|February 4 in recent years
February 4 is the 35th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 330 days remaining until the end of the year (331 in leap years).
- 211 - Roman Emperor Septimius Severus dies, leaving the Roman Empire in the hands of his two quarrelsome sons, Caracalla and Geta.
- 362 - Roman Emperor Julian promulgates an edict that recognizes equal rights to all the religions in the Roman Empire.
- 960 - The coronation of Zhao Kuangyin as Emperor Taizu of Song, initiating the Song Dynasty period of China that would last more than three centuries.
- 1454 - In the Thirteen Years' War, the Secret Council of the Prussian Confederation sends a formal act of disobedience to the Grand Master.
- 1703 - In Edo (now Tokyo), 46 of the Forty-Seven Ronin commit seppuku (ritual suicide) as recompense for avenging their master's death.
- 1783 - American Revolutionary War: The United Kingdom formally declares that it will cease hostilities with the United States of America.
- 1789 - George Washington is unanimously elected to be the first President of the United States by the U.S. Electoral College.
- 1792 - George Washington is unanimously elected to a second term as President of the United States by the U.S. Electoral College.
- 1794 - The French legislature abolishes slavery throughout all territories of the French Republic.
- 1801 - John Marshall is sworn in as Chief Justice of the United States.
- 1810 - British Navy seizes Guadeloupe.
- 1825 - The Ohio Legislature authorizes the construction of the Ohio and Erie Canal and the Miami and Erie Canal.
- 1859 - Codex Sinaiticus discovered in Egypt.
- 1861 - American Civil War: In Montgomery, Delegates from six break-away U.S. states meet and form The Confederate States of America.
- 1899 - The Philippine-American War begins.
- 1915 - Germany establishes a submarine blockade around the UK and declares any vessel in it a legitimate target.
- 1932 - World War II: Japan occupies Harbin.
- 1936 - Radium E. becomes the first radioactive element to be made synthetically.
- 1941 - World War II: The United Service Organization (USO) is created to entertain American troops.
- 1943 - World War II: Battle of Stalingrad ends.
- 1945 - World War II: The Yalta Conference begin .
- 1948 - Ceylon (later renamed Sri Lanka) becomes independent within the British Commonwealth.
- 1957 - USS Nautilus, the first nuclear-powered submarine, logs her 60,000th nautical mile, matching the endurance of the fictional Nautilus described in Jules Verne's novel "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea".
- 1966 - All Nippon Airways Boeing 727 jet plunges into Tokyo Bay, killing 133.
- 1969 - Yasser Arafat takes over as chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization.
- 1974 - The Symbionese Liberation Army kidnaps Patty Hearst in Berkeley.
- 1976 - In Guatemala and Honduras an earthquake kills more than 22,000.
- 1980 - Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini names Abolhassan Banisadr as president of Iran.
- 1991 - The Baseball Hall of Fame votes to ban Pete Rose.
- 1992 - A Coup d'état is led by Hugo Chávez Frías, against Venezuelan President Carlos Andrés Pérez.
- 1996 - Major snowstorm paralyzes Midwestern United States, Milwaukee ties all-time record low temperature at -26°F (-22°C).
- 1997 - En route to Lebanon, two Israeli Sikorsky CH-53 troop-transport helicopters collide in mid-air over northern Galilee, Israel killing 73.
- 1997 - After at first contesting the results, Serbian President Slobodan Milošević recognizes opposition victories in the November 1996 elections.
- 1998 - An earthquake measuring 6.1 on the Richter Scale in northeast Afghanistan kills more than 5,000.
- 1998 - While in Belgium, Bill Gates is assaulted by a Belgian man and hit in the face with a cream pie.
- 1999 - Hugo Chávez Frías, Venezuelan military and politician, is elected President of Venezuela.
- 1999 - Unarmed West African immigrant Amadou Diallo is shot dead by four plainclothes New York City police officers on an unrelated stake-out, inflaming race-relations in the city.
- 1999 - The New Carissa runs aground near Coos Bay
- 2000 - German extortionist Klaus-Peter Sabotta is jailed for life for attempted murder and extortion in connection with the sabotage of German railway lines.
- 2003 - The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia is officially renamed to Serbia and Montenegro and adopts a new constitution.
