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Events

  • 502Chinese emperor Xiao Yan names Xiao Tong his heir designate.
  • 640Pope John IV is elected.
  • 759Tang dynasty poet Du Fu departs for Chengdu, where he is hosted by fellow poet Pei Di.
  • 820 – Emperor Leo V is assassinated in the Hagia Sophia at Constantinople and is succeeded by Michael II.
  • 1144 – The capital of the crusader County of Edessa falls to Imad ad-Din Zengi, the atabeg of Mosul and Aleppo.
  • 1294Pope Boniface VIII is elected, replacing St. Celestine V, who had resigned.
  • 1500 – A joint VenetianSpanish fleet captures the Castle of St. George on the island of Cephalonia.
  • 1737 – The Marathas defeat the combined forces of the Mughal Empire, Rajputs of Jaipur, Nizam of Hyderabad, Nawab of Awadh and Nawab of Bengal in the Battle of Bhopal.
  • 1777Kiritimati, also called Christmas Island, is discovered by James Cook.
  • 1800 – The Plot of the rue Saint-Nicaise fails to kill Napoleon Bonaparte.
  • 1814 – Representatives of the United Kingdom and the United States sign the Treaty of Ghent, ending the War of 1812.
  • 1818 – The first performance of "Silent Night" takes place in the church of St. Nikolaus in Oberndorf, Austria.
  • 1826 – The Eggnog Riot at the United States Military Academy begins that night, wrapping up the following morning.
  • 1846 – British acquired Labuan from the Sultanate of Brunei for Great Britain.
  • 1851 – The Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., burns.
  • 1865 – Jonathan Shank and Barry Ownby form The Ku Klux Klan.
  • 1868 – The Greek Presidential Guard is established as the royal escort by King George I.
  • 1871 – The opera Aida premieres in Cairo, Egypt.
  • 1906Radio: Reginald Fessenden transmits the first radio broadcast; consisting of a poetry reading, a violin solo, and a speech.
  • 1911Lackawanna Cut-Off railway line opens in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
  • 1913 – The Italian Hall disaster in Calumet, Michigan results in the deaths of 73 Christmas party participants (including 59 children) when someone falsely yells "fire".
  • 1914World War I: The "Christmas truce" begins.
  • 1920Gabriele D'Annunzio surrendered the Italian Regency of Carnaro in the city of Fiume to Italian armed forces.
  • 1924Albania becomes a republic.
  • 1929 – Assassination attempt on Argentine President Hipólito Yrigoyen.
  • 1929 – A four alarm fire breaks out in the West Wing of the White House in Washington, D.C.[1]
  • 1939World War II: Pope Pius XII makes a Christmas Eve appeal for peace.
  • 1941 – World War II: Kuching is conquered by Japanese forces.
  • 1941 – World War II: Benghazi is conquered by the British Eighth Army.
  • 1942 – World War II: French monarchist, Fernand Bonnier de La Chapelle, assassinates Vichy French Admiral François Darlan in Algiers, Algeria.
  • 1943 – World War II: U.S. General Dwight D. Eisenhower is named Supreme Allied Commander for the Invasion of Normandy.
  • 1945 – Five of nine children become missing after their home in Fayetteville, West Virginia, is burned down.
  • 1951Libya becomes independent. Idris I is proclaimed King of Libya.
  • 1952 – First flight of Britain's Handley Page Victor strategic bomber.
  • 1953Tangiwai disaster: In New Zealand's North Island, at Tangiwai, a railway bridge is damaged by a lahar and collapses beneath a passenger train, killing 151 people.
  • 1964Vietnam War: Viet Cong operatives bomb the Brinks Hotel in Saigon, South Vietnam to demonstrate they can strike an American installation in the heavily guarded capital.
  • 1964 – Flying Tiger Line Flight 282 crashes after takeoff from San Francisco International Airport, killing three.[2]
  • 1966 – A Canadair CL-44 chartered by the United States military crashes into a small village in South Vietnam, killing 129.
  • 1968Apollo program: The crew of Apollo 8 enters into orbit around the Moon, becoming the first humans to do so. They performed ten lunar orbits and broadcast live TV pictures.
  • 1969 – Nigerian troops capture Umuahia, the Biafran capital.
