Died on December 20

217 Pope Zephyrinus bishop of Rome or pope from 199 to his death in 217. He was born in Rome. His predecessor was Pope Victor Upon his death on 20 December 217, he was succeeded by his principal advisor, Pope Callixtus I
860 Æthelbald of Wessex the second of the five sons of King Æthelwulf of Wessex and Osburh. He was king of Wessex from 858 to 860
1073 Dominic of Silos dedicated. He is revered as a saint in the Catholic Church. His feast day is December 20
1170 Al-Mustanjid the Abbasid Caliph in Baghdad from 1160 to 1170. He was the son of previous Caliph al-Muqtafi. One of al-Muqtafi's wives wanted her own son to succeed. She gained over many Amirs to her side, and had their slave-girls armed with daggers to kill the new Caliph. Al-Mustanjid discovered the plot and placed the rebel son and mother in prison
1295 Margaret of Provence Queen of France as the wife of King Louis IX.
1340 John I Duke of Bavaria the Duke of Lower Bavaria since 1339.
1355 Stephen Uroš IV Dušan of Serbia the King of Serbia and Emperor of the Serbs and Greeks until his death on 20 December 1355. Dušan conquered a large part of southeast Europe, becoming one of his era's most powerful monarchs. He enacted the constitution of the Serbian Empire in Dušan's Code, perhaps the most important work of medieval Serbia. Dušan promoted the Serbian Church from an archbishopric to a patriarchate, finished the construction of the Visoki Dečani-monastery , and founded the Saint Archangels Monastery, among others. Under his rule Serbia reached its territorial, economical, political and cultural peak
1406 Maria de Luna a queen consort of Aragon, as the spouse of King Martin I of Aragon. She was known as "La Grande" , and is regarded as one of the most notable queens in Aragon. She was regent 1396-97
1539 Johannes Lupi a Franco-Flemish composer of the Renaissance. A representative of the generation after Josquin, he was a minor but skilled composer of polyphony who was mainly active in Cambrai
1550 Matthias Greitter a German priest, cantor and composer.
1552 Katharina von Bora the wife of Martin Luther, German leader of the Protestant Reformation. Beyond what is found in the writings of Luther and some of his contemporaries, little is known about her. Despite this, Katharina is often considered one of the most important participants of the Reformation because of her role in helping to define Protestant family life and setting the tone for clergy marriages
1590 Ambroise Paré a French barber surgeon who served in that role for kings Henry II, Francis II, Charles IX and Henry III. He is considered one of the fathers of surgery and modern forensic pathology and a pioneer in surgical techniques and battlefield medicine, especially in the treatment of wounds. He was also an anatomist and invented several surgical instruments
1644 Albert IV Duke of Saxe-Eisenach a ruler of the duchy of Saxe-Eisenach. He was the seventh son of Johann, Duke of Saxe-Weimar, and Dorothea Maria of Anhalt. His regnal name Albert IV derives from the numbering of the duchy of Saxony as a whole, not specifically to the succession in Saxe-Eisenach
1679 John Maurice Prince of Nassau-Siegen count and prince of Nassau-Siegen, and Grand Master of the Order of Saint John.
1680 Princess Elisabeth Sophie of Saxe-Altenburg a princess of Saxe-Altenburg and, by marriage, duchess of Saxe-Gotha.
1722 Kangxi Emperor the fourth emperor of the Qing Dynasty, the first to be born on Chinese soil south of the Pass and the second Qing emperor to rule over China proper, from 1661 to 1722.
1723 Augustus Quirinus Rivinus also known as August Bachmann or Q. Bachmann, was a German physician and botanist who helped to develop better ways of classifying plants
1731 Chhatrasal a medieval Indian warrior from Bundela Rajput clan, who fought against the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, and established his own kingdom in Bundelkhand, becoming a Maharaja of Panna.
