London in History (Part 2)

Historical Events

Events 101 - 200 of 984

  • 1726-05-09 Five men arrested during a raid on Mother Clap's molly house in London are executed at Tyburn

Book releaseHistoric Publication

1726-10-28 "Gulliver's Travels" by Jonathan Swift is published by Benjamin Motte in London

Author, Poet and Satirist Jonathan Swift
Author, Poet and Satirist
Jonathan Swift
  • 1728-01-29 John Gays' "Beggar's Opera" premieres in London [NS=Feb 9]

Music releaseMusic Premiere

1728-02-28 George Frideric Handel's opera "Siroe, re di Persia" premieres in London

  • 1728-05-04 George Frideric Handel's opera "Tolomeo, re di Egitto" premieres in London
  • 1731-02-02 George Frideric Handel's opera "Poro" premieres in London
  • 1732-12-07 The Royal Opera House opens at Covent Garden, London.
  • 1735-12-06 First recorded appendectomy performed by Claudius Amyand at St George's Hospital in London
  • 1738-04-15 Premiere in London of "Serse", an Italian opera by George Frideric Handel
  • 1742-05-28 1st indoor swimming pool opens (Goodman's Fields, London)
  • 1743-03-23 George Frideric Handel's oratorio "Messiah" premieres in London
  • 1744-03-11 English auction house Sotheby's holds its first ever auction (of books) in London
  • 1745-02-15 Colley Cibbers "Papal Tyranny" premieres in London
  • 1747-01-31 The first venereal diseases clinic opens at London Lock Hospital, London
  • 1747-02-14 Astronomer James Bradley presents his discovery of the wobbling motion of the Earth on its axis to the Royal Society, London
  • 1749-01-16 Hoax article advertising fictitious theatrical performer "The Bottle Conjuror" drew huge crowds to the Haymarket Theatre, London, whose inevitable non-appearance caused a riot. It's alleged the Duke of Montagu perpetrated the fiasco to win a bet
  • 1749-04-27 First performance of George Frideric Handel's Fireworks Music in Green Park, London
  • 1750-02-08 Minor earthquake in London
  • 1755-04-15 Samuel Johnson's "A Dictionary of the English Language" published in London
  • 1755-07-15 French ambassador recalled from London
  • 1759-01-15 British Museum opens in Montague House, London
  • 1759-04-20 George Frideric Handel is buried in Westminster Abbey, London
  • 1762-02-02 Thomas Arnes' opera "Artaxerxes" premieres in London
  • 1762-07-10 Louis-François Roubiliac's monument to George Frideric Handel is unveiled at Westminster Abbey in London
  • 1763-04-30 Member of Parliament and journalist John Wilkes confined in the Tower of London, charged with seditious libel
  • 1763-05-16 Samuel Johnson 1st meets his future biographer James Boswell in London
  • 1766-12-05 World's largest auction house - Christie's hold their first sale in their permanent saleroom in Pall Mall,London
  • 1768-01-09 Philip Astley stages the world's first modern circus in London
  • 1768-05-10 John Wilkes is imprisoned for writing an article for "The North Briton" severely criticizing King George III. This action provokes rioting in London.
  • 1772-01-01 First traveler's cheques go on sale in London, can be used in 90 European cities

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1772-08-04 English poet and artist William Blake aged 14 is first apprenticed to engraver James Basire in London

Poet/Artist William Blake
William Blake
  • 1773-03-18 Oliver Goldsmith's "She Stoops to Conquer" premieres in London
  • 1775-01-17 Richard Brinsley Sheridan's play "The Rivals" premieres in London

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1775-11-11 Mohawk military leader Joseph Brant goes to London to solicit more support from the government and to persuade the Crown to address past Mohawk land grievances in exchange for their participation as allies in the impending war