  • 1973District of Columbia Home Rule Act is passed, allowing residents of Washington, D.C. to elect their own local government.
  • 1974Cyclone Tracy devastates Darwin, Australia.
  • 1980 – Witnesses report the first of several sightings of unexplained lights near RAF Woodbridge, in Rendlesham Forest, Suffolk, England, United Kingdom, an incident called "Britain's Roswell".
  • 1994Air France Flight 8969 is hijacked on the ground at Houari Boumediene Airport, Algiers, Algeria. Over the course of three days three passengers are killed, as are all four terrorists.
  • 1997 – The Sid El-Antri massacre in Algeria kills between 50 and 100 people.
  • 1999Indian Airlines Flight 814 is hijacked in Indian airspace between Kathmandu, Nepal, and Delhi, India. The aircraft landed at Kandahar in Afghanistan. The incident ended on December 31 with the release of 190 survivors (one passenger is killed).
  • 2003 – The Spanish police thwart an attempt by ETA to detonate 50 kg of explosives at 3:55 p.m. inside Madrid's busy Chamartín Station.
  • 2005Chad–Sudan relations: Chad declares a state of war against Sudan following a December 18 attack on Adré, which left about 100 people dead.
  • 2008 – The Lord's Resistance Army, a Ugandan rebel group, begins a series of attacks against civilians in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, massacring more than 400.
  • 2018 – A helicopter crash kills Martha Érika Alonso, first female Governor of Puebla, Mexico, and her husband Rafael Moreno Valle Rosas, former governor.[3]

Births

  • 3 BCGalba, Roman emperor (d. 69)[4]
  • 1166John, King of England (d. 1216)[5]
  • 1389John V, Duke of Brittany (d. 1442)[6]
  • 1474Bartolomeo degli Organi, Italian musician (d. 1539)[7]
  • 1475Thomas Murner, German poet and translator (d. 1537)[8]
  • 1508Pietro Carnesecchi, Italian scholar (d. 1567)[9]
  • 1520Martha Leijonhufvud, Swedish noble (d. 1584)
  • 1537Willem IV van den Bergh, Stadtholder of Guelders and Zutphen (d. 1586)
  • 1549Kaspar Ulenberg, German theologian (d. 1617)
  • 1588Constance of Austria (d. 1631)
  • 1596Leonaert Bramer, Dutch painter (d. 1674)
  • 1597Honoré II, Prince of Monaco (d. 1662)
  • 1625Johann Rudolph Ahle, German organist, composer, and theorist (d. 1673)
  • 1635Mariana of Austria (d. 1696)
  • 1679Domenico Sarro, Italian composer and educator (d. 1744)
  • 1698William Warburton, English bishop (d. 1779)
  • 1726Johann Hartmann, Danish composer (d. 1793)
  • 1731Julie Bondeli, Swiss salonist and lady of letters (d. 1778)
  • 1754George Crabbe, English priest, surgeon, and poet (d. 1832)
  • 1761Selim III, Ottoman sultan (d. 1808)
  • 1761 – Jean-Louis Pons, French astronomer (d. 1831)
  • 1798Adam Mickiewicz, Polish poet and playwright (d. 1855)
  • 1809Kit Carson, American general (d. 1868)
  • 1810Wilhelm Marstrand, Danish painter and illustrator (d. 1873)
  • 1812Karl Eduard Zachariae von Lingenthal, German lawyer and jurist (d. 1894)
  • 1818James Prescott Joule, English physicist and brewer (d. 1889)
  • 1822Matthew Arnold, English poet and critic (d. 1888)
  • 1827Alexander von Oettingen, German theologian and statistician (d. 1905)
  • 1837Empress Elisabeth of Austria (d. 1898)
  • 1843Lydia Koidula, Estonian poet and playwright (d. 1886)
  • 1845George I of Greece (d. 1913)
  • 1865Szymon Askenazy, Polish historian, educator, and diplomat, founded the Askenazy school (d. 1935)
  • 1867Tevfik Fikret, Turkish poet and educator (d. 1915)
  • 1868Charles Harvey Bollman, American naturalist (d. 1889)
