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August 31

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  • What happened on August 31
  • August 31 is the 243rd day of the year (244th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 122 days remaining until the end of the year.

 

  • Events on August 31
  • 1056 – After a sudden illness a few days previously, Byzantine Empress Theodora dies childless, thus ending the Macedonian dynasty.
  • 1218 – Al-Kamil becomes sultan of the Ayyubid dynasty.
  • 1314 – King Haakon V of Norway moves the capital from Bergen to Oslo.
  • 1422 – King Henry V of England dies of dysentery while in France. His son, Henry VI becomes King of England at the age of 9 months.
  • 1776 – William Livingston, the first Governor of New Jersey, begins serving his first term.
  • 1795 – War of the First Coalition: The British capture Trincomalee (present-day Sri Lanka) from the Dutch in order to keep it out of French hands.
  • 1798 – Irish Rebellion of 1798: Irish rebels, with French assistance, establish the short-lived Republic of Connacht.
  • 1813 – At the final stage of the Peninsular War, British-Portuguese troops capture the town of Donostia (now San Sebastián), resulting in a rampage and eventual destruction of the town. Elsewhere, Spanish troops repel a French attack in the Battle of San Marcial.
  • 1864 – During the American Civil War, Union forces led by General William T. Sherman launch an assault on Atlanta.
  • 1876 – Ottoman Sultan Murad V is deposed and succeeded by his brother Abdul Hamid II.
  • 1886 – The 7.0 Mw Charleston earthquake affects southeastern South Carolina with a maximum Mercalli intensity of X (Extreme); 60 people killed with damage estimated at $5–6 million.
  • 1888 – Mary Ann Nichols is murdered. She is the first of Jack the Ripper’s confirmed victims.
  • 1895 – German Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin patents his navigable balloon.
  • 1897 – Thomas Edison patents the Kinetoscope, the first movie projector.
  • 1907 – Count Alexander Izvolsky and Sir Arthur Nicolson sign the St. Petersburg Convention, which results in the Triple Entente alliance.
  • 1918 – World War I: Start of the Battle of Mont Saint-Quentin, a successful assault by the Australian Corps during the Hundred Days Offensive.
  • 1920 – Polish–Soviet War: A decisive Polish victory in the Battle of Komarów.
  • 1920 – The first radio news program is broadcast by 8MK in Detroit.
  • 1928 – The Threepenny Opera is first produced in Berlin.
  • 1935 – In an attempt to stay out of the growing turmoil in Europe, the United States passes the first of its Neutrality Acts.
  • 1936 – Radio Prague, now the official international broadcasting station of the Czech Republic, goes on the air.
  • 1939 – Nazi Germany mounts a false flag attack on the Gleiwitz radio station, creating an excuse to attack Poland the following day, thus starting World War II in Europe.
  • 1940 – Pennsylvania Central Airlines Trip 19 crashes near Lovettsville, Virginia. The CAB investigation of the accident is the first investigation to be conducted under the Bureau of Air Commerce act of 1938.
  • 1941 – World War II: Serbian paramilitary forces defeat Germans in the Battle of Loznica.
  • 1943 – USS Harmon, the first U.S. Navy ship to be named after a black person, is commissioned.
  • 1945 – The Liberal Party of Australia is founded by Robert Menzies.
  • 1949 – The retreat of the Democratic Army of Greece in Albania after its defeat on Gramos mountain marks the end of the Greek Civil War.
  • 1957 – The Federation of Malaya (now Malaysia) gains its independence from the United Kingdom.
  • 1958 – A parcel bomb sent by Ngô Đình Nhu, younger brother and chief adviser of South Vietnamese President Ngô Đình Diệm, fails to kill King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia.
  • 1962 – Trinidad and Tobago becomes independent.
  • 1963 – Crown Colony of North Borneo (now Sabah) achieves self governance.
  • 1980 – After two weeks of nationwide strikes, the Polish government signed the Gdańsk Agreement, allowing for the creation of the trade union Solidarity.
  • 1982 – Anti-government demonstrations are held in 66 Polish cities to commemorate the second anniversary of the Gdańsk Agreement.
  • 1986 – Aeroméxico Flight 498 collides with a Piper PA-28 Cherokee over Cerritos, California, killing 67 in the air and 15 on the ground.
  • 1986 – The Soviet passenger liner Admiral Nakhimov sinks in the Black Sea after colliding with the bulk carrier Pyotr Vasev, killing 423.
  • 1987 – Thai Airways Flight 365 crashes into the ocean near Ko Phuket, Thailand, killing all 83 aboard.
  • 1991 – Kyrgyzstan declares its independence from the Soviet Union.
  • 1992 – Pascal Lissouba is inaugurated as the President of the Republic of the Congo.
  • 1993 – Russia completes removing its troops from Lithuania.
  • 1996 – Saddam Hussein’s troops seized Irbil after the Kurdish Masoud Barzani appealed for help to defeat his Kurdish rival PUK.
  • 1997 – Diana, Princess of Wales, her companion Dodi Fayed and driver Henri Paul die in a car crash in Paris.
  • 1999 – The first of a series of bombings in Moscow kills one person and wounds 40 others.
  • 1999 – A LAPA Boeing 737-200 crashes during takeoff from Jorge Newbury Airport in Buenos Aires, killing 65, including two on the ground.
  • 2005 – The 2005 Al-Aaimmah bridge stampede in Baghdad kills 1,199 people.
  • 2006 – Edvard Munch’s famous painting The Scream, stolen on August 22, 2004, is recovered in a raid by Norwegian police.
  • 2012 – A 7.6-magnitude earthquake strikes the Philippine province of Eastern Samar.
  • 2014 – China ruled out full universal suffrage in Hong Kong.
  • 2016 – Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff is impeached and removed from office.