Mohawk Military Leader Joseph Brant
Mohawk Military Leader
Joseph Brant

/flags/united statesUnited States Declaration of Independence

1776-08-10 American Revolutionary War: word of the United States Declaration of Independence reaches London.
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  • 1777-05-01 RB Sheridan's "School for Scandal" premieres in London
  • 1777-08-04 Retired British cavalry officer Philip Astley establishes his riding school with performances in London, precursor of the circus
  • 1779-10-08 English engraver and poet William Blake begins study at the Royal Academy, Old Somerset House, London
  • 1780-06-02 Anti-Catholic demonstration attacks parliament in London
  • 1780-06-07 Anti-Catholic riot in London, hundreds die
  • 1783-11-03 John Austin, a footpad turned murderer, is the last to be publicly hanged at London's Tyburn gallows
  • 1783-12-07 Theatre Royal opens in Covent Garden, London
  • 1783-12-09 First execution at Newgate Jail in London (now the site of the Central Criminal Court aka the Old Bailey), relocated from Tyburn (now the site of Marble Arch)
  • 1785-01-01 "Daily Universal Register" (Times of London) publishes 1st issue
  • 1785-01-13 John Walter publishes 1st issue of "The Times" of London
  • 1787-02-04 1st Anglican bishops of NY & Pennsylvania consecrated in London
  • 1788-01-01 London's Daily Universal Registrar becomes the Times
  • 1792-01-25 The London Corresponding Society is founded.
  • 1792-03-24 Benjamin West (US) becomes president of Royal Academy of London
  • 1792-10-02 Baptist Missionary Society forms in London
  • 1794-03-12 Theatre Royal in London's Dury Lane opens after being rebuilt

  • 1797-01-15 1st top hat worn by John Etherington of London
  • 1797-05-12 Nore Mutiny: British Royal Navy sailors mutiny on the Thames, England and blockade London

InventionScientific Discovery

1800-03-20 Alessandro Volta reports his discovery of the electric battery in a letter to Joseph Banks, president of the Royal Society of London

Physicist and Inventor Alessandro Volta
Physicist and Inventor
Alessandro Volta
Botanist and explorer Joseph Banks
Botanist and explorer
Joseph Banks
  • 1801-10-01 Britain & France sign Preliminary of London
  • 1803-07-26 The Surrey Iron Railway, arguably the world's first public railway, opens in south London
  • 1804-02-24 London's Drury Lane Theatre burns to the ground, leaving owner Richard Brinsley Sheridan destitute

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1806-01-09 Admiral Viscount Horatio Nelson receives a state funeral and is interred in St Paul's Cathedral, London

British Admiral Horatio Nelson
British Admiral
Horatio Nelson
  • 1806-10-07 Carbon paper patented in London by inventor Ralph Wedgwood
  • 1807-01-28 London's Pall Mall is 1st street lit by gaslight
  • 1809-09-18 Royal Opera House in London opens


1812-05-11 British Prime Minister Spencer Perceval is assassinated by John Bellingham in the lobby of the House of Commons, London. Ironically, descendants of both later elected to Parliament at the same time.

British Prime Minister Spencer Perceval
British Prime Minister
Spencer Perceval
  • 1812-09-03 World's first cannery ( Donkin, Hall and Gamble) opens in London, England to supply food to the Royal Navy
  • 1812-10-14 Work on London's Regent's Canal starts.
  • 1814-08-13 Treaty of London-Netherland stops transporting slaves
  • 1814-10-17 A Beer Flood occurs in London killing nine.
  • 1814-11-28 The Times of London first printed by automatic, steam powered presses built by German inventors Friedrich Koenig and Andreas Friedrich Bauer - makes newspapers available to a mass audience
  • 1815-10-31 Cornishman Sir Humphrey Davy patents miner's safety lamp

Book releaseHistoric Publication

1815-12-23 "Emma" By Jane Austen by published by John Murray in London

Novelist Jane Austen
Jane Austen

Book releaseHistoric Publication

1816-05-25 Collection of poems by Samuel Taylor Coleridge published by John Murray in London, including "Kubla Khan" and "Christabel"

Poet, Critic, and Philosopher Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Poet, Critic, and Philosopher
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Book releaseHistoric Publication

1818-01-01 Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus" is published anonymously by the small London publishing house of Lackington, Hughes, Harding, Mavor, & Jones

