1726 in literature
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This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1726.
- February – Lavinia Fenton makes her stage debut as Monimia in Thomas Otway's The Orphan at the Haymarket Theatre in London.
- April 5 – Publication in London of Lewis Theobald's Shakespeare Restored, or A Specimen of the Many Errors As Well Committed as Unamended by Mr Pope in his Late Edition of this Poet; Designed Not only to correct the said Edition, but to restore the True Reading of Shakespeare in all the Editions ever yet published.
- May 1 – Voltaire arrives for a 3-year stay in England.
- May 25 – Britain's first circulating library is opened in Edinburgh (Scotland) by poet and bookseller Allan Ramsay.
- October 26 – Publication in London (anonymously in two volumes) of Jonathan Swift's satirical novel Gulliver's Travels as Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of Several Ships; it sells out within a week.
- Teatro Valle opens in Rome.
- Françoise-Louise de Warens converts to Catholicism to receive a church pension and annuls her marriage.
- The Gujin Tushu Jicheng, an immense Chinese encyclopedia, is printed using copper-based movable type printing.
- Anonymous – Gulliver Decyphered
- Penelope Aubin – The Life and Adventures of the Lady Lucy (novel)
- Jane Barker – The Lining of the Patch-Work Screen (sequel to 1723's A Patch-Work Screen)
- William Rufus Chetwood – The Voyages and Adventures of Captain Robert Boyle (fiction, sometimes attributed to Daniel Defoe)
- Eliza Haywood
- The City Jilt
- The Mercenary Lover
- Jonathan Swift
- Lewis Theobald – Shakespeare Restored
- José Francisco de Isla – Papeles critico-apologéticos
- Diego de Torres Villarroel – El ermitaño y Torres
- Martín Sarmiento – Reflexiones sobre el Diccionario de la lengua castellana que compuso la Real Academia en el año de 1726
- Aaron Hill – The Fatal Extravagance
- Thomas Southerne – Money the Mistress
- Leonard Welsted – The Dissembling Wanton
- Alexander Pope – The Odyssey of Homer
- Richard Savage – Miscellaneous Poems
- William Somervile – Occasional Poems
- Jonathan Swift (anonymously) – Cadenus and Vanessa (written 1713)
- James Thomson – Winter (part of The Four Seasons)
- John Balguy – A letter to a Deist concerning the Beauty and Excellency of Moral Virtue, and the Support and Improvement which it receives from the Christian Religion
- Joseph Butler – Fifteen Sermons
- Anthony Collins – The Scheme of Literal Prophecy
- Corporate authorship – The Craftsman (periodical associated with Henry St. John)
- Daniel Defoe
- The Political History of the Devil
- A System of Magick
- John Dennis – The Stage Defended (reply to Law, below)
- William Law
- The Absolute Unlawfulness of the Stage
- A Practical Treatise upon Christian Perfection
- William Penn
- Fruits of a Father's Love
- A Collection of the Works of William Penn
- (with William Pulteney) – The Discovery
- Joseph Spence – An Essay on Pope's Odyssey (concerning a translation of Homer's Odyssey by Alexander Pope)
- April 7 – Charles Burney, English historian of music and composer (died 1814)
- June 14 – Thomas Pennant, Welsh naturalist and writer (died 1798)
- September 2 – John Howard, English philanthropist and writer (died 1790)
- September 25 – Angelo Maria Bandini, Italian author and librarian (died 1800)
- September 26 – John H. D. Anderson, Scottish natural philosopher (died 1796)
- March 26 – Sir John Vanbrugh, English dramatist and architect (born 1664)
- April 5 – Ludwig Babenstuber, German theologian and philosopher (born 1660)
- April 26 – Jeremy Collier, English theologian and critic (born 1650)
- May 20 – Nicholas Brady, Irish poet (born 1659)
- July 5 – Domenico Viva, Italian theologian (born 1648)
- July 6 – Humfrey Wanley, English librarian and palaeographer (born 1672)
- December 2 – Samuel Penhallow, English historian (born 1665)
- December 11 – Jacques Bouillart, French Benedictine historian (born 1669)
- Unknown dates