Deaths in History on December 23

  • 558 Childebert, King of France (specifically, the Neustrian Franks) (511-58), dies at about 62
  • 679 Dagobert II, king of Austrasia (676-679), murdered while hunting at about 27
  • 910 Naum of Preslav, Bulgarian scholar
  • 918 Conrad I of Germany [Conrad the Younger], King of East Francia (911-18)
  • 1116 Ivo van Chartres, French canonist/bishop of Chartres/saint, dies
  • 1230 Berengaria of Navarre, queen of Richard I of England
  • 1236 Philippus Cancellarius, French theologist/poet (Summa Cum Laude), dies
  • 1502 Margaretha, English princess of Burgundy, dies at 57
  • 1568 Roger Ascham, tutor of Elizabeth I of England
  • 1569 St Philip II, Metropolitan of Moscow, martyred by Ivan the Terrible
  • 1575 Akiyama Nobutomo, Japanese warrior (hanged) (b. 1531)
  • 1588 Hendrik de Guise, French leader of Catholic League, murdered at 37
  • 1619 John Sigismund, Elector of Brandenburg, Duke of Prussia (1618-19), dies at 47
  • 1631 Michael Drayton, English poet (b. 1563)
  • 1646 François Maynard, French poet (b. 1582)
  • 1652 John Cotton, Puritan clergyman in Massachusetts Bay colony, dies at 68
  • 1675 Caesar, duc de Choiseul, French marshal and diplomat (b. 1602)
  • 1722 Pierre Varignon, French mathematician (b. 1654)
  • 1744 Élisabeth Charlotte d'Orléans, Duchess of Lorraine, dies at 68
  • 1749 Mark Catesby, English naturalist (Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands), dies at 66
  • 1761 Alestair Ruadh MacDonnell, Scottish Jacobite spy "Pickle, dies at 36"
  • 1771 Marie-Marguerite d'Youville, first native Canadian canonized (founded the Order of Sisters of Charity of Montreal), dies at 70,
  • 1779 Augustus Hervey, 3rd Earl of Bristol, British admiral and politician (b. 1724)
  • 1787 Louise of France, French princess daughter of King Louis XV and Marie Leszczyńska and Carmelite prioress, dies at 50
  • 1789 Charles-Michel de l'Épée, French philanthropist and developer of 'Signed French', dies at 77
  • 1793 Antoine François Prévost, French author and novelist (b. 1697)
  • 1795 Henry Clinton, British army officer and politician, dies at 65
  • 1805 Francis Masson, Scottish botanist (1st plant hunter for Kew Gardens, in South Africa), dies at 64
  • 1805 Pehr Osbeck, Swedish explorer and naturalist (b. 1723)

Thomas MalthusThomas Malthus (1766-1834)

British economist and demographer (Law of Malthus), dies of heart disease at 68

  • 1846 Jean Baptiste Bory de Saint-Vincent, French naturalist (b. 1780)
  • 1877 Thomas Wright, English antiquarian and writer, dies at 87
  • 1902 Frederick Temple, 95th Archbishop of Canterbury, dies at 81
  • 1907 Pierre Janssen, French astronomer, discovered helium, dies at 83
  • 1912 Otto Schoetensack, German anthropologist, dies at 62
  • 1915 Roland Leighton, English poet and soldier (featured in The Testament of Youth), dies on French battlefield during WWI at 20
  • 1925 A S C Wallis [Adele von Antal-Opzoomer], Dutch writer (Vorstengunst), dies at 69
  • 1930 Johannes H. Been, Brielle archivist, dies at 71
  • 1931 Wilson Bentley, American scientist (b. 1865)
  • 1938 Robert Herrick, American novelist (Chimes), dies at 70
  • 1939 Anthony H. G. Fokker, Dutch airplane builder (Spider), dies at 49
  • 1943 Theo[dorus J] Thijssen, Dutch writer (Kees de Jongen), dies at 64
  • 1944 Charles Dana Gibson, American illustrator (Gibson Girl), dies at 77
  • 1945 Mogens Klitgaard, Danish author (Brunkul), dies at 39
  • 1946 John A. Sampson, American gynecologist (b. 1873)

