December 16 is the 350th day of the year (351st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 15 days remaining until the end of the year.. (complete history can be found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/16th_December )
1431 Henry VI of England is crowned King of France at Notre Dame in Paris.
1497 Vasco da Gama rounds the Cape of Good Hope, the point where Bartolomeu Dias had previously turned back to Portugal.
1707 Last recorded eruption of Mount Fuji in Japan.
1770 Ludwig Van Beethoven was born on Dec. 16, 1770 (baptized on Dec. 17, 1770)
1809 Napoleon Bonaparte and the Empress Josephine are divorced by an act of the French Senate.
1850 History of New Zealand: The Charlotte-Jane and the Randolph bring the first of the Canterbury Pilgrims to Lyttelton.
1857 Earthquake in Naples, Italy
1870 The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is lit for the first time.
1893 Antonn Dvok's Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95, "From The New World" was given its world premiere at Carnegie Hall.
1903 Majestic Theater, New York NY, becomes first in US to employ women ushers
1913 Charles Chaplin, one of the most famous actors in the silent-film era comes to work for the first time at Keystone Studios.
1916 Gregory Rasputin, a monk with considerable influence over the Russian court, is murdered by noblemen.
1920 A magnitude 8.5 earthquake rocks the Gansu province in China, killing an estimated 200,000.
1922 Florence E. Allen becomes the first woman justice of a state supreme court (Ohio).
1922 President of Poland Gabriel Narutowicz is assassinated by Eligiusz Niewiadomski at the Zachta Gallery in Warsaw.
1929 The first NHL game at Chicago Stadium (Black Hawks)
1937 Theodore Cole and Ralph Roe attempt to escape from the American federal prison on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay; neither is ever seen again.
1941 Sarawak occupied by the Japanese
1959 Snow falling in Lowarai Pass West Pakistan kills 48
1960 1960 New York air disaster: While approaching New York's Idlewild Airport, a United Airlines Douglas DC-8 collides with a TWA Lockheed Super Constellation in a blinding snowstorm over Staten Island, killing 134.
1965 Gemini 6 returns to Earth
1965 Pioneer 6 launched into solar orbit
1966 Beatles release "Everywhere it's Christmas" in the UK
1969 "War is Over! If You Want It, Happy Christmas from John & Yoko" posters begin appearing
1970 The first successful landing on Venus (USSR)
1973 O.J. Simpson of the Buffalo Bills becomes the first NFL player to rush for 2,000 yards in a season.
1976 George a goose that lived to 49 years 8 months
1980 Pres-elect Reagan announces Alexander Haig as secretary of state
1985 Paul Castellano Organized-crime chief shot dead by a NYC restaurant
1991 Independence of The Republic of Kazakhstan.
1992 IBM said it would make its first layoffs in fifty years. The company announced it would trim its staff by 25,000 employees and dispose of some of the assets of its mainframebusiness.
1992 Israel orders deportation of 415 Palestinians after escalating terrorist activity
1996 IBM announced on this day in 1996 it would stop selling computers that used that PowerPC chip and ran Windows NT. IBM, Motorola, and Apple had teamed up to challenge Intel Corporation's dominance in chips and Microsoft's near monopoly on operating systems
1998 Iraq disarmament crisis: Operation Desert Fox - The United States and United Kingdom bomb targets in Iraq.
2006 Leona Lewis wins the third series of British UK talent show The X Factor (TV series), winning a 1 million record deal, and releases her debut single A Moment Like This.
2007 Presidential Candidate Ron Paul breaks record for 1 day fundrasing, raising 6 million dollars, a record previously held by John Kerry, at 5.7 million dollars.
1485 - Catherine of Aragon, Queen of England (d. 1536)
1584 - John Selden, English jurist and oriental scholar (d. 1654)
1614 - Eberhard III, Duke of Württemberg (d. 1674)
1714 - George Whitefield, English-born Methodist leader (d. 1770)
1716 - Louis-Jules Mancini-Mazarini, Duc de Nivernais, French diplomat and writer (d. 1798)
1717 - Elizabeth Carter, English writer (d. 1806)
1742 - Gebhard Fürst Blücher von Wahlstatt, German Field Marshal (d. 1819)
1770 - Ludwig van Beethoven, German composer (d. 1827)
1775 - Jane Austen, English writer (d. 1817)
1775 - François-Adrien Boïeldieu, French composer (d. 1834)
1776 - Johann Wilhelm Ritter, German physicist (d. 1810)
1787 - Mary Russell Mitford, English writer (d. 1855)
1790 - King Léopold I of Belgium (d. 1865)
1804 - Viktor Bunyakovsky, Russian mathematician (d. 1889)
1834 - Léon Walras, French economist (d. 1910)
1861 - Antonio de La Gandara, French painter (d. 1917)
1863 - George Santayana, Spanish philosopher and writer (d. 1952)
1865 - Olavo Bilac, Brazilian poet (d. 1918)
1866 (N.S.) - Wassily Kandinsky, Russian-born French abstract painter (d. 1944)
1867 - Amy Carmichael, missionary in Dohnavur, India (d. 1951)
1869 - Hristo Tatarchev, Bulgarian revolutionary (d. 1952)
1872 - Anton Ivanovich Denikin, Russian general (d. 1947)
