Birthdays in History on February 26

  • 1361 Wenceslas of Bohemia, Holy Roman Catholic German emperor (1378-1400)
  • 1564 Christopher Marlowe, English poet and dramatist (Dr Faustus), born in Canterbury, England (d. 1593) baptism date
  • 1671 Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 3rd Earl of Shaftesbury, English politician and philosopher (d. 1713)
  • 1672 Antoine Augustine Calmet, French theologian (d. 1757)
  • 1714 James Hervey, English clergyman and writer (d. 1758)
  • 1720 Gian Francesco Albani, Italian Catholic cardinal (d. 1803)
  • 1725 Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot, French inventor who designed and built 1st automobile, born in Void, France (d. 1804) [or born September 25]
  • 1746 Archduchess Marie Amalie of Austria, Duchess and de facto ruler of Parma, daughter of Maria Therese of Austria and sister of Marie Antoinette, born in Vienna (d. 1806)
  • 1799 Émile Clapeyron, French engineer and physicist (d. 1864)

Victor HugoVictor Hugo (1802-1885)

French author (Hunchback of Notre Dame, Les Miserables), born in Besançon, France

  • 1808 Honoré Daumier, French painter, illustrator, and sculptor (d. 1879)
  • 1808 Nathan Kelley, American architect, active mainly in Ohio, (d. 1871)
  • 1814 Charles Joseph Sainte-Claire Deville, French geologist (d. 1876)
  • 1824 Carlos Calvo, Argentine historian, diplomat and human rights scholar (Calvo Clause), born in Buenos Aires, Argentina (d. 1906)

Levi StraussLevi Strauss (1829-1902)

German-born American clothing designer who founded the 1st company to manufacture blue jeans (Levi Strauss & Co.), born in Buttenheim, Bavaria

  • 1832 John George Nicolay, German-American author (Abe Lincoln's biographer), born in Essingen, Rhenish Bavaria (d. 1901)
  • 1835 Richard Andree, German geography, etnologist (Andree's Handatlas)
  • 1837 Charles Woeste, Belgian count, Minister of Justice, born in Brussels, Belgium (d. 1922)
  • 1841 Evelyn Baring, 1st Earl of Cromer, British diplomat (Consul-General in Egypt, 1883-1907), and writer, born in Cromer, Norfolk, England (d. 1917)
  • 1842 Camille Flammarion, French astronomer, Mars researcher and popularizer of astronomy, born in Montigny-le-Roi, Haute-Marne, France (d. 1925)

Alexander IIIAlexander III (1845-1894)

Russian Tsar (1881-94), born in the Winter Palace, St Petersburg, Russian Empire

  • 1846 William "Buffalo Bill" Cody, Wild West hunter and showman (Buffalo Bill's Wild West), born in Davenport Iowa (d. 1917)
  • 1852 John Harvey Kellogg, American surgeon and nutritionist, inspired flaked cereal industry, born in Tyrone, Michigan (d. 1943)
  • 1857 Emile Coué, French pharmacist (recovery by auto suggestion)
  • 1858 Vladimir Serbsky, Russian psychiatrist (d. 1917)
  • 1861 Ferdinand I, 1st tsar of modern Bulgaria (1908-18), born in Vienna, Austria

Herbert Henry DowHerbert Henry Dow (1866-1930)

