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1989

Related subjects Years

Centuries: 19th century - 20th century - 21st century
Decades: 1950s  1960s  1970s  - 1980s -   1990s   2000s   2010s
Years: 1986 1987 1988 - 1989 - 1990 1991 1992

Year 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays 1989 Gregorian calendar).

Events of 1989

January

January
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23 24 25 26 27 28 29 
30 31
  • January 4 - Gulf of Sidra incident (1989): two Libyan MiG-23 "Floggers" are engaged and shot down by two US Navy F-14 Tomcats.
  • January 7 - Showa period ends with the death of Emperor Hirohito (aka Emperor Showa) after 62 years and 14 days of his reign in Japan. Akihito becomes Emperor of Japan, beginning the Heisei period the following day.
  • January 8 - The Kegworth Air Disaster: A British Midland Boeing 737 crashes on approach to East Midlands Airport, leaving 47 dead.
  • January 10 - Cuban troops begin withdrawing from Angola.
  • January 10 - Assistant AFP Police Commissioner Colin Winchester gunned down in driveway of Canberra home
  • January 12 - George Bush names William Bennett to be his Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy and James Watkins as Secretary of Energy.
  • January 16- January 18 - Race riots occur in Overtown, Miami.
  • January 18 - The Communist Party of Poland votes to legalize Solidarity.
  • January 20 - George H. W. Bush succeeds Ronald Reagan as the 41st President of the United States of America.
  • January 20 - The Soviets begin to airlift supplies to Afghanistan as they pull out.


February

February
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27 28          
  • February 1 - Joan Kirner becomes Victoria's first female Deputy Premier, after the resignation of Robert Fordham over the VEDC (Victorian Economic Development Co-operation) Crisis.
  • February 2 - Soviet war in Afghanistan: The last Soviet Union armored column leaves Kabul, ending 9 years of military occupation.
  • February 2 - Satellite television service Sky Television plc is launched in Europe.
  • February 3 - A military coup overthrows Alfredo Stroessner, dictator of Paraguay since 1954.
  • February 3 - After a stroke, Pieter Willem Botha resigns his party's leadership and the presidency of South Africa.
  • February 7 - The Los Angeles, California City Council bans the sale or possession of semiautomatic weapons.
  • February 10 - Ron Brown is elected chairman of the Democratic National Committee, becoming the first African American to lead a major United States political party.
  • February 11 - Barbara Clementine Harris is consecrated as the first female bishop of the Episcopal Church in the United States of America.
  • February 14 - Union Carbide agrees to pay USD $470 million to the Indian government for damages it caused in the 1984 Bhopal Disaster.
  • February 14 - Iranian leader Ruhollah Khomeini encourages Muslims to kill The Satanic Verses author Salman Rushdie.
  • February 14 - The first of 24 Global Positioning System satellites is placed into orbit.
  • February 15 - Soviet war in Afghanistan: The Soviet Union announces that all of its troops have left Afghanistan.
  • February 16 - Pan Am flight 103: Investigators announce that the cause of the crash was a bomb hidden inside a radio-cassette player.
  • February 23 - After protracted testimony, the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee rejects, 11–9, President Bush's nomination of John Tower for Secretary of Defense.
  • February 24 - Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini places a US $3-million bounty on the head of The Satanic Verses author Salman Rushdie.
  • February 24 - United Airlines Flight 811, a Boeing 747 bound to New Zealand from Honolulu, Hawaii, rips open during flight, sucking 9 passengers and crew out of the first class section.
  • February 24 - After 44 years, Estonian flag is raised to the Pikk Hermann castle tower.
  • February 27 - Venezuela is rocked by the Caracazo, a wave of protests and looting.

