Born on December 20

1326 Peter of Moscow the Russian metropolitan who moved his see from Vladimir to Moscow in 1325. Later he was proclaimed a patron saint of Moscow. In spite of the move, the office remained officially entitled "Metropolitan of Kiev and All Rus'" until the autocephalous election of Jonah in 1448
1342 Juan Alonso de Guzmán 1st Count of Niebla the first Count of Niebla. He was a descendent of Alonso Pérez de Guzmán
1494 Oronce Finé a French mathematician and cartographer.
1537 John III of Sweden King of Sweden from 1568 until his death. He was the son of King Gustav I of Sweden and his second wife Margaret Leijonhufvud. He was also, quite autonomously, the ruler of Finland, as Duke John from 1556 to 1563. In 1581 he assumed also the title Grand Prince of Finland
1576 John Sarkander a Polish and Moravian priest.
1578 Henry of Lorraine Duke of Mayenne a French noble from the House of Lorraine and more particularly from the House of Guise.
1626 Veit Ludwig von Seckendorff a member of a German noble family, which took its name from the village of Seckendorf between Nuremberg and Langenzenn.
1629 Pieter de Hooch a Dutch Golden Age painter famous for his genre scenes of quiet domestic scenes with a few figures. He was a contemporary of Jan Vermeer, with whom his work shares themes and style
1641 Urban Hjärne a Swedish chemist, geologist, physician and writer.
1648 Tommaso Ceva an Italian Jesuit mathematician from Milan. He was the brother of Giovanni Ceva
1669 Charlotte Marie of Saxe-Jena a German princess member of the House of Wettin in the branch of Saxe-Jena and by marriage Duchess of Saxe-Weimar.
1717 Charles Gravier comte de Vergennes a French statesman and diplomat. He served as Foreign Minister from 1774 during the reign of Louis XVI, notably during the American War of Independence
1722 Paisius Velichkovsky an Eastern Orthodox monk and theologian who helped spread staretsdom or the concept of the spiritual elder to the Slavic world. He is a pivotal figure in Orthodox Church history
1729 František Xaver Pokorný a Czech Classical era composer and violinist.
1735 Friedrich August Brand an Austrian painter.
1738 Claude Michel a French sculptor in the Rococo style.
1740 Arthur Lee (diplomat) a physician and opponent of slavery in colonial Virginia in North America who served as an American diplomat during the American Revolutionary War. He was educated in medicine and law at the University of Edinburgh and in London, respectively. After passing the bar, he practiced law in London for several years. He stayed in London during the Revolutionary War, representing the colonies to Britain and France and also serving as an American spy to track their activities. After his return to Virginia, he served as a delegate to the Continental Congress
1754 Joseph Schubert (composer) a German composer, violinist, and violist.
1755 Jörgen Zoega a Danish archaeologist and numismatist; born at Daler near Tønder, near the west coast of northern Schleswig.
1761 Daniel Stewart (Brigadier General) an American politician and brigadier general in the Georgia Militia. He joined the militia in 1776 and served during the American Revolutionary War and the War of 1812
1776 José María del Castillo y Rada a neo-granadine politician, President of the United Provinces of the New Granada from October 5, 1814 until January 21, 1815. Castillo y Rada also served as Vice President of the Republic of Colombia from June 6, 1821 until October 3, 1821
1778 Thomas P. Grosvenor a United States Representative from New York.
1780 John Wilson Croker an Irish statesman and author.
1784 George William Prince of Schaumburg-Lippe a Count and later Prince of Schaumburg-Lippe.
1786 Pietro Raimondi an Italian composer, transitional between the Classical and Romantic eras. While he was famous at the time as a composer of operas and sacred music, he was also as an innovator in contrapuntal technique as well as in creation of gigantic musical simultaneities
1792 Nicolas Toussaint Charlet born in Paris.
1799 Louis Jérôme Reiche a French merchant, manufacturer and entomologist.
1800 Charles Wood 1st Viscount Halifax a British Whig politician and Member of Parliament. He served as Chancellor of the Exchequer from 1846 to 1852
1802 Dimitrios Voulgaris a Greek revolutionary fighter during the Greek War of Independence of 1821 who became a politician after independence. He was nicknamed "Tsoumpes" after the distinctive Ottoman-style robe he wore
1803 Pierre François Lacenaire a French poet and murderer.
1804 Duke Alexander of Württemberg (1804–1881) Duke of Württemberg.
1809 Friedrich Kühmstedt a German composer. He studied with Johann Nepomuk Hummel in Weimar. His work includes symphonies, fugues and preludes for organ
1811 Inácio do Nascimento de Morais Cardoso a Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church and was former Patriarch of Lisbon.
1811 Karl Bogislaus Reichert a German anatomist.
1815 James Legge a noted Scottish sinologist, a Scottish Congregationalist, representative of the London Missionary Society in Malacca and Hong Kong , and first professor of Chinese at Oxford University. In association with Max Müller he prepared the monumental Sacred Books of the East series, published in 50 volumes between 1879 and 1891
1824 Calvert Vaux a British-American architect and landscape designer. He is best remembered as the co-designer of what would become New York's Central Park
1825 Mikhail Loris-Melikov a Russian-Armenian statesman, General of the Cavalry, and Adjutant General of I. Retinue
1828 Isaac E. Avery a planter and an officer in the Confederate States Army. He died at the Battle of Gettysburg during the American Civil War. Avery is most remembered for a poignant blood-stained note that he wrote as he lay dying on the slopes of Cemetery Hill at Gettysburg
1832 Haxhi Zeka an Albanian nationalist leader, a member of the League of Prizren, while in 1899 he was part of the establishment and leadership of the League of Peja, another organization seeking autonomy for Albania within the Ottoman Empire. Zeka was assassinated by a Serbian agent in 1902 with the backing of the Ottoman authorities
1833 Samuel Mudd an American physician who was imprisoned for conspiring with John Wilkes Booth in the assassination of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln
1834 Valtazar Bogišić a Serbian jurist and a pioneer in sociology.
1834 Carl von Than a Hungarian chemist who discovered carbonyl sulfide in 1867.
1836 Alfred Grandidier a French naturalist and explorer.
1838 Edwin Abbott Abbott an English schoolmaster and theologian, best known as the author of the novella Flatland.
1840 Kazimierz Alchimowicz a Lithuanian-born Polish romantic painter.
1841 Ferdinand Buisson a French academic, educational bureaucrat, pacifist and Radical-Socialist politician. He presided over the League of Education from 1902 to 1906 and the Human Rights League from 1914 to 1926. In 1927, the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to him jointly with Ludwig Quidde. Philosopher and educator, he was Director of Primary Education. He was the author of a thesis on Sebastian Castellio, in whom he saw a "liberal Protestant" in his image. Ferdinand Buisson was the president of the National Association of Freethinkers. In 1905, he chaired the parliamentary committee to implement the separation of church and state. Famous for his fight for secular education through the League of Education, he coined the term laïcité
1842 Otto Sinding a Norwegian painter, illustrator, poet and dramatist. Sinding drew on motives from Norwegian nature, folk life and history
1845 George Edward Massee an English mycologist, plant pathologist, and botanist.
1851 Isabella Princess of Asturias (1851–1931) For other Princesses of Asturias named Isabella, see Isabella, Princess of Asturias.
1851 Knut Wicksell a leading Swedish economist of the Stockholm school. His economic contributions would influence both the Keynesian and Austrian schools of economic thought