 

 

 

  • Births on August 31
  • AD 12 – Caligula, Roman emperor (d. 41)
  • 161 – Commodus, Roman emperor (d. 192)
  • 1569 – Jahangir, Mughal Emperor of India (d. 1627)
  • 1652 – Ferdinando Carlo Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua and Montferrat (d. 1708)
  • 1663 – Guillaume Amontons, French physicist and instrument maker (d. 1705)
  • 1721 – George Hervey, 2nd Earl of Bristol, English soldier and politician, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland (d. 1775)
  • 1741 – Jean-Paul-Égide Martini, French composer and educator (d. 1816)
  • 1748 – Jean-Étienne Despréaux, French ballet dancer, choreographer, composer, and playwright (d. 1820)
  • 1767 – Henry Joy McCracken, Irish businessman and activist, founded the Society of United Irishmen (d. 1798)
  • 1775 – Agnes Bulmer, English poet and author (d. 1836)
  • 1802 – Husein Gradaščević, Ottoman general (d. 1834)
  • 1821 – Hermann von Helmholtz, German physician and physicist (d. 1894)
  • 1822 – Galusha A. Grow, American lawyer and politician, 28th Speaker of the United States House of Representatives (d. 1907)
  • 1834 – Amilcare Ponchielli, Italian composer and educator (d. 1886)
  • 1842 – Josephine St. Pierre Ruffin, American journalist, publisher, and activist (d. 1924)
  • 1843 – Georg von Hertling, German academic and politician, 7th Chancellor of the German Empire (d. 1919)
  • 1870 – Maria Montessori, Italian physician and educator (d. 1952)
  • 1871 – James E. Ferguson, American banker and politician, 26th Governor of Texas (d. 1944)
  • 1878 – Frank Jarvis, American sprinter and lawyer (d. 1933)
  • 1879 – Alma Mahler, Austrian-American composer and painter (d. 1964)
  • 1879 – Emperor Taishō of Japan (d. 1926)
  • 1880 – Wilhelmina of the Netherlands (d. 1962)
  • 1885 – DuBose Heyward, American author and playwright (d. 1940)
  • 1890 – August Alle, Estonian poet and author (d. 1952)
  • 1893 – Lily Laskine, French harp player (d. 1988)
  • 1894 – Albert Facey, Australian soldier and author (d. 1982)
  • 1896 – Brian Edmund Baker, English Air Marshal (d. 1979)
  • 1896 – Félix-Antoine Savard, Canadian priest and author (d. 1982)
  • 1897 – Fredric March, American lieutenant, actor, and singer (d. 1975)
  • 1900 – Gino Lucetti, Italian anarchist, attempted assassin of Benito Mussolini (d. 1943)
  • 1902 – Géza Révész, Hungarian general and politician, Hungarian Minister of Defence (d. 1977)
  • 1903 – Arthur Godfrey, American radio and television host (d. 1983)
  • 1903 – Vladimir Jankélévitch, Jewish-French musicologist and philosopher (d. 1985)
  • 1905 – Robert Bacher, American physicist and academic (d. 2004)
  • 1905 – Sanford Meisner, American actor and educator (d. 1997)
  • 1907 – Valter Biiber, Estonian footballer (d. 1977)
  • 1907 – Augustus F. Hawkins, American lawyer and politician (d. 2007)
  • 1907 – Ramon Magsaysay, Filipino captain, engineer, and politician, 7th President of the Philippines (d. 1957)
  • 1907 – William Shawn, American journalist (d. 1992)
  • 1907 – Altiero Spinelli, Italian theorist and politician (d. 1986)
  • 1908 – William Saroyan, American Novelist, playwright, and short story writer (d. 1981)
  • 1909 – Ferenc Fejtő, Hungarian-French journalist and political scientist (d. 2008)