March

March
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
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27 28 29 30 31    
  • March 1 - The Berne Convention, an international treaty on copyrights, is ratified by the United States.
  • March 1 - A curfew is imposed in Kosovo, where protests continue over the alleged intimidation of the Serb minority.
  • March 1 - Louis Wade Sullivan starts his term of office as U.S. Secretary of Commerce.
  • March 1 - James D. Watkins starts his term of office as U.S. Secretary of Energy.
  • March 1 - The Politieke Partij Radicalen, Pacifistisch Socialistische Partij, Communistische Partij Nederland and the Evangelische Volks Partij amalgamate to form Netherlands political party the GroenLinks (GL, GreenLeft).
  • March 2 - Twelve European Community nations agree to ban the production of all chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) by the end of the century.
  • March 3 - Portugal wins the FIFA U-20 World Cup defeating Nigeria on the final by 2–0 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
  • March 4 - Time, Inc. and Warner Communications announce plans for a merger, forming Time Warner.
  • March 4 - The Purley Station rail crash in London leaves 5 dead and 94 injured.
  • March 4 - The first ACT ( Australian Capital Territory) elections are held.
  • March 7 - Iran breaks off diplomatic relations with the United Kingdom over Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses.
  • March 9 - A strike forces financially troubled Eastern Air Lines into bankruptcy.
  • March 13 - A geomagnetic storm caused the collapse of the Hydro-Québec power grid. Six million people were left without power for nine hours. Some areas in the northeastern U.S. and in Sweden also lost power, and auroras seen as far as Texas.
  • March 14 - Gun control: U.S. President George H. W. Bush bans the importation of certain guns deemed assault weapons into the United States.
  • March 14 - Christian General Michel Aoun declares a 'War of Liberation' to rid Lebanon of Syrian forces and their allies.
  • March 18 - In Egypt, a 4,400-year-old mummy is found in the Great Pyramid of Giza.
  • March 22 - Clint Malarchuk of the NHL Buffalo Sabres suffers an almost fatal injury when another player accidentally slits his throat.
  • March 22 - Asteroid 4581 Asclepius approaches the Earth at a distance of 700,000 kilometers.
  • March 23 - Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann announce that they have achieved cold fusion at the University of Utah.
  • March 23 - A 300 m (1,000 ft) diameter Near-Earth asteroid misses the Earth by 500,000 km (400,000 miles).
The Exxon Valdez
The Exxon Valdez
  • March 24 - Exxon Valdez oil spill: In Alaska's Prince William Sound the Exxon Valdez spills 240,000 barrels (11 million gallons) of oil after running aground.
  • March 29 - The 61st Academy Awards are held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California with Rain Man winning Best Picture.

April

April
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  • April 1 - Margaret Thatcher's new local government tax, the Poll tax, is introduced in Scotland.
  • April 4 - In Brussels, Belgium, NATO celebrates its 40th anniversary.
  • April 6 - National Safety Council of Australia chief executive John Friedrich is arrested after defrauding investors to the tune of $235 million.
  • April 7 - The Soviet submarine K-278 Komsomolets sinks in the Barents Sea, killing 41.
  • April 9 - Georgian demonstrators are massacred by Red Army soldiers in Tbilisi's central square during a peaceful rally; 20 citizens are killed , many injured.
  • April 14 US government seizes Irving, CA Lincoln Savings and Loan Association, eventually sends Charles Keating (for whom the Keating Five were named -- John McCain among them) to jail. Part of the massive 80s Savings and Loan Crisis which cost US taxpayers nearly $200 billion in bailouts, and many people their life savings.
  • April 15 - The Hillsborough disaster, one of the biggest tragedies in European football, claims the life of 96 Liverpool supporters.
  • April 20 - NATO debates modernising short range missiles; although the U.S. and UK are in favour, West German chancellor Helmut Kohl obtains a concession deferring a decision.
  • April 21 - Students from Beijing, Shanghai, Xian, and Nanjing begin protesting in Tiananmen Square.
  • April 25 - The term of Baginda Almutawakkil Alallah Sultan Iskandar Al-Haj ibni Almarhum Sultan Ismail as the 8th Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia ends.
  • April 25 - Motorola introduces the Motorola MicroTAC Personal Cellular Telephone, then the world's smallest mobile phone.
  • April 26 - Sultan Azlan Muhibbudin Shah ibni Almarhum Sultan Yusuff Izzudin Shah Ghafarullahu-lahu, Sultan of Perak, becomes the 9th Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia.

