On This Day

Birthdays in History on December 8

Person of interestHorace

65 BC Horace, Roman Republican poet (Odes), born in Venosa, Italy (d. 8 BC)

Roman Poet Horace
Roman Poet
Horace

Person of interestMary, Queen of Scots

1542 Mary, Queen of Scots, [Mary Stuart] (1560-87), born in Linlithgow Palace, Scotland (d. 1587)

Queen of Scotland Mary, Queen of Scots
Queen of Scotland
Mary, Queen of Scots
  • 1574 Maria Anna of Bavaria, Empress consort of the Holy Roman Empire, born in Munich, Bavaria, Holy Roman Empire (d. 1616)
  • 1626 Christina, Queen of Sweden who abdicated after becoming Catholic (1644-54), born in Tre Kronor Castle, Stockholm (d. 1689)
  • 1678 Horatio Walpole, 1st Baron Walpole of Wolterton, English diplomat, born in Houghton, Cambridge, England (d. 1757)
  • 1699 Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen consort of Poland (1734-57), born in Hofburg Palace, Vienna, Austria (d. 1757)
  • 1704 Anton de Haen, Austrian medical expert (Ratio Medendi), born in The Hague, Netherlands (d. 1776)
  • 1708 Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor (1745-1765), born in Ducal Palace of Nancy, Lorraine, Holy Roman Empire (d. 1765)
  • 1715 John Althuysen, Frisian vicar and poet (Frisianche rymlery)
  • 1728 Johann Georg von Zimmermann, Swiss philosophical author and physician, born in Brugg, Aargau, Switzerland (d. 1795)
  • 1730 Jan Ingenhousz, Dutch-English physiologist (discovering photosynthesis) and personal physician of Maria Theresa, born in Breda, Staats-Brabant, Dutch Republic (d. 1799)

Person of interestEli Whitney

1765 Eli Whitney, American inventor (Cotton Gin), born in Westborough, Massachusetts (d. 1825)

Inventor of the Cotton Gin Eli Whitney
Inventor of the Cotton Gin
Eli Whitney
  • 1795 Peter Andreas Hansen, Danish-German astronomer (Hansen hypothesis), born in Tønder, Schleswig, Denmark (d. 1874)
  • 1815 Adolph Menzel, German painter and graphic artist, born in Breslau, Prussian Silesia (d. 1905)
  • 1816 August Belmont, Prussian-American financier and diplomat (U.S. Minister to the Netherlands 1853-57), born in Alzey, Hesse, Germany (d. 1890)
  • 1817 Christian Emil Krag-Juel-Vind-Frijs, Danish nobleman and politician (Council President of Denmark 1865-70), born in Frijsenborg, Denmark (d. 1896)

  • 1822 Luther Prentice Bradley, American Brigadier General (Union Army), born in New Haven, Connecticut (d. 1910)
  • 1826 Friedrich Siemens, German industrialist, born in Menzendorf, Germany (d. 1904)
  • 1828 Clinton Bowen Fisk, American abolitionist, Brevet Major General (Union Army), helped establish 1st free public schools in the South, born in York, New York (d. 1890)
  • 1828 Robert Bullock, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), born in Greenville, North Carolina (d. 1905)
  • 1832 Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, Norwegian author "Pa Guds Veje" and Nobel laureate 1903, born in Kvikne, Norway (d. 1910)
  • 1861 Aristide Maillol, French painter and sculptor (Seated Woman), born in Banyuls-sur-Mer, Roussillon, France (d. 1944)
  • 1861 William C. Durant, American industry pioneer, founded General Motors, Frigidaire, born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 1947)
  • 1862 Georges Feydeau, French playwright (La Dame de Chez Maxim's), born in Paris (d. 1921)
  • 1865 Jacques Hadamard, French mathematician (proved the prime number theorem), born in Versailles, France (d. 1963)
  • 1874 Ernst Moro, Austrian physician and pediatrician (Moro reflex), born in Laibach, Duchy of Carniola, Austria-Hungary (d. 1951)
  • 1881 Padraic Colum, Irish novelist and poet (Collected Poems), born in Columcille, County Longford, Ireland (d. 1972)

Person of interestDiego Rivera

1886 Diego Rivera, Mexican painter (En el Arsenal) and husband of Frida Kahlo, born in Guanajuato, México (d. 1957)

Painter Diego Rivera
Painter
Diego Rivera
  • 1888 Fiske Kimball, American architect and art historian, born in Newton, Massachusetts (d. 1955)
  • 1889 Hervey Allen, American writer and poet (Anthony Adverse), born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (d. 1949)
  • 1892 Herbert "Bert" Hinkler, Australian aviator who made first solo flight from England to Australia (1928), born in Bundaberg, Queensland (d. 1933)
  • 1894 E. C. Segar, American cartoonist (Popeye), born in Chester, Illinois (d. 1938)
  • 1899 Sarah Williamson, US missionary in Liberia
  • 1900 Sun Li-jen, Chinese general (best known for his leadership in the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Chinese Civil War), born in Jinnu, Lujiang, Chaohu, Anhui, Qing dynasty (d. 1990)
  • 1902 Wifredo Lam, Cuban artist (The Jungle), born in Sagua La Grande, Cuba (d. 1982)
  • 1903 Adele Simpson, American fashion designer (Neiman-Marcus Award-1946), born in NYC, New York (d. 1995)

