1859 - A.E. Housman
English classical scholar and poet, best known for his A Shropshire Lad poems.
1874 - Robert Frost
American poet, winner of four Pulitzer Prizes for Poetry.
1904 - Joseph Campbell
American writer and lecturer, known for his work in comparative mythology and religion.
1905 - Viktor Frankl
American neurologist and psychiatrist; his Man's Search for Meaning chronicles his time in a Nazi concentration camp.
1911 - Tenessee Williams
Pen name of Thomas Lanier Williams III, creator of many classics of American drama.
1930 - Gregory Corso
American poet, youngest of the inner circle of Beat Generation writers.
1941 - Richard Dawkins
English evolutionary biologist, best known for his book The Selfish Gene and his outspoken views on religion.
1942 - Erica Jong
American author who pushed the boundaries of female sexuality with her 1973 novel Fear of Flying.
1943 - Bob Woodward
American journalist and author who, with Carl Bernstein, did much of the investigative reporting on the Watergate scandal.
1952 - T.A. Barron
American author of fantasy literature for children and young adults.
1890? - B. Traven
1892 - Walt Whitman
1959 - Raymond Chandler
1969 - John Kennedy Toole
1979 - Jean Stafford
2000 - Alex Comfort
2011 - Diana Wynn Jones