May

May
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
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29 30 31        
  • May 1 - Disney-MGM Studios at Walt Disney World opens to the public for the first time.
  • May 2 - The first crack in the Iron Curtain - Hungary dismantles 150 miles of barbed wire fencing along the border with Austria.
  • May 9 - Andrew Peacock deposes John Howard as Federal Opposition Leader.
  • May 11 - The ACT ( Australian Capital Territory) Legislative Assembly meets for the first time.
  • May 12 - A Southern Pacific Railroad freight train crashes on Duffy Street in San Bernardino, California.
  • May 14 - Mikhail Gorbachev visits China, the first Soviet leader to do so since the 1960s.
  • May 15 - Australia's first private tertiary institution, Bond University, opens on the Gold Coast.
  • May 19 - Tiananmen Square protests of 1989: Zhao Ziyang meets the demonstrators in Tiananmen Square.
  • May 20 - Tiananmen Square protests of 1989: The Chinese government declares martial law in Beijing.
  • May 22 - The Nordland Days in Leningrad region ( Leningrad oblast) open.
  • May 25 - The Calgary Flames win the Stanley Cup: The Calgary Flames of the National Hockey League (NHL) win their first and only Stanley Cup with a 4–2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens.
  • May 25 - Thirteen days after a Southern Pacific train derails, a Calnev pipeline explodes at the same section of Duffy Street in San Bernardino, California.
  • May 26 - Arsenal win the First Division league title with the last kick of the season thanks to a late goal from Michael Thomas against Liverpool.
  • May 30 - Tiananmen Square protests of 1989: The 10 m (33 ft) high Goddess of Democracy statue is unveiled in Tiananmen Square by student demonstrators.

June

June
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
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26 27 28 29 30    
  • June 1 - The SkyDome (now known as Rogers Centre) is opened in Toronto.
  • June 3 - The Ayatollah Khomeini dies.
  • June 4 - The Tiananmen Square massacre takes place in Beijing on the army's approach to the square, and the final stand-off in the square is covered live on television.
  • June 4 - Ufa train disaster: A natural gas explosion near Ufa, Russia kills 645 as 2 trains passing each other throw sparks near a leaky pipeline.
  • June 4 - Solidarity's victory in Polish elections is the first of many anti-communist revolutions in Central and Eastern Europe in 1989.
  • June 7 - 176 are killed in Surinam's worst air disaster.
  • June 8 - Kurt Waldheim is elected president of Austria.
  • June 13 - The wreck of the German battleship Bismarck, which was sunk in 1941, is located 600 miles west of Brest, France.
  • June 16 - A crowd of 250,000 gathers at Heroes Square in Budapest for the historic reburial of Imre Nagy, the former Hungarian prime minister who had been executed in 1958.
  • June 21 - British police arrest 250 people for celebrating the summer solstice at Stonehenge.
  • June 22 - Ireland's first universities established since independence in 1922, Dublin City University and the University of Limerick, open.

July

July
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
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24 25 26 27 28 29 30 
31  
  • July 2 - Andreas Papandreou, Prime Minister of Greece resigns. A new government is formed under Tzannis Tzannetakis.
  • July 5 - The television show Seinfeld premieres.
  • July 9- July 12 - U.S. President George H. W. Bush travels to Poland and Hungary, pushing for U.S. economic aid and investment.
  • July 14 - France celebrates the 200th anniversary of the French Revolution.
  • July 14- July 16 - At the annual G-7 Summit, leaders call for restrictions on gas emissions.
  • July 19 - United Airlines Flight 232 ( Douglas DC-10) crashes in Sioux City, Iowa, killing 112; 184 on board survive.
  • July 20 - Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi is placed under house arrest.
  • July 26 - A federal grand jury indicts Cornell University student Robert Tappan Morris, Jr. for releasing a computer virus, making him the first person to be prosecuted under the 1986 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.