  • 1868 – Emanuel Lasker, German chess player, mathematician, and philosopher (d. 1941)
  • 1869Henriette Roland Holst, Dutch poet, playwright, and politician (d. 1952)
  • 1872Frederick Semple, American golfer and tennis player (d. 1927)
  • 1875Émile Wegelin, French rower (d. 1962)
  • 1877Sigrid Schauman, Finnish painter and critic (d. 1979)
  • 1879Émile Nelligan, Canadian poet (d. 1941)
  • 1879 – Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (d. 1952)
  • 1880Johnny Gruelle, American author and illustrator (d. 1939)
  • 1881Charles Wakefield Cadman, American composer and critic (d. 1946)
  • 1882Hans Rebane, Estonian journalist and politician, 8th Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs (d. 1961)
  • 1883Stefan Jaracz, Polish actor and producer (d. 1945)
  • 1885Paul Manship, American sculptor (d. 1966)
  • 1886Michael Curtiz, Hungarian-American actor, director, and producer (d. 1962)
  • 1887Louis Jouvet, French actor and producer (d. 1951)
  • 1891Feodor Stepanovich Rojankovsky, Russian illustrator and painter (d. 1970)
  • 1892Ruth Chatterton, American actress (d. 1961)
  • 1893 – Harry Warren, American pianist and composer (d. 1981)
  • 1894Georges Guynemer, French captain and pilot (d. 1917)
  • 1894 – Jack Thayer, American businessman (d. 1945)
  • 1895E. Roland Harriman, American financier and philanthropist (d. 1978)
  • 1895 – Noel Streatfeild, English author (d. 1986)
  • 1895 – Marguerite Williams, American geologist (d. 1991)
  • 1897Ville Pörhölä, Finnish shot putter and discus thrower (d. 1964)
  • 1897 – Väinö Sipilä, Finnish runner (d. 1987)
  • 1898Baby Dodds, American drummer (d. 1959)
  • 1900Joey Smallwood, Canadian journalist and politician, 1st Premier of Newfoundland (d. 1991)
  • 1900 – Hawayo Takata, Japanese-American teacher and master practitioner of Reiki (d. 1980)
  • 1903Joseph Cornell, American sculptor and director (d. 1972)
  • 1903 – Ernst Krenkel, Polish-Russian geographer and explorer (d. 1971)
  • 1903 – Ava Helen Pauling, American humanitarian and activist (d. 1981)
  • 1904Joseph M. Juran, Romanian-American engineer and businessman (d. 2008)
  • 1905Howard Hughes, American businessman, engineer, and pilot (d. 1976)
  • 1906Franz Waxman, German-American composer and conductor (d. 1967)
  • 1907I. F. Stone, American journalist and author (d. 1989)
  • 1910Ellen Braumüller, German javelin thrower and triathlete (d. 1991)
  • 1910 – Fritz Leiber, American author and poet (d. 1992)
  • 1910 – Max Miedinger, Swiss typeface designer, created Helvetica (d. 1980)
  • 1913Ad Reinhardt, American painter and academic (d. 1967)
  • 1914Ralph Marterie, Italian-American trumpet player and bandleader (d. 1978)
  • 1914 – Herbert Reinecker, German author and screenwriter (d. 2007)
  • 1918Dave Bartholomew, American bandleader, composer and arranger (d. 2019)
  • 1919Qateel Shifai, Pakistani poet and songwriter (d. 2001)
  • 1919 – Pierre Soulages, French artist
  • 1920Franco Lucentini, Italian author and screenwriter (d. 2002)
  • 1920 – Yevgeniya Rudneva, Ukrainian-Russian lieutenant and navigator (d. 1944)
  • 1921Bill Dudley, American football player (d. 2010)
  • 1922Ava Gardner, American actress (d. 1990)
  • 1923George Patton IV, American general (d. 2004)
  • 1923 – William C. Schneider, American aerospace engineer (d. 1999)
  • 1924Lee Dorsey, American singer-songwriter (d. 1986)
  • 1924 – Abdirizak Haji Hussein, Somalian soldier and politician, 4th Prime Minister of Somalia (d. 2014)
  • 1924 – Mohammed Rafi, Indian singer (d. 1980)
