playwright (Ring Around the Moon), born in Bristol, England (d. 2005)
  • 1911 Helen Vlachos, Greek newspaper publisher (closed her newspapers in protest at military junta), born in Athens, Greece (d. 1995)
  • 1912 Benjamin O. Davis Jr., American Air Force General during WWII, born in Washington D.C. (d. 2002)
  • 1913 Alfred Bester, American sci-fi author (Deceivers, Starlight), born in New York City (d. 1987)

Willy BrandtWilly Brandt (1913-1992)

German statesman, leader of the SPD party (1964-1987) and Chancellor of West Germany (1969-74, Nobel 1971), born in Lübeck, Germany

  • 1914 Jerry Zipkin, American socialite (friend of Nancy Reagan), born in New York City (d. 1995)
  • 1923 Lotti van der Gaag, Dutch sculptor and painter, born in The Hague, Netherlands (d. 1999)
  • 1927 Ramsey Clark, American lawyer, US Attorney General (1967-69) and activist, born in Dallas, Texas (d. 2021)
  • 1927 Roméo LeBlanc, Canadian politician, 25th Governor General of Canada (1995-99), born in Memramcook, New Brunswick (d. 2009)
  • 1927 Sterling Lanier, American writer (Hiero's Journey), born in New York City (d. 2007)
  • 1928 Józef Glemp, Polish cardinal, born in Inowrocław, Poland (d. 2013)
  • 1931 Alison Plowden, English historian (d. 2007)
  • 1933 Arthur Leigh Allen, American suspected Zodiac serial killer (d. 1992)
  • 1934 Boris Volynov, Soviet cosmonaut (Soyuz 5, 21), born in Irkutsk, Siberia
  • 1934 John Bingham, Lord Lucan, British peer suspected of murdering his nanny who disappeared, born in London (presumed dead)
  • 1935 Bonno Spieker, Dutch 2nd Chamber member (PvdA), born in Delfzijl, Netherlands (d. 2017)
  • 1939 Christoffel "Stoffel" van de Merwe, South African minister of Education
  • 1939 Harold E. Varmus, American scientist (1989 Nobel Prize for Medicine or Physiology for cellular origin of retroviral oncogenes.), born in Oceanside, New York
  • 1939 Michael J. Moorcock, English sci-fi author (Alien Heat, Bull & Spear), born in London, England
  • 1940 Bramwell Morrison, Canadian member of children's music group Sharon, Lois & Bram, born in Toronto, Ontario
  • 1941 William, English Prince of Gloucester and grandson of George V, born in Hadley Common, England (d. 1972)
  • 1945 Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev, King of Nepal (1972-2001), born in Kathmandu, Nepal (d. 2001)
  • 1946 Stephen (Steve) Biko, South African anti-apartheid activist, born in Ginsberg Township (d. 1977)
  • 1947 Eddie Antar, American businessman (Crazy Eddie Electronics Store), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2016)
  • 1947 Judy Heumann, American disability rights activist, and author, born in Brooklyn, New York
  • 1948 Edmund "Ed" Kemper, American serial killer, born in Burbank, California
  • 1950 Gillian Armstrong, Australian director (My brilliant Career, Little Women), born in Melbourne, Victoria
  • 1951 Andy Thomas, Australian American astronaut (STS 77, STS 89/91), born in Adelaide, Australia
  • 1951 Pape Diouf, Senegalese journalist and football agent (president Olympique de Marseille 2005-09; first black president in Europe's top 6 leagues), born in Abéché, Chad (d. 2020)
  • 1953 Khas-Magomed Hadjimuradov, Chechen bard
  • 1956 Reinhold Ewald, German physicist and cosmonaut (Soyuz TM-25), born in Mönchengladbach, West Germany
  • 1960 Kazuhide Uekusa, Japanese economist, born in Edogawa, Tokyo
  • 1960 Yoon Suk-yeol, South Korean prosecutor and politician (President of South Korea 2022-), born in Seoul, South Korea
  • 1961 Thomas Strittmatter, writer
  • 1964 Pierre Nkurunziza, President of Burundi (2005-20), born in Ngozi, Burundi (d. 2020)
  • 1970 Johnny Yeo, English artist
  • 1970 Miles Marshall Lewis, American author
  • 1971 Barkha Dutt, Indian journalist
  • 1972 DJ Lethal, Latvian-born American DJ (House of Pain, Limp Bizkit)
  • 1972 Trevor Chowning, American Pop Artist
  • 1983 Ady Barkan, American lawyer and activist (Medicare for all)