1882 - Sir Jack Hobbs, English cricketer (d. 1963)
1882 - Zoltán Kodály, Hungarian composer (d. 1967)
1882 - Walther Meissner, German physicist (d. 1974)
1883 - Max Linder, French pioneer of silent film (d. 1925)
1888 - King Alexander I of Yugoslavia (d. 1934)
1888 - Alphonse Juin, marshall of France (d. 1967)
1899 - Sir Noel Coward, English playwright, actor and composer (d. 1973)
1900 - V. S. Pritchett, English author and critic (d. 1997)
1901 - Margaret Mead, American anthropologist (d. 1978)
1902 - Rafael Alberti, Spanish poet (d. 1999)
1905 - Piet Hein, Danish mathematician and inventor (d. 1996)
1906 - Barbara Kent, Canadian actress
1913 - George Ignatieff, Russian-born Canadian diplomat (d. 1989)
1915 - Turk Murphy, American trombonist (d. 1987)
1917 - Nabi Bux Khan Baloch, Sindhi scholar
1917 - Sir Arthur C. Clarke, English writer (d. 2008)
1918 - Pierre Delanoë, French songwriter and lyricist (d. 2006)
1922 - Cy Leslie, American music and video executive (d. 2008)
1926 - James McCracken, American tenor (d. 1988)
1927 - Randall Garrett, American writer (d. 1987)
1928 - Philip K. Dick, American writer (d. 1982)
1929 - Nicholas Courtney, English actor
1932 - Rodion Shchedrin, Soviet/Russian composer
1934 - Elgin Gay Baylor, NBA Hall of Famer
1936 - Morris Dees, founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center
1937 - Joyce Bulifant, American actress
1938 - Frank Deford, American sportswriter
1938 - Liv Ullmann, Norwegian actress
1941 - Lesley Stahl, American journalist
1942 - Donald Carcieri, American politician, governor of Rhode Island
1943 - Steven Bochco, American television producer and writer
1943 - Tony Hicks, English guitarist (The Hollies)
1945 - Patti Deutsch, American actress and Match Game panelist
1945 - Bobby George, English professional darts player
1945 - Yukio Hattori, Japanese Iron Chef commentator
1946 - Benny Andersson, Swedish musician, singer and songwriter (ABBA)
1946 - Trevor Pinnock, English conductor and harpsichordist
1947 - Ben Cross, English actor
1947 - Vincent Matthews, American sprinter
1948 - Christopher Biggins, English actor
1949 - Billy Gibbons, American guitarist (ZZ Top)
1950 - Claudia Cohen, American gossip columnist and socialite (d. 2007)
1950 - Roy Schuiten, Dutch cyclist (d. 2006)
1951 - Robben Ford, American guitarist
1952 - Joel Garner, Barbadian West Indies cricketer
1952 - Francesco Graziani, Italian footballer
1955 - Xander Berkeley, American actor
1955 - Prince Lorenz of Belgium, Archduke of Austria-Este
1960 - Pat Van Den Hauwe, Belgian footballer
1961 - Bill Hicks, American comedian (d. 1994)
1961 - Jon Tenney, American actor
1962 - Maruschka Detmers, Dutch actress
1962 - William "The Refrigerator" Perry, American football player
1963 - Benjamin Bratt, American actor
1963 - Jeff Carson, American singer
1963 - James Mangold, American film director and screenwriter
1964 - Heike Drechsler, East German-born sprinter
1964 - Georgie Parker, Australian actress
1964 - Billy Ripken, American baseball player
1965 - Chris Jones, American baseball player
1965 - Melanie Sloan, American attorney
1965 - Nancy Valen, American actress
1966 - Clifford Robinson, American basketball player
1966 - Dennis Wise, English footballer
1967 - Donovan Bailey, Jamaican-born Canadian sprinter
1967 - Miranda Otto, Australian actress
1971 - Michael McCary, American singer (Boyz II Men)
1971 - Paul van Dyk, German DJ
1972 - Angela Bloomfield, New Zealand actress
1972 - Charles Gipson, American baseball player
1972 - Željko Kalac, Australian soccer player
1973 - Themba Mnguni, South African footballer
1973 - Scott Storch, Canadian-American hip-hop producer
1974 - Frida Hallgren, Swedish actress
1975 - Valentin Bădoi, Romanian footballer
1975 - Nawo Kawakita, Japanese drummer (Maximum the Hormone)
1975 - Benjamin Kowalewicz, Canadian musician (Billy Talent)
1975 - Jonathan Scarfe, Canadian actor
1977 - Éric Bélanger, Canadian ice hockey player
1977 - Sylvain Distin, French footballer
1978 - Gunter Van Handenhoven, Belgian footballer
1978 - Kaine, American rapper (Ying Yang Twins)
1979 - Mihai Trăistariu, Romanian singer
1979 - Jessie Ward, American professional wrestler
1979 - Trevor Immelman, South African golfer
1979 - Flo Rida, American rapper
1980- I was born..:)
1981 - Anna Sedokova, Ukrainian singer
1981 - Took Leng How, Malaysian criminal (d. 2006)
1981 - Gareth Williams, Scottish footballer
1982 - Garnon Davies, Welsh actor
1982 - Antrel Rolle, National Football League defensive back
1983 - Kelenna Azubuike, English basketball player
1983 - Danielle Lloyd, English model
1985 - Keita Tachibana, member of Japanese boy band w-inds.
1987 - Hallee Hirsh, American actress
1988 - Anna Popplewell, English actress
1992 - Marios Theodorou, Cypriot teenager
Holidays and observances
Bahrain - National Day
Bangladesh - Victory Day
India - Vijay Diwas (Victory Day)
Kazakhstan - Independence Day
South Africa - Day of Reconciliation
Afrikaners (South Africa) - Day of the Vow
Mexico - First day of Las Posadas
Philippines - First day of Misa de Gallo