- 2006 - A stampede occurs in the ULTRA Stadium near Manila killing 88..
- 1524 - Luis de Camões, Portugal's greatest poet. (d. 1580)
- 1575 - Pierre de Bérulle, French cardinal and statesman (d. 1629)
- 1620 - Gustaf Bonde, Swedish statesman (d. 1667)
- 1646 - Hans Erasmus Aßmann, German statesman and poet (d. 1699)
- 1677 - Johann Ludwig Bach, German composer (d. 1731)
- 1688 - Pierre de Marivaux, French writer (d. 1763)
- 1725 - Dru Drury, English entomologist (d. 1804)
- 1746 - Tadeusz Kościuszko, Polish, Belarusian and Lithuanian national hero (d. 1817)
- 1778 - A. P. de Candolle, Swiss botanist (d. 1841)
- 1799 - Almeida Garrett, Portuguese writer (d. 1854)
- 1859 - Timofei Mikhailov, Russian revolutionary, member of Narodnaya Volya
- 1841 - Clément Ader, French aviation pioneer (d. 1926)
- 1846 - Nikolay Umov, Russian physicist (d. 1915)
- 1848 - Jean Aicard, French poet (d. 1921)
- 1849 - Jean Richepin, French poet (d. 1926)
- 1871 - Friedrich Ebert, German politician, 1st Reichspräsident of the Weimar Republic (d. 1925)
- 1873 - Étienne Desmarteau, Canadian athlete (d. 1905)
- 1875 - Ludwig Prandtl, German physicist (d. 1953)
- 1881 - Fernand Léger, French painter (d. 1955)
- 1892 - Andreu Nin, Catalan politician (d. 1937)
- 1882 - E. J. Pratt, Canadian poet (d. 1964)
- 1895 - Nigel Bruce, English actor (d. 1953)
- 1896 - Friedrich Glauser, German-language Swiss writer (d. 1938)
- 1896 - Friedrich Hund, German physicist (d. 1997)
- 1897 - Ludwig Erhard, 2nd Bundeskanzler of Germany (d. 1977)
- 1900 - Jacques Prévert, French poet and lyricist (d. 1977)
- 1902 - Charles Lindbergh, American pilot (d. 1974)
- 1902 - Hartley Shawcross, British lawyer and politician (d. 2003)
- 1904 - MacKinlay Kantor, American writer (d. 1977)
- 1906 - Dietrich Bonhoeffer, German theologian (d. 1945)
- 1906 - Clyde Tombaugh, American astronomer (d. 1997)
- 1908 - Julian Bell, British poet (d. 1937)
- 1912 - Ola Skjåk Bræk, Norwegian politician (d. 1999)
- 1912 - Erich Leinsdorf, Austrian conductor (d. 1993)
- 1912 - Byron Nelson, American golfer (d. 2006)
- 1912 - Louis-Albert Cardinal Vachon, archbishop of Quebec (d. 2006)
- 1913 - Rosa Parks, American civil rights activist (d. 2005)
- 1914 - Alfred Andersch, German writer (d. 1980)
- 1915 - William Talman, American actor (1968)
- 1915 - Norman Wisdom, English actor and comedian
- 1916 - Shah Maghsoud Sadegh Angha, 41st master of the Oveyssi-Shahmaghsoudi Sufi Order (d. 1980)
- 1917 - Yahya Khan, President of Pakistan (d. 1980)
- 1918 - Ida Lupino, English film actress and director (d. 1995)
- 1918 - Luigi Pareyson, Italian philosopher (d. 1991)
- 1918 - Janet Waldo, American actress
- 1921 - Betty Friedan, American feminist (d. 2006)
- 1921 - K. R. Narayanan, President of India (d. 2005)
- 1923 - Conrad Bain, Canadian-born actor
- 1925 - Russell Hoban, American writer
- 1929 - Jerry Adler, American actor
- 1931 - Isabel Martínez de Perón, third wife of Argentine dictator Juan Perón
- 1935 - Martti Talvela, Finnish bass (d. 1989)
- 1936 - David Brenner, American comedian
- 1936 - Gary Conway, American actor
- 1937 - David Newman, American filmmaker (d. 2003)
- 1940 - George Romero, American director, screenwriter and producer
- 1940 - John Schuck, American actor
- 1941 - John Steel, British musician (The Animals)
- 1943 - Alberto João Jardim, Portuguese president of the regional government of Madeira
- 1943 - Ken Thompson, American computer scientist
- 1944 - Florence LaRue, American singer (The Fifth Dimension)
- 1947 - Dan Quayle, 44th Vice President of the United States
- 1948 - Alice Cooper, American musician
- 1949 - Michael Beck, American actor
- 1950 - Pamela Franklin, British actress
- 1951 - Patrick Bergin, Irish actor
- 1951 - Phil Ehart, American musician (Kansas)
- 1951 - Dariush Eghbali, Iranian singer and musician
- 1951 - Stan Papi, American baseball player
- 1952 - Lisa Eichhorn, American actress
- 1952 - Jerry Shirley, drummer of rock band Humble Pie.
