Answering Exams

January 1 – History, Events, Births, Deaths, Holidays and Observances On This Day

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During the Middle Ages under the influence of the , many in western Europe decided to move the start of the year to one of several important Christian festivals – (the Nativity of ), , (the Annunciation), or even Easter. The Byzantine Empire began its numbered year on .

In England, January 1 was celebrated as the New Year festival, but from the 12th century to the year in England began on March 25 (Lady Day). So, for example, the Parliamentary record notes the execution of Charles I as occurring on , , (as the year did not end until ), although modern histories adjust the start of the year to January 1 and record the execution as occurring in .

Most western countries changed the start of the year to January 1 before they adopted the . For example, changed the start of the Scottish New Year to January 1 in . England, Ireland and the British colonies changed the start of the year to January 1 in 52. Later that year in September, the was introduced throughout Britain and the British colonies. These two reforms were implemented by the Calendar (New Style) Act .

January 1 became the official start of the year as follows:

Julian calendar:

Gregorian calendar:

Events on January 1

Pre-Julian

  •  – For the first time, Roman consuls begin their year in office on January 1.

(before Augustus’ correction)

  •  – The Julian calendar takes effect as the civil calendar of the Roman Empire, establishing January 1 as the new date of the new year.
  •  – The Roman Senate posthumously deifies Julius Caesar.

Julian calendar

  •  – The Senate chooses Pertinax against his will to succeed Commodus as Roman emper]or.
  •  – Saint Telemachus tries to stop a gladiatorial fight in a Roman amphitheatre, and is stoned to death by the crowd. This act impresses the Christian  Honorius, who issues a historic on gladiatorial fights.
  •  – Emperor Honorius forces Galla Placidia into marriage to Constantius, his famous (magister militum) (probable).
  •  – Grand Prince Stephen I of Hungary is named the first King of Hungary by Pope Sylvester II (probable).
  •  – Romanos IV Diogenes marries Eudokia Makrembolitissa and is crowned Byzantine Emperor.
  •  – Michael VIII Palaiologos is proclaimed co-emperor of the Empire of Nicaea with his ward John IV Laskaris.
  •  – Albert II of Habsburg is crowned King of Hungary.
  •  – The present-day location of Rio de Janeiro,  is first explored by the Portuguese.
  •  – Twenty-year-old Francis, Duke of Brittany, succeeds to the French throne following the death of his father-in-, Louis XII.
  •  – Croatian nobles elect Ferdinand I of as  in the Parliament on Cetin.
  • 1583 to 1700 – see 
  • 1600 – Scotland recognises January 1 as the start of the year, instead of March 25.
  •  –  is crowned King of Scotland.
  • 1700 – Russia begins using the Anno Domini era instead of the Anno Mundi era of the Byzantine Empire.
  • to – see 
  • to – see 
  • to 2100 – see 

