Born in May

May 24, 15 Germanicus a member of the Julio-Claudian dynasty and a prominent general of the early Roman Empire. He was born in Rome, Italia, and was named either Nero Claudius Drusus after his father or Tiberius Claudius Nero after his uncle. He was the grandson-in-law and great-nephew of the Emperor Augustus, nephew and adoptive son of the Emperor Tiberius, father of the Emperor Caligula, brother of the Emperor Claudius, and the maternal grandfather of the Emperor Nero. He received the agnomen Germanicus in 9 BC, when it was posthumously awarded to his father in honour of his victories in Germania
May 28, 82 Marcus Caelius Rufus an orator and politician in the late Roman Republic. He was born into a wealthy equestrian family from Interamnia Praetuttiorum , on the central east coast of Italy. He is best known for his trial for public violence in March 56 BC, when Cicero defended him in the extant speech Pro Caelio, and as both recipient and author of some of the best-written letters in the ad Familiares corpus of Cicero's extant correspondence. He may be the Rufus named in the poems of Catullus
May 7, 165 Julia Maesa a Roman citizen and daughter of Gaius Julius Bassianus, priest of the sun god Heliogabalus, the patron god of Emesa in the Roman province of Syria. Grandmother of both the Roman emperors Elagabalus and Alexander Severus, she figured prominently in the ascension of each to the title at the age of fourteen
May 10, 213 Claudius Gothicus Roman Emperor from 268 to 270. During his reign he fought successfully against the Alamanni and scored a crushing victory against the Goths at the Battle of Naissus. He died after succumbing to a plague that ravaged the provinces of the Empire
May 20, 370 Lucifer of Cagliari a bishop of Cagliari in Sardinia known for his passionate opposition to Arianism. He is venerated as a Saint in Sardinia, though his status remains controversial
May 23, 635 K'inich Kan B'alam II king of the pre-Columbian Maya polity of Baakal in the Classic period of Mesoamerican chronology, based around the ceremonial center and city now known as the Maya archaeological site of Palenque. Kan B'alam took the throne on January 10, 684, several months after the death of his father and predecessor, Pacal the Great. He continued the ambitious project of adorning Palenque with fine art and architecture begun by his father; his most important addition to the city of Palenque was the Temple of the Cross which is the center piece of the Temple of the Cross Complex. He was succeeded by his younger brother, K'inich K'an Joy Chitam II
May 27, 742 Emperor Dezong of Tang an emperor of the Chinese Tang Dynasty and the oldest son of his father Emperor Daizong. His reign of 26 years was the third longest in the Tang dynasty. Emperor Dezong started out as a diligent and frugal emperor and he tried to reform the governmental finances by introducing new tax laws. His attempts to destroy the powerful regional warlords and the subsequent mismanagement of those campaigns, however, resulted in a number of rebellions that nearly destroyed him and the Tang Dynasty. After those events, he dealt cautiously with the regional governors, causing warlordism to become unchecked, and his trust of eunuchs caused the eunuchs' power to rise greatly. He was also known for his paranoia about officials' wielding too much power, and late in his reign, he did not grant much authority to his chancellors
May 5, 867 Emperor Uda the 59th emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession.
May 18, 905 Constantine VII the fourth Emperor of the Macedonian dynasty of the Byzantine Empire, reigning from 913 to 959. He was the son of the emperor Leo VI and his fourth wife, Zoe Karbonopsina, and the nephew of his predecessor, the emperor Alexander
May 29, 931 Jimeno Garcés of Pamplona the brother of King Sancho I of Pamplona and son of García Jiménez by his second wife, Dadildis of Pallars. He reigned from 925 until his death. While sometimes said to have been regent for his nephew, García, at least one contemporary document in which both appear names him and not his nephew as king. Only in the last year of his reign does García also appear with the royal title. In 927, he took an army south to support his Banu Qasi kinsman, causing, Abd-ar-Rahman III, Emir of Córdoba, nephew of Jimeno's wife, to retreat without offering battle
May 6, 972 Henry II Holy Roman Emperor also known as Saint Henry, Obl. B. , was Holy Roman Emperor from 1014 until his death in 1024 and the last member of the Ottonian dynasty of Emperors as he had no children. The Duke of Bavaria from 995, Henry became King of Germany following the sudden death of his second cousin, Emperor Otto III in 1002, was crowned King of Italy in 1004, and was crowned by the Pope as Emperor in 1014