  • 1924 – Norman Rossington, English actor (d. 1999)
  • 1927Mary Higgins Clark, American author (d. 2020)
  • 1928Lev Vlassenko, Georgian-Australian pianist and educator (d. 1996)
  • 1929Lennart Skoglund, Swedish footballer (d. 1975)
  • 1929 – Philip Ziegler, English historian and author
  • 1930Robert Joffrey, American dancer and choreographer (d. 1988)
  • 1930 – John J. Kelley, American runner (d. 2011)
  • 1931Ray Bryant, American pianist and composer (d. 2011)
  • 1931 – Mauricio Kagel, Argentinian-German composer and scholar (d. 2008)
  • 1932Colin Cowdrey, Indian-English cricketer (d. 2000)
  • 1932 – On Kawara, Japanese-American painter (d. 2014)
  • 1934John Critchinson, English pianist and composer (d. 2017)
  • 1934 – Stjepan Mesić, Croatian lawyer and politician, 2nd President of Croatia
  • 1934 – Alex Hutchinson, Australian jazz musician
  • 1936Ivan Lawrence, English lawyer and politician
  • 1937Félix Miélli Venerando, Brazilian footballer and manager (d. 2012)
  • 1937 – John Taylor, Baron Kilclooney, Northern Irish politician, Irish Minister of Home Affairs
  • 1938Bobby Henrich, American baseball player
  • 1938 – Valentim Loureiro, Portuguese soldier and politician
  • 1940Janet Carroll, American actress and singer (d. 2012)
  • 1940 – Anthony Fauci, American physician, Director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984
  • 1941Mike Hazlewood, English singer-songwriter (d. 2001)
  • 1942Indra Bania, Indian actor, director, and playwright (d. 2015)
  • 1942 – Jonathan Borofsky, American sculptor and painter
  • 1942 – Đoàn Viết Hoạt, Vietnamese journalist, educator, and activist
  • 1943Tarja Halonen, Finnish lawyer and politician, 11th President of Finland
  • 1943 – Suzy Menkes, English journalist and critic
  • 1944Barry Elliott, English actor and screenwriter (d. 2018)
  • 1944 – Mike Curb, American businessman and politician, 42nd Lieutenant Governor of California
  • 1944 – Oswald Gracias, Indian cardinal
  • 1944 – Daniel Johnson, Jr., Canadian lawyer and politician, 25th Premier of Quebec
  • 1944 – Erhard Keller, German speed skater
  • 1944 – Bob Shaw, Australian golfer
  • 1944 – Woody Shaw, American trumpeter (d. 1989)
  • 1945Lemmy, English hard rock singer-songwriter and bass player (d. 2015)
  • 1945 – Steve Smith, Canadian-American actor and comedian
  • 1946Jan Akkerman, Dutch rock guitarist and songwriter
  • 1946 – Jeff Sessions, American captain, lawyer, and politician, 44th Attorney General of Alabama and 84th Attorney General of the United States
  • 1947Kevin Sheedy, Australian footballer and coach
  • 1948Stan Bowles, English footballer and sportscaster
  • 1948 – Frank Oliver, New Zealand rugby player and coach
  • 1949Warwick Brown, Australian race car driver
  • 1949 – Randy Neugebauer, American accountant and politician
  • 1950Dana Gioia, American poet and critic
  • 1950 – Hiroshi Ikushima, Japanese businessman and academic
  • 1950 – Libby Larsen, American composer
  • 1951John D'Acquisto, American baseball player
  • 1951 – Nick Kent, English-French journalist and author
  • 1952Michael Ray, American jazz musician
  • 1953Timothy Carhart, American actor
  • 1954Yves Debay, Congolese-French commander and journalist (d. 2013)
  • 1954 – José María Figueres, Costa Rican businessman and politician, President of Costa Rica
  • 1954 – Helen Jones, English lawyer and politician
  • 1955Scott Fischer, American mountaineer and guide (d. 1996)
  • 1955 – Clarence Gilyard, American actor and educator
  • 1956Anil Kapoor, Indian actor and producer.