Gregorian calendar

  •  – John V is proclaimed King of Portugal and the Algarves in Lisbon.
  •  – Bouvet Island, the ’s remotest island is discovered by French explorer Jean-Baptiste Charles Bouvet de Lozier.
  •  – The first traveler’s cheques, which could be used in 90 European , were issued by the London Credit Exchange Company.
  •  – The hymn that became known as “Amazing Grace”, then titled “1 Chronicles 17:16–17” is first used to accompany a sermon led by John Newton in the town of Olney, Buckinghamshire, England.
  •  – American Revolutionary War: Norfolk, Virginia is burned by combined Royal Navy and Continental Army action.
  • 1776 – General George Washington hoists the first  flag; the Grand Union Flag at Prospect Hill.
  •  – American Revolutionary War: One thousand five hundred soldiers of the 6th Regiment under General Anthony Wayne’s command rebel against the Continental Army’s winter camp in Morristown, New Jersey in the  Line Mutiny of .
  •  – First edition of The Times of London, previously The Daily Universal Register, is published.
  • 1801 – The legislative union of Kingdom of Great Britain and Kingdom of Ireland is completed, and the  of Great Britain and Ireland is proclaimed.
  • 1801 – Ceres, the largest and first known object in the Asteroid belt, is discovered by Giuseppe Piazzi.
  •  – Emperor Gia Long orders all bronze wares of the Tây Sơn dynasty to be collected and melted into nine cannons for the Royal Citadel in Huế, .
  • 1804 – French rule ends in Haiti. Haiti becomes the first black-majority republic and second in  after the United States.
  •  – The French Calendar is abolished.
  •  – The United States bans the importation of slaves.
  •  – Major-General Lachlan Macquarie officially becomes  of New South Wales.
  •  – The Greek Constitution of  is adopted by the First National Assembly at Epidaurus.
  •  – The world’s first “Mercy” Hospital is founded in Pittsburgh, United States, by a group of Sisters of Mercy from Ireland; the name will on to grace over 30 major hospitals throughout the world.
  • 1 – The first Polish stamp is issued, replacing the Russian stamps previously in use.
  •  – Liberal forces supporting Benito Juárez enter .
  •  – : The  takes effect in  territory.
  •  – Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom is proclaimed Empress of .
  •  – Twenty-five nations adopt Sandford Fleming’s proposal for standard time (and also, time zones).
  •  – Eritrea is consolidated into a colony by the Italian government
  •  – Ellis Island begins processing immigrants into the United States.
  • 1 – ,  annexes land from surrounding counties, creating the City of Greater . The four initial boroughs, , Brooklyn, Queens, and The Bronx, are joined on 5 by Staten Island to create the modern city of five boroughs.
  •  – Spanish rule ends in Cuba.
  • 1901 – Nigeria becomes a 
  • 1901 – The British colonies of New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, South , Tasmania, and Western  federate as the Commonwealth of ; Edmund Barton is appointed the first Prime Minister
  •  – The first American  football bowl game, the Rose Bowl between Michigan and Stanford, is held in Pasadena, .
  •  – Captain David Beatty is promoted to Rear admiral, and becomes the youngest admiral in the Royal Navy (except for Royal family members) since Horatio .
  •  – The Republic of  is established.
  •  – The SPT Airboat Line becomes the world’s first scheduled airline to use a winged aircraft.
  •  – Britain’s Railways are grouped into the Big Four: LNER, GWR, SR, and LMS.
  •  – New Mexican oil legislation goes into effect, leading to the formal outbreak of the Cristero War.
  •  – Boris Bazhanov defects through Iran. He is the only assistant of Joseph ’s secretariat to have defected from the Eastern Bloc.
  •  – The former municipalities of Point Grey, British Columbia and South Vancouver, British Columbia are amalgamated into Vancouver.
  •  – The United States Post Office Department issues a set of 12 stamps commemorating the 200th anniversary of George Washington’s birth.
  •  – Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay becomes a United States federal prison.
  • 1934 – A “” comes into effect in .
  •  – The Declaration by  is signed by twenty-six nations.
  •  – : In retaliation for the Malmedy massacre, U.S. troops kill 60  POWs at Chenogne.
  • 1945 – World War II: The German Luftwaffe launches Operation Bodenplatte, a massive, but failed attempt to knock out Allied air power in northern Europe in a single blow.
  •  – Cold War: The American and British occupation zones in Allied-occupied Germany, after World War II, merge to form the Bizone, which later (with the French zone) became part of .
  • 1947 – The Canadian Citizenship Act  comes into effect, converting British subjects into Canadian citizens.Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King becomes the first Canadian citizen.
