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January 31

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  • What happened on January 31
  • January 31 is the 31st day of the year according to the Gregorian calendar. There are 334 days remaining until the end of the year (335 in leap years).

 

  • 314 – Pope Sylvester I succeeds Pope Miltiades.
  • 1504 – France cedes Naples to Aragon.
  • 1578 – The Battle of Gembloux takes place.
  • 1606 – Gunpowder Plot: Guy Fawkes is executed for plotting against Parliament and King James.
  • 1747 – The first venereal diseases clinic opens at London Lock Hospital.
  • 1801 – John Marshall is appointed the Chief Justice of the United States.
  • 1814 – Gervasio Antonio de Posadas becomes Supreme Director of the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata (present-day Argentina).
  • 1846 – After the Milwaukee Bridge War, Juneautown and Kilbourntown unify as the City of Milwaukee.
  • 1848 – John C. Frémont is court-martialed for mutiny and disobeying orders.
  • 1849 – Corn Laws are abolished in the United Kingdom pursuant to legislation in 1846.
  • 1862 – Alvan Graham Clark discovers the white dwarf star Sirius B, a companion of Sirius, through an 18.5-inch (47 cm) telescope now located at Northwestern University.
  • 1865 – American Civil War: The United States Congress passes the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, abolishing slavery and submits it to the states for ratification.
  • 1865 – American Civil War: Confederate General Robert E. Lee becomes general-in-chief.
  • 1891 – History of Portugal: The first attempt at a Portuguese republican revolution breaks out in the northern city of Porto.
  • 1897 – Czechoslav Trade Union Association is founded in Prague.
  • 1900 – Datu Muhammad Salleh is killed in Kampung Teboh, Tambunan, ending the Mat Salleh Rebellion.
  • 1915 – World War I: Germany is the first to make large-scale use of poison gas in warfare in the Battle of Bolimów against Russia.
  • 1917 – World War I: Germany announces that its U-boats will resume unrestricted submarine warfare after a two-year hiatus.
  • 1918 – A series of accidental collisions on a misty Scottish night leads to the loss of two Royal Navy submarines with over a hundred lives, and damage to another five British warships.
  • 1919 – The Battle of George Square takes place in Glasgow, Scotland.
  • 1929 – The Soviet Union exiles Leon Trotsky.
  • 1930 – 3M begins marketing Scotch Tape.
  • 1942 – World War II: Allied forces are defeated by the Japanese at the Battle of Malaya and retreat to the island of Singapore.
  • 1943 – World War II: German Field Marshal Friedrich Paulus surrenders to the Soviets at Stalingrad, followed 2 days later by the remainder of his Sixth Army, ending one of the war’s fiercest battles.
  • 1944 – World War II: American forces land on Kwajalein Atoll and other islands in the Japanese-held Marshall Islands.
  • 1944 – World War II: During the Anzio campaign the 1st Ranger Battalion (Darby’s Rangers) is destroyed behind enemy lines in a heavily outnumbered encounter at Battle of Cisterna, Italy.
  • 1945 – US Army private Eddie Slovik is executed for desertion, the first such execution of an American soldier since the Civil War.
  • 1945 – World War II: About 3,000 inmates from the Stutthof concentration camp are forcibly marched into the Baltic Sea at Palmnicken (now Yantarny, Russia) and executed.
  • 1945 – World War II: The end of fighting in the Battle of Hill 170 during the Burma Campaign, in which the British 3 Commando Brigade repulsed a Japanese counterattack on their positions and precipitated a general retirement from the Arakan Peninsula.
  • 1946 – Yugoslavia’s new constitution, modeling that of the Soviet Union, establishes six constituent republics (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia,Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia).
  • 1946 – The Democratic Republic of Vietnam introduces the đồng to replace the French Indochinese piastre at par.
  • 1949 – These Are My Children, the first television daytime soap opera is broadcast by the NBC station in Chicago.
  • 1950 – United States President Harry S. Truman announces a program to develop the hydrogen bomb.