May 4, 1008 Henry I of France the King of the Franks from 1031 to his death. The royal demesne of France reached its smallest size during his reign, and for this reason he is often seen as emblematic of the weakness of the early Capetians. This is not entirely agreed upon, however, as other historians regard him as a strong but realistic king, who was forced to conduct a policy mindful of the limitations of the French monarchy
May 30, 1010 Emperor Renzong of Song the fourth emperor of the Song Dynasty of China, ruling from 1022 to 1063. Renzong was the son of Emperor Zhenzong of Song. Despite his long reign of over 40 years, Renzong is not widely known. His reign marked the high point of Song influences and powers but was also the beginning of its slow disintegration that would persist over the next century and a half
May 31, 1015 Ernest I Duke of Swabia the Duke of Swabia. He was a younger son of Leopold I, the Babenberg Margrave of Austria. His mother was called Richardis of Sualafeldgau
May 18, 1048 Omar Khayyám a sufi mystic, Persian polymath, philosopher, mathematician, astronomer and poet. He also wrote treatises on mechanics, geography, mineralogy, music, and Islamic theology
May 25, 1048 Emperor Shenzong of Song the sixth emperor of the Chinese Song dynasty. His personal name was Zhao He reigned from 1067 to 1085
May 23, 1052 Philip I of France King of the Franks from 1060 to his death. His reign, like that of most of the early Capetians, was extraordinarily long for the time. The monarchy began a modest recovery from the low it reached in the reign of his father and he added to the royal demesne the Vexin and Bourges
May 23, 1100 Emperor Qinzong of Song the ninth emperor of the Song Dynasty of China, and the last emperor of the Northern Song. His personal name was Zhao Huan. He reigned from January 1126 to January 1127
May 13, 1112 Ulric II Margrave of Carniola the Margrave of Istria from 1098 until circa 1107 and Carniola from 1098 until his death. He was the second son of Ulric I and Sophia, a daughter of Bela I of Hungary. He was thus of royal blood
May 22, 1124 Wiprecht of Groitzsch the Margrave of Meissen and the Saxon Ostmark from 1123 until his death. He was born to a noble family of the Altmark, the son of Wiprecht of Balsamgau and Sigena of Leinungen. After his father's death in 1060, he was raised at the court of Lothair Udo II, Margrave of the Nordmark, in Stade
May 13, 1133 Hōnen the religious reformer and founder of the first independent branch of Japanese Pure Land Buddhism called Jōdo-shū. In the related Jōdo Shinshū sect, he is considered the Seventh Patriarch. Hōnen became a monk of the Tendai sect at an early age, but grew disaffected, and sought an approach to Buddhism that anyone could follow, even during the perceived Age of Dharma Decline. After discovering the writings of Chinese Buddhist, Shan-tao, he undertook the teaching of rebirth in the Pure Land of Amitabha through reciting the Buddha's name, or nembutsu
May 28, 1140 Xin Qiji a Chinese poet, military leader and statesman during the Southern Song dynasty.
May 27, 1141 Eisai a Japanese Buddhist priest, credited with bringing the Rinzai school of Zen Buddhism and green tea from China to Japan. He is often known simply as Eisai/Yōsai Zenji , literally "Zen master Eisai"
May 9, 1147 Minamoto no Yoritomo the founder and the first shogun of the Kamakura Shogunate of Japan. He ruled from 1192 until 1199
May 17, 1155 Jien a Japanese poet, historian, and Buddhist monk.
May 5, 1163 Ban Kulin the Ban of Bosnia from 1180 to 1204, first as a vassal of the Byzantine Empire and then of the Kingdom of Hungary. He was one of Bosnia's most prominent and notable historic rulers and had a great effect on the development of early Bosnian history. One of his most noteworthy diplomatic achievements is widely considered to have been the signing of the Charter of Ban Kulin, which encouraged trade and established peaceful relations between Dubrovnik and the Kingdom of Bosnia. His son, Stjepan Kulinić succeeded him as Bosnian Ban. Kulin founded the House of Kulinić
May 21, 1173 Shinran a Japanese Buddhist monk, who was born in Hino at the turbulent close of the Heian Period and lived during the Kamakura Period. Shinran was a pupil of Hōnen, and the founder of what ultimately became the Jōdo Shinshū sect, in Japan
May 13, 1179 Theobald III Count of Champagne Count of Champagne from 1197 to his death. He was the younger son of Henry I, Count of Champagne and Marie, a daughter of Louis VII of France and Eleanor of Aquitaine. He succeeded as Count of Champagne in 1197 upon the death of his older brother Henry II
May 18, 1186 Konstantin of Rostov the eldest son of Vsevolod the Big Nest and Maria Shvarnovna.