  •  – The British railway network is nationalized to form British Railways.
  •  – United Nations cease-fire takes effect in Kashmir from one minute before midnight. War between India and  stops accordingly.
  •  – Sudan achieves independence from Egypt and the United Kingdom.
  •  – George Town, Penang, is made a city by a royal charter of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom.
  •  –  is established.
  •  – Cuban Revolution: Fulgencio Batista, dictator of Cuba, is overthrown by Fidel Castro’s forces.
  •  – Cameroon achieves independence from France and the United Kingdom.
  • 1 – Western Samoa achieves independence from ; its name is changed to the Independent State of Western Samoa.
  •  – The Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland is divided into the independent republics of Zambia and Malawi, and the British-controlled Rhodesia.
  •  – The People’s of Afghanistan is founded in Kabul, Afghanistan.
  •  – The defined beginning of Unix time, at 00:00:00.
  •  – Cigarette advertisements are banned on American television.
  •  – Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom are admitted into the European Economic Community.
  •  – A bomb explodes on board Middle East Airlines Flight 438 over Qaisumah, Saudi Arabia, killing all 81 people on board.
  •  – Air India Flight , a Boeing , crashes into the Arabian Sea, due to instrument failure, spatial disorientation, and pilot error, off the coast of Bombay, India, killing all 213 people on board.
  •  – Normal diplomatic relations are established between the People’s Republic of China and the United States.
  •  –  is admitted into the European Community.
  •  – Peruvian Javier Pérez de Cuéllar becomes the first Latin American to hold the title of Secretary-General of the United Nations.
  •  – The ARPANET officially changes to using TCP/IP, the Internet Protocol, effectively creating the Internet.
  •  – The original American Telephone & Telegraph Company is divested of its 22 Bell System companies as a result of the settlement of the  United States Department of Justice antitrust suit against AT&T.
  • 1984 –  becomes independent of the United Kingdom.
  •  – The first British mobile phone call is made by Michael Harrison to his father Sir Ernest Harrison, chairman of Vodafone.
  •  – The Isleta Pueblo tribe elect Verna Williamson to be their first female governor.
  •  – The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America comes into existence, creating the largest Lutheran denomination in the United States.
  •  – The Montreal Protocol comes into force, stopping the use of chemicals contributing to ozone depletion.
  •  – David Dinkins is sworn in as New York City’s first black mayor.
  •  – Dissolution of Czechoslovakia: Czechoslovakia is divided into the  and Slovak Republic.
  •  – The Zapatista Army of National Liberation initiates twelve days of armed conflict in the Mexican state of Chiapas.
  • 1994 – The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) comes into effect.
  •  – The World Trade Organization comes into being.
  • 1995 – The Draupner wave in the North Sea in Norway is detected, confirming the existence of freak waves.
  • 1995 – Austria, Finland and Sweden join the EU.
  •  – Following a currency reform, Russia begins to circulate new rubles to stem inflation and promote confidence.
  •  – Euro currency is introduced in 11 member nations of the  (with the exception of the United Kingdom, Denmark, Greece and Sweden; Greece later adopts the euro).
  •  – In a vote of confidence, General Pervez Musharraf wins out of 1,170 votes in the  of Pakistan, and according to Article 41(8) of the Constitution of Pakistan, is “deemed to be elected” to the office of  until October .
  • 2007 – Bulgaria and Romania join the EU.
  • 2007 – Adam Air Flight  breaks apart in mid-air and crashes near the Makassar Strait,  killing all 102 people on board.
  •  – Sixty-six people die in a nightclub fire in Bangkok, Thailand.
  •  – A suicide car bomber detonates at a volleyball tournament in Lakki Marwat, Pakistan, killing 105 and injuring 100 more.
  •  – A bomb explodes as Coptic Christians in Alexandria, Egypt, leave a new year service, killing 23 people.
  • 2011 – Estonia officially adopts the Euro currency and becomes the 17th Eurozone country.
  •  – At least 60 people are killed and 200 injured in a stampede after celebrations at Félix Houphouët-Boigny Stadium in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.
  •  – The Eurasian Economic Union comes into effect, creating a political and economic union between Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.
  •  – An attack on a nightclub in Istanbul, Turkey, during New Year’s celebrations, kills at least 39 people and injures more than 60 others

