Today is Thursday, August 24, the 236th day of 2017. Those born on this date are under the sign of Virgo.

They include:

-- Argentine poet/author Jorge Luis Borges in 1899

-- Palestinian leader/Nobel Peace Prize laureate Yasser Arafat in 1929

-- British novelist A.S. Byatt in 1936 (age 81)

-- Musician David Freiberg in 1938 (age 79)

-- Musician Mason Williams in 1938 (age 79)

-- Wrestling entrepreneur Vince McMahon in 1945 (age 72)

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-- Brazilian author Paul Coelho in 1947 (age 70)

-- Actor Anne Archer in 1947 (age 70)

-- Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee in 1955 (age 62)

-- Actor Stephan Fry in 1957 (age 60)

-- Actor Steve Guttenberg in 1958 (age 59)

-- Baseball Hall of Fame member Cal Ripken Jr. (major league record 2,632 consecutive games) in 1960 (age 57)

-- Political commentator Major Garrett in 1962 (age 55)

-- Actor Marlee Matlin in 1965 (age 52)

-- Director Ava DuVernay in 1972 (age 45)

-- Comedian Dave Chappelle in 1973 (age 44)

-- Young adult author John Green in 1977 (age 40)

-- Actor Chad Michael Murray in 1981 (age 36)

-- Actor Rupert Grint in 1988 (age 29)

On this date in history:

In 79 A.D., thousands died and the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum were buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in Italy.

In 1814, the British captured Washington and burned the Capitol and the White House.

In 1932, Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly non-stop across the United States.

In 1981, Mark Chapman, who claimed devils forced him to kill John Lennon and God told him to confess, was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison for fatally shooting the former leader of the Beatles.

In 1991, Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev quit as general secretary of the Communist Party central committee. He also ordered his Cabinet to resign.