Frankenstein Author Mary Shelley
Frankenstein Author
Mary Shelley
  • 1820-01-12 Astronomical Society of London (now the Royal Astronomical Society) founded in England
  • 1820-08-01 London's Regent's Canal opens.
  • 1822-10-20 1st edition of London Sunday Times
  • 1823-04-22 Baltic Club (Exchange) forms in London
  • 1823-05-08 "Home! Sweet Home!" by John Howard Payne is 1st sung in London
  • 1823-12-13 Gioacchino Rossini arrives in London
  • 1824-02-16 Athenaeum club founded in London
  • 1824-05-10 The National Gallery in London opens to the public in its temporary home in a townhouse on Pall Mall

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1824-05-17 The diaries of Lord Byron are burnt by six of the poet's friends at the office of John Murray in London, sometimes described as “the greatest crime in literary history”

Romantic Poet Lord Byron
Romantic Poet
Lord Byron
  • 1826-02-11 University College London founded; known until 1836 as London University
  • 1826-04-12 Weber's opera "Oberon" premieres in London
  • 1828-04-27 Zoological Gardens at Regent's Park in London opens
  • 1828-10-25 St Katharine Docks opens in London, England
  • 1829-06-08 1st UK municipal swimming pool outside of London opens in Liverpool

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1829-06-19 Sir Robert Peel introduces the Metropolitan Police Act 1829 into Parliament to establish a unified police force for London

British Prime Minister Robert Peel
British Prime Minister
Robert Peel
  • 1829-07-04 The first London bus "omnibus", operated by George Shillibeer, begins service between Marylebone Road and Bank Junction
  • 1829-09-29 The first units of the London Metropolitan Police appear on the streets of the British capital
  • 1830-03-16 London's re-organised police force (Scotland Yard)
  • 1831-08-01 London Bridge opens to traffic
  • 1832-02-13 First appearance of cholera in London

Music concertMusic Concert

1832-05-14 Felix Mendelssohn's concert overture "Hebrides" premieres in London

Composer and Pianist Felix Mendelssohn
Composer and Pianist
Felix Mendelssohn
  • 1834-10-16 Much of the ancient structures of the Palace of Westminster (parliament) in London is burnt down.
  • 1834-12-23 Joseph Hansom of London receives patent for Hansom cabs
  • 1836-06-16 London Working Men's Association forms

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1837-02-17 Charles Lyell makes his presidential address to the Geographical Society, London and announces that Richard Owen has concluded from Darwin's fossils that extinct species were related to current species in the same locality

Geologist Charles Lyell
Charles Lyell

CommunicationOpening of Euston Station

1837-07-20 Euston railway station opens in London as the terminus of the London and Birmingham Railway (L&BR), the city's 1st intercity railway station
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  • 1837-07-25 The first commercial use of an electric telegraph successfully demonstrated by William Cooke and Charles Wheatstone between Euston and Camden Town in London
  • 1838-02-25 London pedestrian walks 20 miles backward then forward in 8 hours
  • 1838-04-09 UK National Gallery re-opens in its new dedicated building in Trafalgar Square, London

Famous Birthdays

Birthdays 101 - 200 of 1,418

Person of interestJoseph Grimaldi

1779-12-18 Joseph Grimaldi, English pantomimist and the "greatest clown in history", born in London (d. 1837)

Greatest Clown in History Joseph Grimaldi
Greatest Clown in History
Joseph Grimaldi
  • 1782-08-10 Charles Napier, soldier, born in London, England
  • 1783-04-08 John Claudius, horticulturist, born in London, England
  • 1785-09-25 George Pinto, English composer, born in London (d. 1806)
  • 1786-01-11 Joseph Jackson Lister, British optician who perfected the optical microscope by designing the achromatic objective lens, born in London, England
  • 1787-11-04 Edmund Kean, British Shakespearean actor (Edmund Kean's Masonic Career), born in London, England (d. 1833)

Person of interestLord Byron

1788-01-22 Lord Byron [George Gordon Byron], English romantic poet (Don Juan), born in London (d. 1824)