Births on January 1

  •  – Ali al-Ridha (d. ) 8th Imam of Twelver Shia
  •  – Pope Alexander VI (d. )
  •  – Lorenzo de’ Medici, Italian politician (d. )
  •  – Sigismund I the Old, Polish king (d. )
  •  – Huldrych Zwingli, Swiss pastor and theologian (d. )
  •  – Henry, Duke of Cornwall, first-born child of Henry VIII of England (d. )
  •  – Stephen Bocskay, Prince of Transylvania (d. )
  • 1600 – Friedrich Spanheim, theologian and academic (d. 1649)
  •  – Christoph Bernhard, and theorist (d. )
  •  – Christian Thomasius, German jurist and philosopher (d. )
  •  – Arnold Drakenborch, Dutch scholar and author (d. )
  •  – Soame Jenyns, author, poet, and politician (d. )
  •  – Baron Franz von der Trenck, Austrian soldier (d. )
  •  – Giovanni Battista Mancini, Italian soprano and author (d. 1800)
  • 1714 – Kristijonas Donelaitis, Lithuanian pastor and poet (d. )
  •  – Paul Revere, American silversmith and engraver (d. )
  •  – Anthony Wayne, American general and politician (d. )
  • 1752 – Betsy Ross, American seamstress, credited with designing the Flag of the United States (d. )
  •  – Maria Edgeworth, Anglo-Irish author (d. )
  •  – Marie-Louise Lachapelle, French obstetrician (d. )
  •  – André Marie Constant Duméril, French zoologist and academic (d. )
  •  – William Clowes, English publisher (d. 1847)
  • 1803 – Edward Dickinson, American politician and father of poet Emily Dickinson (d. )
  • 1806 – Lionel Kieseritzky, Estonian-French chess player (d. )
  •  – Achille Guenée, French lawyer and entomologist (d. )
  •  – George Bliss, American politician (d. )
  •  – Hong Xiuquan, rebellion leader and king (d. )
  • 1818 – William Gamble, Irish-born American general (d. )
  •  – Arthur Hugh Clough, English-Italian poet and academic (d. 1861)
  • 1819 – George Foster Shepley, American general (d. )
  •  – Sándor Petőfi, Hungarian poet and activist (d. 1849)
  •  – Robert Lawson, Scottish-New Zealand architect, designed the Otago Boys’  and Knox Church (d. 1902)
  •  – Ludovic Halévy, French author and playwright (d. )
  •  – Ouida, English-Italian author and activist (d. 1908)
  •  – John W. Goff, Irish-American lawyer and politician (d. )
  •  – Eugène-Anatole Demarçay, French chemist and academic (d. )
  •  – James George Frazer, Scottish anthropologist and academic (d. 1941)
  • 1854 – Thomas Waddell, Irish-Australian politician, 15th Premier of New South Wales (d. )
  •  – Tim Keefe, American baseball player (d. )
  •  – Michael Joseph Owens, American inventor (d. 1923)
  • 1859 – Thibaw Min, Burmese king (d. )
  • 1860 – Michele Lega, Italian cardinal (d. )
  • 1863 – Pierre de Coubertin, French historian, and educator, founded the  Olympic Committee (d. )
  • 1864 – Alfred Stieglitz, American photographer, and curator (d. 1946)
  • 1864 – Qi Baishi, Chinese painter (d. 1957)
  •  – Mary Ackworth Evershed, English astronomer and scholar (d. 1949)
  • 1874 – Frank Knox, American publisher, and politician, 46th United States Secretary of the Navy (d. )
  • 1874 – Gustave Whitehead, German-American pilot and engineer (d. 1927)
  • 1877 – Alexander von Staël-Holstein, German sinologist and orientalist (d. 1937)
  • 1878 – Agner Krarup Erlang, Danish mathematician, statistician, and engineer (d. 1929)
  •  – E. M. Forster, English author and playwright (d. 1970)
  • 1879 – William Fox, Hungarian-American screenwriter and , founded the Fox Film Corporation and Fox Theatres (d. )
  •  – William J. Donovan, American general, lawyer, and politician (d. 1959)
  •  – Chikuhei Nakajima, lieutenant, engineer, and politician, founded Nakajima Aircraft Company (d. 1949)
  •  – Wilhelm Canaris, German admiral (d. 1945)
  •  – Georgios Stanotas, Greek general (d. 1965)
  • 1888 – John Garand, Canadian-American engineer, designed the M1 Garand rifle (d. 1974)
  •  – Charles Bickford, (d. )
  • 1890 – Anton Melik, Slovenian geographer and academic (d. )
  •  – Sampurnanand, Indian educator and politician, 3rd Governor of Rajasthan (d. )
  • 1892 – Mahadev Desai, Indian author and activist (d. 1942)
  • 1892 – Manuel Roxas, Filipino lawyer and politician, 5th President of the  (d. 1948)
  •  – Mordechai Frizis, Greek colonel (d. 1940)
  •  – Satyendra Nath Bose, Indian physicist, and mathematician (d. 1974)
