1569 – Giambattista Marino, influential Italian poet; founder of the school of Marinism, characterized by the use of extravagant conceits.
1638 – Lars (Lasse) Johnstown, Swedish baroque poet, usually referred to by his pseudonym, Lucidor.
1701 – Charles le Beau, French historian, writer, and educator.
1741 – Pierre Ambroise François Choderlos de Laclos, French general and controversial author, best known for his epistolary novel Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Dangerous Liaisons), which was considered scandalous in his day; he also invented the modern artillery shell.
1777 – Heinrich von Kleist, German dramatist, poet, and novelist.
1785 – Thomas Love Peacock, author, poet, and essayist.
1865 – Logan Pearsall Smith, American-born essayist and critic who became a British citizen; he was especially known for his aphorisms and epigrams.
1889 – Fannie Hurst, novelist who frequently wrote about women as the subject of economic and social discrimination.
1894 – H.L. Davis, Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist and poet.
1895 – Raymond Brulez, Flemish author and broadcaster, known for his skepticism.
1897 – Isabel Briggs Myers, American psychological theorist and author, best known for the Myers Briggs Type Indicator, a personality assessment she created with her mother, Katharine Cook Briggs.
1948 – Ntozake Shange, American poet and playwright whose work explores issues of race and feminism.
1950 – Wendy Wasserstein, Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright and professor.
1951 – Terry McMillan, bestselling American novelist.