May 30, 1201 Theobald I of Navarre Count of Champagne from birth and King of Navarre from 1234. He was famous as a trouvère and Crusader, and was the first Frenchman to rule Navarre
May 5, 1210 Afonso III of Portugal the first to use the title King of Portugal and the Algarve, from 1249. He was the second son of King Afonso II of Portugal and his wife, Urraca of Castile; he succeeded his brother, King Sancho II of Portugal, who was removed from the throne on 4 January 1248
May 3, 1217 Henry I of Cyprus King of Cyprus from 1218 to 1253. He was the son of Hugh I of Cyprus and Alice of Champagne of Jerusalem. When his father Hugh I died on January 10, 1218, the 8-month-old Henry became king. His mother was the official Regent, but handed off the actual governing to her uncle, Philip of Ibelin. When Philip died, the effective regency passed to his brother, John of Ibelin, the Old Lord of Beirut
May 1, 1218 John I Count of Hainaut the count of Hainaut from 1246 to his death. Born in Houffalize, he was the eldest son of Margaret II of Flanders by her first husband, Bouchard IV of Avesnes. As the marriage of Margaret and Bouchard was papally dissolved, he was considered illegitimate
May 1, 1218 Rudolf I of Germany King of the Romans from 1273 until his death. Rudolf was the first of the count-kings, so-called by the historian Bernd Schneidmüller
May 30, 1220 Alexander Nevsky the Prince of Novgorod, Grand Prince of Kiev and Grand Prince of Vladimir during some of the most trying times in the country's history. Commonly regarded as the key figure of medieval Rus', Alexander was the grandson of Vsevolod the Big Nest and rose to legendary status on account of his military victories over the German and Swedish invaders while agreeing to pay tribute to the powerful Golden Horde
May 1, 1224 Jean de Joinville one of the great chroniclers of medieval France. He is most famous for writing Life of Louis, a biography of Louis IX of France that chronicled the Seventh Crusade
May 1, 1238 Magnus VI of Norway King of Norway from 1263 to 1280. One of his greatest achievements was his modernisation and nationalisation of the Norwegian law-code, after which he is known as Magnus the Law-mender. He was the first Norwegian monarch known to personally have used an ordinal number, although originally counting himself as "IV"
May 27, 1240 William de Warenne 5th Earl of Surrey the son of Hamelin de Warenne and Isabel, daughter of William de Warenne, 3rd Earl of Surrey. His father Hamelin granted him the manor of Appleby, North Lincolnshire
May 31, 1243 James II of Majorca King of Majorca and Lord of Montpellier from 1276 until his death. He was the second son of James I of Aragon and his wife Violant, daughter of Andrew II of Hungary. In 1279, by the Treaty of Perpignan, he became a vassal of the Crown of Aragon
May 4, 1252 Günther von Wüllersleben the eighth Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights.
May 13, 1254 Marie of Brabant Queen of France Queen consort of France.
May 12, 1258 Sancho IV of Castile the King of Castile, León and Galicia from 1284 to his death. He was the second son of Alfonso X and Yolanda, daughter of James I of Aragon
May 26, 1264 Prince Koreyasu the seventh shogun of the Kamakura shogunate of Japan. He was the nominal ruler controlled by the Hōjō clan regents
May 10, 1265 Emperor Fushimi the 92nd emperor of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession. His reign spanned the years from 1287 through 1298
May 27, 1272 Eric I Duke of Schleswig a Danish nobleman. He was the ruling Duke of Schleswig from 1260 until his death in 1272. He was the second son of King Abel of Denmark, Duke of Schleswig and Mechtild of Holstein
May 3, 1276 Louis Count of Évreux a prince, the third son of King Philip III of France and his second wife Maria of Brabant, and thus a half-brother of King Philip IV of France.
May 1, 1278 William II of Villehardouin the last Villehardouin prince of Achaea and ruled the principality at the height of its power and influence.
May 8, 1278 Emperor Duanzong of Song the eighth and penultimate emperor of the Southern Song Dynasty of China who reigned from 1276 to 1278 and died at the early age of ten. He was also known as the "Nation Establishing Duke ". Born Zhào Shì , his father was sixth Southern Song Emperor Duzong. He became Prince Ji in 1274 and Prince Yi in 1276. Enthroned as emperor at Fuzhou on 14 June 1276, his only era took the name of Jǐngyán. Duanzong's temple name means "Final Ancestor"
May 5, 1280 John I Count of Blois count of Blois from 1241 to 1280 and lord of Avesnes.
May 5, 1282 Juan Manuel Prince of Villena a Spanish medieval writer, nephew of Alfonso X of Castile, son of Manuel of Castile and Beatrice of Savoy. He inherited from his father the great Seigneury of Villena, receiving the titles of Lord, Duke and lastly Prince of Villena