  • 1953 – A North Sea flood causes over 1,800 deaths in the Netherlands and over 300 in the United Kingdom
  • 1957 – Eight people on the ground in Pacoima, California are killed following the mid-air collision between a Douglas DC-7 airliner and a Northrop F-89 Scorpionfighter jet.
  • 1958 – The first successful American satellite detects the Van Allen radiation belt.
  • 1961 – Project Mercury: Mercury-Redstone 2: Ham the Chimp travels into outer space.
  • 1966 – The Soviet Union launches the unmanned Luna 9 spacecraft as part of the Luna program.
  • 1968 – Vietnam War: Viet Cong guerrillas attack the United States embassy in Saigon, and other attacks, in the early morning hours, later grouped together as the Tet Offensive.
  • 1968 – Nauru gains independence from Australia.
  • 1971 – Apollo program: Apollo 14: Astronauts Alan Shepard, Stuart Roosa, and Edgar Mitchell, aboard a Saturn V, lift off for a mission to the Fra Mauro Highlands on the Moon.
  • 1971 – The Winter Soldier Investigation, organized by the Vietnam Veterans Against the War to publicize war crimes and atrocities by Americans and allies inVietnam, begins in Detroit.
  • 1996 – An explosives-filled truck rams into the gates of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka in Colombo, killing at least 86 people and injuring 1,400.
  • 2000 – Alaska Airlines Flight 261 crash: An MD-83, experiencing horizontal stabilizer problems, crashes in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Point Mugu, California, killing all 88 aboard.
  • 2001 – In the Netherlands, a Scottish court convicts Libyan Abdelbaset al-Megrahi and acquits another Libyan citizen for their part in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988.
  • 2007 – Suspects are arrested in Birmingham, England, accused of plotting the kidnap, holding and murder by beheading of a serving Muslim British soldier in Iraq.
  • 2009 – In Kenya, at least 113 people are killed and over 200 injured following an oil spillage ignition in Molo, days after a massive fire at a Nakumatt supermarket in Nairobi killed at least 25 people.
  • 2010 – Avatar becomes the first film to gross over $2 billion worldwide.

 

 

 

  • Births on January 31
  • 877 – Taejo of Goryeo (d. 943)
  • 1512 – Henry, King of Portugal (d. 1580)
  • 1543 – Tokugawa Ieyasu, Japanese shogun (d. 1616)
  • 1550 – Henry I, Duke of Guise (d. 1588)
  • 1597 – John Francis Regis, French priest and saint (d. 1640)
  • 1624 – Arnold Geulincx, Flemish philosopher and academic (d. 1669)
  • 1673 – Louis de Montfort, French priest and saint (d. 1716)
  • 1686 – Hans Egede, Norwegian missionary and explorer (d. 1758)
  • 1752 – Gouverneur Morris, American lawyer, politician, and diplomat, United States Ambassador to France (d. 1816)
  • 1759 – François Devienne, French flute player and composer (d. 1803)
  • 1797 – Franz Schubert, Austrian pianist and composer (d. 1828)
  • 1799 – Rodolphe Töpffer, a Swiss teacher, author, and artist (d. 1846)
  • 1820 – William B. Washburn, American politician, 28th Governor of Massachusetts (d. 1887)
  • 1835 – Lunalilo of Hawaii (d. 1874)
  • 1854 – David Emmanuel, Romanian mathematician and academic (d. 1941)
  • 1865 – Henri Desgrange, French cyclist and journalist (d. 1940)
  • 1865 – Shastriji Maharaj, Indian spiritual leader, founded BAPS (d. 1951)
  • 1868 – Theodore William Richards, American chemist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1928)
  • 1872 – Zane Grey, American author (d. 1939)