  • 1956 – Shim Hwa-jin, South Korean academic and educator
  • 1957Hamid Karzai, Afghan politician, 12th President of Afghanistan
  • 1958Munetaka Higuchi, Japanese drummer and producer (d. 2008)
  • 1958 – Paul Pressey, American basketball player and coach
  • 1958 – Gene Sperling, American economist
  • 1958 – Diane Tell, Canadian singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • 1959Chris Blackhurst, English journalist
  • 1959 – Lee Daniels, American director and producer
  • 1960Glenn McQueen, Canadian-American animator (d. 2002)
  • 1960 – Carol Vorderman, English television host
  • 1961Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijani businessman and politician, 4th President of Azerbaijan
  • 1961 – Mary Barra, American businesswoman, current CEO and chairwoman of General Motors
  • 1961 – Eriko Kitagawa, Japanese director and screenwriter
  • 1961 – Darren Wharton, English singer-songwriter and keyboard player
  • 1961 – Wade Williams, American actor
  • 1961 – Jay Wright, American basketball player and coach
  • 1962Kate Spade, American fashion designer (d. 2018)
  • 1963Caroline Aherne, English actress, producer, and screenwriter (d. 2016)
  • 1963 – Jay Bilas, American basketball player and sportscaster
  • 1963 – Timo Jutila, Finnish ice hockey player and sportscaster
  • 1963 – Mary Ramsey, American singer-songwriter and violinist
  • 1963 – Neil Turbin, American singer-songwriter
  • 1964Mark Valley, American actor
  • 1965Millard Powers, American bass player, songwriter, and producer
  • 1965 – William Branham, American minister
  • 1966Diedrich Bader, American actor
  • 1967Mikhail Shchennikov, Russian race walker
  • 1967 – Pernilla Wahlgren, Swedish singer and actress
  • 1968Doyle Bramhall II, American singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • 1968 – Marleen Renders, Belgian runner
  • 1969Brad Anderson, American wrestler
  • 1969 – Milan Blagojevic, Australian footballer and manager
  • 1969 – Pernille Fischer Christensen, Danish director and screenwriter
  • 1969 – Taro Goto, Japanese soccer player
  • 1969 – Leavander Johnson, American boxer (d. 2005)
  • 1969 – Ryuji Kato, Japanese soccer player
  • 1969 – Nick Love, English director and screenwriter
  • 1969 – Clinton McKinnon, American saxophonist and keyboard player
  • 1969 – Ed Miliband, English academic and politician, Minister for the Cabinet Office
  • 1969 – Mark Millar, Scottish author
  • 1969 – Luis Musrri, Chilean footballer and manager
  • 1969 – Oleg Skripochka, Russian astronaut and engineer
  • 1969 – Gintaras Staučė, Lithuanian footballer and manager
  • 1969 – Michael Zucchet, American economist and politician
  • 1970Adam Haslett, American author and academic
  • 1970 – Amaury Nolasco, Puerto Rican-American actor
  • 1971Geoff Allott, New Zealand cricketer
  • 1971 – Sascha Fischer, German rugby player
  • 1971 – Ricky Martin, Puerto Rican-American singer-songwriter and actor
  • 1972Álvaro Mesén, Costa Rican footballer
  • 1972 – Klaus Schnellenkamp, Chilean businessman and author
  • 1973Liu Dong, Chinese-Spanish runner
  • 1973 – Paul Foot, English comedian
  • 1973 – Stephenie Meyer, American author and film producer
  • 1973 – Ali Salem Tamek, Moroccan activist
  • 1974Thure Lindhardt, Danish actor
  • 1974 – Paal Nilssen-Love, Norwegian drummer and composer
  • 1974 – Marcelo Salas, Chilean footballer
  • 1974 – Ryan Seacrest, American radio host and television personality, and producer
  • 1974 – J.D. Walsh, American actor, director, and producer
  • 1976Linda Ferga, French hurdler
  • 1977Michael Raymond-James, American actor
  • 1978Yıldıray Baştürk, German-Turkish footballer
  • 1978 – Warren Tredrea, Australian footballer and sportscaster