  • 1911 – Edward Brongersma, Dutch journalist and politician (d. 1998)
  • 1911 – Arsenio Rodríguez, Cuban-American tres player, composer, and bandleader (d. 1970)
  • 1913 – Helen Levitt, American photographer and cinematographer (d. 2009)
  • 1913 – Bernard Lovell, English physicist and astronomer (d. 2012)
  • 1914 – Richard Basehart, American actor (d. 1984)
  • 1915 – Pete Newell, American basketball player and coach (d. 2008)
  • 1916 – Danny Litwhiler, American baseball player and coach (d. 2011)
  • 1916 – Daniel Schorr, American journalist and author (d. 2010)
  • 1916 – John S. Wold, American geologist and politician
  • 1918 – Alan Jay Lerner, American songwriter and composer (d. 1986)
  • 1919 – Amrita Preetam, Indian poet and author (d. 2005)
  • 1921 – Otis G. Pike, American judge and politician (d. 2014)
  • 1921 – Raymond Williams, Welsh author and academic (d. 1988)
  • 1924 – John Davidson, American physician and politician (d. 2012)
  • 1924 – Buddy Hackett, American actor and singer (d. 2003)
  • 1924 – Herbert Wise, Austrian-English director and producer (d. 2015)
  • 1925 – Moran Campbell, English-Canadian physician and academic, invented the venturi mask (d. 2004)
  • 1925 – Maurice Pialat, French actor and director (d. 2003)
  • 1928 – James Coburn, American actor (d. 2002)
  • 1928 – Jaime Sin, Filipino cardinal (d. 2005)
  • 1930 – Big Tiny Little, American pianist (d. 2010)
  • 1931 – Jean Béliveau, Canadian ice hockey player (d. 2014)
  • 1931 – Noble Willingham, American actor (d. 2004)
  • 1932 – Allan Fotheringham, Canadian journalist
  • 1935 – Eldridge Cleaver, American activist and author (d. 1998)
  • 1935 – Bryan Organ, English painter
  • 1935 – Frank Robinson, American baseball player and manager
  • 1936 – Vladimir Orlov, Russian journalist and author (d. 2014)
  • 1937 – Warren Berlinger, American actor
  • 1937 – Bobby Parker, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (d. 2013)
  • 1938 – Martin Bell, English journalist and politician
  • 1939 – Jerry Allison, American drummer and songwriter
  • 1940 – Robbie Basho, American guitarist, pianist, and composer (d. 1986)
  • 1940 – Wilton Felder, American saxophonist and bass player (d. 2015)
  • 1940 – Larry Hankin, American actor, director, and producer
  • 1940 – Roger Newman, English-American actor and screenwriter (d. 2010)
  • 1940 – Jack Thompson, Australian actor
  • 1941 – William DeWitt, Jr., American businessman
  • 1941 – Emmanuel Nunes, Portuguese-French composer and educator (d. 2012)
  • 1942 – Isao Aoki, Japanese golfer
  • 1943 – Leonid Ivashov, Russian general
  • 1944 – Roger Dean, English illustrator and publisher
  • 1944 – Liz Forgan, English journalist
  • 1944 – Christine King, English historian and academic
  • 1944 – Clive Lloyd, Guyanese cricketer
  • 1945 – Van Morrison, Northern Irish singer-songwriter
  • 1945 – Itzhak Perlman, Israeli-American violinist and conductor
  • 1945 – Bob Welch, American singer and guitarist (d. 2012)
  • 1946 – Ann Coffey, Scottish social worker and politician
  • 1946 – Jerome Corsi, American theorist and author
  • 1946 – Tom Coughlin, American football player and coach
  • 1947 – Luca Cordero di Montezemolo, Italian businessman
