Died on May 31

455 Petronius Maximus Western Roman Emperor for two and a half months in 455. A wealthy senator and a prominent aristocrat, he was instrumental in the murders of the Western Roman magister militum, Flavius Aëtius, and the Western Roman Emperor Valentinian III. Maximus was killed during the events culminating in the sack of Rome by the Vandals in 455
1076 Waltheof Earl of Northumbria the last of the Anglo-Saxon earls and the only English aristocrat to be executed during the reign of William I.
1162 Géza II of Hungary King of Hungary and Croatia from 1141 to 1162. He was still a child when he succeeded his father, Béla the Blind, such that his mother, Helena of Rascia, and her brother, Beloš, ruled Hungary until he came of age in 1146. Géza was one of the most powerful monarchs of Hungary, and intervened successfully in the internal affairs of neighbouring countries
1223 Mstislav II Svyatoslavich a Rus' prince. His baptismal name was Panteleymon. He was probably prince of Kozelsk , of Novgorod-Seversk , and of Chernigov. He was killed in the Battle of the Kalka River
1321 Birger King of Sweden King of Sweden from 1290 to 1318.
1329 Albertino Mussato an Early Renaissance Italian statesman, poet, historian and dramatist credited with providing an impetus to the revival of literary Latin. He was a pupil of Italian poet and humanist Lovato Lovati
1349 Thomas Wake 2nd Baron Wake of Liddell summoned to parliament as a baron in 1295, and the grandson of Baldwin Wake , both warriors of repute.
1408 Ashikaga Yoshimitsu the 3rd shogun of the Ashikaga shogunate who ruled from 1368 to 1394 during the Muromachi period of Japan. Yoshimitsu was the son of the second shogun Ashikaga Yoshiakira
1488 Galeotto Manfredi an Italian condottiero and lord of Faenza.
1495 Cecily Neville Duchess of York an English noblewoman, the wife of Richard Plantagenet, 3rd Duke of York and the mother of two Kings of England, Edward IV and Richard III. Cecily Neville was called "the Rose of Raby", because she was born at Raby Castle in Durham, and "Proud Cis", because of her pride and a temper that went with Historically she is also known for her piety. She herself signed her name "Cecylle"
1558 Philip Hoby a 16th-century English Ambassador to the Holy Roman Empire and Flanders.
1567 Guido de Bres a Walloon pastor and theologian, a student of John Calvin and Theodore Beza in Geneva. He was born in Mons, County of Hainaut, Southern Netherlands, and martyred at Valenciennes, aged 45. De Bres compiled and published the Walloon Confession of Faith known as the Belgic Confession still in use today in Belgium and the Netherlands. It is also used by many Reformed Churches all over the world
1580 Dorothea of Denmark Electress Palatine a Danish, Norwegian and Swedish princess and an electress of the Palatinate as the wife of Elector Frederick II of the Palatinate. She was a claimant to the Danish, Norwegian and Swedish thrones
1581 Jan Kostka a Polish noble and a candidate in elections for the new King of Poland in 1572. He was also an advisor to Kings Henry of Valois and Stefan Batory
1594 Tintoretto an Italian painter and a notable exponent of the Renaissance school. For his phenomenal energy in painting he was termed Il Furioso. His work is characterized by its muscular figures, dramatic gestures, and bold use of perspective in the Mannerist style, while maintaining color and light typical of the Venetian School
1665 Pieter Jansz. Saenredam Saenredam was a painter of the Dutch Golden Age, known for his distinctive paintings of whitewashed church interiors
1680 Joachim Neander generally regarded as one of the greatest hymns of praise of the Christian church and, since being translated into English by Catherine Winkworth in the 19th century, it has appeared in most major hymnals.
1696 Heinrich Schwemmer a German music teacher and composer.
1725 Erik Carlsson Sjöblad a Swedish governor, admiral, and baron.
1740 Frederick William I of Prussia the King in Prussia and Elector of Brandenburg from 1713 until his death. He was in personal union the sovereign prince of the Principality of Neuchâtel
1747 Andrey Osterman a German-born Russian statesman who came to prominence under Tsar Peter I of Russia and served until the accession of the Tsesarevna Elizabeth. His foreign policy was based upon the Austrian alliance. General Admiral
1806 George Macartney 1st Earl Macartney an Irish-born British statesman, colonial administrator and diplomat. He is often remembered for his observation following Britain's success in the Seven Years War and subsequent territorial expansion at the Treaty of Paris that Britain now controlled "a vast Empire, on which the sun never sets"
1806 Michael von Melas a Transylvanian-born field marshal of Saxon descent for the Austrian Empire during the Napoleonic Wars.