  • 1881 – Irving Langmuir, American chemist and physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1957)
  • 1884 – Theodor Heuss, German journalist and politician, 1st President of the Federal Republic of Germany (d. 1963)
  • 1884 – Mammad Amin Rasulzade, Azerbaijani scholar and politician, 1st President of The Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan (d. 1955)
  • 1889 – Frank Foster, English cricketer (d. 1958)
  • 1892 – Eddie Cantor, American singer-songwriter, actor, and dancer (d. 1964)
  • 1894 – Isham Jones, American saxophonist, composer, and bandleader (d. 1956)
  • 1896 – Sofya Yanovskaya, Russian mathematician and historian (d. 1966)
  • 1902 – Nat Bailey, Canadian businessman, founded White Spot (d. 1978)
  • 1902 – Tallulah Bankhead, American actress (d. 1968)
  • 1902 – Alva Myrdal, Swedish sociologist and politician, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1986)
  • 1905 – John O’Hara, American author, playwright, and screenwriter (d. 1970)
  • 1909 – Miron Grindea, Romanian-English journalist (d. 1995)
  • 1913 – Don Hutson, American football player and coach (d. 1997)
  • 1914 – Jersey Joe Walcott, American boxer and police officer (d. 1994)
  • 1915 – Bobby Hackett, American trumpet player and cornet player (d. 1976)
  • 1915 – Alan Lomax, American historian, author, and scholar (d. 2002)
  • 1915 – Thomas Merton, American monk and author (d. 1968)
  • 1915 – Garry Moore, American comedian and game show host (d. 1993)
  • 1916 – Frank Parker, American tennis player (d. 1997)
  • 1917 – Fred Bassetti, American architect and academic, founded Bassetti Architects (d. 2013)
  • 1919 – Jackie Robinson, American baseball player and sportscaster (d. 1972)
  • 1920 – Stewart Udall, American soldier, lawyer, and politician, 37th United States Secretary of the Interior (d. 2010)
  • 1920 – Bert Williams, English footballer (d. 2004)
  • 1921 – John Agar, American actor (d. 2002)
  • 1921 – Carol Channing, American actress, singer, and dancer
  • 1921 – E. Fay Jones, American architect, designed the Thorncrown Chapel (d. 2004)
  • 1921 – Mario Lanza, American tenor and actor (d. 1959)
  • 1922 – Joanne Dru, American actress (d. 1996)
  • 1923 – Norman Mailer, American journalist and author (d. 2007)
  • 1925 – Benjamin Hooks, American minister, lawyer, and activist (d. 2010)
  • 1926 – Tom Alston, American baseball player (d. 1993)
  • 1927 – Norm Prescott, American animator, producer, and composer, co-founded Filmation Studios (d. 2005)
  • 1928 – Chuck Willis, American singer-songwriter (d. 1958)
  • 1928 – Irma Wyman, American computer scientist and engineer
  • 1929 – Rudolf Mössbauer, German physicist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 2011)
  • 1929 – Jean Simmons, English-American actress, singer, and dancer (d. 2010)
  • 1930 – Joakim Bonnier, Swedish race car driver (d. 1972)
  • 1930 – Al De Lory, American composer, conductor, and producer (d. 2012)
  • 1931 – Ernie Banks, American baseball player and coach (d. 2015)
  • 1931 – Christopher Chataway, English runner, journalist, and politician (d. 2014)
  • 1932 – Miron Babiak, Polish captain (d. 2013)
  • 1933 – Camille Henry, Canadian ice hockey player and coach (d. 1997)
  • 1933 – Morton Mower, American cardiologist and inventor
  • 1934 – Ernesto Brambilla, Italian motorcycle racer and race car driver
  • 1934 – Gene DeWeese, American author (d. 2012)
  • 1934 – James Franciscus, American actor and producer (d. 1991)
  • 1934 – Bob Turner, Canadian ice hockey player and coach (d. 2005)