August

August
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
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28 29 30 31      
  • August 7 - U.S. Congressman Mickey Leland (D-TX) and 15 others die in a plane crash in Ethiopia.
  • August 7 - Federal Express purchased Flying Tigers for an amount circa 800 million USD
  • August 8 - STS-28 Space Shuttle Columbia takes off on a secret 5-day military mission.
  • August 9 The asteroid 4769 Castalia is the first asteroid directly imaged by radar from Arecibo.
  • August 13 - A hot air balloon accident near Alice Springs, Australia kills 13.
  • August 14 - The Sega Genesis is released in North America.
  • August 18 - Leading presidential hopeful Luis Carlos Galán is assassinated near Bogotá in Colombia.
  • August 19 - Polish president Wojciech Jaruzelski nominates Solidarity activist Tadeusz Mazowiecki to be Prime Minister, the first non-communist in power in 42 years.
  • August 20 - Fifty-one people die when the Marchioness pleasure boat collides with a barge on the River Thames adjacent to Southwark Bridge.
August 25: Voyager II at Neptune.
August 25: Voyager II at Neptune.
  • August 23 - Two million indigenous people of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, then still occupied by the Soviet Union, join hands to demand freedom and independence, forming an uninterrupted 600 km human chain called the Baltic Way.
  • August 23 - Hungary removes border restrictions with Austria.
  • August 23 - All of Australia's 1,645 domestic airline pilots resign over an airline's move to sack and sue them over a dispute.
  • August 23 - Yusef Hawkins is shot in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn, New York, sparking racial tensions between African Americans and Italian Americans.
  • August 24 - Record-setting baseball player Pete Rose agrees to a lifetime ban from the sport following allegations of illegal gambling, thereby preventing his induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
  • August 24 - Indonesia's first privately owned television station, Rajawali Citra Televisi Indonesia, ( RCTI) begins broadcasting.
  • August 25 - Voyager II passes the planet Neptune and its moon Triton.

September

September
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
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  • September 6 - The South African general election (the last under apartheid) returns the National Party with a much-reduced majority.
  • September 6 - England holds Sweden to a 0–0 draw in Sweden, qualifying for the 1990 FIFA World Cup. The game became famous after Terry Butcher sustained a deep cut to his forehead early in the game. He received stitches but played on the entire game. By the end of the game, the front of Butcher's white shirt and shorts where almost entirely covered in blood.
  • September 10 - The Hungarian government opens the country's western borders to refugees from the German Democratic Republic.
  • September 14 - Agreement of cooperation between Leningrad oblast (Russia) and NordlandCounty (Norway) is signed in Leningrad, by the chairmen Lev Kojkolainen and Sigbjørn Eriksen
  • September 20 - F. W. de Klerk was sworn in as State President of South Africa.
  • September 21 - Hurricane Hugo makes landfall in South Carolina, causing $7 billion in damage.
  • September 22 - Deal barracks bombing: An IRA bomb explodes at the Royal Marine School of Music in Deal, United Kingdom, leaving 11 dead and 22 injured.

October

October
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
            1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22 
23 24 25 26 27 28 29 
30 31
October 23:  Phillips Disaster
October 23: Phillips Disaster
  • October 5 - U.S. televangelist John Nunes is found guilty of embezzling $158 million.
  • October 9 - An official news agency in the Soviet Union reports the landing of a UFO in Voronezh.
  • October 9 - In Leipzig, East Germany, protesters demand the legalization of opposition groups and democratic reforms.
  • October 13 - The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunges 170.58 points, or 6.91 percent, to close at 2,569.26 most likely after the junk bond market collapsed. This mini-crash became known as the Friday the 13th mini-crash.
  • October 17 - The Loma Prieta earthquake, measuring 7.1 on the Richter scale, strikes the San Francisco- Oakland region of Northern California, killing 63.
  • October 18 - The Communist leader of East Germany, Erich Honecker, is forced to step down as leader of the country after a series of health problems.
  • October 19 - The Guildford Four are freed after 14 years.
  • October 19- The Wonders of Life pavilion opens at Epcot
  • October 21 - The Heads of Government of the Commonwealth of Nations issue the Langkawi Declaration on the Environment, making environmental sustainability one of the Commonwealth's main priorities.
  • October 23 - The Hungarian Republic is officially declared by president Mátyás Szűrös (replacing the Hungarian People's Republic).
  • October 23 - Phillips Disaster in Pasadena, Texas killed 23 and injured 314 others.
  • October 30 - The qualification for the 1990 Football World Cup ends.