1740 Richard Boyle 2nd Viscount Shannon a British military officer and statesman. After serving as a junior officer at the Battle of the Boyne during the Williamite War in Ireland and at the Battle of Landen during the Nine Years' War, he commanded a brigade of grenadiers during the storming of Vigo during the War of the Spanish Succession. During this engagement the entire French fleet, under the command of the Marquis de Château-Renault, together with the Spanish galleons and transports under Manuel de Velasco, were either been captured or destroyed. He also took part in a successful raid on Barcelona three years later. He went on to serve as Commander-in-Chief, Ireland throughout the 1720s and 1730s
1764 Erik Pontoppidan a Danish author, bishop, historian and antiquary. He was educated in Fredericia , after which he was a private tutor in Norway, and then studied in Holland, and in London and Oxford, England. In 1721 he became informator of Frederick Carl of Carlstein , and two years later morning preacher in the castle and afternoon preacher in Nordborg. From 1726 to 1734 he was pastor at Hagenberg, where he so protected the pietists as to find it advisable to defend his course against the Lutherans with Dialogus; oder Unterredung Severi, Sinceri, und Simplicis von der Religion and Reinheit der Lehre and Heller Glaubensspiegel. During this same period he laid the foundation of his later topographical and historical works in Memoria Hafniæ ; Theatrum Daniæ ; and Kurzgefasste Reformationshistorie der dänischen Kirche. Pontoppidan became successively pastor in Hillerød and castle preacher in Frederiksborg , Danish court preacher at Copenhagen , professor extraordinary of theology at the University , and a member of the mission board , meanwhile writing his Everriculum fermenti veteris and Böse Sprichwörter
1765 Louis Dauphin of France (1729–1765) the only surviving son of King Louis XV of France and his wife, Queen Marie Leszczyńska. Son of the king, Louis was styled Fils de France. As heir apparent, he became Dauphin of France. However, he died before ascending to the throne. Three of his sons became kings of France: Louis XVI , Louis XVIII and Charles X
1768 Carlo Innocenzo Frugoni an Italian poet and librettist. As a poet Frugoni was one of the best of the school of the Arcadian Academy, and his lyrics and pastorals had great facility and elegance. His collected works were published at Parma in 10 volumes in 1799, and a more complete edition appeared at Lucca in the same year in 15 volumes
1783 Antonio Soler a Spanish composer whose works span the late Baroque and early Classical music eras. He is best known for his keyboard sonatas, an important contribution to the harpsichord, fortepiano and organ repertoire
1811 Princess Catherine of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck a daughter of Peter August of Holstein-Beck, who was a Russian field marshal and governor of Estonia, and his second wife, Countess Natalia Golovina.
1812 Sacagawea a Lemhi Shoshone woman, who accompanied the Lewis and Clark Expedition, acting as an interpreter and guide, in their exploration of the Western United States. She traveled thousands of miles from North Dakota to the Pacific Ocean between 1804 and 1806
1820 John Bell (farmer) a farmer and only person in history whose death was attributed to the doings of a Spirit. He is a central figure in the Bell Witch ghost story of southern American folklore. In 1817, Bell contracted a mysterious affliction that worsened over the next three years, ultimately leading to his death. Bell Witch took pleasure in tormenting him during his affliction, finally poisoning him one December morning as he lay unconscious after suffering a number of violent seizures
1834 Maurycy Mochnacki a Polish literary, theatre and music critic, publicist, journalist, pianist, historian and independence activist. One of the main theorists of Polish Romanticism. He joined the November Uprising in 1830 taking part in several battles for example at Stoczek, Ostrołęka, Grochów and Wawer. For that activity he was promoted to officer rank and awarded the War Order of Virtuti Militari, which is the highest Polish military decoration
1837 Princesse Moustache a Russian lady in waiting, socialite and noble and Dame of the Order of Catherine's first degree.
1838 François Pouqueville a French diplomat, writer, explorer, physician and historian, member of the Institut de France.