  • 1894 – Edward Joseph Hunkeler, American clergyman (d. 1970)
  •  – J. Edgar Hoover, American law enforcement official; 1st Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (d. )
  • 1900 – Chiune Sugihara, Japanese soldier and diplomat (d. )
  • 1900 – Xavier Cugat, Spanish-American singer-songwriter and (d. 1990)
  • 1902 – Buster Nupen, Norwegian-South African and lawyer (d. )
  • 1902 – Hans von Dohnányi, German jurist and political dissident (d. 1945)
  • 1904 – Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry, Pakistani lawyer and politician, 5th President of Pakistan (d. 1982)
  •  – Stanisław Mazur, Ukrainian-Polish mathematician and theorist (d. 1981)
  •  – Manuel Silos, Filipino filmmaker, and actor (d. 1988)
  •  – Kinue Hitomi, Japanese sprinter and long jumper (d. )
  •  – Dana Andrews, American actor (d. )
  • 1909 – Stepan Bandera, Ukrainian soldier and politician (d. 1959)
  •  – Audrey Wurdemann, American poet and author (d. 1960)
  • 1911 – Basil Dearden, English director, producer, and screenwriter (d. 1971)
  • 1911 – Hank Greenberg, American baseball player (d. 1986)
  • 1911 – Roman Totenberg, Polish-American violinist and educator (d. )
  • 1912 – Boris Vladimirovich Gnedenko, Russian mathematician and historian (d. 1995)
  • 1912 – Kim Philby, British spy (d. 1988)
  • 1912 – Nikiforos Vrettakos, Greek poet and academic (d. )
  • 1914 – Noor Inayat Khan, British SOE agent (d. 1944)
  •  – Shannon Bolin, American actress and singer (d. )
  • 1918 – Patrick Anthony Porteous, Scottish colonel, Victoria Cross recipient (d. )
  • 1918 – Willy den Ouden, Dutch swimmer (d. )
  •  – Carole Landis, American actress (d. 1948)
  • 1919 – J. D. Salinger, American soldier and author (d. 2010)
  • 1919 – Rocky Graziano, American boxer and actor (d. 1990)
  •  – Osvaldo Cavandoli, Italian cartoonist (d. 2007)
  •  – César Baldaccini, French sculptor and academic (d. 1998)
  • 1921 – Ismail al-Faruqi, Palestinian-American philosopher and academic (d. 1986)
  • 1921 – Regina Bianchi, Italian actress (d. 2013)
  •  – Ernest Hollings, American soldier, and politician, 106th Governor of  (d. )
  • 1923 – Valentina Cortese, Italian actress (d. 2019)
  • 1923 – Milt Jackson, American jazz vibraphonist and composer (d. 1999)
  • 1924 – Francisco Macías Nguema, Equatorial Guinean politician, 1st President of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea (d. 1979)
  •  – Matthew Beard, American child actor (d. 1981)
  • 1925 – Paul Bomani, Tanzanian politician and diplomat, 1st Tanzanian Minister of Finance (d. )
  •  – Kazys Petkevičius, Lithuanian basketball player and coach (d. )
  • 1927 – Doak Walker, American football player and businessman (d. 1998)
  • 1927 – James Reeb, American clergyman and political activist (d. 1965)
  • 1927 – Maurice Béjart, French-Swiss dancer, choreographer, and director (d. 2007)
  • 1927 – Vernon L. Smith, American economist and academic,  laureate
  • 1928 – Ernest Tidyman, American author and screenwriter (d. 1984)
  • 1928 – Gerhard Weinberg, German-American historian, author, and academic
  • 1929 – Larry L. King, American , author, and playwright (d. 2012)
  •  – Frederick Wiseman, American director and producer
  • 1930 – Gaafar Nimeiry, Egyptian-Sudanese politician, 4th President of the Sudan (d. 2009)
  • 1932 – Giuseppe Patanè, Italian conductor (d. 1989)
  • 1933 – James Hormel, American philanthropist and diplomat.
  • 1933 – Joe Orton, English dramatist (d. 1967)
  • 1934 – Alan Berg, American lawyer and host (d. 1984
  • 1934 – Lakhdar Brahimi, Algerian politician, Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • 1935 – Om Prakash Chautala, Indian politician
  •  – James Sinegal, American businessman, co-founded Costco
  •  – Michèle Mercier, French actress
  • 1939 – Phil Read, English motorcycle racer and businessman
  • 1939 – Senfronia Thompson, American politician
  • 1941 – Younoussi Touré, Malian politician, Prime Minister of Mali
  • 1942 – Alassane Ouattara, Ivorian economist and politician, President of the Ivory Coast (doubtful)
  • 1942 – Anthony Hamilton-Smith, 3rd Baron Colwyn, English dentist and politician
  • 1942 – Country Joe McDonald, American singer-songwriter and guitarist
