1741 in literature
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The year 1741 in literature involved some significant events and new books.
- January 29 - A memorial to William Shakespeare (d. 1616), designed by William Kent and sculpted by Peter Scheemakers, is erected in Poets' Corner of Westminster Abbey.
- February 13 - Andrew Bradford launches the American colonies' first periodical in Philadelphia, the American Magazine.
- March 14 - K.K. Theater an der Burg (Imperial Court Theatre) in Vienna opened.
- October 19 - David Garrick makes his London stage debut, as Shakespeare's Richard III. His performance quickly packs theatres. His professional debut was earlier in the year at Ipswich in Southerne's adaptation of Oroonoko.
- Irish-born actor Charles Macklin makes his London stage debut in the part of Shakespeare's Shylock at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, reversing the tradition of portraying the character as a comic villain.
- Printer Robert Foulis sets up as a publisher in Edinburgh.
- The Life of Pamela (parody of Richardson's Pamela)
- Pamela Censured
- Geoffrey Chaucer - The Canterbury Tales of Chaucer (new edition revives interest in Chaucer's tales)
- Stephen Duck - Every Man in his Own Way
- Henry Fielding (as "Mr. Conny Keyber") - An Apology for the Life of Mrs. Shamela Andrews
- Eliza Haywood - The Anti-Pamela; or Feign’d Innocence Detected
- Ludvig Holberg - Niels Klim's Underground Travels
- John Kelly - Pamela's Conduct in High Life (continuation of Pamela)
- Robert Craggs Nugent - An Ode to Mankind
- Alexander Pope with John Gay and John Arbuthnot - Memoirs of the Extraordinary Life, Works, and Discoveries of Martinus Scriblerus
- Charles Povey - The Virgin in Eden (prose fiction)
- Samuel Richardson
- Letters Written to and for Particular Friends (aka "Familiar Letters")
- Pamela; or, Virtue Rewarded vols. iii - iv
- John and Charles Wesley - A Collection of Psalms and Hymns
- Hristofor Zhefarovich - Stemmatographia
- Real Academia Española - Ortografía
- Martín Sarmiento - Memorias para la historia de la poesía y poetas españoles
- Anonymous - Pamela; or, Virtue Triumphant
- Robert Dodsley - The Blind Beggar of Bethnal Green (adapted from the anonymous Elizabethan play)
- David Garrick - The Lying Valet
- William Hatchett - The Chinese Orphan: An Historical Tragedy (adapted from the 13th century Chinese play The Orphan of Zhao; unperformed)
- John Kelly - The Levee
- Voltaire - Mahomet (first performed)
- William Shenstone - The Judgment of Hercules
- Edward Young - Poetical Works of the Reverend Edward Young
- Alonso Verdugo, third Earl of Torrepalma - Adonis
- Thomas Betterton - The History of the English Stage, from the Restoration to the Present
- Thomas Francklin - Of the Nature of the Gods
- David Hume - Essays Moral and Political
- Emanuel Swedenborg - A Hieroglyphic Key to Natural and Spiritual Arcana by Way of Representation and Correspondences (written, published in 1784).
- Jonathan Swift
- Dean Swift's Literary Correspondence (pirate publication by Edmund Curll, for which he was sued by Pope)
- Some Free Thoughts on the Present State of Affairs
- Isaac Watts - The Improvement of the Mind
- Leonard Welsted - The Summum Bonum
- George Whitefield - A Letter to the Reverend John Wesley
- January 16 – Hester Thrale (Mrs Piozzi), English diarist and arts patron (died 1821)
- August 25 – Karl Friedrich Bahrdt, German theologian and adventurer (died 1792)
- October 4 – Edmond Malone, Irish Shakespearean editor (died 1812)
- October 18 – Pierre Choderlos de Laclos, French novelist (died 1803)
- October 28 – Johann August von Starck, German theologian and political writer (died 1816)
- February 21 – Jethro Tull, English agricultural innovator and writer (born 1674)
- March 17 – Jean-Baptiste Rousseau, French dramatist and poet (born 1671)
- April 10 – Celia Fiennes, English travel writer (born 1662)
- December 14 – Charles Rollin, French historian (born 1661)
- December 21 – Bernard de Montfaucon, French scholar and palaeographer (born 1655)
- Unknown date – Thomas Emlyn, English Unitarian writer (born 1663)
- "History". Westminster Abbey. Retrieved 2013-11-29.
- "First Magazine Published in America". West Hempstead Public Library. Retrieved 2012-07-22.
- Horace Walpole remarked, "there was a dozen dukes a night at Goodman's Fields." Freedley, George; Reeves, John A. (1968). A History of the Theatre. New York, Crown. p. 290.
- Simpson, Louis (1993-04-04). "There, They Could Say, Is the Jew". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-09-04.