Died on December 15

1011 Conrad I Duke of Carinthia Duke of Carinthia from 1004 until his death.
1025 Basil II a Byzantine Emperor from the Macedonian dynasty who reigned from 10 January 976 to 15 December 1025. He was known in his time as Basil the Porphyrogenitus and Basil the Young to distinguish him from his supposed ancestor, Basil I the Macedonian
1072 Alp Arslan the second Sultan of the Seljuk Empire and great-grandson of Seljuk, the eponymous founder of the dynasty. His real name was Muhammad bin Dawud Chaghri, and for his military prowess, personal valour, and fighting skills he obtained the name Alp Arslan, which means "Heroic Lion" in Turkish
1191 Welf VI the margrave of Tuscany and duke of Spoleto , the third son of Henry IX, Duke of Bavaria, and a member of the illustrious family of the Welf.
1230 Ottokar I of Bohemia duke and then king of Bohemia. He was a member of the Přemyslid dynasty
1283 Philip of Courtenay titular Emperor of Constantinople 1273–1283. He was born in Constantinople, the son of Baldwin II of Constantinople and Marie of Brienne
1423 Michael Küchmeister von Sternberg the 28th Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights, serving from 1414 to 1422.
1461 Afonso Duke of Braganza the first Duke of Braganza and the eighth Count of Barcelos. He would start a dynasty, the House of Braganza, that would end up being the most powerful and wealthy in all of Portugal. His descendents would go on to become high-ranking nobles, imperial officials, and even the Kings of Portugal and the Emperors of Brazil
1541 Johanna Maria van der Gheynst in 1521-1522, for a short time, the mistress of the Emperor Charles V and bore him a daughter, Margaret of Parma, who was Governor of the Netherlands from 1559 to 1567 and from 1580 to 1583.
1598 Philips of Marnix Lord of Saint-Aldegonde a Flemish and Dutch writer and statesman, and the probable author of the text of the Dutch national anthem, the Wilhelmus.
1621 Charles d'Albert duc de Luynes a favourite of Louis XIII, by whom he was made a Peer of France and Constable of France before dying at the height of his influence.
1651 Virginia Centurione Bracelli a saint in the Roman Catholic Church from Genoa, Italy.
1673 Margaret Cavendish Duchess of Newcastle-upon-Tyne an English aristocrat, a prolific writer, and a scientist. Born Margaret Lucas, she was the youngest sister of prominent royalists Sir John Lucas and Sir Charles Lucas. She became an attendant of Queen Henrietta Maria and travelled with her into exile in France, living for a time at the court of the young King Louis XIV. She became the second wife of William Cavendish, 1st Duke of Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1645, when he was a marquess
1675 Johannes Vermeer a Dutch painter who specialized in domestic interior scenes of middle-class life. Vermeer was a moderately successful provincial genre painter in his lifetime. He seems never to have been particularly wealthy, leaving his wife and children in debt at his death, perhaps because he produced relatively few paintings
1683 Izaak Walton an English writer. Best known as the author of The Compleat Angler, he also wrote a number of short biographies that have been collected under the title of Walton's Lives
1683 Mikołaj Hieronim Sieniawski a Polish noble , military leader, politician.
1688 Gaspar Fagel a Dutch statesman, writer and quasi-diplomat who authored correspondence from and on behalf of William III, Prince of Orange during the English Revolution of 1688.
1688 Louis Victor de Rochechouart de Mortemart a French nobleman and member of the ancient House of Rochechouart. His father Gabriel de Rochechouart de Mortemart was a childhood friend of Louis XIII. His older sister was Gabrielle de Rochechouart de Mortemart, the celebrated beauty of the era; another sister was Madame de Montespan herself the mistress of Louis XIV. He was Général des galères and Marshal of France, Maréchal de Vivonne
1691 Hendrik van Rheede a military man and a colonial administrator of the Dutch East India Company and naturalist. Between 1670 and 1677 he served as a governor of Dutch Malabar and employed twenty-five people on his book Hortus Malabaricus, describing 740 plants in the region. The plant Entada rheedii is named for him
1713 Carlo Maratta an Italian painter, active mostly in Rome, and known principally for his classicizing paintings executed in a Late Baroque Classical manner. Although he is part of the classical tradition stemming from Raphael, he was not exempt from the influence of Baroque painting and particularly in his use of colour. His contemporary and friend, Giovanni Bellori, wrote an early biography on Maratta
