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|( 1780s: ) 1788|
Australia is colonized, starting a British political prison camp, in what will become Sydney
- January 1 – The first edition of The Times, previously The Daily Universal Register, is published in London.
- January 18 – The leading ship (armed tender HMS Supply) in Captain Arthur Phillip's First Fleet arrives at Botany Bay, to colonise Australia.
- January 26 – Australia Day: Eleven ships of the First Fleet from Botany Bay, led by Captain Arthur Phillip, land at Sydney Cove (which will become Sydney), Australia, where he determines to establish the British prison colony of New South Wales, the first permanent European settlement on the continent.
- January 31 – Henry Benedict Stuart becomes the new Stuart claimant to the throne of Great Britain, as King Henry IX and the figurehead of Jacobitism.
- February 1 – Isaac Briggs and William Longstreet patent a steamboat.
- February 7 – Sydney is named and founded, by the British Colony of New South Wales.
- May 15 – The Australian frontier wars begin.
- June 7 – France: Day of the Tiles, which some consider the beginning of the French Revolution.
- June 9 – The African Association, an exploration group dedicated to plotting the Niger River and finding Timbuktu, is founded in England.
- July 13 – A hailstorm sweeps across France and the Dutch Republic, with hailstones 'as big as quart bottles' that take 'three days to melt'; immense damage is done.
- July 24 – Governor General Lord Dorchester, by proclamation issued from the Chateau St. Louis in Quebec City, divides the British Province of Quebec into five Districts, namely: Gaspé, Nassau, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, and Hesse.
- August 8 – King Louis XVI of France agrees to convene the Estates-General meeting in May 1789, the first time since 1614.
- September 24 – The Theater War begins, when the army of Denmark–Norway invades Sweden.
- October – King George III of the United Kingdom becomes deranged; the Regency Crisis of 1788 starts.
- November 20 – In the United Kingdom, the Houses of Parliament are given the first formal report by Prime Minister Pitt of the mental illness of King George III. Parliament adjourns for two weeks, to await the results of examinations by royal physicians.
- November 25 – Fifty consecutive days of temperatures below freezing strike France, a record that will be unbroken more than 200 years later.
- Annual British iron production reaches 68,000 tons.
|Title||Born||Place of birth||Died||Description|
|Robert Peel||5 February 1788||Lancashire|
|2 July 1850||Twice UK PM|
- Robert Huish, Memoirs of George the Fourth: Descriptive of the Most Interesting Scenes of His Private and Public Life, and the Important Events of His Memorable Reign (Thomas Kelly Publishers, 1830) p195
- David Andress, The Oxford Handbook of the French Revolution (Oxford University Press, 2015)