  • 1979Chris Hero, American wrestler and trainer
  • 1980Stephen Appiah, Ghanaian footballer
  • 1980 – Tomas Kalnoky, Czech-American singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • 1980 – Maarja Liis-Ilus, Estonian pop musician
  • 1981Dima Bilan, Russian singer-songwriter and actor
  • 1984Isaac De Gois, Australian rugby league player
  • 1985Alexey Dmitriev, German ice hockey player
  • 1985 – David Ragan, American race car driver
  • 1986Tim Elliott, American mixed martial artist
  • 1986 – Kyrylo Fesenko, Ukrainian basketball player
  • 1987Jane Summersett, American ice dancer
  • 1988Stefanos Athanasiadis, Greek footballer
  • 1988 – Emre Özkan, Turkish footballer
  • 1988 – Simon Zenke, Nigerian footballer
  • 1990Brigetta Barrett, American high jumper
  • 1990 – Marcus Jordan, American basketball player
  • 1990 – Ryo Miyake, Japanese fencer
  • 1991Lara Michel, Swiss tennis player
  • 1991 – Wasim Tareen, Pakistani footballer
  • 1991 – Louis Tomlinson, English singer-songwriter
  • 1994Fa'amanu Brown, New Zealand rugby league player
  • 1994 – Miguel Castro, Dominican baseball player
  • 1994 – Matt Frawley, Australian rugby league player

Deaths

  • 36Gongsun Shu, emperor of Chengjia
  • 427Archbishop Sisinnius I of Constantinople
  • 820Leo V the Armenian, Byzantine emperor (b. 775)
  • 903Hedwiga, duchess of Saxony
  • 950Shi Hongzhao, Chinese general
  • 950 – Wang Zhang, Chinese official
  • 950 – Yang Bin, Chinese chancellor
  • 1193Roger III of Sicily (b. 1175)
  • 1257John I, Count of Hainaut (b. 1218)
  • 1263Hōjō Tokiyori, regent of Japan (b. 1227)
  • 1281Henry V of Luxembourg (b. 1216)
  • 1449Walter Bower, Scottish chronicler (b. 1385)
  • 1453John Dunstaple, English composer (b. 1390)
  • 1456Đurađ Branković, Despot of Serbia (b. 1377)
  • 1473John Cantius, Polish scholar and theologian (b. 1390)
  • 1524Vasco da Gama, Portuguese explorer and politician, Governor of Portuguese India (b. 1469)
  • 1541Andreas Karlstadt, Christian theologian and reformer (born 1486)
  • 1635Hester Jonas, German nurse (b. 1570)
  • 1660Mary, Princess Royal and Princess of Orange (b. 1631)
  • 1707Noël Coypel, French painter and educator (b. 1628)
  • 1813Empress Go-Sakuramachi of Japan (b. 1740)
  • 1844Friedrich Bernhard Westphal, Danish-German painter (b. 1803)
  • 1863William Makepeace Thackeray, English author and poet (b. 1811)
  • 1865Charles Lock Eastlake, English painter and historian (b. 1793)
  • 1867José Mariano Salas, Mexican general and politician. President of Mexico (1846, 1859) and regent of the Second Mexican Empire(b. 1797)[10]
  • 1868Adolphe d'Archiac, French paleontologist and geologist (b. 1802)
  • 1872William John Macquorn Rankine, Scottish physicist and engineer (b. 1820)
  • 1873Johns Hopkins, American businessman and philanthropist (b. 1795)
  • 1879Anna Bochkoltz, German operatic soprano, voice teacher and composer (b. 1815)
  • 1889Jan Jakob Lodewijk ten Kate, Dutch pastor and poet (b. 1819)
  • 1893B. T. Finniss, Australian politician, 1st Premier of South Australia (b. 1807)
  • 1898Charbel Makhluf, Lebanese priest and saint (b. 1828)
  • 1914John Muir, Scottish-American geologist, botanist, and author, founded Sierra Club (b. 1838)
  • 1920Stephen Mosher Wood, American lieutenant and politician (b. 1832)
  • 1926Wesley Coe, American shot putter, hammer thrower, and discus thrower (b. 1879)
  • 1931Carlo Fornasini, micropalaeontologist (b. 1854)
  • 1931 – Flying Hawk, American warrior, educator and historian (b. 1854)
  • 1935Alban Berg, Austrian composer and educator (b. 1885)
  • 1938Bruno Taut, German architect and urban planner (b. 1880)
  • 1941Siegfried Alkan, German composer (b. 1858)
