On This Day

Deaths in History on November 17

  • 375 Valentinian I "The Great", Roman Co-Emperor and Ruler of Western Roman Empire (336-75), dies at 54
  • 474 Leo II, Byzantine Emperor (474), dies

Person of interestGregory of Tours

594 St Gregory of Tours, Frankisch bishop of Tours, dies at 55

Chronicler/Bishop Gregory of Tours
Chronicler/Bishop
Gregory of Tours
  • 641 Emperor Jomei of Japan (b. 593)
  • 680 Hilda of Whitby, Christian saint and founding abbess of Whitby monastery (b. 614)
  • 885 Liutgard of Saxony, Queen of the Franks (876-882)
  • 1093 Margaret, widow of Scottish king Malcolm III, dies
  • 1231 Elisabeth of Hungary, daughter of Andrew II of Hungary (b. 1207)
  • 1302 St. Gertrude the Great (b. 1256)
  • 1326 Edmund FitzAlan, 9th Earl of Arundel, English politician, dies at 41
  • 1494 Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, Italian philosopher (b. 1463)
  • 1512 Kempo Roeper, Frisian rebel, quartered
  • 1525 Eleanor of Viseu, Queen of Portugal (1481-95), dies at 67
  • 1558 Reginald Pole, English cardinal/scholar/"heretic", dies at 58
  • 1558 Mary I [Bloody Mary], English Queen of England (1553-58), dies at 42
  • 1562 Antoine de Bourbon, King of Navarre and father of Henry IV of France (b. 1518)

  • 1592 John III, King of Sweden (1568-92), dies at 54
  • 1600 Kuki Yoshitaka, Japanese naval commander (b. 1542)
  • 1608 Adolf, count of Nassau-Siegen, dies in battle at 22
  • 1632 Gottfried Heinrich Graf zu Pappenheim, Bavarian field marshal, dies at 38
  • 1643 Jean-Baptiste Budes, Comte de Guébriant, Marshal of France (b. 1602)
  • 1665 John Earle, English bishop
  • 1668 Joseph Alleine, English preacher (b. 1634)
  • 1690 Charles de Sainte-Maure, duc de Montausier, French soldier, dies at 80
  • 1713 Abraham van Riebeeck, Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies (b. 1653)

BattleCalico Jack

1720 Calico Jack [John Rackham], English pirate captain who operated in the Bahamas and Cuba, executed for piracy by hanging in Port Royal at 37

Pirate Calico Jack
Pirate
Calico Jack
  • 1747 Alain-René Lesage, French author (Le diable boiteux), dies at 79
  • 1757 Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen consort of Poland (1734-57), dies at 57

Person of interestThomas Pelham-Holles

1768 Thomas Pelham-Holles, 1st Duke of Newcastle, British Prime Minister (Whig: 1757-62), dies at 75

British Prime Minister Thomas Pelham-Holles
British Prime Minister
Thomas Pelham-Holles
  • 1776 James Ferguson, Scottish astronomer, dies at 66
  • 1780 Bernardo Bellotto, Italian painter (b. 1720)
  • 1794 Jacques François Dugommier, French general, dies at 56

Person of interestCatherine the Great

1796 Catherine the Great [Catherine II], Empress of Russia (1762-96), dies of a stroke at 67

Empress of Russia Catherine the Great
Empress of Russia
Catherine the Great
  • 1808 David Zeisberger, Moravian clergyman and missionary, dies at 87
  • 1808 Mustafa IV, 29th Sultan of Ottoman Empire (1807-08), dies at 29
  • 1818 Charlotte Sophia von Mecklenburg-Strelitz, Queen of England, dies

  • 1848 Jozef B "Olim" Cannaert, Flemish lawyer, dies
  • 1849 Prince Alexander of Hohenlohe-Waldenburg-Schillingsfürst, German priest and miracle-worker (b. 1794)
  • 1858 Robert Owen, British father of the cooperative movement (b. 1771)
  • 1865 James McCune Smith, African-American doctor and abolitionist, dies at 52
  • 1875 Hilario Ascasubi, Argentina author (pampa, gauchos & indians), dies
  • 1893 Alexander-Jozef von Battenberg, Prince of Bulgaria (1879-86), dies at 36
  • 1897 George Hendric Houghton, American Protestant Episcopal clergyman (b. 1820)
  • 1902 Hugh Price Hughes, Welsh Methodist Social reformer, dies at 55
  • 1905 Adolphe [Adolf Wilhelm August Karl Friedrich], Grand Duke of Luxembourg (1890-1905), dies at 88
  • 1905 Prince Philippe, Count of Flanders and son of Leopold I, dies at 68

