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|Centuries:||17th century – 18th century – 19th century|
|Decades:||1710s 1720s 1730s – 1740s – 1750s 1760s 1770s|
|Years:||1737 1738 1739 – 1740 – 1741 1742 1743|
|1740 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||2493|
|British Regnal year||13 Geo. 2 – 14 Geo. 2|
— to —庚申年十一月十三日
|- Vikram Samvat||1796–1797|
|- Shaka Samvat||1662–1663|
|- Kali Yuga||4841–4842|
|- Ǹrí Ìgbò||740–741|
|Japanese calendar||Genbun 5
|Juche calendar||N/A (before 1912)|
|Julian calendar||Gregorian minus 11 days|
|Minguo calendar||172 before ROC
|Thai solar calendar||2283|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: 1740|
- February 20 – The North Carolina General Assembly incorporates the town of Newton as Wilmington, North Carolina, named for Spencer Compton, 1st Earl of Wilmington, and patron of Royal Governor Gabriel Johnston.
- May 31 – Frederick II comes to power in Prussia upon the death of his father, Frederick William I.
- June 26 – War of Jenkins' Ear – Siege of Fort Mose: A Spanish column of 300 regular troops, free black militia and Indian auxiliaries storms Britain's strategically crucial position of Fort Mose, Florida.
- August 1 – The song Rule, Britannia! is first performed at Cliveden, the country home of Frederick, Prince of Wales.
- August 17 – Pope Benedict XIV succeeds Pope Clement XII as the 247th pope.
- October 9–22 – Batavia massacre: Troops of the Dutch East India Company massacre 5,000–10,000 Chinese Indonesians in Batavia.
- October 20 – Maria Theresa inherits the Habsburg hereditary dominions (Austria, Bohemia, Hungary and present-day Belgium). However, her succession to the Holy Roman Empire is contested widely because she is a woman.
- November – Hertford College, Oxford, is founded for the first time.
- December 16 – Frederick II of Prussia invades the Habsburg possession of Silesia, starting the War of the Austrian Succession.
Date unknown 
- By an act of the Parliament of Great Britain, alien immigrants (including Huguenots and Jews) in the colonies receive British nationality.
- Enfield, North Carolina, is founded.
- Adam Smith enters Balliol College, Oxford.
- George Whitefield founds the Bethesda Orphanage.
- Spain begins construction on Fort Matanzas in the Matanzas Inlet, approximately 15 miles (24 km) south of St. Augustine, Florida.
- Annual British iron production reaches 17,000 tons.
- February 4 – Carl Michael Bellman, Swedish poet and composer (d. 1795)
- February 15 – Juan Andrés, Spanish Jesuit (d. 1817)
- February 16 – Giambattista Bodoni, Italian publisher and engraver (d. 1813)
- March – Johann van Beethoven, German musician and father of Ludwig van Beethoven (d. 1792)
- March 16 – Johann Jacob Schweppe, inventor and founder of the Schweppes Company (d. 1821)
- May 7 – Nikolai Arkharov, Russian police chief (d. 1814)
- June 2 – Marquis de Sade, French author (d. 1814)
- June 6 – Victor Maitre, French aristocrat (d. 1796)
- August 14 – Pope Pius VII (d. 1823)
- August 23 – Emperor Ivan VI of Russia (d. 1764)
- September 23 – Empress Go-Sakuramachi of Japan (d. 1813)
- October 29 – James Boswell, Scottish author (d. 1795)
- January 5 – Antonio Lotti, Italian composer (b. 1667)
- January 27 – Louis Henri, Duc de Bourbon, Prime Minister of France (b. 1692)
- February 6 – Pope Clement XII (b. 1652)
- March 23 – Olof Rudbeck the Younger, Swedish scientist and explorer (b. 1660)
- April 23 – Thomas Tickell, English writer (b. 1685)
- May 31 – Frederick William I, King in Prussia (b. 1688)
- June 1 – Samuel Werenfels, Swiss theologian (b. 1657)
- June 6 – Alexander Spotswood, British governor of Virginia Colony (b. 1676)
- June 17 – William Wyndham, English politician (b. 1687)
- June 17 – Saint Theophilus of Corte, Corsican preacher and missionary (b. 1676)
- October 5 – Johann Philipp Baratier, German scholar (b. 1721)
- October 20 – Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor (b. 1685)
- October 28 – Anna, Empress of Russia (b. 1693)
- December 20 – Richard Boyle, 2nd Viscount Shannon, British military officer and statesman (b. 1675)
- Williams, Hywel (2005). Cassell's Chronology of World History. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson. p. 308. ISBN 0-304-35730-8.
- image: Bird's eye view of Batavia showing the massacre of the Chinese
- Hibbert, Christopher, ed. (1988). The Encyclopædia of Oxford. London: Macmillan. p. 182. ISBN 0-333-39917-X.