1849 William Miller (preacher) credited with beginning the mid-nineteenth century North American religious movement that was known as the Millerites. After his prophetic interpretations did not happen as he expected, new heirs of his message emerged, including Seventh-day Adventists and Advent Christians. Later movements found inspiration in Miller's emphasis on Bible prophecy
1854 James Kempt a British Army officer, who served in the Netherlands, Egypt, Italy, the Peninsula, and British North America during the Napoleonic Wars. He famously led a British brigade at the Battle of Waterloo and later became Governor General of Canada
1856 Francesco Bentivegna an Italian patriot, who led various revolts in Sicily against the Bourbon rulers between 1848 and 1856.
1858 Jean-Jacques Germain Pelet-Clozeau joined the French army in 1800 and soon became a topographic engineer. He saw much service during the Napoleonic Wars. Asked to serve on the staff of Marshal André Masséna in 1805, he fought in Italy where he was wounded. He accompanied Masséna to southern Italy in 1806 and Poland in 1807. The 1809 campaign saw him at Ebelsberg where he was wounded, and at Aspern-Essling and Wagram
1862 Robert Knox a Scottish anatomist, zoologist, ethnologist and doctor. He was the most popular lecturer in anatomy in Britain, where he introduced the theory of transcendental anatomy, but is now best known for his involvement in the Burke and Hare murders. Difficulty in obtaining cadavers for dissection after the passage of the Anatomy Act and disagreements with professional colleagues ruined his career, and a move to London did not improve matters. His later pessimistic view of humanity contrasted sharply with his youthful attachment to the ideas of Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire
1866 William Gamble (general) a civil engineer and a Union cavalry officer in the American Civil War.
1868 Samuel Augustus Mitchell an American geographer.
1875 Mikhail Pogodin a Russian historian and journalist who, jointly with Nikolay Ustryalov, dominated the national historiography between the death of Nikolay Karamzin in 1826 and the rise of Sergey Solovyov in the 1850s. He is best remembered as a staunch proponent of the Normanist theory of Russian statehood
1880 Gaspar Tochman Polish-born American lawyer and soldier who formed the Polish Brigade of Johnson's Division.
1884 Domenico Consolini an Italian bishop and cardinal, who served as a diplomat of the Holy See.
1886 Johann Friedrich Horner an ophthalmologist based at the University of Zurich, Switzerland.
1891 Msiri founded and ruled the Yeke Kingdom in south-east Katanga from about 1856 to 1891. His name is sometimes spelled 'M'Siri' in articles in French. Other variants are "Mziri", "Msidi", and "Mushidi"; and his full name was Mwenda Msiri Ngelengwa Shitambi
1893 George C. Magoun was, in the late 1880s, the Chairman of the Board of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway.
1900 Frederick Richard Pickersgill an English painter and book illustrator. Born into a family of artists, he was admitted to the Royal Academy Schools in 1840. He did some book illustrations for the works of John Milton and Edgar Allan Poe
1900 Karl Becker (painter) a German history painter and president of the Berlin Academy.
1904 Princess Alexandrine of Baden the eldest child of Leopold, Grand Duke of Baden and his wife Princess Sophie of Sweden.
1908 Francis P. Fleming an American politician and the 15th Governor of Florida from 1889 to 1893. Fleming was a Democrat, strong supporter of segregation and an opponent of civil rights for blacks. Fleming was a Confederate soldier and lawyer before he became governor
1909 Édouard Brissaud a French physician and pathologist. He was taught by Jean Martin Charcot at Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital. He had interests in a number of medical disciplines including motion disturbances, anatomy, neurology and psychiatry. He died of a brain tumour, aged 57
1911 Joan Maragall a Spanish Catalan poet, journalist and translator, the foremost member of the modernisme movement in literature. His manuscripts are preserved in the Joan Maragall Archive of Barcelona
1911 William McGregor (football) regarded as the founder of the Football League, the first organised association football league in the world.
1915 Upendrakishore Ray Chowdhury a famous Bengali writer, painter, violin player and composer, technologist and entrepreneur.