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31st December is the 365t (366t in lowp years) an last day o the year in the Gregorian calendar.
- 1600 - The Breetish East Indie Company gets a ryal chairter.
- 1703 - A yirdquauk an tsunami hit Tokyo, killin 10,000 fowk.
- 1844 - This date is skipped in the Philippines, when the Internaitional Date Line is shifted east.
- 1857 - Queen Victoria decides that Ottawa would be the caipital ceety o Canadae.
- 1862 - Abraham Lincoln signs the act creatin Wast Virginie.
- 1907 - The tradeetional Ne'er's E'en Baw Drop in Times Square, New York Ceety, occurs for the first time.
- 1909 - The Manhattan Brig opens.
- 1917 - Breetish troop transporter "Osmanieh" hits a mine laid bi a German U-boat aff Alexandria, Egyp, killin 99 fowk.
- 1929 - The Glen Picturs mishanter in Paisley, Scotland kills 71 fowk.
- 1946 - Harry S. Truman offeecially declares the end o hostilities in Warld War II.
- 1981 - Jerry Rawlings comes tae pouer bi coup in Ghana.
- 1983 - Muhammadu Buhari carries oot a coup in Nigerie.
- 1986 - The Dupont Plaza Hottle fire in Puerto Rico kills ower 90 fowk.
- 1987 - Robert Mugabe becomes Preses o Zimbabwe, efter seeven year as Prime meenister.
- 1991 - End o the Soviet Union.
- 1992 - Czechoslovakie is offeecially dissolved; the kintra splits intae the Czech Republic an Slovakie when 1993 stairts at midnicht.
- 1994 - This date is skipped in Kiribati, when the Internaitional Date Line is shifted east.
- 1999 - The Unitit States gies control o the Panama Canal tae Panama.
- 1999 - Boris Yeltsin resigns as Preses o Roushie.
- 2004 - The Taipei 101 touer in Taipei, Taiwan, opens in time for the stairt o 2005.
- 2006 - Edinburgh's tradeetional Hogmanay celebrations are cancelled acause o hivy rain an wind.
- 2014 - The first same-sex mairiages in Scotland tak place.
- 2014 - Beji Caid Essebsi becomes Preses o Tunisie.
- 2014 - A stampede at a Ne'er event in Shanghai kills 36 fowk.
- 2015 - A major fire breaks oot at the Downton Address Hottle in Dubai.
- 2016 - Scots tennis player Andy Murray gains a knichthuid in the Ne'er's Honours Leet, alang wi Olympic athlete Mo Farah.
- 2016 - Bomb attacks in Baghdad kill at least 28 fowk.
- 2017 - A bus crash in Migaa, Kenyae, kills at least 36 fowk.
- 2018 - A ten-storey biggin collapses in Magnitogorsk, Chelyabinsk Oblast, Roushie, killin 39 fowk.
- 2019 - Iraqi militiamen an protesters breach the entrance o the Unitit States Embassy in Baghdad, efter a US militar operation tairgetin Iraqi militia twa days earlier.
- 2019 - COVID-19 pandemic: The Fowkrepublic o Cheenae reports the ootbrak o a mysterious virus circulatin in Wuhan tae the Warld Heal Organization; it is nou kent as COVID-19.
- 2020 - Brexit: The Unitit Kinrick's transition period ends an it exits European Union rules.
- 1378 - Pape Callixtus III (d. 1458)
- 1491 - Jacques Cartier, French splorer (d. 1557)
- 1720 - Chairles Edwart Stuart, Jacobite pretender (d. 1788)
- 1804 - John Scouler, Scots naituralist (d. 1871)
- 1869 - Henri Matisse, French penter (d. 1954)
- 1880 - George Marshall, 50t Unitit States Secretar o State (d. 1959)
- 1908 - Simon Wiesenthal, Austrick Holocaust survivor (d. 2005)
- 1935 - King Salman o Saudi Arabie
- 1937 - Sir Anthony Hopkins, Welsh actor
- 1941 - Sir Alex Ferguson, Scots fitbaa manager
- 1943 - Sir Ben Kingsley, Inglis actor
- 1943 - John Denver, American sangster (d. 1997)
- 1948 - Sandy Jardine, Scots fitbawer (d. 2014)
- 1948 - Donna Summer, American sangster (d. 2012)
- 1954 - Alex Salmond, Scots politeecian, 4t First Meenister o Scotland
- 1959 - Val Kilmer, American actor
- 1965 - Gong Li, Cheenese actress
- 1977 - PSY, Sooth Korean sangster an rapper
- 1977 - Donald Trump Jr., American businessman
- 1980 - Richie McCaw, New Zealand rugby player
- 1982 - Craig Gordon, Scots fitbaa goalkeeper
- 1995 - Gabby Douglas, American airtistic gymnast
- 192 - Commodus, Roman Emperor (b. 161)
- 335 - Pape Sylvester
- 1868 - James David Forbes, Scots pheesicist an glaciologist (b. 1809)
- 1877 - Gustave Courbet, French penter (b. 1819)
- 1880 - John Stenhouse, Scots chemist (b. 1809)
- 1936 - Miguel de Unamuno, Spaingie writer an philosopher (b. 1864)
- 1950 - Karl Renner, Preses o Austrick (b. 1870)
- 1980 - Marshall McLuhan, Canadian professor an philosopher (b. 1911)
- 1985 - Ricky Nelson, American sangster (b. 1940)
- 1993 - Zviad Gamsakhurdia, Preses o Georgie (b. 1939)
- 2013 - James Avery, American actor (b. 1945)
- 2015 - Natalie Cole, American sangster (b. 1950)
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