  • 1935 – Kenzaburō Ōe, Japanese author and academic, Nobel Prize laureate
  • 1936 – Can Bartu, Turkish former basketball and football player
  • 1937 – Regimantas Adomaitis, Lithuanian actor
  • 1937 – Andrée Boucher, Canadian educator and politician, 39th Mayor of Quebec City (d. 2007)
  • 1937 – Philip Glass, American composer
  • 1937 – Suzanne Pleshette, American actress (d. 2008)
  • 1938 – Beatrix of the Netherlands
  • 1938 – Lynn Carlin, American actress
  • 1938 – James G. Watt, American lawyer and politician, 43rd United States Secretary of the Interior
  • 1940 – Kitch Christie, South African rugby player and coach (d. 1998)
  • 1941 – Dick Gephardt, American lawyer and politician
  • 1941 – Gerald McDermott, American author and illustrator (d. 2012)
  • 1941 – Jessica Walter, American actress
  • 1942 – Daniela Bianchi, Italian actress
  • 1942 – Derek Jarman, English director, stage designer, and author (d. 1994)
  • 1944 – Connie Booth, American-English actress and psychotherapist
  • 1944 – John Inverarity, Australian cricketer and coach
  • 1944 – Charlie Musselwhite, American singer-songwriter and harmonica player
  • 1945 – Rynn Berry, American historian and author (d. 2014)
  • 1945 – Brenda Hale, Baroness Hale of Richmond, English lawyer, judge, and academic
  • 1945 – Joseph Kosuth, American sculptor and theorist
  • 1947 – Nolan Ryan, American baseball player
  • 1947 – Matt Minglewood, Canadian singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • 1947 – Glynn Turman, American actor
  • 1948 – Volkmar Groß, German footballer
  • 1948 – Muneo Suzuki, Japanese politician
  • 1949 – Johan Derksen, Dutch footballer and journalist
  • 1949 – Norris Church Mailer, American model and educator (d. 2010)
  • 1949 – Ken Wilber, American sociologist, philosopher, and author
  • 1950 – Denise Fleming, American author and illustrator
  • 1950 – Alexander Korzhakov, Russian general and bodyguard
  • 1950 – Janice Rebibo, American-Israeli author and poet (d. 2015)
  • 1951 – Harry Wayne Casey, American singer-songwriter, pianist, and producer
  • 1951 – Phil Manzanera, English musician and record producer
  • 1954 – Faoud Bacchus, Guyanese cricketer
  • 1954 – Adrian Vandenberg, Dutch guitarist and songwriter
  • 1955 – Virginia Ruzici, Romanian tennis player and manager
  • 1956 – John Lydon, English singer-songwriter
  • 1956 – Stefan Majewski, Polish footballer and coach
  • 1957 – Shirley Babashoff, American swimmer
  • 1958 – Armin Reichel, German footballer and manager
  • 1959 – Anthony LaPaglia, Australian footballer, actor, and producer
  • 1959 – Kelly Lynch, American model and actress
  • 1959 – Mickey Simmonds, English keyboard player and songwriter
  • 1960 – Akbar Ganji, Iranian journalist and author
  • 1960 – Grant Morrison, Scottish author and screenwriter
  • 1960 – Željko Šturanović, Montenegrin politician, 31st Prime Minister of Montenegro (d. 2014)
  • 1961 – Elizabeth Barker, Baroness Barker, English politician
  • 1961 – Fatou Bensouda, Gambian lawyer and judge
  • 1961 – Lloyd Cole, English singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • 1963 – Craig Coleman, Australian rugby league player and coach
  • 1963 – Gwen Graham, American lawyer and politician
  • 1964 – Sylvie Bernier, Canadian diver
  • 1964 – Jeff Hanneman, American guitarist and songwriter (d. 2013)
  • 1964 – Martha MacCallum, American journalist
  • 1965 – Giorgos Gasparis, Greek basketball player and coach
  • 1965 – Ofra Harnoy, Israeli-Canadian cellist
  • 1965 – Peter Sagal, American author and radio host
