Born on January 8

454 John the Silent a Christian saint known for living alone for seventy-six years. He was given the surname because he loved recollection and silence. John's feast day is May 13 in the Latin Rite of the Roman Catholic Church, and December 3 in the Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches
1037 Su Shi a Chinese writer, poet, painter, calligrapher, pharmacologist, gastronome, and a statesman of the Song dynasty. A major personality of the Song era, Su was an important figure in Song Dynasty politics, aligning himself with Sima Guang and others, against the New Policy party lead by Wang Anshi. Su Shi was famed as an essayist, and his prose writings lucidly contribute to the understanding of topics such as 11th-century Chinese travel literature or detailed information on the contemporary Chinese iron industry. His poetry has a long history of popularity and influence in China, Japan, and other areas in the near vicinity and is well known in the English speaking parts of the world through the translations by Arthur Waley, among others. In terms of the arts, Su Shi has some claim to being "the pre-eminent personality of the eleventh century." He is credited with creating dongpo pork, a prominent dish in Hangzhou cuisine
1360 Ulrich von Jungingen the 26th Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights, serving from 1407 to 1410. His policy of confrontation with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Kingdom of Poland would spark the Polish–Lithuanian–Teutonic War and lead to disaster for his Order, and his own death, at the Battle of Grunwald
1529 John Frederick II Duke of Saxony duke of Saxony, and briefly, Elector of Saxony.
1556 Uesugi Kagekatsu a Japanese samurai daimyo during the Sengoku period and Edo period.
1583 Simon Episcopius a Dutch theologian and Remonstrant who played a significant role at the Synod of Dort in 1618. His name is the Latinized form of his Dutch name Simon Bischop
1585 Henriette Catherine de Joyeuse the daughter of Henri de Joyeuse and Catherine de Nogaret. She married her first husband, Henri de Bourbon, Duke of Montpensier, on 15 May 1597 and her second husband, Charles, Duke of Guise, on 6 January 1611
1587 Jan Pieterszoon Coen an officer of the Dutch East India Company in Indonesia in the early seventeenth century, holding two terms as its Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies.
1587 Johannes Fabricius a Frisian/German astronomer and a discoverer of sunspots , independently of Galileo Galilei.
1589 Ivan Gundulić the most prominent Croatian Baroque poet from the Republic of Ragusa. His work embodies central characteristics of Roman Catholic Counter-Reformation: religious fervor, insistence on "vanity of this world" and zeal in opposition to "infidels." Gundulić's major works—the epic poem Osman, the pastoral play Dubravka, and the religious poem Tears of the Prodigal Son are examples of Baroque stylistic richness and, frequently, rhetorical excess
1601 Baltasar Gracián a Spanish Jesuit and baroque prose writer and philosopher. He was born in Belmonte, near Calatayud. His proto-existentialist writings were lauded by Nietzsche and Schopenhauer
1618 Madeleine Béjart a French actress and theatre director, one of the most famous French stage actors of the 17th-century. She belonged to the Béjart family, a famous theatre family in 17th-century France. Madeleine was the second child of Joseph and Marie-Herve Bejart. She debuted with her elder brother Joseph at the Theatre du Marais and in the provinces in the late 1630s
1628 François-Henri de Montmorency duc de Luxembourg a French general, marshal of France, famous as the comrade and successor of the great Condé.
1632 Samuel von Pufendorf a German jurist, political philosopher, economist, statesman, and historian. His name was just Samuel Pufendorf until he was ennobled in 1684; he was made a Freiherr a few months before his death at age 62 in 1694. Among his achievements are his commentaries and revisions of the natural law theories of Thomas Hobbes and Hugo Grotius
1635 Luis Manuel Fernández de Portocarrero a Spanish prelate, who was cardinal archbishop of Toledo. Uncle of Luis Antonio Tomas de Portocarrero y Moscoso, 5th Count, who became a Grandee of Spain, 2nd class, since 1707 by King Felipe V of Spain
1638 Elisabetta Sirani an Italian Baroque painter who died in still-unexplained circumstances at the early age of 27.
1640 Elisabeth Dorothea of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg a German princess and a member of the House of Wettin in the Ernestine branch of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg. By marriage she was Landgravine of Hesse-Darmstadt and Landgravine-Regent from 1678 to 1688
1680 Sebastiano Conca an Italian painter.
1705 Jacques-François Blondel a French architect and teacher. After running his own highly successful school of architecture for many years, he was appointed Professor of Architecture at the Académie d'Architecture in 1762, and his Cours d'architecture largely superseded a similarly titled book published in 1675 by his famous namesake, François Blondel, who had occupied the same post in the late 17th century
1707 Louis Dauphin of France Duke of Brittany the first son of Louis of France, Duke of Burgundy, and Marie Adélaïde of Savoy.
1721 John Frederick Prince of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt the ruling Prince of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt from 1744 to 1767.
1733 Anton von Maron an Austrian painter, active in Rome.
1735 John Carroll (bishop) the first Roman Catholic bishop and archbishop in the United States, serving as the ordinary of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. He is also known as the founder of Georgetown University, , and of John the Evangelist Parish of Rock Creek, , the first secular parish in the country
1763 Jean-Baptiste Drouet (French revolutionary) a French politician of the 1789 Revolution, chiefly noted for the part he played in the arrest of King Louis XVI during the Flight to Varennes.