  • 1942 – Dennis Archer, American lawyer and politician, 67th Mayor of Detroit
  • 1942 – Gennadi Sarafanov, Russian pilot and cosmonaut (d. 2005)
  •  – Don Novello, American comedian, screenwriter and producer.
  • 1943 – Tony Knowles, American soldier and politician, 7th Governor of Alaska.
  • 1943 – Vladimir Šeks, Croatian lawyer and politician, 16th Speaker of the Croatian Parliament
  • 1944 – Mati Unt, Estonian author, playwright, and director (d. 2005)
  • 1944 – Omar al-Bashir, Sudanese field marshal and politician, 7th President of Sudan
  • 1944 – Teresa Torańska, Polish journalist and author (d. 2013)
  • 1944 – Zafarullah Khan Jamali, Pakistani field player and politician, 13th 
  • 1945 – Jacky Ickx, Belgian racing driver
  • 1945 – Victor Ashe, American politician and former United States Ambassador to
  • 1946 – Claude Steele, American social psychologist and academic
  • 1946 – Rivellino, Brazilian footballer and manager
  • 1947 – Jon Corzine, American sergeant and politician, 54th Governor of New Jersey
  • 1948 – Devlet Bahçeli, Turkish economist, academic, and politician, 57th Deputy Prime Minister of Turkey
  • 1948 – Dick Quax, New Zealand runner and politician (d. )
  • 1948 – Pavel Grachev, Russian general and politician, 1st Russian Minister of Defence (d. 2012)
  • 1949 – Borys Tarasyuk, Ukrainian politician and diplomat
  • 1952 – Shaji N. Karun, Indian director and cinematographer
  •  – Gary Johnson, American businessman and politician, 29th Governor of New
  •  – Bob Menendez, American lawyer and politician
  • 1954 – Dennis O’Driscoll, Irish poet and critic (d. 2012)
  • 1954 – Yannis Papathanasiou, Greek engineer and politician, Greek Minister of Finance
  •  – LaMarr Hoyt, American baseball player
  • 1955 – Mary Beard, English classicist, academic and presenter
  • 1956 – Sergei Avdeyev, Russian engineer and astronaut
  • 1956 – Christine Lagarde, French lawyer and politician; Managing Director, International Monetary Fund
  • 1957 – Evangelos Venizelos, Greek lawyer and politician, Deputy Prime Minister of Greece
  • 1958 – Grandmaster Flash, Barbadian rapper and DJ
  • 1959 – Abdul Ahad Mohmand, Afghan colonel, pilot, and astronaut
  • 1959 – Azali Assoumani, Comorian colonel and politician, President of the Comoros
  • 1959 – Panagiotis Giannakis, Greek basketball player and coach
  •  – Anton Muscatelli, Italian-Scottish economist and academic
  •  – Jean-Marc Gounon, French racing driver
  • 1964 – Dedee Pfeiffer, American actress
  • 1966 – Anna Burke, Australian businesswoman and politician, 28th Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives
  • 1966 – Ivica Dačić, Serbian journalist and politician, 95th Prime Minister of Serbia
  • 1966 – Tihomir Orešković, Croatian–Canadian businessman, 11th Prime Minister of Croatia
  •  – Davor Šuker, Croatian footballer
  • 1971 – Bobby Holík, Czech-American ice hockey player and coach
  • 1971 – Jyotiraditya Madhavrao Scindia, Indian politician
  • 1971 – Sammie Henson, and coach
  • 1972 – Lilian Thuram, French footballer
  • 1974 – Christian Paradis, Canadian lawyer and politician, 9th Canadian Minister of Industry
  •  – Becky Kellar-Duke, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1975 – Chris Anstey, Australian basketball player and coach
  • 1975 – Fernando Tatís, Dominican baseball player
  • 1975 – Joe Cannon, American and sportscaster
  • 1979 – Vidya Balan, Indian actress
  • 1981 – Zsolt Baumgartner, Hungarian racing driver
  • 1981 – Mladen Petrić, Croatian footballer
  • 1982 – David Nalbandian, Argentinian player
  • 1982 – Egidio Arévalo Ríos, Uruguayan footballer
  • 1983 – Melaine Walker, Jamaican hurdler
  • 1983 – Park Sung-hyun, South archer
  • 1983 – Calum Davenport,
  • 1984 – Paolo Guerrero, Peruvian footballer
  • 1985 – Steven Davis, Northern Irish footballer
  • 1985 – Tiago Splitter, Brazilian basketball player
  • 1986 – Pablo Cuevas, Uruguayan tennis player
  • 1986 – Ramses Barden, American football player
  • 1987 – Meryl Davis, American ice dancer1987 – Patric Hörnqvist, Swedish ice hockey player
  • 1988 – Marcel Gecov, Czech footballer
  • 1989 – Jason Pierre-Paul, American football player
  • 1991 – Darius Slay, American football player