  • 1947 – Yumiko Ōshima, Japanese author and illustrator
  • 1947 – Somchai Wongsawat, Thai lawyer and politician, 26th Prime Minister of Thailand
  • 1948 – Harald Ertl, Austrian race car driver and journalist (d. 1982)
  • 1948 – Lowell Ganz, American screenwriter and producer
  • 1948 – Ken McMullen, English director, producer, and screenwriter
  • 1948 – Holger Osieck, German footballer and manager
  • 1948 – Rudolf Schenker, German guitarist and songwriter
  • 1949 – Richard Gere, American actor and producer
  • 1949 – Hugh David Politzer, American physicist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate
  • 1951 – Grant Batty, New Zealand rugby player
  • 1951 – Sirje Tamul, Estonian historian, author, and academic
  • 1952 – Kim Kashkashian, American viola player and educator
  • 1952 – Herbert Reul, German politician
  • 1953 – Miguel Ángel Guerra, Argentinian race car driver
  • 1953 – György Károly, Hungarian poet and author
  • 1953 – Pavel Vinogradov, Russian astronaut and engineer
  • 1955 – Aleksander Krupa, Polish-American actor
  • 1955 – Julie Maxton, Scottish lawyer and academic
  • 1955 – Edwin Moses, American hurdler
  • 1955 – Anthony Thistlethwaite, English saxophonist and bass player
  • 1955 – Gary Webb, American journalist and author (d. 2004)
  • 1956 – Mária Balážová, Slovak painter and illustrator
  • 1956 – Masashi Tashiro, Japanese singer, actor, and director
  • 1957 – Colm O’Rourke, Irish footballer and sportscaster
  • 1957 – Glenn Tilbrook, English singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • 1958 – Serge Blanco, Venezuelan-French rugby player and businessman
  • 1958 – Stephen Cottrell, English bishop
  • 1958 – Julie Brown, American actress and screenwriter
  • 1959 – Ralph Krueger, Canadian ice hockey player and coach
  • 1959 – Jessica Upshaw, American lawyer and politician (d. 2013)
  • 1960 – Vali Ionescu, Romanian long jumper
  • 1960 – Chris Whitley, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (d. 2005)
  • 1960 – Hassan Nasrallah, Lebanese politician, 3rd Secretary-General of Hezbollah
  • 1961 – Kieran Crowley, New Zealand rugby player
  • 1961 – Magnus Ilmjärv, Estonian historian and author
  • 1962 – Dee Bradley Baker, American voice actor
  • 1963 – Reb Beach, American guitarist
  • 1963 – Rituparno Ghosh, Indian actor, director, and screenwriter (d. 2013)
  • 1963 – Naomi Robson, American-Australian journalist
  • 1963 – Sonny Silooy, Dutch footballer and manager
  • 1964 – Raymond P. Hammond, American poet and critic
  • 1965 – Zsolt Borkai, Hungarian gymnast and politician
  • 1965 – Susan Gritton, English soprano and actress
  • 1967 – Gene Hoglan, American drummer
  • 1967 – Anita Moen, Norwegian skier
  • 1968 – Valdon Dowiyogo, Nauruan politician
  • 1968 – Hideo Nomo, Japanese-American baseball player
  • 1968 – Jolene Watanabe, American tennis player
  • 1969 – Nathalie Bouvier, French skier
  • 1969 – Jonathan LaPaglia, Australian actor and physician
  • 1969 – Javagal Srinath, Indian cricketer and referee
  • 1970 – Debbie Gibson, American singer-songwriter, producer, and actress
  • 1970 – Nikola Gruevski, Macedonian economist and politician, 6th Prime Minister of the Republic of Macedonia
