On This Day

1772 in History

Events in History

  • Jan 1 First traveler's cheques go on sale in London, can be used in 90 European cities
  • Feb 12 Yves de Kerguelen of France discovers Kerguelen Archipelago, India
  • Feb 17 1st Partition of Poland signed in Vienna by Austria, Prussia and Russia
  • Mar 13 Gotthold Lessing's "Emilia Galotti" premieres in Brunswick

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 6 Catherine the Great Empress of Russia, ends tax on men with beards, enacted by Tsar Peter the Great in 1698

Empress of Russia Catherine the Great
Empress of Russia
Catherine the Great
Russian Tsar Peter the Great
Russian Tsar
Peter the Great

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 9 Philosopher and mathematician Jean-Baptiste Le Rond d'Alembert becomes permanent secretary of the French Academy of Sciences

Enlightenment Philosopher Jean-Baptiste Le Rond d'Alembert
Enlightenment Philosopher
Jean-Baptiste Le Rond d'Alembert
  • Apr 30 John Clais patents 1st scale
  • May 11 Amsterdam Theater destroyed by fire, 18 killed, in Amsterdam, Northern Netherlands
  • Jun 6 Haitian explorer Jean Baptiste-Pointe Dusable settles in Chicago
  • Jun 9 1st Protestant church west of Pennsylvania (in Ohio) holds communion
  • Jun 9 1st naval attack of Revolutionary War takes place in Providence, Rhode Island
  • Jun 10 Burning of British revenue cutter Gaspée by Rhode Islanders
  • Jun 12 Marion du Fresne is killed at Tacoury's Cove, Bay of Islands, New Zealand, by local Māori
  • Jun 22 Somerset v Stewart court case finds slavery unsupported by English common law, encouraging the abolitionist movement

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jul 13 Captain James Cook begins 2nd voyage aboard the Resolution to the South Seas to search for Terra Australis (Southern continent)

Explorer James Cook
James Cook

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Aug 4 English poet and artist William Blake aged 14 is first apprenticed to engraver James Basire in London

Poet and Artist William Blake
Poet and Artist
William Blake
  • Aug 5 1st Partition of Poland between Austria, Prussia and Russia is made public
  • Aug 11 Explosive eruption blows 4,000' off Papandayan Java, kills 3,000

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Aug 19 King Gustav III seizes effective control of Swedish government and restores full power of monarchy, which had been subordinate to parliament since 1720

King of Sweden Gustav III
King of Sweden
Gustav III
  • Aug 21 King Gustav III of Sweden completes a coup d'etat by adopting a new Constitution and installing himself as an enlightened despot, ending 50 years of parliamentary rule
  • Aug 31 Hurricane destroy ships off Dominica
  • Sep 1 Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa forms in California
  • Sep 22 1st Partition of Poland is ratified by Austria, Prussia and Russia
  • Sep 26 New Jersey passes bill requiring a license to practise medicine
  • Oct 30 Captain James Cook arrives with ship Resolution in Capetown
  • Nov 2 Boston: anti-English Committee of Correspondence forms
  • Dec 22 Moravian missionary constructs 1st schoolhouse west of Allegheny