Deaths on January 1

  •  – Lucius Aelius, adopted son and intended successor of Hadrian (b. )
  • 404 – Telemachus, Christian monk and martyr
  •  – Qianfei, Chinese emperor of the Liu Song Dynasty (b. )
  • 898 – Odo I, king (b. 860)
  •  – Ramiro II, king of León and Galicia1031 – William of Volpiano, Italian abbot (b. 962)
  •  – Henry of Marcy, Cistercian abbot (b. c. )
  •  – Haakon III, king of Norway (b. )
  •  – Charles II, king of Navarre (b. )
  •  – Charles d’Orléans, count of Angoulême (b. )
  • 1515 – Louis XII, king of France (b. )
  • 1559 – Christian III, king of Denmark (b. 1503)
  •  – Joachim du Bellay, French poet and critic (b. )
  •  – Hendrik Goltzius, and (b. )
  •  – Filippo Baldinucci, Florentine historian and author (b. )
  •  – William Wycherley, English playwright and poet (b. )
  • 1748 – Johann Bernoulli, Swiss mathematician and academic (b. )
  • 1780 – Johann Ludwig Krebs, German organist and composer (b. )
  •  – Johann Christian Bach, German composer (b. 1735)
  •  – Fletcher Norton, 1st Baron Grantley, English lawyer and politician, British Speaker of the House of Commons (b. 1716)
  •  – Francesco Guardi, Italian painter and educator (b. )
  •  – Martin Heinrich Klaproth, German chemist and academic (b. )
  •  – John Torrington, English sailor and explorer (b. )
  • 1853 – Gregory Blaxland, Australian farmer and explorer (b. )
  •  – Mikhail Ostrogradsky, Ukrainian mathematician and physicist (b. 1801)
  •  – Louis Auguste Blanqui, French activist (b. )
  • 1892 – Roswell B. Mason, American lawyer and politician, 25th Mayor of Chicago (b. 1805)
  • 1894 – Heinrich Hertz, German physicist and academic (b. 1857)
  •  – Alfred Ely Beach, American publisher and lawyer, created the Beach Pneumatic Transit (b. )
  • 1906 – Hugh Nelson, Scottish-Australian farmer and politician, 11th Premier of Queensland (b. 1833)
  • 1918 – William Wilfred Campbell, Canadian poet and author (b. )
  • 1921 – Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg, German lawyer and politician, 5th Chancellor of Germany (b. )
  • 1929 – Mustafa Necati, Turkish civil servant and politician, Turkish Minister of Environment and Urban Planning (b. 1894)
  • 1931 – Martinus Beijerinck, Dutch microbiologist and botanist (b. )
  • 1937 – Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati, Indian religious leader, founded the Gaudiya Math (b. 1874)
  • 1940 – Panuganti Lakshminarasimha Rao, Indian author and educator (b. )
  • 1944 – Edwin Lutyens, English architect, designed the Castle Drogo and Thiepval Memorial (b. )
  • 1944 – Charles Turner, Australian cricketer (b. 1862)
  • 1953 – Hank Williams, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1923)
  • 1954 – Duff Cooper, English politician and diplomat, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (b. 1890)
  • 1954 – Leonard Bacon, American poet and critic (b. 1887)
  • 1955 – Arthur C. Parker, American archaeologist and historian (b. 1881)
  • 1960 – Margaret Sullavan, American actress (b. 1909)
  • 1966 –  Auriol, French journalist and politician, 16th President of the French Republic (b. 1884)
  • 1969 – Barton MacLane, American actor, playwright and screenwriter (b. 1902)
  • 1971 – Amphilochius of Pochayiv, Ukrainian saint (b. 1894)
  • 1972 – Maurice Chevalier, French actor and singer (b. 1888)
  • 1978 – Carle Hessay, German-Canadian painter (b. 1911)
  •  – Pietro Nenni, and politician, Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs (b. 1891)
  • 1981 – Hephzibah Menuhin, American-Australian pianist (b. 1920)
  • 1982 – Victor Buono, American actor (b. )
  • 1984 – Alexis Korner, French-English singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1928)
  • 1992 – Grace Hopper, American computer and admiral, co-developed COBOL (b. 1906)
  • 1994 – Arthur Porritt, Baron Porritt, New Zealand physician and politician, 11th Governor-General of New Zealand (b. 1900)
  • 1994 – Cesar Romero, American actor (b. 1907)
  • 1994 – Edward Arthur Thompson, Irish historian and academic (b. 1914)
  • 1995 – Eugene Wigner, Hungarian-American physicist and mathematician, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1902)
  •  – Arleigh Burke, American admiral (b. 1901)
  • 1996 – Arthur Rudolph, German-American engineer (b. 1906)
  • 1997 – Townes Van Zandt, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer (b. 1944)
  • 1998 – Helen Wills, American tennis player and coach (b. 1905)
  • 2000 –  Archdale, English-Australian cricketer and educator (b. 1907)
  •  – Ray Walston, American actor (b. 1914)
  •  – Julia Phillips, American film producer and author (b. 1944)
  •  – Joe Foss, American soldier, pilot, and politician, 20th Governor of South Dakota (b. )
  • 2005 – Shirley Chisholm, American educator and politician (b. 1924)
  •  – Harry Magdoff, American economist and journalist (b. )
  • 2007 – Roland Levinsky, South African-English biochemist and academic (b. 1943)
  • 2007 – Tillie Olsen, American short story writer (b. 1912)
  • 2008 – Pratap Chandra Chunder, Indian educator and politician (b. 1919)
  • 2009 – Claiborne Pell, American politician (b. 1918)
  • 2010 – Lhasa de Sela, American-Mexican singer-songwriter (b. 1972)
  • 2012 – Kiro Gligorov, Bulgarian-Macedonian lawyer and politician, 1st President of the Republic of Macedonia (b. 1917)
  • 2012 – Nay Win Maung, Burmese physician, businessman, and activist (b. 1962)
  • 2012 – Tommy Mont, American football player and coach (b. 1922)
  • 2013 – Christopher Martin-Jenkins, English journalist (b. 1945)
  • 2013 – Patti Page, American singer and actress (b. 1927)
  •  – Higashifushimi Kunihide, Japanese monk and educator (b. 1910)
  • 2014 – Juanita Moore, American actress (b. 1914)
  • 2014 – William Mgimwa, Tanzanian banker and politician, 13th Tanzanian Minister of Finance (b. )
  • 2015 – Boris Morukov, Russian physician and astronaut (b. 1950)
  • 2015 – Donna Douglas, American actress (b. 1932)
  • 2015 – Mario Cuomo, American lawyer and politician, 52nd  (b. 1932)
  • 2015 – Omar Karami, Lebanese lawyer and politician, 58th Prime Minister of Lebanon (b. 1934)
  • 2016 – Dale Bumpers, American soldier, lawyer, and politician, 38th Governor of  (b. 1925)
  • 2016 – Fazu Aliyeva, Russian poet and journalist (b. 1932)
  • 2016 – Vilmos Zsigmond, Hungarian-American cinematographer and producer (b. 1930)
  • 2017 – Derek Parfit, British philosopher (b. 1942)
  • 2017 – Tony Atkinson, British economist (b. 1944)
  • 2017 – Yvon Dupuis, Canadian politician (b. 1926)
  • 2018 – Robert Mann, American violinist (b. 1920)
  • 2019 – Pegi Young, American singer, songwriter, environmentalist, educator and philanthropist (b. 1952)
  • 2019 – Paul Neville, Australian politician (b. 1940)
  •  – David Stern, American lawyer and businessman (b. 1942)
  • 2020 – Alexander Frater, British travel writer and journalist (b. 1937)
  • 2020 – Barry McDonald, Australian rugby union player (b. 1940)

