Died in 1566

Jan 7 Louis de Blois a Flemish monk and mystical writer, generally known under the name of Blosius.
Feb 3 George Cassander a Flemish theologian.
Mar 9 David Rizzio an Italian courtier, born close to Turin, a descendant of an ancient and noble family still living in Piedmont, the Riccio Counts de San Paolo et Solbrito, who rose to become the private secretary of Mary, Queen of Scots. Mary's husband, Lord Darnley, is said to have been jealous of their friendship, because of rumours that he had made Mary pregnant, and joined in a conspiracy of Protestant nobles, led by Patrick Ruthven, 3rd Lord Ruthven, to murder him. The murder was the catalyst for the downfall of Darnley and had serious consequences for Mary's subsequent career
Mar 26 Antonio de Cabezón a Spanish Renaissance composer and organist. Blind from childhood, he quickly rose to prominence as performer and was eventually employed by the royal family. He was among the most important composers of his time and the first major Iberian keyboard composer
Mar 28 Sigismund von Herberstein a Carniolan diplomat, writer, historian and member of the Holy Roman Empire Imperial Council. He was most noted for his extensive writing on the geography, history and customs of Russia and contributed greatly to early Western European knowledge of that area
Apr 4 Daniele da Volterra an Italian painter mannerist and sculptor.
Apr 16 Giulia Gonzaga an Italian noblewoman of the Renaissance.
Apr 25 Diane de Poitiers a French noblewoman and a prominent courtier at the courts of kings Francis I and his son, Henry II of France. She became notorious as the latter's favourite. It was in this capacity that she wielded much influence and power at the French Court, which continued until Henry was mortally wounded in a tournament accident, during which his lance wore her favour rather than his wife's
Apr 25 Louise Labé a female French poet of the Renaissance, born in Lyon, the daughter of a rich ropemaker, Pierre Charly, and his second wife, Etiennette Roybet. A recent book has argued that the poetry ascribed to her was a feminist creation of a number of French male poets of the Renaissance
May 10 Leonhart Fuchs a German physician and botanist. His chief notability is as the author of a large book about plants and their uses as medicines, i.e. a Herbal Book. It was first published in 1542 in Latin. It has about 500 accurate and detailed drawings of plants, which were printed from woodcuts. The drawings are the book's most notable advance on its predecessors. Although drawings were in use beforehand in other Herbal books, Fuchs' Herbal book proved and emphasized high-quality drawings as the most telling way to specify what a plant name stands for
Jul 2 Nostradamus a French apothecary and reputed seer who published collections of prophecies that have since become famous worldwide. He is best known for his book Les Propheties, the first edition of which appeared in 1555. Since the publication of this book, which has rarely been out of print since his death, Nostradamus has attracted a following that, along with much of the popular press, credits him with predicting many major world events. Most academic sources maintain that the associations made between world events and Nostradamus's quatrains are largely the result of misinterpretations or mistranslations or else are so tenuous as to render them useless as evidence of any genuine predictive power. Nevertheless, occasional commentators have successfully used a process of free interpretation and determined "twisting" of his words to predict an apparently imminent event. For example, in 1867 , Le Pelletier did so to anticipate either the triumph or the defeat of Napoleon III in a war that, in the event, begged to be identified as the Franco-Prussian War, while admitting that he could not specify either which or when
Jul 18 Bartolomé de las Casas a 16th-century Spanish historian, social reformer and Dominican friar. He became the first resident Bishop of Chiapas, and the first officially appointed "Protector of the Indians". His extensive writings, the most famous being A Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies and Historia de Las Indias, chronicle the first decades of colonization of the West Indies and focus particularly on the atrocities committed by the colonizers against the indigenous peoples
Jul 30 Guillaume Rondelet Regus Professor of medicine at the University of Montpellier in southern France and Chancellor of the University between 1556 and his death in 1566. He achieved renown as an anatomist and a naturalist with a particular interest in botany and zoology. His major work was a lengthy treatise on marine animals, which took two years to write and became a standard reference work for about a century afterwards, but his lasting impact lay in his education of a roster of star pupils who became leading figures in the world of late-16th century science
Sep 2 Taddeo Zuccari an Italian painter, one of the most popular members of the Roman mannerist school.
Sep 7 Suleiman the Magnificent the tenth and longest-reigning Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, from 1520 to his death in 1566.
Sep 7 Nikola Šubić Zrinski a Croatian nobleman and general in service of Habsburg Monarchy, ban of Croatia from 1542 to 1556, and member of the Zrinski noble family. He was known across Europe for his involvement with the Battle of Szigetvár and is today seen as a hero by both Hungarians and Croats
Sep 22 Johannes Agricola a German Protestant reformer. He was a follower and friend of Martin Luther, who became his antagonist in the matter of the binding obligation of the law on Christians
Sep 27 Marco Girolamo Vida an Italian humanist, bishop and poet. Born at Cremona, Vida joined the court of Pope Leo X and was given a prior at Frascati. He became bishop of Alba in 1532
Nov 17 Annibale Caro an Italian writer and poet.
Dec 28 Margaret Paleologa an Italian ruler; Marchioness of Montferrat in her own right. She also married into the Gonzaga family, rulers of Mantua, making her Duchess of Mantua by her marriage to Federico II, Duke of Mantua. Margaret was the regent of Mantua as the guardian of her two sons from 1540 until 1556 in companionship with her brother-in-law