American chemical industrialist (Dow Chemical), born in Ontario, Canada

  • 1867 Siegfried Passarge, German geographer (Cameroon, South Africa, born in Königsberg, Prussia (d. 1958) alternative birth date Nov 28 1866
  • 1869 Nadezhda Krupskaya, Russian revolutionary and wife of Vladimir Lenin, born in St. Petersburg, Russia (d. 1939)
  • 1873 Ewoud van Everdingen, Dutch meteorologist
  • 1876 Agustín Pedro Justo, President of Argentina (1932-38) during the Infamous Decade, born in Concepción del Uruguay, Entre Ríos (d. 1943)
  • 1876 Pauline Musters, Dutch world's smallest woman at 24 inches (61 cm), born in Ossendrecht, Netherlands (d. 1895)
  • 1877 Carel Steven Adama van Scheltema, Dutch socialist poet, born in Amsterdam, Netherlands (d. 1924)
  • 1880 Lionel Logue, Australian speech therapist who treated King George VI (The Kings Speech), born in Adelaide (d. 1953)
  • 1882 Husband E. Kimmel, American admiral, commander of the Pacific Fleet during Pearl Harbour Attack, born in Henderson, Kentucky (d. 1968)
  • 1882 Walter Lucht, German artillery general (WW I/WW II)
  • 1883 Erich R. Jaensch, German psychologist (eidetism), born in Breslau, German Empire (d. 1940)
  • 1884 Hildo Krop, Dutch modernistic sculptor
  • 1885 Aleksandras Stulginskis, President of Lithuania (d. 1969)
  • 1887 Benegal Narsing Rau, Indian lawyer and civil servant, President of UN Security Council (1950), helped draft India's constitution, born in Mangalore, India (d. 1953)
  • 1887 Stefan Grabinski, Polish writer (d. 1936)
  • 1893 (Ivor Armstrong) I. A. Richards, British poet and influential critic (Meaning of Meaning), born in Sandbach, England (d. 1979)
  • 1896 Andrei A. Zjdanov, Russian politician (against kosmopolitism)
  • 1898 Julien de Valckenaere, Flemish writer
  • 1899 Max Petitpierre, member of the Swiss Federal Council (d. 1994)
  • 1902 Vercors [Jean Bruller], French writer (Le Silence de la mer), born in Paris (d. 1991)
  • 1903 Giulio Natta, Italian chemist, Nobel laureate (d. 1979)
  • 1906 Nikos Ghika, Greek artist, born in Athens (d. 1994)
  • 1907 John Bowlby, British psychologist, born in London, England (d. 1990)
  • 1908 Leela Majumdar, Bengali writer (d. 2007)
  • 1908 Tex Avery, American cartoonist at Warner Bros, MGM (Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig), born in Taylor, Texas (d. 1980)
  • 1909 Fanny Cradock, English TV Chef and food critic, born in Leytonstone, England (d. 1994)
  • 1909 King Talal of Jordan (d. 1972)
  • 1911 Josef Smrkovsky, Czechoslovakia MP chairman
  • 1911 Tarō Okamoto, Japanese avant-garde artist (d. 1996)
  • 1913 George Barker, English poet (Calamiterror, Anno Domini), born in Loughton, England (d. 1991)
  • 1913 Hermann Lenz, German writer (Swabian Chronicle), born in Stuttgart (d. 1998)
  • 1915 Elisabeth Eybers, South African Dutch poetess (That Woman & Other Verses)
  • 1915 Pran Nath Chhuttani, Indian physician and teacher, born in Leiah, Pakistan (d. 1996)
  • 1917 Robert Taft Jr, American politician (Sen-R-Ohio), born in Cincinnati, Ohio (d. 1993)
  • 1918 Otis Bowen, American politician, US Sec of Health & Human Services (1985-89), born in near Rochester, Indiana (d. 2013)
  • 1918 Theodore Sturgeon, American sci-fi author (Hugo, It, Caviar), born in Staten Island, New York (d. 1985)
  • 1920 Lucjan Wolanowski, Polish journalist, writer and traveller (d. 2006)
  • 1924 Noboru Takeshita, Japanese PM (1987-89), born in Unnan, Japan (d. 2000)
  • 1927 Tom Kennedy, American quiz host (You Don't Say, Name That Tune), born in Louisville, Kentucky
  • 1928 Anatoli Vassilyevich Filipchenko, Russian cosmonaut (Soyuz 7, 16), born in Davydovka, USSR

Ariel SharonAriel Sharon (1928-2014)

Israeli general, politician and Prime Minister of Israel (2001-06), born in Kfar Malal, Mandatory Palestine

  • 1933 James Goldsmith, corporate raider (Referendum Party), born in Paris, France
  • 1935 Azzedine Alaïa, Tunisian-born fashion designer, born in Tunis, Tunisia (d. 2017)
  • 1938 Evagoras Pallikarides, Cypriot freedom fighter, born in Tsada, Cyprus (d. 1957)
  • 1942 Adriaan van Dis, Dutch author (Nathan Sid, In Africa), born in Bergen aan Zee, Netherlands
  • 1943 Bob van Reeth, Flemish architect, born in Temse, Belgium
  • 1943 Dante Ferretti, Italian art director & costume designer, born in Macerata, Italy
  • 1946 Ahmed Zewail, Egyptian-American chemist & Nobel laureate (1999), born in Damanhur, Egypt (d. 2016)
  • 1946 Phyllis Eisenstein, American sci-fi author (Sorcerer's Son, Born to Exile), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1947 Sandie Shaw [Sandra Goodrich], English rocker (Girl Don't Come), born in Essex, England
  • 1949 Elizabeth George, American novelist (Inspector Thomas Lynley mystery novels), born in Warren, Ohio

Helen ClarkHelen Clark (72 years old)

1950 New Zealand Prime Minister (Labour: 1999-2008) and Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (2009-17), born in Hamilton, New Zealand

Recep Tayyip ErdoğanRecep Tayyip Erdoğan (68 years old)

1954 Turkish politician (President of Turkey, 2014-present; Prime Minister of Turkey, 2003-14), born in Kasımpaşa, Istanbul, Turkey

  • 1957 David Muldrow Beasley, American politician, born in Darlington, South Carolina
  • 1958 Karen Berger, American comic book editor, born in New York City
  • 1958 Michel Houellebecq, French novelist, born in Saint-Pierre, Réunion
  • 1958 Susan J. Helms, Mjr USAF/Astronaut (STS 54, 64, 78), born in Charlotte, North Carolina
  • 1958 Tim Kaine, US Senator (D-Virginia, 2016 Democratic nominee for Vice President, born in Saint Paul, Minnesota

Wang DanWang Dan (53 years old)

1969 Chinese dissident and one of the student leaders of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests, born in Beijing, China

  • 1978 John Tartaglia, Broadway performer & "Muppeteer", born in Maple Shade, New Jersey