  • 1970 – Greg Mulholland, English politician
  • 1970 – Queen Rania of Jordan
  • 1970 – Arie van Lent, Dutch-German footballer and manager
  • 1970 – Zack Ward, Canadian actor and producer
  • 1971 – Pádraig Harrington, Irish golfer
  • 1971 – Vadim Repin, Belgian-Russian violinist
  • 1972 – Chris Tucker, American comedian and actor
  • 1973 – Scott Niedermayer, Canadian ice hockey player and coach
  • 1974 – Andriy Medvedev, Ukrainian-Monacan tennis player
  • 1975 – Craig Cumming, New Zealand cricketer and sportscaster
  • 1975 – John Grahame, American ice hockey player and coach
  • 1976 – Vincent Delerm, French singer-songwriter and pianist
  • 1976 – Roque Júnior, Brazilian footballer and manager
  • 1976 – Radek Martínek, Czech ice hockey player
  • 1977 – Jeff Hardy, American wrestler and singer
  • 1977 – Ian Harte, Irish footballer
  • 1977 – Craig Nicholls, Australian singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • 1978 – Philippe Christanval, French footballer
  • 1978 – Ido Pariente, Israeli mixed martial artist and trainer
  • 1978 – Sandis Valters, Latvian basketball player
  • 1978 – Morten Qvenild, Norwegian pianist and composer
  • 1979 – Clay Hensley, American baseball player
  • 1979 – Mark Johnston, Canadian swimmer
  • 1979 – Simon Neil, Scottish singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer
  • 1979 – Yuvan Shankar Raja, Indian singer-songwriter and producer
  • 1979 – Ramón Santiago, Dominican baseball player
  • 1980 – Joe Budden, American rapper
  • 1981 – Ahmad Al Harthy, Omani race car driver
  • 1981 – Dwayne Peel, Welsh rugby player
  • 1981 – Steve Saviano, American ice hockey player
  • 1982 – Ian Crocker, American swimmer
  • 1982 – Chris Duhon, American basketball player
  • 1982 – Lien Huyghebaert, Belgian sprinter
  • 1982 – Christopher Katongo, Zambian footballer
  • 1982 – Josh Kroeger, American baseball player
  • 1982 – Alexei Mikhnov, Ukrainian-Russian ice hockey player
  • 1982 – Pepe Reina, Spanish footballer
  • 1982 – Michele Rugolo, Italian race car driver
  • 1982 – G. Willow Wilson, American journalist and author
  • 1983 – Deniz Aydoğdu, German-Turkish footballer
  • 1983 – Milan Biševac, Serbian footballer
  • 1983 – Larry Fitzgerald, American football player
  • 1984 – Matti Breschel, Danish cyclist
  • 1984 – Ryan Kesler, American ice hockey player
  • 1984 – Ted Ligety, American skier
  • 1984 – Charl Schwartzel, South African golfer
  • 1985 – Rolando, Portuguese footballer
  • 1985 – Andrew Foster, Australian footballer
  • 1987 – Xavi Annunziata, Spanish footballer
  • 1987 – Petros Kravaritis, Greek footballer
  • 1987 – Ondřej Pavelec, Czech ice hockey player
  • 1988 – Trent Hodkinson, Australian rugby league player
  • 1988 – David Ospina, Colombian footballer
  • 1989 – Dezmon Briscoe, American football player
  • 1990 – Tadeja Majerič, Slovenian tennis player
  • 1991 – António Félix da Costa, Portuguese race car driver
  • 1991 – Cédric Soares, Portuguese footballer
  • 1992 – Tyler Randell, Australian rugby league player
  • 1993 – Pablo Marí, Spanish football player
  • 1993 – Ilnur Alshin, Russian football player
  • 1993 – Anna Karnaukh, Russian water polo player
  • 1994 – Alex Harris, Scottish footballer