Hideki TojoHideki Tojo (1884-1948)

Japanese Prime Minister during WW II (1941-44), hanged for war crimes at 64

  • 1951 Benito Lynch, Irish-Argentine writer (Palo Verde), dies at 66

Lavrentiy BeriaLavrentiy Beria (1899-1953)

Soviet politician and head of the NKVD secret service, executed after being ousted from power at 54

  • 1954 René Iché, French sculptor (b. 1897)
  • 1959 Edward Frederick Wood, 1st Earl of Halifax, viceroy of India and British ambassador to US (1940-46), dies at 78
  • 1961 Kurt Meyer, German SS officer (b. 1910)
  • 1962 George Saiko, Austrian writer, dies at 70
  • 1966 Heimito von Doderer, Austrian writer, dies at 70
  • 1967 Ruth Fuller Sasaki, American Zen teacher (1st Zen Institute of America), dies at 75
  • 1970 Bessie Abramowitz Hillman, Russian-American labor leader and founder of Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America, dies at 71
  • 1972 Abraham Joshua Heschel, Polish-born Jewish American rabbi and theologian dies in New York aged 65
  • 1972 Andrej Tupolev, Russian aircraft builder, dies at 84
  • 1973 Gerard Kuiper, Dutch-American astronomer after whom the Kuiper belt is named, dies at 68
  • 1975 Richard S Welch, CIA station chief in Athens, shot dead
  • 1976 Paul M Frank Forest, dies at 80
  • 1976 Walter Bauer, German Canadian writer, dies at 72
  • 1979 Peggy Guggenheim, American art collector, dies at 81
  • 1983 Colin Middleton, Northern Irish artist (b. 1910)
  • 1984 Joan Lindsay, Australian author (Picnic at Hanging Rock), dies at 88
  • 1991 Rosa Jackson Lumpkin, among the oldest people in the world, dies at 115
  • 1994 Didier Rocher, son of French cosmetic maker Yves Rocher, dies at 41
  • 1995 David Land, impresario and theatre producer, dies at 77
  • 1997 Austin Whitaker, schoolmaster classical scholar/archivist, dies at 90
  • 1997 Brian Malzard Foss, British psychologist, dies at 76
  • 1997 Donald Gunn MacRae, British sociologist, dies at 76
  • 2001 Bola Ige, Nigerian politician, Minister of Justice, murdered at 71
  • 2002 Tatamkhulu Afrika, South African poet & writer, dies at 82
  • 2004 Anne Truitt, American artist dies aged 83
  • 2004 P. V. Narasimha Rao, Indian politician, 9th Prime Minister of India (1991-96), dies of a heart attack at 83
  • 2004 Peter Beazley, British politician (C) (European Parliament), dies at 82
  • 2006 Robert Stafford, American politician (Sen-R-VT, 1971-88), dies at 93
  • 2007 William Francis Ganong, American physiologist (b. 1924)
  • 2008 Eric Charles Twelves Wilson, English British Army officer (awarded Victoria Cross), dies at 96
  • 2009 Edward Schillebeeckx, Belgian Roman Catholic theologian (influential at Second Vatican Council), dies at 95
  • 2009 Ngapoi Ngawang Jigme, Tibetan senior official (b. 1910)
  • 2009 Robert L. Howard, highly decorated officer of the United States Army (b. 1939)
  • 2010 Fred Hargesheimer, American World War II pilot (b. 1916)
  • 2010 K. Karunakaran, Indian politician (b. 1918)

Mikhail KalashnikovMikhail Kalashnikov (1919-2013)

Russian general and inventor of the AK-47, dies at 94

  • 2013 Vito Rizzuto, Italian-Canadian alleged mafia boss, also known as "Montreal's Teflon Don", dies at 67
  • 2015 Alfred G. Gilman, American scientist (1994 Nobel Prize for G-protein discoveries), dies at 74
  • 2016 Piers J Sellers, English astronaut and climate scientist, dies of cancer at 61
  • 2017 Maurice Hayes, Irish politician (European Person of the Year 2003), dies at 90