  • 1903 Irene Eisinger, German-British singer, born in Cosel, German Empire (d. 1994)
  • 1903 Kitty Muggeridge, British author and translator, born in Chateau d'Oex, Switzerland (d. 1994)
  • 1905 Julius Silverman, British Labour Party politician, born in Leeds, England (d. 1996)
  • 1906 Richard Llewellyn, Welsh novelist (How Green Was My Valley), born in Hendon, Middlesex, England (d. 1983)
  • 1908 John Volpe, American politician (61st and 63rd Governor of Massachusetts) and U.S. Secretary of Treasury (1969-73), born in Wakefield, Massachusetts (d. 1994)
  • 1912 Jura Soyfer, Austrian political journalist and cabaret writer, born in Kharkov, Russian Empire (d. 1939)
  • 1913 Delmore Schwartz, American poet, short story writer and critic (Shenandoah), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 1966)
  • 1913 Paul Félix, Flemish architect (Sun Song), born in Ostend, Belgium (d. 1981)
  • 1915 George Scheuer, Austrian writer and journalist, born in Vienna, Austria (d. 1996)
  • 1916 Dorothy Mae Ballard, labor union rep
  • 1919 Peter Tali Coleman, Governor of American Samoa (1956-61, 78-85, 89-93), born in Pago Pago, American Samoa (d. 1997)
  • 1920 Ronald Gulliford, English educationalist (Dean of the Faculty of Education, Birmingham University 1979-81), born in Manchester (d. 1997)
  • 1922 John B. McKay, American test pilot (X-15), born in Portsmouth, Virginia (d. 1975)
  • 1922 Lucian Freud, German-British artist (Benefits Supervisor Sleeping, Boy With a Rat), born in Berlin, Germany (d. 2011)
  • 1923 Rudolph Pariser, American chemist, born in Harbin, China
  • 1925 Carmen Martín Gaite, Spanish author, born in Salamanca, Spain (d. 2000)

Person of interestJoachim Fest

1926 Joachim Fest, German historian and journalist (Hitler biography, Speer: The Final Verdict), born in Berlin, Germany (d. 2006)

Historian and Journalist Joachim Fest
Historian and Journalist
Joachim Fest
  • 1927 Vladimir Shatalov, Soviet cosmonaut (Soyuz 4, 8, 10), born in Petropavlovsk, Kazakh SSR
  • 1928 Ulric Neisser, America psychologist (Intelligence: Knowns and Unknowns, Bell Curve task force head), born in Kiel, Germany (d. 2012)
  • 1929 Goffredo Parise, Italian writer (Il padrone), born in Vicenza, Italy (d. 1986)
  • 1930 John Morressy, American sci-fi author (Starbrat, Greymantle, Kingsbane), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • 1930 Julian Critchley, British journalist and politician, born in Islington, London (d. 2000)
  • 1936 Brad Jurjens, Estonian director (The Bank Job), born in Viljandi, Estonia
  • 1937 Jan van Houwelingen, Dutch politician (Undersecretary of Defense (CDA), born in Leerdam, Netherlands (d. 2013)
  • 1937 Arne Næss Jr., Norwegian mountain climber and businessman, born in Germany (d. 2004)
  • 1939 Lynn Wilson, contractor and multi-millionaire
  • 1941 Albert J Evenhuis, Dutch undersecretary of Economic (VVD)
  • 1941 Randall "Duke" Cunningham, US Navy fighter pilot and Congressman
  • 1942 Mario Savio, American political activist, born in NYC, New York (d. 1996)
  • 1943 Michael Unger, English editor-in-chief (Evening News, Manchester)
  • 1945 John Banville, Irish novelist and journalist
  • 1946 Graham Knight, Scottish musician (Marmalade)
  • 1947 Geoff Daking, American rocker (Blue Magoos)
  • 1947 Thomas R. Cech, American chemist, Nobel laureate
  • 1947 Kati-Claudia Fofonoff, Skolt Sámi writer

Person of interestJimmy Lai

1948 Jimmy Lai [Lai Chee-Ying], Chinese businessman (founder of Giordano), born in Guangzhou, China

Founder of Giordano Jimmy Lai
Founder of Giordano
Jimmy Lai
  • 1948 Roscoe Nance, American sportswriter (USA Today; Mississippi’s first African American sportswriter at mainstream newspaper), born in Enterprise, Alabama (d. 2020)
  • 1949 Mary Gordon, American author
  • 1949 Robert Sternberg, Proposed the Triarchic Theory of Intelligence
  • 1950 Rick Baker, American special effects makeup artist (Exorcist), born in Binghamton, New York
  • 1951 Bill Bryson, American British author (Notes From a Small Island), born in Des Moines, Iowa
  • 1952 Khaw Boon Wan, Singapore Health Minister
  • 1953 Norman Finkelstein, American professor, activist
  • 1954 Harold Hongju Koh, Korean-American Dean of Yale Law School
  • 1959 Jim Yong Kim, South Korean-American physician, anthropologist and President of the World Bank, born in Seoul, South Korea
  • 1960 Lim Guan Eng, Secretary-General of the Malaysian Democratic Action Party (DAP)
  • 1961 Ann Coulter, American author, political commentator, and attorney
  • 1972 Frank Shamrock, American mixed martial artist, born in Santa Monica, California
  • 1979 Johan Forssell, Swedish politician, born in Stockholm, Sweden
  • 1982 Noelle Pikus-Pace, American skeleton racer, born in Provo, Utah