1715 George Hickes an English divine and scholar.
1753 Richard Boyle 3rd Earl of Burlington The Hon. Richard Boyle, 3rd Earl of Burlington and 4th Earl of Cork, KG, PC , born in Yorkshire, England, was the son of The 2nd Earl of Burlington and 3rd Earl of Cork. Burlington was called 'the Apollo of the Arts' and 'the architect Earl', never taking more than a passing interest in politics despite his position as a Privy Counsellor and a member of both the British House of Lords and the Irish House of Lords
1755 Pierluigi Carafa an Italian cardinal from the famous Neapolitan family of Italian nobles, clergy, and men of arts. He served the papacy as Camerlengo of the Sacred College of Cardinals and as Dean of same College. He is currently buried at Sant'Andrea delle Fratte in Rome
1775 Princess Tarakanoff a pretender to the Russian throne. She styled herself, among other names, Knyaginya Vladimirskaya , princess Elisabeth Alexeievna, Fräulein Frank, and Madame Trémouille. Tarakanova is a name only later entertainment gave to her, apparently on the basis of how she lived her last months and died. In her own time, she was not known by that name
1780 Charles-Henri-Louis d'Arsac de Ternay a French naval officer. Most active in the Seven Years' War and the War of American Independence, Ternay was the naval commander of a 1762 expedition that successfully captured John's Newfoundland. He was appointed commander of the Marine Royale, French naval forces, as part of the project code named Expédition Particulière that brought French troops to American soil in 1780. He died aboard ship off Newport, Rhode Island
1783 Ahmad bin Said al-Busaidi the first ruler of Oman of the Al Said dynasty. He came to power during a period when Oman was divided by civil war, and the Persians had occupied large parts of the country. During his long rule as Imam the country prospered and regained its leading position in the Persian Gulf
1784 Nathanael Matthaeus von Wolf a German botanist, physician, and astronomer.
1792 Joseph Martin Kraus a composer in the classical era who was born in Miltenberg am Main, Germany. He moved to Sweden at age 21, and died at the age of 36 in Stockholm. He is sometimes referred to as "the Swedish Mozart", and had a life span which was very similar to that of Mozart
1796 Anthony Wayne a United States Army officer, statesman, and member of the United States House of Representatives. Wayne adopted a military career at the outset of the American Revolutionary War, where his military exploits and fiery personality quickly earned him promotion to brigadier general and the sobriquet Mad Anthony. He later served as General in Chief of the Army and commanded the Legion of the United States
1803 Dru Drury a British entomologist.
1810 Sarah Trimmer a writer and critic of 18th-century British children's literature, as well as an educational reformer. Her periodical, The Guardian of Education, helped to define the emerging genre by seriously reviewing children's literature for the first time; it also provided the first history of children's literature, establishing a canon of the early landmarks of the genre that scholars still use today. Trimmer's most popular children's book, Fabulous Histories, inspired numerous children's animal stories and remained in print for over a century
1811 Johannes van der Kemp a military officer, doctor and philosopher who became a missionary in South Africa.
1812 Shneur Zalman of Liadi an Orthodox Rabbi, and the founder and first Rebbe of Chabad, a branch of Hasidic Judaism, then based in Liadi, Imperial Russia. He was the author of many works, and is best known for Shulchan Aruch HaRav, Tanya and his Siddur Torah Or compiled according to the Nusach Ari
1819 Daniel Rutherford most famous for the isolation of nitrogen in 1772.
1831 Hannah Adams a Christian author, born in Medfield, Massachusetts and died in Brookline. She was the first woman in the United States who worked professionally as a writer
1839 Ignaz Aurelius Fessler a Hungarian ecclesiastic, politician, historian and freemason.
1841 David Don a Scottish botanist.
1846 Philip Landgrave of Hesse-Homburg a field marshal in the imperial Austrian army. He was the ruling Landgrave of Hesse-Homburg from 1839 until his death
1846 Alexander Turgenev a Russian statesman and historian.
1848 Yevhen Hrebinka a Ukrainian romantic writer and poet. He wrote in both the Ukrainian and Russian languages
1848 Stevan Šupljikac a voivode and the first Duke of the Serbian Vojvodina, in 1848.
1849 Archduke Ferdinand Karl Viktor of Austria-Este Archduke of Austria-Este and Prince of Modena.
1853 Georg Friedrich Grotefend a German epigraphist and philologist. He is known mostly for his contributions toward the decipherment of cuneiform
1855 Jacques Charles François Sturm a French mathematician.
1857 George Cayley a prolific English engineer and one of the most important people in the history of aeronautics. Many consider him the first true scientific aerial investigator and the first person to understand the underlying principles and forces of flight
1862 Maxcy Gregg a lawyer, soldier in the United States Army during the Mexican-American War, and a Confederate brigadier general during the American Civil War who was mortally wounded at the Battle of Fredericksburg and died two days later.
1867 Honoré Théodoric d'Albert de Luynes remembered most for the collection he gave to the Cabinet des Médailles in 1862.
1867 Chester Dewey an American botanist, clergyman and educator.:68.
1867 Ábrahám Ganz a Swiss-born Hungarian iron manufacturer, machine and technical engineer, father of the Ganz companies.
1877 Aleksander Wielopolski a Polish aristocrat, owner of large estates, and the 13th lord of the manor of Pinczów. In 1862 he was appointed head of Poland's Civil Administration within the Russian Empire under Tsar Alexander II