  • 1942François Darlan, French admiral and politician, 122nd Prime Minister of France (b. 1881)
  • 1945Josephine Sabel, American singer and comedian (b. 1866)
  • 1947Charles Gondouin, French rugby player and tug of war competitor (b. 1875)
  • 1957Norma Talmadge, American actress and producer (b. 1894)
  • 1961Robert Hillyer, American poet and academic (b. 1895)
  • 1962Wilhelm Ackermann, German mathematician (b. 1896)
  • 1962 – Eveline Adelheid von Maydell, German illustrator (b. 1890)
  • 1964Claudia Jones, Trinidad-British journalist and activist (b. 1915)
  • 1965John Black, English businessman (b. 1895)
  • 1965 – William M. Branham, American minister and theologian (b. 1906)
  • 1967Burt Baskin, American businessman, co-founded Baskin-Robbins (b. 1913)
  • 1969Stanisław Błeszyński, Polish-German entomologist and lepidopterist (b. 1927)
  • 1969 – Cortelia Clark, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1907)
  • 1969 – Olivia FitzRoy, English soldier and author (b. 1921)
  • 1969 – Alfred B. Skar, Norwegian journalist and politician (b. 1896)
  • 1971Maria Koepcke, German-Peruvian ornithologist and zoologist (b. 1924)
  • 1972Gisela Richter, English-American archaeologist and historian (b. 1882)
  • 1973Fritz Gause, German historian and author (b. 1893)
  • 1975Bernard Herrmann, American composer and conductor (b. 1911)
  • 1977Samael Aun Weor, Colombian author and educator (b. 1917)
  • 1980Karl Dönitz, German admiral and politician, President of Germany (b. 1891)
  • 1982Louis Aragon, French author and poet (b. 1897)
  • 1984Peter Lawford, English-American actor (b. 1923)
  • 1985Robert Todd Lincoln Beckwith, American lawyer (b. 1904)
  • 1985 – Camille Tourville, Canadian-American wrestler and manager (b. 1927)
  • 1986Gardner Fox, American author (b. 1911)
  • 1987Joop den Uyl, Dutch journalist, economist, and politician, 45th Prime Minister of the Netherlands (b. 1919)
  • 1987 – M. G. Ramachandran, Sri Lankan-Indian actor, producer, and politician, 5th Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu (b. 1917)
  • 1988Jainendra Kumar, Indian author (b. 1905)
  • 1990Thorbjørn Egner, Norwegian playwright and songwriter (b. 1922)
  • 1991Virginia Sorensen, American author (b. 1912)
  • 1992Bobby LaKind, American singer-songwriter and conga player (b. 1945)
  • 1992 – James Mathews, Australian rugby league player (b. 1968)
  • 1992 – Peyo, Belgian cartoonist, created The Smurfs (b. 1928)
  • 1993Norman Vincent Peale, American minister and author (b. 1898)
  • 1994John Boswell, American historian, author, and academic (b. 1947)
  • 1994 – Rossano Brazzi, Italian actor (b. 1916)
  • 1997James Komack, American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (b. 1930)
  • 1997 – Toshiro Mifune, Chinese-Japanese actor and producer (b. 1920)
  • 1997 – Pierre Péladeau, Canadian businessman, founded Quebecor (b. 1925)
  • 1998Syl Apps, Canadian ice hockey player and pole vaulter (b. 1915)
  • 1999Bill Bowerman, American runner, coach, and businessman, co-founded Nike, Inc. (b. 1911)
  • 1999 – Maurice Couve de Murville, French soldier and politician, 152nd Prime Minister of France (b. 1907)
  • 1999 – João Figueiredo, Brazilian general and politician, 30th President of Brazil (b. 1918)
  • 1999 – William C. Schneider, American aerospace engineer (b. 1923)
  • 2000John Cooper, English businessman, co-founded the Cooper Car Company (b. 1923)
  • 2002Kjell Aukrust, Norwegian author and poet (b. 1920)
  • 2002 – Jake Thackray, English singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1938)
  • 2004Johnny Oates, American baseball player, coach, and manager (b. 1946)
  • 2006Braguinha, Brazilian singer-songwriter and producer (b. 1907)
  • 2006 – Kenneth Sivertsen, Norwegian guitarist and composer (b. 1961)
