1796 – Mirza Ghalib, the preeminent Urdu-Persian poet during the last years of the Mughal Empire; he used pen names Ghalib and Asad.
1821 – Lady Jane Francesca Agnes Wilde (born Jane Francesca Elgee), Irish poet who wrote under the pen name “Speranza,” and a supporter of the nationalist movement; she had a special interest on Irish fairy tales, and helped to gather them.
1896 – Louis Bromfield, Pulitzer Prize-winning U.S. novelist, nonfiction author, conservationist, and pioneer of innovative scientific farming concepts.
1904 – Ingri Parin d’Aulaire, Norwegian-born children’s book author and illustrator who often worked as a team with her Swiss husband Edgar after they immigrated to the U.S.; their best known works include a book of Greek mythology and a children’s biography of Abraham Lincoln.
1907 – Mary Howard, pen name of British romance novelist Mary Mussi.
1936 – Mohammed Abed Al-Jabri (Arabic: محمد عابد الجابري), Moroccan critic, philosopher, and professor who was an expert in Arabic, Islamic thought, and Arabic literature; was considered a major intellectual figure in the contemporary Arab world.
1946 – William “Bill” Manhire, award-winning New Zealand poet, short-story writer, and professor who was New Zealand’s first Poet Laureate.
1946 – Mary Louisa “Polly” Toynbee, left-wing British writer, journalist, and newspaper columnist.
1956 – Patricia Gaffney, U.S. author of contemporary novels and historical romances.
1957 – Greg Mortensen, U.S. author and mountaineer who co-founded the nonprofit Central Asia Institute; his bestseller Three Cups of Tea, an account of building a school for girls in rural Pakistan, has been discredited because of revelations that episodes presented in the book as factual were actually fictitious.
1959 – Gerina Dunwich, professional U.S. astrologer and New Age author.
1964 – Kevin Patterson, Canadian novelist, short-story writer, and medical doctor.
1966 – Chris Abani, Nigerian author, now based in the U.S., who is part of a new generation of Nigerian writers working to convey to an English-speaking audience the experience of those born and raised in his native country.
1966 – Wendy Coakley-Thompson, U.S. author and public radio commentator whose fiction centers on issues of race and gender.
1969 – Sarah Vowell, U.S. author, journalist, social commentator, and actress.
1982 – Isuna Hasekura (支倉 凍砂), Japanese author and manga writer.
1982 – Erin E. Stead, Caldecott Medal-winning U.S. illustrator of children’s books.