Romantic Poet Lord Byron
Romantic Poet
Lord Byron
  • 1789-03-17 Edmund Kean, British Shakespearean tragic actor (Shylock), born in London, England (d. 1833)
  • 1789-10-08 William John Swainson, English naturalist and artist, born in Newington, London (d. 1855)
  • 1790-08-19 Edward John Dent, British Clockmaker to Queen Victoria and commissioned to make Big Ben, London (completed after his death by his son Frederick Dent), born in London, England

Person of interestCharles Babbage

1791-12-26 Charles Babbage, British inventor (calculating machine), born in London, England (d. 1871)

Inventor Charles Babbage
Charles Babbage
  • 1792-04-12 John George Lambton, British statesman (1st Earl of Durham), born in London, England (d. 1840)
  • 1792-09-27 George Cruikshank, caricaturist (Oliver Twist), born in London, England
  • 1792-11-13 Edward John Trelawny, English traveler and author (Adv of Younger Son), born in London (d. 1881)
  • 1793-03-03 William Charles Macready, British actor, manager, and diarist, born in London, England (d. 1873)

Person of interestJohn Keats

1795-10-31 John Keats, English Romantic poet (Ode to a Grecian Urn), born in London (d. 1821)

Romantic Poet John Keats
Romantic Poet
John Keats
  • 1796-10-09 Joseph Bonomi the Younger, English artist and Egyptologist, born in London (d. 1878)

Person of interestMary Shelley

1797-08-30 Mary Shelley, English author (Frankenstein), born in London, England (d. 1851)

Frankenstein Author Mary Shelley
Frankenstein Author
Mary Shelley
  • 1798-01-29 Henry Neele, poet, born in London, England
  • 1800-04-16 George Bingham, 3rd Earl of Lucan, British army officer (Charge of the Light Brigade), born in London, England (d. 1888)
  • 1802-07-26 Winthrop Mackworth Praed, English politician and poet, born in London, England (d. 1839)
  • 1803-01-03 Douglas William Jerrold, author/playwright/wit (Punch Mag), born in London, England

Person of interestBenjamin Disraeli

1804-12-21 Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield, British Prime Minister (Tory: 1868, 1874-80) and writer, born in London (d. 1881)

British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli
British Prime Minister
Benjamin Disraeli
  • 1805-01-27 Samuel Palmer, painter/etcher (Valley of Vision), born in London, England
  • 1805-09-07 Samuel Wilberforce, English bishop and one of the greatest public speakers of his day (remembered for his opposition to Darwin's theory of evolution), born in London (d. 1873)

Person of interestJohn Stuart Mill

1806-05-20 John Stuart Mill, English philosopher, political economist and utilitarian, born in London (d. 1873)

Philosopher and Political Economist John Stuart Mill
Philosopher and Political Economist
John Stuart Mill
  • 1809-11-27 Frances Anne "Fanny" Kemble, British Shakespearian actress (Juliet) and author, born in London, England (d. 1893)
  • 1810-09-29 Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell, novelist, born in London, England
  • 1811-02-24 Edward Dickinson Baker, American politician and Major General (Union Army), born in London, England (d. 1861)
  • 1811-04-17 Ann Mounsey, English composer, born in Soho, London (d. 1891)

Person of interestRobert Browning

1812-05-07 Robert Browning, English poet (Pied Piper), born in London, England (d. 1889)

  • 1813-03-02 George Alexander Macfarren, British composer and musicologist, born in London, England (d. 1887)
  • 1813-10-26 Henry Smart, English organist and composer, born in London (d. 1879)
  • 1814-04-21 Angela Burdett-Coutts, English philanthropist extrordinaire and "the richest heiress in England", born in London (d. 1906)
  • 1815-04-24 Anthony Trollope, English novelist and poet (Barchester Towers), born in London (d. 1882)

Person of interestAda Lovelace

1815-12-10 Ada Lovelace, English mathematician considered the first computer programmer, born in London (d. 1852)