Birthdays in History

  • Jan 4 Paul-Louis Courier, (de Mere), French writer/interpreter
  • Jan 12 Count Mikhail Speransky, Russian reformer (d. 1839)
  • Feb 18 Giovanni Battista Brocchi, Bassano del Grappa, Italian Geologist
  • Mar 10 Friedrich von Schlegel, German romantic writer/critic (Lucinde)
  • Apr 4 Nachman of Breslov, Ukrainian founder of Breslov Hasidut, born in Międzybóż, Kingdom of Poland (d. 1810)
  • Apr 7 F M Charles Fourier, French socialist
  • Apr 11 Manuel Jose Quintana, Spanish author and poet (El Duque de Viseo), born in Madrid, Spain (d. 1857)
  • Apr 15 Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, French naturalist, born in Étampes, France (d. 1844)
  • Apr 19 David Ricardo, English economist (On the Principles of Political Economy and Taxation), born in London (d. 1823)
  • May 2 Novalis [Georg Philipp Friedrich Freiherr von Hardenberg], German romantic writer ('Heinrich von Ofterdingen), born in Oberwiederstedt, Saxony (d. 1801)
  • May 4 Friedrich Arnold Brockhaus, German encyclopedia publisher, born in Dortmund, Germany (d. 1823)
  • May 20 William Congreve, English artillery officer and inventor who designed fire rockets, born in London (d. 1829)
  • May 22 Ram Mohan Roy, Hindu reformer who helped found Brahmo Sabha, a social-religious reform movement, born in Radhanagar, British India (d. 1833)
  • Jun 6 Maria Theresa of Naples and Sicily, Holy Roman Empire Empress, born in Royal Palace, Naples (d. 1807)
  • Jun 8 Robert Stevenson, Scottish civil engineer (Bell Rock Lighthouse, Scotland), born in Glasgow, Scotland (d. 1850)
  • Aug 11 Rowland Hill, 1st Viscount/general
  • Aug 24 William I Frederick, King of the Netherlands (1815-40) and Grand Duke of Luxembourg, born in The Hague, Netherlands (d. 1843)
  • Aug 30 Henri de La Rochejacquelin, French Royalist Army leader, born in Mauléon, Kingdom of France (d. 1794)
  • Sep 27 Martha Jefferson Randolph, daughter of Thomas Jefferson the 3rd President of the U.S., born in Monticello, Virginia (d. 1836)

Person of interestSamuel Taylor Coleridge

Oct 21 Samuel Taylor Coleridge, English romantic poet (Rime of Ancient Mariner), born in Ottery St Mary, Devon (d. 1834)

Poet, Critic and Philosopher Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Poet, Critic and Philosopher
Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  • Nov 28 Luke Howard, British manufacturing chemist and meteorologist (nomenclature system for clouds), born in London (d. 1864)

Weddings in History

LoveWedding of Interest

Jan 1 US founding father Thomas Jefferson (30) marries Martha Wayles Skelton (23)

3rd US President Thomas Jefferson
3rd US President
Thomas Jefferson

LoveWedding of Interest

Mar 28 Charles Edward Stuart 'the Young Pretender' (52) marries by proxy Princess Louise of Stolberg-Gedern (20)

Pretender to the British throne Bonnie Prince Charlie
Pretender to the British throne
Bonnie Prince Charlie

Deaths in History

  • Feb 8 Augusta of Saxe-Gotha, Princess of Wales by marriage to Frederick, Prince of Wales, dies at 52
  • Feb 10 Joseph Wenzel I, Prince of Liechtenstein and general, dies at 75
  • Feb 18 Johann Hartwig Ernst, Count von Bernstorff, Danish statesman (b. 1712)
  • Mar 2 Robert J Pothier, French lawyer, dies at 73
  • Mar 21 Jacques-Nicolas Bellin, French cartographer (b. 1703)
  • Mar 22 John Canton, English physicist, dies at 53
  • Mar 26 Charles Pinot Duclos, French writer (b. 1704)
  • Mar 29 Emanuel Swedenborg, Swedish philosopher and mathematician (b. 1688)
  • Apr 28 Johann Friedrich Struensee, German physician of Christian VII of Denmark, dies at 34
  • May 1 Gottfried Achenwall, German lawyer/statistics/economist, dies at 52
  • May 22 Durastante Natalucci, Italian historian (specialized in history of Trevi, in Umbria), dies at 84
  • Jun 12 Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne, French explorer (made important discoveries in the south Indian Ocean, in Tasmania and in New Zealand), killed by local Maori in New Zealand at 48 (b. 1724)
  • Jun 18 Gerard van Swieten, Dutch-Austrian physician (Austrian Empress Maria Theresa's personal physician), dies at 72
  • Jun 18 Johann Ulrich von Cramer, German judge and philosopher, dies at 65
  • Aug 31 William Borlase, English naturalist (b. 1695)
  • Sep 30 James Brindley, English engineer (canals and watermills), dies at about 76
  • Oct 7 John Woolman, American Quaker preacher and abolitionist, dies of smallpox at 51
  • Nov 5 Pieter Steyn, Dutch grand pensionary (1749-72), dies at 66
  • Nov 10 Pedro Antonio Joaquim Correa da Serra Garção, Portuguese poet (b. 1724)
  • Nov 11 John Mauritius Quinkhard, portrait painter, dies at 84
  • Nov 19 William Nelson, American colonial governor of Virginia (b. 1711)
  • Dec 28 Ernst J earl van/of Biron, Russian duke of Courland, dies at 82