On This Day

Deaths in History on April 16

  • 69 Marcus Salvius Otho, Roman Emperor, dies at 36
  • 744 al-Walid II, Umayyad caliph (743-744), killed at 35
  • 924 Berengar of Friuli, King of Italy, Holy Roman Emperor (915-924) (b c. 845)
  • 1090 Sikelgaita, Lombard princess, wife of Robert Guiscard, Duke of Apulia and Calabria, who often went into battle, armed, dies at about 50
  • 1113 Sviatopolk II of Kiev, Russian prince (b. 1050)
  • 1118 Adelaide del Vasto, wife of Roger II of Sicily
  • 1198 Duke Frederick I of Austria
  • 1446 Filippo Brunelleschi, Italian Renaissance architect (dome of Florence cathedral), dies at 68 or 69
  • 1496 David van Bourgondie, Bishop of Utrecht (1456-96), dies at about 69
  • 1529 Louis de Berquin, French humanist, reformer and heretic, burned at stake
  • 1619 Denijs Calvaert/Caluwaert [Dionisio Fiamingo], Flemish painter, dies
  • 1687 George Villiers, 2nd duke of Buckingham, English statesman and poet, dies at 59
  • 1689 Aphra Behn, English dramatist and novelist, dies at 48
  • 1743 Cornelis van Bijnkershoek, Dutch jurist who helped develop international law along positivist lines, dies at 69
  • 1756 Jacques Cassini, French astronomer, dies at 79
  • 1760 Laurence, 4th Earl Ferrers, executed for murder of his steward

  • 1783 Christian Mayer, Czech Catholic priest and astronomer, dies at 63
  • 1788 George-Louis Leclerc, count de Buffon, French naturalist and writer on natural history (Histoire naturelle, générale et particulière), dies at 80
  • 1825 Henry Fuseli, Swiss-born painter and art writer (Tracks in the Snow), dies at 84
  • 1828 Francisco Goya y Lucientes, Spanish painter and printmaker (The Third of May 1808), dies at 82

Person of interestMadame Tussaud

1850 Marie Tussaud, French founder of Madame Tussaud's wax museum, dies at 88

Wax Museum Creator Madame Tussaud
Wax Museum Creator
Madame Tussaud
  • 1859 Alexis de Tocqueville, French historian (b. 1805)
  • 1860 Carolina, duchess of Berry/daughter of crown prince of Naples, dies
  • 1865 Robert C. Tyler, US Confederate brigadier general, dies during the Battle of West Point, at 32
  • 1870 Anatoli O Demidov, Russian ruler of Donato/traveller, dies
  • 1879 Bernadette Soubirous, French saint (saw Virgin Mary at Lourdes), dies from tuberculosis at 35 in Nevers, France
  • 1888 Zygmunt Florenty Wróblewski, Polish physicist and chemist, dies at 42
  • 1899 Emilio Jacinto, Filipino poet and revolutionary, dies at 23
  • 1904 Maximilian Kronberger, German poet, dies at 16
  • 1904 Samuel Smiles, Scottish writer and reformer (b. 1812)
  • 1914 George William Hill, American astronomer (moon orbit), considered to be the greatest master of celestial mechanics of his time, dies at 76
  • 1914 S. R. Crockett, Scottish novelist (The Stickit Minister), dies at 54
  • 1915 Nelson W. Aldrich, U.S. Senator from Rhode Island, dies at 73
  • 1928 Henry Birks, Canadian businessman and founder of Henri Birks and Sons, dies at 87
  • 1929 Abraham van Stolk Jzn, Dutch art collector, dies at 57
  • 1930 José Carlos Mariátegui, Peruvian journalist, political philosopher and activist (b. 1894)

  • 1931 Rachel Bluwstein, Hebrew poet, dies of tuberculosis at 40
  • 1938 Bertram Mills, British circus proprietor (Bertram Mills Circus), dies at 70
  • 1941 Josiah Stamp, 1st Baron Stamp, British civil servant, industrialist, economist, statistician and banker, dies at 60
  • 1947 Rudolf Höss, German commandant of the Auschwitz concentration camp, dies at 45
  • 1955 Abdullah Seif el-Islam, brother of Yemenite king Ahmed, beheaded