Person of interestAuguste Rodin

1917 Auguste Rodin, French sculptor (Baiser, Thinker), dies at 77

Sculptor Auguste Rodin
Sculptor
Auguste Rodin
  • 1917 Charles Holroyd, English artist and curator, Director of the National Gallery (1906-16), dies at 56
  • 1921 Pa Chay Vue, Hmong Nationalist
  • 1922 Robert Comtesse, Swiss politician and member of the Swiss Federal Council (1899-1912), dies at 75
  • 1926 Carl Akeley, American taxidermist and naturalist who developed the animal mount process and other techniques for museums, dies at 62
  • 1927 Adolph Joffe, Russian Communist revolutionary and writer (Brest-Litovsk), commits suicide at 44
  • 1928 Lala Lajpat Rai, Indian author, politician, & freedom fighter (b. 1865)
  • 1929 Herman Hollerith, German/US statistician (punch card), dies at 69
  • 1931 John Paulus Lotsy, Dutch botanist and geneticist (Resumptio Genetics), dies at 64
  • 1931 Hara Prasad Shastri, Indian academic, Sanskrit scholar, archivist and historian of Bengali literature, dies at 77
  • 1934 Joachim Ringelnatz [Hans Bötticher], German writer and artist, dies at 51
  • 1938 Ante Trumbić, Croatian politician (23rd Mayor of Split), dies at 74
  • 1940 Eric Gill, British sculptor (b. 1882)
  • 1940 Raymond Pearl, American biologist (b. 1879)
  • 1941 Ernst Udet, German WWI pilot and notable flying ace who helped develop the Luftwaffe under the Nazi Party, commits suicide at 45
  • 1942 Ben Reitman, American anarchist, physician (b. 1879)
  • 1944 Johan Hermanus Doorn, Dutch journalist and resistance fighter (Orange Newspaper), dies at 34
  • 1945 Frederick Francis IV, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, dies at 63
  • 1947 Ricarda Huch, German writer and historian "First Lady of German humanism", dies at 83
  • 1947 Victor Serge, Russian anarchist, novelist, and historian (b. 1890)
  • 1962 Arthur Vining Davis, American industrialist and CEO (Alcoa-1910-57), dies at 95
  • 1968 Wilhelm Lehmann, German writer, dies at 86
  • 1968 Mervyn Peake, British writer and illustrator (Gormenghast books), dies at 57
  • 1973 Mirra Richard [The Mother], French-born Indian spiritual leader (Sri Aurobindo), dies at 95
  • 1979 John Glassock, bass (Jethro Tull), dies at 27 following heart surgery
  • 1979 Immanuel Velikovsky, Russian writer (Worlds in Collision), dies at 84
  • 1982 Ruth Donnelly, comedienne, dies at 86 in NYC
  • 1986 Georges Besse, French president-director of Renault, murdered
  • 1988 Sheilah Graham, gossip columnist, dies of heart failure at 84
  • 1989 Gus Farace, American gangster (b. 1960)

Person of interestRobert Hofstadter

1990 Robert Hofstadter, American atomic physicist and Nobel laureate (electron scattering in atomic nuclei), dies at 75

  • 1991 John Blatnik, (Rep-Minn, 1947-75), dies at 80
  • 1992 Audre Lorde, American writer, feminist and activist (Black Unicorn), dies of cancer at 58
  • 1993 Gérard D. Levesque, Canadian politician, dies at 67
  • 1994 G Waller, German/Swiss movie journalist (NRC/Variety), dies at 82
  • 1995 Edward LeBone Molotlegi, chief of the Bafokeng, dies at 66
  • 1995 John Prickett, teacher/ecumenist, dies at 88
  • 1995 Marguerite Young, writer, dies at 87
  • 1996 Andrew John Fairclough, trade union educator, dies at 45
  • 2000 Louis Eugène Félix Néel, French physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1904)
  • 2002 Abba Eban, Israeli diplomat (b. 1915)
  • 2011 Olin Branstetter, American businessman and politician (b. 1929)
  • 2012 Margaret Yorke, English crime fiction writer, dies at 88
  • 2013 Doris Lessing, Iranian novelist and Nobel laureate (Adore, Memoirs of a Survivor, Golden Notebook), dies at 94
  • 2013 Omprakash Valmiki, Indian Dalit writer and poet (Joothan), dies of stomach cancer at 63
  • 2017 Salvatore Riina, Italian mobster and chief of the Sicilian Mafia, dies at