  • 1966 – Umar Alisha, Indian journalist and philanthropist
  • 1966 – Dexter Fletcher, English actor and director
  • 1966 – JJ Lehto, Finnish racing driver
  • 1967 – Fat Mike, American singer-songwriter, bass player, and producer
  • 1968 – Matt King, English actor, producer, and screenwriter
  • 1968 – Ulrica Messing, Swedish politician, 2nd Swedish Minister for Infrastructure
  • 1968 – Patrick Stevens, Belgian sprinter
  • 1969 – Dov Charney, Canadian-American fashion designer and businessman, founded American Apparel
  • 1970 – Minnie Driver, English singer-songwriter and actress
  • 1970 – Danny Michel, Canadian singer-songwriter and producer
  • 1971 – Patrick Kielty, Northern Irish comedian and television host
  • 1971 – Patricia Velásquez, Venezuelan model and actress
  • 1973 – Portia de Rossi, Australian-American actress
  • 1974 – Othella Harrington, American basketball player and coach
  • 1974 – Ariel Pestano, Cuban baseball player
  • 1975 – Fred Coleman, American football player and coach
  • 1975 – Preity Zinta, Indian Actress, producer, television host
  • 1976 – Traianos Dellas, Greek footballer and manager
  • 1976 – Buddy Rice, American race car driver
  • 1976 – Paul Scheer, American comedian, actor, producer, and screenwriter
  • 1977 – Jim Kleinsasser, American football player
  • 1977 – Bobby Moynihan, American actor and comedian
  • 1977 – Sergei Pareiko, Estonian footballer
  • 1977 – David Terbrugge, South African cricketer
  • 1977 – Kerry Washington, American actress
  • 1978 – Fabián Caballero, Argentinian footballer and manager
  • 1978 – Simon Prestigiacomo, Australian footballer
  • 1978 – Ellen Stagg, American photographer
  • 1979 – Daniel Tammet, English author and educator
  • 1980 – James Adomian, American comedian, actor, and screenwriter
  • 1980 – Shim Yi-young, South Korean actress
  • 1981 – Julio Arca, Argentinian footballer
  • 1981 – Mark Cameron, Australian cricketer
  • 1981 – Justin Timberlake, American singer-songwriter, dancer, and actor
  • 1982 – Maret Ani, Estonian tennis player
  • 1982 – Yuniesky Betancourt, Cuban baseball player
  • 1982 – Andreas Görlitz, German footballer
  • 1982 – Salvatore Masiello, Italian footballer
  • 1982 – Helena Paparizou, Greek-Swedish singer
  • 1982 – Allan McGregor, Scottish footballer
  • 1982 – Jānis Sprukts, Latvian ice hockey player
  • 1982 – Yukimi Nagano, Swedish singer-songwriter
  • 1982 – Brad Thompson, American baseball player
  • 1983 – James Sutton, English actor
  • 1983 – Fabio Quagliarella, Italian footballer
  • 1984 – Vernon Davis, American football player
  • 1984 – Josh Johnson, Canadian-American baseball player
  • 1984 – Jeremy Wariner, American runner
  • 1984 – Alessandro Zanni, Italian rugby player
  • 1985 – Adam Federici, Australian footballer
  • 1985 – Mario Williams, American football player
  • 1986 – Megan Ellison, American film producer, founded Annapurna Pictures
  • 1986 – George Elokobi, Cameroonian footballer
  • 1986 – Yves Ma-Kalambay, Belgian footballer
  • 1986 – Pauline Parmentier, French tennis player
  • 1987 – Marcus Mumford, American-English singer-songwriter
  • 1988 – Justine Ozga, German tennis player
  • 1988 – Brett Pitman, English footballer
  • 1988 – Taijo Teniste, Estonian footballer
  • 1990 – Jacopo Fortunato, Italian footballer
  • 1990 – Kota Yabu, Japanese idol, singer, model, actor
  • 1994 – Kenneth Zohore, Danish footballer
  • 1995 – Sten Olmre, Estonian basketball player

 

 

  • Deaths on January 31
  • 632 – Máedóc of Ferns, Irish bishop and saint (b. 550)
