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This article is about the year 1738.
|Centuries:||17th century – 18th century – 19th century|
|Decades:||1700s 1710s 1720s – 1730s – 1740s 1750s 1760s|
|Years:||1735 1736 1737 – 1738 – 1739 1740 1741|
|1738 by topic:|
|Arts and Sciences|
|Archaeology – Architecture – Art – Literature (Poetry) – Music – Science|
|Canada – Great Britain –|
|Lists of leaders|
|Colonial governors – State leaders|
|Birth and death categories|
|Births – Deaths|
|Establishments and disestablishments categories|
|Establishments – Disestablishments|
|Ab urbe condita||2491|
|British Regnal year||11 Geo. 2 – 12 Geo. 2|
|Chinese calendar||丁巳年 (Fire Snake)
4434 or 4374
— to —
戊午年 (Earth Horse)
4435 or 4375
|- Vikram Samvat||1794–1795|
|- Shaka Samvat||1660–1661|
|- Kali Yuga||4839–4840|
|Japanese calendar||Genbun 3
|Julian calendar||Gregorian minus 11 days|
|Minguo calendar||174 before ROC
|Thai solar calendar||2280–2281|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to 1738.|
Year 1738 (MDCCXXXVIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Sunday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar.
- February 4 – Court Jew Joseph Süß Oppenheimer is executed in Württemberg.
- March/April – Emperor Iyasu II of Ethiopia is defeated by the Funj at the Battle of the Dindar River.
- April 15 – Serse, an Italian opera by George Frideric Handel, premieres in London.
- May 24 – John Wesley experiences a spiritual rebirth at a Moravian Church meeting in Aldersgate in the City of London, essentially launching the Methodist movement; the day is celebrated annually by Methodists as Aldersgate Day. His younger brother Charles had a similar experience three days earlier.
- September 18 – Samuel Johnson composes his first solemn prayer (published 1785).
- November 18 – The Treaty of Vienna is ratified, ending the War of the Polish Succession. Under the terms of the treaty, Stanisław Leszczyński receives Lorraine in exchange for renouncing the Polish throne.
- Russo–Turkish War (1735–1739): The Russian army fails to cross the Dniester. They are decimated by plague.
- China's Qing government announces that all western businessmen have to use the Cohong in Guangzhou to trade.
- The excavation of Herculaneum, a Roman city buried by Vesuvius in AD 79, begins.
- Pierre Louis Maupertuis publishes Sur la figure de la terre, which confirms Newton's view that the earth is an oblate spheroid slightly flattened at the poles.
- Jacques de Vaucanson presents the world's first automaton, The Flute Player (1737) to the French Academy of Sciences.
- Black Forest clockmaker Franz Ketterer produces one of the earliest cuckoo clocks.
- Holy Royal Arch is founded.
- January 21 – Ethan Allen, American patriot (d. 1789)
- April 12 – Padre Francisco Garcés, Spanish missionary (d. 1781)
- April 14 – William Cavendish-Bentinck, 3rd Duke of Portland, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (d. 1809)
- April 16 – Henry Clinton, British officer (d. 1795)
- May 1 – King Kamehameha I of Hawaii (d. 1819)
- May 27 – Nathaniel Gorham, American politician (d. 1796)
- May 28 – Joseph-Ignace Guillotin, French physician (d. 1814)
- June 4 – King George III of the United Kingdom (d. 1820)
- July 3 – John Singleton Copley, American painter (d. 1815)
- September 25 – Nicholas Van Dyke, American lawyer and President of Delaware (d. 1789)
- October 11 – Arthur Phillip, British admiral and Governor of New South Wales (d. 1814)
- October 18 – Andrei Bolotov, Russian agriculturalist and memoirist (d. 1833)
- November 15 – William Herschel, German-born astronomer (d. 1822)
- December 31 – Charles Cornwallis, 1st Marquess Cornwallis, British general (d. 1805)
- February 15 – Matthias Braun, Czech sculptor (b. 1684)
- March 16 – George Bähr, German architect (b. 1666)
- March 25 – Turlough O'Carolan, Irish harper and composer (b. 1670)
- May 1 – Charles Howard, 3rd Earl of Carlisle, English statesman (b. c. 1669)
- May 15 – Sir John Chesshyre, English lawyer (b. 1662)
- June 5 – Isaac de Beausobre, French Protestant pastor (b. 1659)
- June 21 – Charles Townshend, 2nd Viscount Townshend, English politician (b. 1674)
- September 23 – Herman Boerhaave, Dutch humanist and physician (b. 1668)
- December 22 – Constantia Jones, English prostitute (executed) (b. c. 1708)