 

 

 

 

 

  • Deaths on August 31
  • 318 – Liu Cong, emperor of the Xiongnu state
  • 577 – John Scholasticus, Byzantine patriarch and saint
  • 651 – Aidan of Lindisfarne, Irish bishop and saint
  • 731 – Ōtomo no Tabito, Japanese poet (b. 665)
  • 894 – Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Ta’i, Muslim governor
  • 1056 – Theodora, Empress of the Eastern Roman Empire (b. 981)
  • 1158 – Sancho III of Castile (b. 1134)
  • 1234 – Emperor Go-Horikawa of Japan (b. 1212)
  • 1287 – Konrad von Würzburg, German poet
  • 1324 – Henry II of Jerusalem (b. 1271)
  • 1372 – Ralph de Stafford, 1st Earl of Stafford, English soldier (b. 1301)
  • 1422 – Henry V of England (b. 1386)
  • 1645 – Francesco Bracciolini, Italian poet (b. 1566)
  • 1654 – Ole Worm, Danish physician and historian (b. 1588)
  • 1688 – John Bunyan, English preacher, theologian, and author (b. 1628)
  • 1730 – Gottfried Finger, Czech-German viol player and composer (b. 1660)
  • 1741 – Johann Gottlieb Heineccius, German academic and jurist (b. 1681)
  • 1772 – William Borlase, English geologist and historian (b. 1695)
  • 1795 – François-André Danican Philidor, French-English chess player and composer (b. 1726)
  • 1799 – Nicolas-Henri Jardin, French architect and academic, designed the Bernstorff Palace and Marienlyst Castle (b. 1720)
  • 1811 – Louis Antoine de Bougainville, French admiral and explorer (b. 1729)
  • 1814 – Arthur Phillip, English admiral and politician, 1st Governor of New South Wales (b. 1738)
  • 1817 – Sir John Duckworth, 1st Baronet, English admiral and politician, 39th Commodore Governor of Newfoundland (b. 1747)
  • 1867 – Charles Baudelaire, French poet and critic (b. 1821)
  • 1869 – Mary Ward, Irish astronomer and entomologist (b. 1827)
  • 1908 – Leslie Green, English architect (b. 1875)
  • 1910 – Emīls Dārziņš, Latvian composer, conductor, and music critic (b. 1875)
  • 1912 – Jean, duc Decazes, French sailor (b. 1864)
  • 1920 – Wilhelm Wundt, German physician, psychologist, and philosopher (b. 1832)
  • 1924 – Todor Aleksandrov, Bulgarian soldier (b. 1881)
  • 1927 – Andranik, Armenian general (b. 1865)
  • 1940 – Georges Gauthier, Canadian archbishop (b. 1871)
  • 1941 – Marina Tsvetaeva, Russian poet and author (b. 1892)
  • 1948 – Andrei Zhdanov, Russian civil servant and politician (b. 1896)
  • 1952 – Henri Bourassa, Canadian publisher and politician (b. 1868)
  • 1954 – Elsa Barker, American author and poet (b. 1869)
  • 1963 – Georges Braque, French painter and sculptor (b. 1882)
  • 1965 – E. E. Smith, American engineer and author (b. 1890)
  • 1967 – Ilya Ehrenburg, Russian journalist and author (b. 1891)
  • 1968 – John Hartle, English motorcycle racer (b. 1933)
  • 1969 – Rocky Marciano, American boxer (b. 1923)
  • 1973 – John Ford, American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (b. 1894)
  • 1974 – William Pershing Benedict, American soldier and pilot (b. 1928)
  • 1974 – Norman Kirk, New Zealand engineer and politician, 29th Prime Minister of New Zealand (b. 1923)
  • 1978 – John Wrathall, Rhodesian accountant and politician, 2nd President of Rhodesia (b. 1913)
  • 1979 – Sally Rand, American actress and dancer (b. 1904)
  • 1979 – Tiger Smith, English cricketer and coach (b. 1886)
  • 1984 – Audrey Wagner, American baseball player, obstetrician, and gynecologist (b. 1927)
  • 1985 – Frank Macfarlane Burnet, Australian virologist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1899)
  • 1986 – Elizabeth Coatsworth, American author and poet (b. 1893)