November

November
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
    1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26 
27 28 29 30      
  • ("November 1989" – Cold War: East Germany Nov 7, 9; Bulgaria Nov 10; Czechoslovakia Nov 17, 20, 28)
  • November 2 - North Dakota and South Dakota celebrate their One Hundredth Birthdays.
  • November 4 - Typhoon Gay devastates the Thai province of Chumphon.
  • November 7 - Douglas Wilder wins the governor's seat in Virginia, becoming the first elected African American governor in the United States.
  • November 7 - David Dinkins becomes the first African American mayor of New York City.
  • November 7 - Cold War: The Communist government of East Germany resigns, although SED leader Egon Krenz remains head of state.
  • November 9 - Cold War: East Germany opens checkpoints in the Berlin Wall, allowing its citizens to travel freely to West Germany for the first time in decades (the next day celebrating Germans began tearing the wall down).
  • November 10 - After 45 years of Communist rule in Bulgaria, Bulgarian Communist Party leader Todor Zhivkov is replaced by Foreign Minister Petar Mladenov, who changes the party's name to the Bulgarian Socialist Party.
  • November 10 - Gaby Kennard becomes the first Australian woman to fly non-stop around the world.
  • November 10 - CKO a Canadian national all- news radio network suddenly terminated all broadcasting during the newscast at noon (Eastern time), due to financial losses. The station began broadcasting on July 1, 1977.
  • November 12 - Brazil holds its first free presidential election since 1960. This marked the first time that all Ibero-American nations, excepting Cuba, had elected constitutional governments simultaneously.
  • November 16 - South African President F.W. de Klerk announces the scrapping of the Separate Amenities Act.
  • November 16 - UNESCO adopts the Seville Statement on Violence at the twenty-fifth session of its General Conference.
  • November 17 - Cold War: The Velvet Revolution begins - In Czechoslovakia a peaceful student demonstration in Prague is severely beaten back by riot police. This sparks a revolution aimed at overthrowing the Communist government (it succeeds on December 29).
  • November 20 - Cold War: Velvet Revolution - The number of peaceful protesters assembled in Prague, Czechoslovakia swells from 200,000 the day before to an estimated half-million.
  • November 21 - North Carolina celebrates its bicentennial statehood.
  • November 22 - In West Beirut, a bomb explodes near the motorcade of Lebanese President Rene Moawad and kills him.
  • November 28 - Cold War: Velvet Revolution - The Communist Party of Czechoslovakia announces they will give up their monopoly on political power (elections held in December bring the first non-communist government to Czechoslovakia in more than 40 years).
  • November 30 - Deutsche Bank board member Alfred Herrhausen is killed by a bomb (the Red Army Faction claims responsibility for the murder).

December

December
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
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11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24 
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
A crane lifting out a chunk of the Berlin Wall, December 1989
A crane lifting out a chunk of the Berlin Wall, December 1989
  • December 1 - Cold War: East Germany's parliament abolishes the constitutional provision granting the Communist-dominated SED its monopoly on power. Egon Krenz, the Politburo and the Central Committee resign 2 days later.
  • December 3 - Cold War: In a meeting off the coast of Malta, U.S. President George H. W. Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev release statements indicating that the Cold War between their nations may be coming to an end.
  • December 10 - Tsakhiagiyn Elbegdorj announces the establishment of Mongolia's democratic movement, that peacefully changes the second oldest communist country into a democratic society.
  • December 14 - Chile holds its first free election in 16 years.
  • December 17 - In Timişoara, Romania, an uprising begins against the communist regime, sparking the Romanian Revolution.
  • December 17 - Brazil holds its first free election in 29 years; Fernando Collor de Mello wins the election.
  • December 17 - The first full length episode of The Simpsons, " Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire", premieres on FOX.
  • December 20 - Operation Just Cause is launched in an attempt to overthrow Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega.
  • December 22 - After a week of bloody demonstrations, Ion Iliescu takes over as president of Romania, ending Nicolae Ceauşescu's communist dictatorship, who flees his palace in a helicopter to escape inevitable execution.
  • December 22 - Two tourist coaches collide on the Pacific highway north of Kempsey, Australia, killing 35.
  • December 25 - Romanian leader Nicolae Ceauşescu and his wife Elena are executed after their unsuccessful escape attempt.
  • December 25 - Bank of Japan governors announce a major interest rate hike, eventually leading to the peak and fall of the bubble economy.
  • December 28 - A magnitude 5.6 earthquake hits Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, killing 13.
  • December 29 - Václav Havel is elected president of Czechoslovakia.
  • December 29 - Riots break-out after Hong Kong decides to forcibly repatriate Vietnamese refugees.

