1006 – Khwaja Abdullah Ansari, Persian Sufi poet known as the “Sage of Herat” for his oratory and poetic talents.
1825 – Thomas Henry Huxley, English biologist and essayist who advocated for evolutionary theory; he was the grandfather of biologist Julian Huxley and novelist Aldous Huxley.
1905 – Boris J. Kochanowsky, Russian-American memoirist.
1916 – Jane Jacobs, American/Canadian journalist, author, urban planner, economist, sociologist, activist, and writer on urbanism; her book The Death and Life of Great American Cities argued that urban renewal did not respect the needs of city-dwellers, and organized grassroots efforts to protect neighborhoods from “slum clearance.”
1925 – Ruth First, South African writer, politician, author, university teacher, journalist, and anti-apartheid political activist who moved to Mozambique in exile from South Africa, and was assassinated there.
1928 – Thomas Kinsella, Irish poet, translator, and anthologist.
1939 – Amoz Oz (born Amos Klausner), Israeli writer, novelist, journalist, and literature professor.
1940 – Robin Cook, American physician and novelist known for his medical thrillers.
1941 – George Will, American conservative writer, journalist, and columnist whose works focus on politics or baseball.
1949 – Graham Swift, award-winning English author of magical realism novels.
1956 – David Guterson, American author best known for the novel Snow Falling on Cedars, which was made into a feature film.
1967 – Dalia Ibelhauptaitė, Lithuanian playwright, writer, and theatre director whose work combines the traditions of Russian and Western theatre.
1979 – Kristin Harmel, American author of women’s fiction.
Irish poet, translator, and anthologist Thomas Kinsella (1928)