1763 Edmond-Charles Genêt the French ambassador to the United States during the French Revolution.
1763 Johann Jacob Roemer a physician and professor of botany in Zurich, Switzerland. He was also an entomologist
1769 Pietro Benvenuti an Italian neoclassical painter.
1776 Thomas Langlois Lefroy an Irish-Huguenot politician and judge. He served as an MP for the constituency of Dublin University in 1830–1841, Privy Councillor of Ireland in 1835–1869 and Lord Chief Justice of Ireland in 1852–1866
1779 Julia Glover an Irish-born stage actress well known for her comic roles in the late 18th and 19th centuries.
1782 Tommaso Riario Sforza the Neapolitan Cardinal who, as protodeacon, announced at the end of the 1846 conclave the election of Cardinal Giovanni Mastai-Ferretti as Pope Pius IX.
1786 Nicholas Biddle (banker) an American financier who served as the second and last president of the Second Bank of the United States.
1788 John C. Spencer an American lawyer, politician, judge and United States Cabinet secretary in the administration of President John Tyler.
1788 Duke Eugen of Württemberg (1788–1857) a German prince and a General of Infantry in the Imperial Russian Army during the Napoleonic Wars.
1788 Archduke Rudolf of Austria (1788–1831) a Cardinal, an Archbishop of Olmütz, and a member of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine.
1792 Lowell Mason a leading figure in American church music, the composer of over 1600 hymn tunes, many of which are often sung today. His most well-known tunes include his arrangement of "Joy to the World" and "Bethany", his setting of the hymn, "Nearer, My God, to Thee". He was largely responsible for introducing music into American public schools, and is considered to be the first important music educator in the United States. In the last part of his career, as music director of the Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church in New York City, he radically transformed American church music from a practice of having professional choirs and accompaniment to congregational singing accompanied by organ music
1793 Ludwig Reichenbach a German botanist and ornithologist.
1801 John Joseph Bennett a British botanist.
1805 Orson Hyde a leader in the early Latter Day Saint movement and an original member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. He was the President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1847 to 1875 and was a missionary of the LDS Church in the United States, Europe, and the Ottoman Empire
1805 John Bigler an American lawyer, politician and diplomat. A Democrat, he served as the third governor of California from 1852 to 1856 and was the first California governor to complete an entire term in office, as well as the first to win re-election. His younger brother, William Bigler, was elected governor of Pennsylvania during the same period. Bigler was also appointed by President James Buchanan as the U.S. Minister to Chile from 1857 to 1861
1806 Jean Gigoux a French painter and illustrator. He is best known as the last paramour of Eveline Hańska, the widow of French novelist Honoré de Balzac
1812 Sigismond Thalberg a composer and one of the most distinguished virtuoso pianists of the 19th century.
1812 Vasily Botkin a Russian essayist, literary, art and music critic, translator and publicist.
1817 Theophilus Shepstone a British South African statesman who was responsible for the annexation of the Transvaal to Britain in 1877.
1821 James Longstreet one of the foremost Confederate generals of the American Civil War and the principal subordinate to General Robert Lee, who called him his "Old War Horse." He served under Lee as a corps commander for many of the famous battles fought by the Army of Northern Virginia in the Eastern Theater, but also with Gen. Braxton Bragg in the Army of Tennessee in the Western Theater. Biographer and historian Jeffry Wert wrote that "Longstreet... was the finest corps commander in the Army of Northern Virginia; in fact, he was arguably the best corps commander in the conflict on either side."
1822 Carlo Alfredo Piatti an Italian cellist and renowned teacher.
1823 Alfred Russel Wallace a British naturalist, explorer, geographer, anthropologist, and biologist. He is best known for independently conceiving the theory of evolution through natural selection; his paper on the subject was jointly published with some of Charles Darwin's writings in 1858. This prompted Darwin to publish his own ideas in On the Origin of Species. Wallace did extensive fieldwork, first in the Amazon River basin and then in the Malay Archipelago, where he identified the faunal divide now termed the Wallace Line, which separates the Indonesian archipelago into two distinct parts: a western portion in which the animals are largely of Asian origin, and an eastern portion where the fauna reflect Australasia
1824 Francisco González Bocanegra a Mexican poet who wrote the lyrics of the Mexican National Anthem in 1853.
1824 Wilkie Collins an English novelist, playwright, and author of short stories. His best-known works are The Woman in White, The Moonstone, Armadale, and No Name
1830 Gouverneur K. Warren a civil engineer and prominent general in the Union Army during the American Civil War. He is best remembered for arranging the last-minute defense of Little Round Top during the Battle of Gettysburg and is often referred to as the "Hero of Little Round Top." His subsequent service as a corps commander and his remaining military career were ruined during the Battle of Five Forks, when he was relieved of command by Philip Sheridan
1830 Hans von Bülow a German conductor, virtuoso pianist, and composer of the Romantic era. One of the most famous conductors of the 19th century, his activity was critical for establishing the successes of several major composers of the time, especially Richard Wagner and Johannes Brahms. Along with Carl Tausig, Bülow was perhaps the most prominent of the early students of Hungarian virtuoso pianist, conductor and composer Franz Liszt. He became acquainted with and eventually married Liszt's daughter Cosima, who later left him for Wagner. Noted for his interpretation of the works of Ludwig van Beethoven, he was one of the earliest European musicians to tour the United States