1809 Joseph Haydn a prominent and prolific composer of the Classical period. He was instrumental in the development of chamber music such as the piano trio and his contributions to musical form have earned him the epithets "Father of the Symphony" and "Father of the String Quartet"
1809 Ferdinand von Schill a Prussian officer who revolted unsuccessfully against French domination in May 1809.
1809 Jean Lannes a Marshal of the Empire. He was one of Napoleon's most daring and talented generals. Napoleon once commented on Lannes: "I found him a pygmy and left him a giant". A personal friend of the emperor, he was allowed to address him with the familiar "tu", as opposed to the formal "vous"
1810 William Martin (naturalist) an English naturalist and palaeontologist who proposed that science should use fossils as evidence to support the study of natural history. Martin published the first colour pictures of fossils and the first scientific study of fossils in English
1827 Pierre Louis Prieur a French lawyer elected to the Estates-General of 1789. During the French Revolution he served as a deputy to the National Convention and held membership in the Committee of Public Safety
1831 Samuel Bentham a noted English mechanical engineer and naval architect credited with numerous innovations, particularly related to naval architecture, including weapons. He was the only surviving sibling of philosopher Jeremy Bentham, with whom he had a close bond
1832 Évariste Galois a French mathematician born in Bourg-la-Reine. While still in his teens, he was able to determine a necessary and sufficient condition for a polynomial to be solvable by radicals, thereby solving a 350 years-standing problem. His work laid the foundations for Galois theory and group theory, two major branches of abstract algebra, and the subfield of Galois connections. He died at age 20 from wounds suffered in a duel
1837 Nicolas-André Monsiau a French history painter and a refined draughtsman who turned to book illustration to supplement his income when the French Revolution disrupted patronage. His cool Poussiniste drawing style and coloring marked his conservative art in the age of Neoclassicism
1837 Joseph Grimaldi an English actor, comedian and dancer, who became the most popular English entertainer of the Regency era. In the early 1800s, he expanded the role of Clown in the harlequinade that formed part of British pantomimes, notably at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane and the Sadler's Wells and Covent Garden theatres. He became so dominant on the London comic stage that harlequinade clowns became known as "Joey", and both the nickname and Grimaldi's whiteface make-up design were, and still are, used by other types of clowns. Grimaldi originated catchphrases such as "Here we are again!", which continue to feature in modern pantomimes
1841 George Green a British mathematical physicist who wrote An Essay on the Application of Mathematical Analysis to the Theories of Electricity and Magnetism. The essay introduced several important concepts, among them a theorem similar to the modern Green's theorem, the idea of potential functions as currently used in physics, and the concept of what are now called Green's functions. Green was the first person to create a mathematical theory of electricity and magnetism and his theory formed the foundation for the work of other scientists such as James Clerk Maxwell, William Thomson, and others. His work on potential theory ran parallel to that of Carl Friedrich Gauss
1846 Philip Marheineke a German Protestant church leader within the Evangelical Church in Prussia.
1847 Thomas Chalmers a Scottish minister, professor of theology, political economist, and a leader of the Church of Scotland and of the Free Church of Scotland. He has been called "Scotland's greatest nineteenth-century churchman"
1847 Abbasgulu Bakikhanov an Azerbaijani writer, historian, journalist, linguist, poet and philosopher; descendant of the ruling dynasty of the Baku Khanate, nephew of the last khan of Baku. He was an officer in the Imperial Russian Army from 1820 and participated in the Russo-Persian War of 1826-1828. He later retired and settled in Quba, but traveled extensively within Russia, meeting important literary figures as Alexander Pushkin
1848 Eugénie de Guérin the sister of the poet Maurice de Guérin.
1850 Giuseppe Giusti an Italian poet and satirist.
1854 Vatroslav Lisinski a Croatian composer.
1860 Peter Vivian Daniel an American jurist who served as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court of the United States.
1867 Théophile-Jules Pelouze a French chemist. He was born at Valognes, and died in Paris
1870 Vasili Samarsky-Bykhovets a Russian mining engineer and the chief of Russian Mining Engineering Corps between 1845 and 1861. The mineral samarskite , and chemical element samarium are named after him. He was the first person whose name was given to a chemical element
1875 Eliphas Levi a French occult author and ceremonial magician.
1882 Elizabeth Jane Caulfeild Countess of Charlemont the only daughter of William Meredyth, first Lord Athlumney, and by marriage in December 1856 to James Caulfeild, 3rd Earl of Charlemont, she became the Countess of Charlemont.
1883 James T. Rapier an attorney, a planter and a politician; he served as a United States Representative from 1873 until 1875. Born free, he was educated in Canada and admitted to the bar. He became a national figure in the Republican Party after the Civil War and was one of Alabama's three blacks elected as congressmen during Reconstruction. He was one of seven blacks serving in the 43rd Congress. They each testified in 1874 for passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1875 which guaranteed access to accommodations
1887 Thomas Spencer Baynes a philosopher.
1887 Moritz Wagner a German explorer, collector, geographer and natural historian. Wagner devoted three years to the exploration of Algiers: it was here that he made important observations in natural history, which he later supplemented and developed: that geographical isolation could play a key role in speciation
1891 Anton Heinrich Springer a German art historian and writer.
1892 Solomon Zeitlin a Jewish historian. His work The Rise and Fall of the Judean State is still considered the standard history of the Second Jewish Commonwealth, and essential reading for anyone wishing to study the origins and birth of Christianity
1892 Theodor Meynert a German-Austrian neuropathologist and anatomist born in Dresden. Meynert believed that disturbances in brain development could be a predisposition for psychiatric illness and that certain psychoses are reversible