1834 - Ernst Haeckl
German natural philosopher; promoter of Darwin's ideas in Germany.
1838 - Henry Adams
American historian whose posthumously published autobiography won the 1919 Pulitzer Prize.
1883 - Elizabeth Craig
Scottish journalist and cookbook author.
1886 - Van Wyck Brooks
American historian and biographer, winner of the Pulitzer Prize in History and the National Book Award for The Flowering of New England.
1904 - George F. Kennan
American diplomat and Cold War figure, Ambassador to the Soviet Union and author of seventeen books, including a Pulitzer and National Book Award winner.
1927 - David Bryon Davis
American historian and authority on slavery and abolition in the Western world.
1944 - Richard Ford
American author, winner of the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for his book Independence Day.
1954 - Iain Banks
Scottish author of both fiction and science fiction.
1958 - Natalie Angier
American science journalist and non-fiction author.
1968 - Warren Ellis
English author of fiction and comic books.
1973 - Maureen Johnson
American author of young adult fiction.
1907 - Giosuè Carducci
1992 - Angela Carter
2002 - Carol Fenner