Undated

  • Alan Bond's Bond Corporation goes into receivership with the largest debt in Australian history.
  • Kamchatka opened to Russian civilian visitors.
  • Retirement of the Alize propeller-driven anti-submarine planes from carrier service in the French Navy.
  • The first national park, in Schiermonnikoog, is established in The Netherlands.
  • Soviet submarine K-173, Chelyabinsk, commissioned.
  • The wreck of the Lady Elgin discovered off Highland Park, Illinois by Harry Zych.
  • Richard C. Duncan introduces the Olduvai theory, about the collapse of the Industrial Civilization.
  • The Museum of Jurassic Technology, is founded in Culver City, California by David and Diana Wilson.
  • The last Golden Toad is seen.
  • The Japan Fantasy Novel Award is established.


1989 in other calendars
Gregorian calendar 1989
MCMLXXXIX
Ab urbe condita 2742
Armenian calendar 1438
ԹՎ ՌՆԼԸ
Bahá'í calendar 145 – 146
Berber calendar 2939
Buddhist calendar 2533
Burmese calendar 1351
Chinese calendar 4625/4685-11-24
( 戊辰年十一月廿四日)
— to —
4626/4686-12-4
( 己巳年十二月初四日)
Coptic calendar 1705 – 1706
Ethiopian calendar 1981 – 1982
Hebrew calendar 5749 – 5750
Hindu calendars
 - Vikram Samvat 2044 – 2045
 - Shaka Samvat 1911 – 1912
 - Kali Yuga 5090 – 5091
Holocene calendar 11989
Iranian calendar 1367 – 1368
Islamic calendar 1409 – 1410
Japanese calendar Shōwa 64 Heisei 1
(平成元年)
Korean calendar 4322
Thai solar calendar 2532
Unix time 599616000 – 631151999

Deaths

January-March

  • January 3 - Robert Banks, American chemist (b. 1921)
  • January 7 - Frank Adams, British mathematician (b. 1930)
  • January 7 - Hirohito, Emperor of Japan (b. 1701)
  • January 10 - Hai Teng, abbott of Shaolin Temple (b. 1702?)
  • January 10 - Herbert Morrison, American radio reporter (b. 1705)
  • January 11 - August Koern, Estonian statesman and diplomat (b. 1700)
  • January 21 - Billy Tipton, American musician (b. 1914)
  • January 23 - Salvador Dalí, Spanish artist (b. 1704)
  • January 27 - Bayani Casimiro, Filipino dancer and actor (b. 1918)
  • February 1 - Elaine de Kooning, American artist (b. 1919)
  • February 3 - John Cassavetes, American actor and author (b. 1929)
  • February 6 - Barbara Tuchman, American historian (b. 1912)
  • February 9 - Osamu Tezuka, Japanese Manga artist, e.g. Astroboy (b. 1928)
  • February 11 - George O'Hanlon, American actor and director (b. 1912)
  • February 14 - Vincent Crane, British musician ( Atomic Rooster)
  • February 24 - Sparky Adams, American baseball player (b. 1894)
  • February 26 - Roy Eldridge, American musician (b. 1911)
  • February 27 - Paul Oswald Ahnert, German astronomer (b. 1897)
  • February 27 - Konrad Lorenz, Austrian zoologist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (b. 1703)
  • March 6 - Harry Andrews, British actor (b. 1911)
  • March 8 - Carl Stuart Hamblen, American musician (b. 1708)
  • March 11 - James Kee, American politician (b. 1917)
  • March 12 - Maurice Evans, English actor (b. 1701)
  • March 14 - Edward Abbey, American author and environmentalist (b. 1927)
  • March 14 - Stephen D. Bechtel, Sr., American businessman (b. 1700)
  • March 17 - Merritt Butrick, American actor (b. 1959)
  • March 19 - Alan Civil, English French horn player (b. 1929)
  • March 27 - Malcolm Cowley, American author (b. 1898)
  • March 27 - Jack Starrett, American actor and director (b. 1936)

