December 4 is the 338th day (339th on leap years) of the Gregorian calendar. There are 27 days remaining.
- 771 - Charlemagne becomes king of the complete Frankish kingdom.
- 1110 - The Crusaders conquer Sidon.
- 1534 - The Turkish sultan Suleiman I captures Baghdad.
- 1563 - Final session of the Council of Trent.
- 1619 - First English colonists disembark in Virginia. First Thanksgiving.
- 1644 - Peace congress in Münster starts. The Peace of Westphalia (1648) would end the Thirty Years' War.
- 1674 - Father Jacques Marquette[?] founds what later becomes the city of Chicago, Illinois.
- 1783 - General George Washington bids his officers farewell.
- 1791 - First issue of The Observer, the world's first Sunday newspaper.
- 1829 - The British abolish the suttee[?] in India.
- 1851 - Failed coup d'état in France.
- 1867 - The Grange Movement[?] is founded
- 1864 - Romania passes law forbidding Jews to practice law
- 1872 - The ship Marie Celeste[?] is found, abandoned for 9 days, but only slightly damaged.
- 1875 - Notorious New York City politician Boss Tweed escapes from prison and flees to Cuba, then Spain
- 1900 - The French National Assembly rejects nationalist General Auguste Mercier's[?] proposal to plan an invasion of England.
- 1909 - First Grey Cup game -- University of Toronto defeats Toronto Parkdale
- 1916 - Alpha Phi Alpha[?], the first African-American college fraternity, is established.
- 1918 - President Woodrow Wilson sails for Versailles for the World War I peace talks. He is the first American president to travel abroad while in office.
- 1918 - The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (Yugoslavia) is proclaimed
- 1930 - The Vatican approves the rhythm method for birth control.
- 1942 - First US bombing of mainland Italy.
- 1943 - The Yugoslavian resistance forms a provisional government.
- 1943 - Works Progress Administration comes to an end
- 1945 - The United States Senate approves American participation in the United Nations.
- 1952 - Killer fogs in London - "Smog" becomes a word.
- 1958 - Dahomey becomes independent
- 1973 - Pioneer 10 reaches Jupiter.
- 1977 - Jean-Bedel Bokassa, president of Central African Republic, crowns himself Emperor.
- 1981 - South Africa grants "homeland" Ciskei[?] independence. Not recognised outside South Africa.
- 1982 - China adopts its constitution.
- 1991 - Journalist Terry Anderson[?] is released after a seven years' captivity as a hostage in Bayrut.
- 1992 - American soldiers are sent on a mission to Somalia.
- 1993 - A truce is concluded between the government of Angola and UNITA rebels.
- 1443 - Pope Julius II
- 1777 - Madame Récamier[?], writer (+ 1849)
- 1795 - Thomas Carlyle, writer, historian (+ 1881)
- 1835 - Samuel Butler, writer
- 1849 - Crazy Horse, Native American leader
- 1860 - Lillian Russell[?], singer, actress (+ 1922)
- 1866 - Wassily Kandinsky, painter (+ 1944)
- 1875 - Rainer Maria Rilke, poet (+ 1926)
- 1892 - Francisco Franco, dictator of Spain (+ 1975)
- 1914 - Rudolf Hausner[?], painter and graphic artist (+ 1995)
- 1921 - Deanna Durbin[?], actress, singer
- 1922 - Gérard Philipe[?], actor (+ 1959)
- 1934 - Victor French[?], actor (+ 1989)
- 1937 - Max Baer Jr.[?], actor
- 1940 - John Cale, rock musician (Velvet Underground)
- 1944 - Dennis Wilson[?], pop musician (The Beach Boys)
- 1949 - Jeff Bridges, actor
- 1963 - Sergey Bubka[?], athlete (pole vault)
- 1964 - Marisa Tomei, actress
- 1973 - Tyra Banks, model
- 771 - Carloman, king of the Franks
- 1334 - Pope John XXII
- 1576 - Rheticus[?], mathematician
- 1642 - Cardinal Armand-Jean du Plessis, duc de Richelieu, French statesman
- 1732 - John Gay, playwright
- 1798 - Luigi Galvani, physicist
- 1867 - Sophie (Frémiet) Rude[?], French artist
- 1890 - King Willem III of the Netherlands (date of burial)
- 1956 - Alexandr Rodchenko[?], Russian painter and photographer
- 1967 - Bert Lahr[?], actor
- 1973 - Michael O'Shea[?], actor
- 1976 - Benjamin Britten, composer
- 1976 - Tommy Bolin, rock guitarist (Deep Purple)
- 1993 - Frank Zappa, rock musician, composer
- 1997 - Richard Vernon[?], actor
Holidays and observances:
December 3 - December 5 - November 4 - January 4 -- listing of all days
January, February, March, April, May, June, July,
August, September, October, November, December
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