- 1952 - Li Yinhe, Chinese sexologist
- 1953 - Kitaro, Japanese composer
- 1955 - Mikuláš Dzurinda, Slovak Prime minister
- 1957 - Don Davis, American composer
- 1957 - Evan Wolfson, American attorney and activist
- 1958 - Tomasz Pacyński, Polish writer
- 1959 - Pamelyn Ferdin, American actress
- 1959 - Lawrence Taylor, American football player
- 1960 - Tim Booth, British singer (James)
- 1960 - Siobhan Dowd, British/Irish author (d. 2007)
- 1960 - Jenette Goldstein, American actress
- 1960 - Jonathan Larson, American composer (d. 1996)
- 1961 - Stewart O'Nan, American author
- 1961 - Denis Savard, Canadian ice hockey player
- 1962 - Clint Black, American musician
- 1962 - Michael Riley, Canadian actor
- 1963 - Pirmin Zurbriggen, Swiss skier
- 1964 - Noodles, American guitarist (The Offspring)
- 1965 - Jerome Brown, American football player (d. 1992)
- 1966 - Viatcheslav Ekimov, Russian cyclist
- 1966 - Kyoko Koizumi, Japanese actress and singer
- 1967 - Sergei Grinkov, Russian figure skater (d. 1995)
- 1968 - Marko Matvere, Estonian actor
- 1969 - Duncan Coutts, Canadian bassist (Our Lady Peace)
- 1969 - Dallas Drake, ice hockey player
- 1970 - Gabrielle Anwar, English actress
- 1971 - Rob Corddry, American actor and comedian
- 1971 - Michael A. Goorjian, American actor
- 1972 - Giovanni Silva De Oliveira, Brazilian footballer
- 1973 - Oscar de la Hoya, Mexican-born boxer
- 1974 - Eric Townsend, American musician and record producer
- 1975 - Natalie Imbruglia, Australian musician and actress
- 1975 - Konstantinos Nebegleras, Greek footballer
- 1976 - Cam'ron, American rapper
- 1977 - Gavin DeGraw, American musician
- 1978 - Danna Garcia, Colombian actress
- 1979 - Giorgio Pantano, Italian racing car driver
- 1981 - Jason Kapono, America professional basketball player
- 1981 - Tom Mastny, Indonesian baseball player
- 1982 - Chris Sabin, American professional wrestler
- 1982 - Tomas Vaitkus, Lithuanian professional road racing cyclist
- 1982 - Kimberly Wyatt, American singer and dancer (Pussycat Dolls)
- 1984 - Mauricio Pinilla, Chilean footballer
- 1985 - Bug Hall, American actor
- 1987 - Lucie Šafářová, Czech tennis player
- 1988 - Eoin McDowell, Irish rugby player
- 1988 - Alexandros Pagalis, Greek footballer
- 1988 - Carly Patterson, American gymnast
- 211 - Septimius Severus, Emperor of Rome (b. 146)
- 708 - Pope Sisinnius
- 856 - Rabanus Maurus, Bishop of Mainz
- 869 - Saint Cyril, Greek missionary to the Slavs (b. 827)
- 1508 - Conrad Celtes, German humanist scholar (b. 1459)
- 1590 - Gioseffo Zarlino, Italian composer (b. 1517)
- 1615 - Dom Justo Takayama, Japanese warlord (b. 1552)
- 1615 - Giovanni Battista della Porta, Italian physicist (b. 1535)
- 1694 - Nataliya Kyrillovna Naryshkina, Tsaritsa of Russia (b. 1651)
- 1713 - Anthony Ashley Cooper, English politician and philosopher (b. 1671)
- 1774 - Charles Marie de La Condamine, French mathematician and geographer (b. 1701)
- 1799 - Étienne-Louis Boullée, French architect (b. 1728)