Holidays and observances on January 1

  • Christian feast day:
    • Adalard of Corbie
    • Basil the Great (Eastern Orthodox Church)
    • Feast of the Circumcision of Christ
      • Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus (Anglican Communion, Lutheran Church)
      • Feast of Fools (Medieval Europe)
    • Fulgentius of Ruspe
    • Giuseppe Maria Tomasi
    • Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, the Octave Day of Christmas, considered a holy day of obligation in some countries (Catholic Church); and its related observances:
      • World Day of Peace
    • Telemachus
    • Zygmunt Gorazdowski
    • January 1 (Eastern Orthodox liturgics)
  • Earliest day on which Handsel  can fall, while  is the latest; celebrated on the first of the year (Scotland)
  • The second day of Hogmanay (Scotland) -January 1, in some cases until January 2.
  • The last day of Kwanzaa (African-Americans)
  • The eighth of the Twelve Days of Christmas (Western )
  • Constitution Day ()
  • Dissolution of Czechoslovakia-related observances:
    • Day of the Establishment of the Slovak Republic ()
    • Restoration Day of the Independent Czech State (Czech Republic)
  • Emancipation Day (United States)
  • Euro Day (European Union)
  • Flag Day (Lithuania) commemorates raising of the Lithuanian flag on Gediminas’ Tower in 1919
  • Founding Day () commemorates the establishment of the Provisional Government in Nanjing
  • Global Family Day
  • Independence Day (Brunei, Cameroon, Haiti, Sudan)
  • International Nepali Dhoti and Nepali Topi Day
  • Jump-up Day (Montserrat)
  • Kalpataru Day (Ramakrishna Movement)
  • Kamakura Ebisu, January 1–3 (Kamakura, Kanagawa, )
  • National Bloody Mary Day (United States)
  • National Tree Planting Day ()
  • New Year’s Day (Gregorian calendar)
    • Japanese New Year
    • Novy God Day (Russia)
    • Sjoogwachi (Okinawa Islands)
  • Polar Bear Swim Day ( and United States)
  • Public Domain Day (multiple countries)
  • Triumph of the Revolution (Cuba)
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