  • 1986 – Urho Kekkonen, Finnish journalist, lawyer, and politician, 8th President of Finland (b. 1900)
  • 1986 – Henry Moore, English sculptor and illustrator (b. 1898)
  • 1990 – Nathaniel Clifton, American basketball player and coach (b. 1922)
  • 1991 – Cliff Lumsdon, Canadian swimmer and coach (b. 1931)
  • 1997 – Dodi Fayed, Egyptian film producer (b. 1955)
  • 1997 – Diana, Princess of Wales (b. 1961)
  • 2000 – Lucille Fletcher, American screenwriter (b. 1912)
  • 2000 – Dolores Moore, American baseball player and educator (b. 1932)
  • 2002 – Lionel Hampton, American pianist, composer, and bandleader (b. 1908)
  • 2002 – Farhad Mehrad, Persian singer-songwriter, guitarist, and pianist (b. 1944)
  • 2002 – George Porter, English chemist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1920)
  • 2005 – Joseph Rotblat, Polish-English physicist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1908)
  • 2006 – Mohamed Abdelwahab, Egyptian footballer (b. 1983)
  • 2006 – Tom Delaney, English race car driver and businessman (b. 1911)
  • 2007 – Gay Brewer, American golfer (b. 1932)
  • 2007 – Jean Jacques Paradis Canadian general (b. 1928)
  • 2007 – Sulev Vahtre, Estonian historian and academic (b. 1926)
  • 2008 – Ken Campbell, English actor and screenwriter (b. 1941)
  • 2008 – Ike Pappas, American journalist (b. 1933)
  • 2008 – Victor Yates, New Zealand rugby player (b. 1939)
  • 2010 – Laurent Fignon, French cyclist (b. 1960)
  • 2011 – Wade Belak, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1976)
  • 2012 – Max Bygraves, English actor (b. 1922)
  • 2012 – Joe Lewis, American martial artist and actor (b. 1944)
  • 2012 – Carlo Maria Martini, Italian cardinal (b. 1927)
  • 2012 – Kashiram Rana, Indian lawyer and politician (b. 1938)
  • 2012 – John C. Shabaz, American judge and politician (b. 1931)
  • 2012 – Sergey Sokolov, Russian commander and politician, 6th Minister of Defence for The Soviet Union (b. 1911)
  • 2013 – Alan Carrington, English chemist and academic (b. 1934)
  • 2013 – David Frost, English journalist and game show host (b. 1939)
  • 2013 – Jimmy Greenhalgh, English footballer and manager (b. 1923)
  • 2013 – Jan Camiel Willems, Belgian mathematician and theorist (b. 1939)
  • 2014 – Bapu, Indian director and screenwriter (b. 1933)
  • 2014 – Ștefan Andrei, Romanian politician, 87th Romanian Minister of Foreign Affairs (b. 1931)
  • 2014 – Stan Goldberg, American illustrator (b. 1932)
  • 2014 – Carol Vadnais, Canadian ice hockey player and coach (b. 1945)
  • 2015 – Edward Douglas-Scott-Montagu, 3rd Baron Montagu of Beaulieu, English politician, founded the National Motor Museum (b. 1926)
  • 2015 – Tom Scott, American football player (b. 1930)

 

 

 

  • Holidays and observances on August 31
  • Baloch-Pakhtun Unity Day (Balochs and Pashtuns, International observance)
  • Christian feast day:
    • Aidan of Lindisfarne
    • Raymond Nonnatus
    • August 31 (Eastern Orthodox liturgics)
  • Day of Solidarity and Freedom (Poland)
  • Independence Day, celebrates the independence of Kyrgyzstan from the Soviet Union in 1991.
  • Independence Day, celebrates the independence of Malaya from the United Kingdom in 1957.
  • Independence Day, celebrates the independence of Trinidad and Tobago from the United Kingdom in 1962.
  • National Language Day (Moldova)
  • National Trail Mix Day (United States)
  • North Borneo Self-government Day (Sabah, Borneo)

 

August 31
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