Mathematician and Computer Programmer Ada Lovelace
Mathematician and Computer Programmer
Ada Lovelace
  • 1817-02-23 George Watts, painter, born in London, England
  • 1817-07-15 John Fowler, English engineer (London Metropolitan Railway)
  • 1818-06-30 Edward John Hopkins, English organist and composer, born in London (d. 1901)
  • 1818-09-16 Francis Seymour Haden, English surgeon and etcher, born in London (d. 1910)

Person of interestEmperor Norton

1819-02-04 Emperor Norton [Joshua Abraham Norton], British born self proclaimed "Norton I, Emperor of the United States," born in London, England (d. 1880)

Emperor of the USA Emperor Norton
Emperor of the USA
Emperor Norton
  • 1819-03-28 Sir Joseph Bazalgette, English civil engineer (London's Metropolitan Board of Works), born in Clay Hill, Enfield, London (d. 1891)

Person of interestVictoria

1819-05-24 Queen Victoria, Queen of the United Kingdom and Ireland (1837-1901), born in London (d. 1901)

Queen of the United Kingdom Victoria
Queen of the United Kingdom
  • 1819-06-06 William Howard Glover, English composer, born in London, England (d. 1875)
  • 1820-03-21 Frank Mori, English composer, born in London (d. 1873)
  • 1820-05-04 Joseph Whitaker, British publisher (Whitaker's Almanack), born in London (d. 1895)
  • 1820-08-13 George Grove, biblical scholar/misicographer, born in London, England
  • 1821-06-08 Samuel White Baker, English explorer (Ceylon & Egypt), born in London, England (d. 1893)
  • 1822-12-26 Dion Boucicault [Dionysus Lardner Boursiquot], Irish actor and playwright (Rip van Winkle, London Assurance), born in Dublin, Ireland (d. 1890)
  • 1823-05-17 Charlotte Sainton-Dolby, English contralto and composer, born in London (d. 1885)
  • 1824-01-08 [William] Wilkie Collins, English writer (Woman in White), born in London (d. 1889)
  • 1824-06-02 Samuel Wilks, British Physician and founding father of clinical science, born in London, England
  • 1824-06-20 George E Street, English architect, born in Woodford, London (d. 1881)
  • 1825-05-08 George Bruce Malleson, English officer in India and author, born in Wimbledon, London (d. 1898)
  • 1826-08-28 Walter Cecil Macfarren, English pianist and composer, born in London (d. 1905)
  • 1827-04-02 William Holman Hunt, English painter (Light of the World), born in Cheapside, London (d. 1910)
  • 1829-09-25 William Michael Rossetti, English writer and civil servant, born in London (d. 1919)
  • 1830-01-17 Eyre Massey Shaw, British first chief of London Fire Brigade, born in Ballymore, Ireland (d. 1908)
  • 1830-12-05 Christina Rossetti, poet (Winter Rain, Passing Away), born in London, England

Person of interestDavid Edward Hughes

1831-05-16 David Edward Hughes, British-American inventor (microphone, teleprinter), born in either London, England or Corwen, Wales (d. 1900)

  • 1833-01-07 Henry Enfield Roscoe, English Chemist (vanadium and photochemistry), born in London, England
  • 1833-01-28 Charles George Gordon, general (China, Khartoum), born in London, England
  • 1834-04-30 Lord Avebury [John Lubbock], British banker and politician, born in London (d. 1913)
  • 1836-03-16 Andrew Smith Hallidie, American inventor of the cable car, born in London (d. 1900)
  • 1836-06-09 Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, 1st qualified woman physician in Britain, first woman mayor (Aldeburgh), born in London (d. 1917)

Person of interestWilliam Schwenck Gilbert

1836-11-18 William Schwenck Gilbert, English dramatist, librettist, poet and illustrator (Gilbert & Sullivan), born in London, England