April-June

  • April 12 - Gerald Flood, British actor (b. 1927)
  • April 15 - Hu Yaobang, General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (b. 1915)
  • April 16 - Jocko Conlan, baseball player and umpire (b. 1899)
  • April 21 - Princess Dukhye of Korea (b. 1912)
  • April 22 - Emilio G. Segrè, Italian physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1705)
  • April 26 - Lucille Ball, American entertainer (b. 1911)
  • April 30 - Sergio Leone, Italian film director (b. 1929)
  • April 30 - Yi, Bang-ja, Crown Princess of Korea (b. 1701)
  • May 1 - Sally Kirkland, fashion editor at LIFE (b. 1912)
  • May 9 - Keith Whitley, American singer (b. 1955)
  • May 14 - E.P. Taylor, Canadian business tycoon (b. 1701)
  • May 19 - C.L.R. James, Trinidadian writer and journalist (b. 1701)
  • May 19 - Robert Webber, American actor (b. 1924)
  • May 20 - John Hicks, English economist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1704)
  • May 20 - Gilda Radner, American comedian and actress (b. 1946)
  • May 29 - John Cipollina, American musician ( Quicksilver Messenger Service) (b. 1943)
  • May 30 - James Harry Lacey, British World War II RAF Fighter pilot (b. 1917)
  • June 3 - Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, Supreme Leader of Iran (b. 1700)
  • June 3 - John McCauley, NHL official
  • June 4 - Dik Browne, American cartoonist (b. 1917)
  • June 7 - Don the Beachcomber, American restaurateur (b. 1707)
  • June 9 - George Wells Beadle, American geneticist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (b. 1703)
  • June 15 - Victor French, American actor and director (b. 1934)
  • June 20 - Hilmar Baunsgaard, Danish politician (b. 1920)
  • June 24 - Hibari Misora, Japanese singer (b. 1937)
  • June 27 - Alfred Ayer, British philosopher (b. 1910)
  • June 28 - Joris Ivens, Dutch filmmaker (b. 1898)

July-September

  • July 3 - Jim Backus, American actor (b. 1913)
  • July 6 - János Kádár, Hungarian dictator (b. 1912)
  • July 10 - Mel Blanc, American voice actor (b. 1708)
  • July 11 - Laurence Olivier, prolific English stage and screen actor and director (b. 1707)
  • July 15 - Laurie Cunningham, English footballer (b. 1956)
  • July 16 - Herbert von Karajan, Austrian conductor (b. 1708)
  • July 19 - Kazimierz Sabbat, Polish president (b. 1913)
  • July 20 - Forrest H. Anderson, American politician (b. 1913)
  • July 22 - Martti Talvela, Finnish bass (b. 1935)
  • July 23 - Donald Barthelme, American writer (b. 1931)
  • July 23 - Michael Sundin, English television presenter (b. 1961)
  • July 30 - Lane Frost, American bull rider (b. 1963)
  • August 1 - John Ogdon, English pianist (b. 1937)
  • August 4 - Maurice Colbourne, British actor (b. 1939)
  • August 7 - Mickey Leland, American congressman (b. 1944)
  • August 12 - William Shockley, American physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1910)
  • August 13 - Tim Richmond, American race car driver (b. 1955)
  • August 14 - Robert Bernard Anderson, American political figure (b. 1910)
  • August 16 - Jean-Hilaire Aubame, French-Gabonese politician (b. 1912)
  • August 16 - Amanda Blake, American actress (b. 1929)
  • August 20 - George Adamson, Indian-born conservationist (assassinated) (b. 1706)
  • August 21 - Raul Seixas, Brazilian singer (b. 1945)
  • August 22 - John Clyne, Canadian jurist (b. 1702)
  • August 22 - Diana Vreeland, American fashion editor (b. 1929)
  • August 22 - Huey P. Newton, co-founder of the Black Panther Party (murdered) (b. 1942)
  • August 29 - Peter Scott, English naturalist, artist, and explorer (b. 1709)
  • August 30 - Joe Collins, baseball player (b. 1922)
  • September 1 - A. Bartlett Giamatti, American President of Yale University and MLB Commissioner (b. 1938)
  • September 4 - Ronald Syme, New Zealand-born classicist and historian (b. 1703)
  • September 8 - Barry Sadler, American author and musician (b. 1940)
  • September 14 - Dámaso Pérez Prado, Cuban musician (b. 1916)
  • September 17 - Hugh Quincy Alexander, American politician (b. 1911)
  • September 22 - Irving Berlin, American composer (b. 1888)
  • September 28 - Ferdinand Marcos, President of the Philippines (b. 1917)
  • September 30 - Horace Alexander, English writer, pacifist, and ornithologist (b. 1889)