  • 2006 – Frank Stanton, American businessman (b. 1908)
  • 2007Nicholas Pumfrey, English lawyer and judge (b. 1951)
  • 2007 – George Warrington, American businessman (b. 1952)
  • 2008Ralph Harris, British journalist (b. 1921)
  • 2008 – Harold Pinter, English playwright, screenwriter, director, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1930)
  • 2009Marcus Bakker, Dutch journalist and politician (b. 1923)
  • 2009 – Rafael Caldera, Venezuelan lawyer and politician, 65th President of Venezuela (b. 1916)
  • 2009 – George Michael, American sportscaster (b. 1939)
  • 2009 – Gero von Wilpert, German author and academic (b. 1933)
  • 2010Elisabeth Beresford, French-English journalist and author (b. 1926)
  • 2010 – Frans de Munck, Dutch footballer and manager (b. 1922)
  • 2010 – Orestes Quércia, Brazilian journalist, lawyer, and politician, 28th Governor of São Paulo State (b. 1938)
  • 2010 – Eino Tamberg, Estonian composer and educator (b. 1930)
  • 2011Johannes Heesters, Dutch-German entertainer (b. 1903)
  • 2012Richard Rodney Bennett, English-American composer and academic (b. 1936)
  • 2012 – Charles Durning, American soldier and actor (b. 1923)
  • 2012 – Jack Klugman, American actor (b. 1922)
  • 2012 – Dennis O'Driscoll, Irish poet and critic (b. 1954)
  • 2013Frédéric Back, German-Canadian director, animator, and screenwriter (b. 1924)
  • 2013 – Ian Barbour, Chinese-American author and scholar (b. 1923)
  • 2013 – John M. Goldman, English haematologist and oncologist (b. 1938)
  • 2013 – Allan McKeown, English-American screenwriter and producer (b. 1946)
  • 2014Buddy DeFranco, American clarinet player (b. 1923)
  • 2014 – Edward Greenspan, Canadian lawyer and author (b. 1944)
  • 2014 – Herbert Harris, American lawyer and politician (b. 1926)
  • 2014 – Krzysztof Krauze, Polish director and screenwriter (b. 1953)
  • 2015Turid Birkeland, Norwegian businesswoman and politician, Norwegian Minister of Culture (b. 1962)
  • 2015 – Letty Jimenez Magsanoc, Filipino journalist (b. 1941)
  • 2015 – Adriana Olguín, Chilean lawyer and politician, Chilean Minister of Justice (b. 1911)
  • 2016Rick Parfitt, British musician (b. 1948)
  • 2016 – Liz Smith, English actress (b. 1921)
  • 2016 – Richard Adams, English author (b. 1920)
  • 2016 – Ben Xi, Chinese singer (b.1994)
  • 2017Jerry Kindall, American baseball player and coach (b. 1935)
  • 2017 – Heather Menzies, Canadian-American model and actress (b. 1949)
  • 2018Martha Érika Alonso, first female Governor of Puebla, Mexico, and her husband Rafael Moreno Valle Rosas, former governor; helicopter crash (Alonso b. 1973, Valle b. 1968)[3]

Holidays and observances

  • Christian feast day:
    • Adela and Irmina
    • Paola Elisabetta Cerioli
    • December 24 (Eastern Orthodox liturgics)
  • Christmas Eve (Christianity) and its related observances:
    • Aðfangadagskvöld, the day when the 13th and the last Yule Lad arrives to towns. (Iceland)
    • Feast of the Seven Fishes (Italian Americans)
    • Juleaften (Denmark)/Julaften (Norway)/Julafton (Sweden)
    • Nittel Nacht (certain Orthodox Jewish denominations)
    • Nochebuena (Spain and Spanish-speaking countries)
    • The Declaration of Christmas Peace (Old Great Square of Turku, Finland's official Christmas City)
    • Wigilia (Poland)
    • Quviasukvik, the Inuit new year (Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Russia)
  • Independence Day (Libya)
  • Day of Military Honour - Siege of Ismail (Russia)

References

  1. https://www.whitehousehistory.org/the-christmas-eve-west-wing-fire-of-1929
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External links

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