English Dramatist William Schwenck Gilbert
English Dramatist
William Schwenck Gilbert
  • 1837-04-05 Algernon Charles Swinburne, English poet (Atalanta in Calydon), born in London (d. 1909)
  • 1837-11-09 Alfred Holmes, English violinist and composer, born in London (d. 1876)
  • 1838-04-11 Joseph Leopold Röckel, German composer, born in London (d. 1908)
  • 1838-12-03 Octavia Hill, British reformer, leader of open-space movement, born in London, England (d. 1912)
  • 1839-08-04 Walter Pater, writer (Plato & Platoism), born in London, England
  • 1839-11-07 Henry Holmes, English violinist and composer, born in London (d. 1905)
  • 1840-03-26 George Smith, English archaeologist and assyriologist (cuneiform script), born in London (d. 1876)
  • 1840-03-31 Benjamin Baker, English civil engineer who designed the bridge over the Firth of Forth, Scotland and the London underground, born in Frome, England (d. 1907)
  • 1840-04-27 Edward Whymper, English mountaineer, 1st to climb Matterhorn (1865), born in London (d. 1911)
  • 1840-05-24 Frederick Walker, British social realist painter, born in London (d. 1875)
  • 1840-10-09 Simeon Solomon, English Pre-Raphaelite painter, born in London (d. 1905)
  • 1841-05-14 Sir Squire Bancroft [Butterfield], British actor and manager known for creating 'drawing-room comedy' (Haymarket), born in Rotherhithe, London (d. 1926)
  • 1841-11-09 Edward VII, King of England (1901-10), born in Buckingham Palace, London (d. 1910)
  • 1842-05-13 Arthur Sullivan, English operatic composer (Pirates of Penzance, H.M.S Pinafore), born in London (d. 1900)
  • 1842-07-26 Alfred Marshall, economist, born in London, England
  • 1842-08-14 Henry Duff Traill, British author and journalist (The Marquis of Salisbury), born in Blackheath, London (d. 1900)
  • 1843-01-20 Pierre-Paul Cambon, French diplomat (Madrid, Constantinople, London)
  • 1843-04-25 Princess Alice of the United Kingdom, Grand Duchess of Hesse, born in Buckingham Palace, London (d. 1878)
  • 1844-05-03 Richard D'Oyly Carte, English opera impresario (Gilbert & Sullivan operas), born in London (d. 1901)
  • 1844-07-22 William Archibald Spooner, reverend/inventor (spoonerisms), born in London, England
  • 1844-07-28 Gerard Manley Hopkins, English poet (Windhover), born in Stratford, London (d. 1889)
  • 1845-02-14 Cecil De Vere, 1st official British chess champion (1866), born in London (d. 1875)

Person of interestMary Ann Nichols

1845-08-26 Mary Ann Nichols, English victim of Jack the Ripper, born in London (d. 1888)

First Victim of Jack the Ripper Mary Ann Nichols
First Victim of Jack the Ripper
Mary Ann Nichols

Person of interestArchibald Primrose

1847-05-07 Archibald Primrose, 5th Earl of Rosebery, British Prime Minister (Liberal: 1894-95), born in London (d. 1929)

British Prime Minister Archibald Primrose
British Prime Minister
Archibald Primrose
  • 1847-06-11 Millicent Fawcett, English leader of women's rights, born in London (d. 1929)
  • 1847-09-14 William Edward Ayrton, English Physicist and Inventor, born in London, England
  • 1847-10-01 Annie Besant, English social reformer and supporter of Indian independence, born in London (d. 1933)
  • 1847-12-09 George Grossmith, British actor, comedian and writer (The Diary of a Nobody, A Society Clown), born in London, England (d. 1912)
  • 1848-04-09 Francis MacKinnon, English cricketer (later the 35th Mackinnon of Mackinnon), born in Paddington, London (d. 1947)
  • 1849-09-21 Edmund Gosse, translator/critic (Father & Son), born in London, England

Person of interestSamuel Gompers

1850-01-27 Samuel Gompers, American labor union leader (American Federation of Labor), born in London, England

Founder of the American Federation of Labor Samuel Gompers
Founder of the American Federation of Labor
Samuel Gompers
  • 1850-01-29 Ebenezer Howard, pioneer of garden cities, born in London, England
  • 1850-05-18 Oliver Heaviside, physicist (predicted ionosphere), born in London, England
  • 1850-05-24 Ernest Albert Waterlow, English water-color painter, born in London (d. 1919)

Famous Weddings

Famous Deaths