Person of interestRosalind Franklin

1958 Rosalind Franklin, English chemist and co-discoverer of the structure of DNA, dies of ovarian cancer at 37

Chemist and Molecular Biologist Rosalind Franklin
Chemist and Molecular Biologist
Rosalind Franklin
  • 1967 Jean Alexandre Barré, French neurologist who helped identify the Guillain-Barré-Strohl syndrome, dies at 86
  • 1968 Edna Ferber, American author and playwright (American Beauty, Cimarron), dies at 82
  • 1970 Richard Neutra, American architect (b. 1892)
  • 1972 Yasunari Kawabata, Japanese novelist (Thousand Cranes) and Nobel laureate (1968), dies at 72
  • 1978 Lucius du Bignon Clay, American WWII general and military governor of West Germany, dies at 80
  • 1988 Jacques de Kadt, Dutch politician and writer (Fascism is War!), dies at 90
  • 1988 Khalil al-Wazir, PLO leader, assassinated by Israeli commandos at 52
  • 1988 Warde Donovan, dies at 72
  • 1989 Tawfieq Yusuf Awwaad, Lebanese writer, dies
  • 1992 Frank Killmond, dies at 58
  • 1993 John P W Meefout, sculptor (Laying wife), dies at 77
  • 1994 Ralph Waldo Ellison, American writer (Invisible Man), dies at 80
  • 1994 Samuel "Sam" Selvon, Trinidad-born writer (The Lonely Londoners), dies at 70
  • 1995 Cheyenne Brando, daughter of Marlon, commits suicide

  • 1995 Iqbal Masih, Pakistani child slave labourer, activist (b. 1982)
  • 1996 Madeleine Bourdouxhe, Belgian writer, dies at 89
  • 1996 Stavros Niarchos, Greek shipping magnate (Those Fabulous Greeks), dies at 86
  • 1997 Emilio Azcarraga Milmo, American Mexican media tycoon (Televisa), dies at 66
  • 1997 Roland Topor, French illustrator (b. 1938)
  • 1997 Doris Angleton, American socialite, murdered at 46
  • 1998 Alberto Calderón, Argentine mathematician, dies at 77
  • 2002 Ruth Fertel, American restaurateur (b. 1927)
  • 2003 Graham Stuart Thomas, English author and garden designer (b. 1909)
  • 2005 Marla Ruzicka, American humanitarian worker and peace activist (b. 1976)
  • 2007 Seung-Hui Cho, Korean American murderer (b. 1984), see List of victims of the Virginia Tech massacre
  • 2007 Jocelyne Couture-Nowak, American instructor of French (b. 1958)
  • 2007 Kevin Granata, American professor of Engineering (b. 1961)
  • 2007 Liviu Librescu, American Jewish-Romanian professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics (b. 1930)
  • 2007 G. V. Loganathan, Indian American professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering (b. 1954)
  • 2007 Frank Bateson, New Zealand astronomer (b. 1909)
  • 2008 Joseph Solman, American painter
  • 2008 Edward Norton Lorenz, American mathematician and meteorologist, dies at 90
  • 2010 Rasim Delic, Bosnian military chief of staff and war criminal (b. 1949)
  • 2010 Daryl Gates, LAPD Chief, dies at 83
  • 2010 Marion Ladewig, American ten-pin bowler (9 time woman bowler of year 1950-63), dies at 95
  • 2011 Harold Volkmer, American politician, U.S. House of Representatives from Missouri, dies at 80
  • 2011 Bijan, Iranian men's apparel designer (Bijan), dies of stroke at 71
  • 2011 William A. Rusher, American lawyer and columnist, dies at 87
  • 2011 Allan Blakeney, Canadian politician (10th Premier of Saskatchewan), dies at 85
  • 2012 Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller, Danish shipping Magnate, dies at 98
  • 2020 Luis Sepúlveda, Chilean writer and political activist (The Old Man Who Read Love Stories), dies of COVID-19 at 70
  • 2020 Gene Deitch, American illustrator (Tom Terrific, Nudnik), dies at 95