  • 876 – Hemma of Altdorf, Frankish queen
  • 1030 – William V, Duke of Aquitaine (b. 969)
  • 1216 – Theodore II of Constantinople
  • 1398 – Emperor Sukō of Japan (b. 1334)
  • 1418 – Mircea I of Wallachia (b. 1355)
  • 1435 – Xuande Emperor of China (b. 1398)
  • 1561 – Bairam Khan, Mughalan general (b. 1501)
  • 1561 – Menno Simons, Dutch minister and theologian (b. 1496)
  • 1580 – Henry, King of Portugal (b. 1512)
  • 1606 – Guy Fawkes, English conspirator, leader of the Gunpowder Plot (b. 1570)
  • 1606 – Ambrose Rookwood, English Gunpowder Plot conspirator (b. 1578)
  • 1606 – Thomas Wintour, English Gunpowder Plot conspirator (b. 1571)
  • 1615 – Claudio Acquaviva, Italian priest, 5th Superior General of the Society of Jesus (b. 1543)
  • 1632 – Jost Bürgi, Swiss clockmaker and mathematician (b. 1552)
  • 1665 – Johannes Clauberg, German philosopher and theologian (b. 1622)
  • 1686 – Jean Mairet, French playwright (b. 1604)
  • 1720 – Thomas Grey, 2nd Earl of Stamford, English politician, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (b. 1654)
  • 1729 – Jacob Roggeveen, Dutch explorer (b. 1659)
  • 1736 – Filippo Juvarra, Italian architect and set designer, designed the Basilica of Superga (b. 1678)
  • 1790 – Thomas Lewis, Irish-born American lawyer and surveyor (b. 1718)
  • 1794 – Mariot Arbuthnot, English admiral and politician, 12th Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia (b. 1711)
  • 1811 – Manuel Alberti, Argentinian priest and journalist (b. 1763)
  • 1815 – José Félix Ribas, Venezuelan soldier (b. 1775)
  • 1828 – Alexander Ypsilantis, Greek general (b. 1792)
  • 1836 – John Cheyne, English physician and author (b. 1777)
  • 1844 – Henri Gatien Bertrand, French general (b. 1773)
  • 1856 – 11th Dalai Lama (b. 1838)
  • 1870 – Cilibi Moise, Moldavian-Romanian journalist and author (b. 1812)
  • 1888 – John Bosco, Italian priest and educator, founded the Salesian Society (b. 1815)
  • 1892 – Charles Spurgeon, English pastor and author (b. 1834)
  • 1907 – Timothy Eaton, Canadian businessman, founded Eaton’s (b. 1834)
  • 1923 – Eligiusz Niewiadomski, Polish painter and critic (b. 1869)
  • 1933 – John Galsworthy, English novelist and playwright, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1867)
  • 1942 – Henry Larkin, American baseball player and manager (b. 1860)
  • 1944 – Jean Giraudoux, French author and playwright (b. 1882)
  • 1954 – Edwin Howard Armstrong, American engineer, invented FM radio (b. 1890)
  • 1954 – Vivian Woodward, English captain and footballer (b. 1879)
  • 1955 – John Mott, American activist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1865)
  • 1956 – A. A. Milne, English author, poet, and playwright, created Winnie-the-Pooh (b. 1882)
  • 1958 – Karl Selter, Estonian politician, 14th Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs (b. 1898)
  • 1961 – Krishna Singh, Indian politician, 1st Chief Minister of Bihar (b. 1887)
  • 1966 – Arthur Percival, English general (b. 1887)
  • 1967 – Eddie Tolan, American sprinter and educator (b. 1908)
  • 1969 – Meher Baba, Indian spiritual master (b. 1894)
  • 1971 – Viktor Zhirmunsky, Russian historian and linguist (b. 1891)
  • 1973 – Ragnar Frisch, Norwegian economist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1895)
  • 1974 – Samuel Goldwyn, Polish-American film producer, co-founded Goldwyn Pictures (b. 1882)
  • 1976 – Evert Taube, Swedish author and composer (b. 1890)
  • 1985 – Reginald Baker, English-Australian film producer (b. 1896)