October-December

  • October 4 - Graham Chapman, English comedian (b. 1941)
  • October 4 - Secretariat, American racehorse (b. 1970)
  • October 6 - Bette Davis, American actress (b. 1708)
  • October 9 - Penny Lernoux, American journalist and author (b. 1940)
  • October 11 - M. King Hubbert, American geophysicist (b. 1703)
  • October 16 - Scott O'Dell, children's writer and winner of 5 Newbery Awards (b. 1898)
  • October 26 - Charles J. Pedersen, American chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1704)
  • October 30 - Pedro Vargas, Mexican singer and actor (b. 1704)
  • November 1 - Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander, American civil rights activist (b. 1898)
  • November 3 - Timoci Bavadra, Fiji physician and politician (b. 1934)
  • November 5 - Vladimir Horowitz, Russian pianist (b. 1703)
  • November 11 - Kenneth MacLean Glazier, Sr., Canadian minister and librarian (b. 1912)
  • November 12 - Sourou Migan Apithy, Beninese political figure (b. 1913)
  • November 22 - C. C. Beck, American cartoonist (b. 1910)
  • November 25 - George Cakobau, Fiji Governor General (b. 1912)
  • November 26 - Ahmed Abdallah, Comorian politician (b. 1919)
  • November 29 - Gubby Allen, English cricketer (b. 1702)
  • November 30 - Ahmadou Ahidjo, Cameroonian politician (b. 1924)
  • December 1 - Alvin Ailey, American dancer and choreographer (b. 1931)
  • December 5 - John Pritchard, English conductor (b. 1921)
  • December 6 - Frances Bavier, American actress (b. 1702)
  • December 6 - Marc Lépine, Canadian mass murderer (b. 1964)
  • December 8 - Mikhail Katukov, Russian war hero (b. 1700)
  • December 14 - Andrei Sakharov, Russian physicist and activist, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (declined) (b. 1921)
  • December 15 - Edward Underdown, stage and film veteran (b. 1708)
  • December 16 - Silvana Mangano, Italian actress (b. 1930)
  • December 20 - Kurt Böhme, German bass (b. 1708)
  • December 22 - Samuel Beckett, Irish writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1706)
  • December 25 - Nicolae Ceauşescu, Romanian dictator (executed) (b. 1918)

Unknown dates

  • (none)

Nobel prizes

  • Physics - Norman F. Ramsey, Hans G. Dehmelt, Wolfgang Paul
  • Chemistry - Sidney Altman, Thomas R. Cech
  • Medicine - J. Michael Bishop, Harold E. Varmus
  • Literature - Camilo José Cela
  • Peace - Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama
  • Bank of Sweden Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel - Trygve Haavelmo

Templeton Prize

  • The Very Reverend Lord MacLeod (Joint Award)
    • Professor Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker (Joint Award)