- 1781 - Josef Mysliveček, Czech composer (b. 1737)
- 1894 - Adolphe Sax, Belgian instrument maker (b. 1814)
- 1905 - Louis-Ernest Barrias, French sculptor (b. 1841)
- 1928 - Hendrik Lorentz, Dutch physicist, Nobel Prize Laureate (b. 1853)
- 1933 - Archibald Sayce, English educator (b. 1846)
- 1936 - Wilhelm Gustloff, German leader of the Swiss Nazi party (b. 1895)
- 1940 - Nikolai Yezhov, Head of Soviet NKVD (b. 1895)
- 1943 - Frank Calder, the first NHL President (b. 1877)
- 1944 - Yvette Guilbert, French singer and actress (b. 1867)
- 1944 - Arsen Kotsoyev, Russian writer (b. 1872)
- 1958 - Henry Kuttner, American author (b. 1915)
- 1959 - Una O'Connor, Irish actress (b. 1880)
- 1966 - Gilbert H. Grosvenor, American president of the National Geographic Society (b. 1875)
- 1967 - Albert Orsborn, 6th General of The Salvation Army (b. 1886)
- 1968 - Neal Cassady, American writer (b. 1926)
- 1969 - Thelma Ritter, American actress (b. 1905)
- 1974 - Satyendra Nath Bose, Indian physicist (b. 1894)
- 1975 - Louis Jordan, American musician (b. 1908)
- 1975 - Howard Hill, American archer (b. 1899)
- 1977 - Brett Halliday, American writer (b. 1904)
- 1982 - Alex Harvey, Scottish musician (b. 1935)
- 1982 - Georg Konrad Morgen, German judge (b. 1909)
- 1983 - Karen Carpenter, American singer and drummer (The Carpenters) (anorexia) (b. 1950)
- 1984 - Anna Anderson, claimant to the throne of Russia
- 1987 - Liberace, American musician (b. 1919)
- 1987 - Carl Rogers, American psychologist (b. 1902)
- 1990 - Whipper Billy Watson, Canadian professional wrestler (b. 1917)
- 1992 - Lisa Fonssagrives, Swedish model (b. 1911)
- 1995 - Godfrey Brown, British athlete and teacher (b. 1915)
- 1995 - Patricia Highsmith, American author (b. 1921)
- 2000 - Carl Albert, American politician, 54th Speaker of the United States House of Representatives (b. 1908)
- 2000 - Doris Coley, American singer (Shirelles) (b. 1941)
- 2000 - Phil Tonken, American radio and television announcer (b. 1919)
- 2001 - J. J. Johnson, American jazz trombonist and composer (b. 1924)
- 2001 - Iannis Xenakis, Greek composer and architect (b. 1922)
- 2002 - George Nader, American film and television actor (b. 1921)
- 2003 - Charlie Biddle, Canadian jazz bassist (b. 1926)
- 2003 - Benyoucef Ben Khedda, Algerian politician (b. 1920)
- 2005 - Ossie Davis, American actor (b. 1917)
- 2006 - Betty Friedan, American feminist (b. 1921)
- 2006 - Myron Waldman, American animator (b. 1908)
- 2007 - Steve Barber, American baseball pitcher (b. 1938)
- 2007 - José Carlos Bauer, Brazilian World Cup footballer (b. 1925)
- 2007 - Ilya Kormiltsev, Russian poet and translator (b. 1959)
- 2007 - Barbara McNair, American singer and actress (b. 1934)
- 2007 - Jules Olitski, Ukrainian-born American abstract painter and sculptor (b. 1922)
Holidays and observances
In the Roman Catholic Church:
78 Familypedia people were born on February 4
134 Familypedia people died on February 4
120 Familypedia people were first married on February 4