  • 1985 – Tatsuzō Ishikawa, Japanese author (b. 1905)
  • 1987 – Yves Allégret, French director and screenwriter (b. 1907)
  • 1989 – William Stephenson, Canadian captain and spy (b. 1896)
  • 1990 – Eveline Du Bois-Reymond Marcus, German zoologist and academic (b. 1901)
  • 1990 – Rashad Khalifa, Egyptian-American biochemist and academic (b. 1935)
  • 1991 – Kostas Mountakis, Greek singer-songwriter (b. 1926)
  • 1995 – George Abbott, American actor, director and producer (b. 1887)
  • 1997 – John Joseph Scanlan, Irish-American bishop (b. 1930)
  • 1999 – Giant Baba, Japanese wrestler and trainer, co-founded All Japan Pro Wrestling (b. 1938)
  • 1999 – Norm Zauchin, American baseball player (b. 1929)
  • 2000 – Gil Kane, Latvian-American author and illustrator (b. 1926)
  • 2001 – Gordon R. Dickson, Canadian-American author (b. 1923)
  • 2002 – Gabby Gabreski, American colonel and pilot (b. 1919)
  • 2004 – Eleanor Holm, American swimmer and actress (b. 1913)
  • 2006 – Moira Shearer, Scottish actress and ballerina (b. 1926)
  • 2007 – Molly Ivins, American journalist and author (b. 1944)
  • 2007 – Adelaide Tambo, South African activist and politician (b. 1929)
  • 2011 – Bartolomeu Anania, Romanian bishop and poet (b. 1921)
  • 2011 – Mark Ryan, English guitarist and playwright (b. 1959)
  • 2012 – Mani Ram Bagri, Indian lawyer and politician (b. 1920)
  • 2012 – Anthony Bevilacqua, American cardinal (b. 1923)
  • 2012 – Tristram Potter Coffin, American author, scholar, and academic (b. 1922)
  • 2012 – Dorothea Tanning, American painter and sculptor (b. 1910)
  • 2013 – Rubén Bonifaz Nuño, Mexican poet and scholar (b. 1923)
  • 2013 – Hassan Habibi, Iranian lawyer and politician, 1st Vice President of Iran (b. 1937)
  • 2014 – Francis M. Fesmire, American cardiologist and physician (b. 1959)
  • 2014 – Anna Gordy Gaye, American songwriter and producer, co-founded Anna Records (b. 1922)
  • 2014 – Abdirizak Haji Hussein, Somalian politician, 4th Prime Minister of Somalia (b. 1924)
  • 2014 – Miklós Jancsó, Hungarian director and screenwriter (b. 1921)
  • 2014 – Joseph Willcox Jenkins, American composer, conductor, and educator (b. 1928)
  • 2014 – Christopher Jones, American actor (b. 1941)
  • 2015 – Tomás Bulat, Argentinian economist, journalist, and academic (b. 1964)
  • 2015 – Don Covay, American singer-songwriter (b. 1936)
  • 2015 – Vic Howe, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1929)
  • 2015 – Udo Lattek, German footballer, coach, and journalist (b. 1935)
  • 2015 – Lizabeth Scott, American actress (b. 1922)
  • 2015 – Richard von Weizsäcker, German captain and politician, 6th President of Germany (b. 1920)
  • 2016 – Gil Carmichael, American businessman and politician (b. 1927)
  • 2016 – Terry Wogan, Irish-English radio and television host (b. 1938)
  • 2017 – Rob Stewart, Canadian filmmaker (b. 1979)
  • 2017 – Tokitenkū Yoshiaki, Mongolian sumo wrestler (b. 1979)
  • 2017 – John Wetton, English singer-songwriter and bass guitarist (b. 1949)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Holidays and observances on January 31
  • Christian feast day:
    • Blessed Ludovica
    • Geminianus
    • John Bosco
    • Marcella
    • Samuel Shoemaker (Episcopal Church (USA))
    • January 31 (Eastern Orthodox liturgics)
  • Amartithi (Meherabad, India, followers of Meher Baba)
  • Independence Day (Nauru), celebrates independence from Australia in 1968.
  • Street Children’s Day (Austria)
January 31

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