1798 in literature
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This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1798.
- February – Samuel Taylor Coleridge writes the conversation poem "Frost at Midnight".
- April – Coleridge writes the conversation poems "Fears in Solitude" ("Written ... During the Alarm of an Invasion" and published soon afterwards in a pamphlet) and "The Nightingale".
- April 16 – Coleridge's "The Recantation: An Ode", published in The Morning Post, describes his disillusionment with the French Revolution.
- April 30 – Richard Cumberland's comedy The Eccentric Lover is first performed at the Covent Garden Theatre in London.
- September 18 – William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge's The anonymous Lyrical Ballads, with a Few Other Poems by William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge are first published. in Bristol, marking the beginning of English literary Romanticism. Most of the poems are by Wordsworth, including Lines composed a few miles above Tintern Abbey on revisiting the banks of the Wye during a tour, 13 July 1798, but also including the first publication of Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere. First London publication is on October 4.
- October 11 – Elizabeth Inchbald's Lovers' Vows (adapted from Kotzebue's Das Kind der Liebe) is first performed at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London.
- October 12 – The rebuilt Weimarer Hoftheater is inaugurated with the first performance of the first part of Friedrich Schiller's dramatic trilogy Wallenstein, Das Lager ("The Camp"), directed by Goethe.
- Publication of Ivan Kotliarevsky's mock-heroic poem Eneyida (Енеїда), the first printed work in the modern Ukrainian language.
- The National Library of the Netherlands originates when the Batavian Republic opens the former library of the stadtholder to the public.
- The Académie française publishes the 5th edition of its Dictionnaire.
- Thomas Nelson (publisher) originates in Edinburgh as a second-hand religious bookshop.
- Charles Brockden Brown
- Alcuin: a Dialogue
- Wieland: or, The Transformation; an American Tale
- Emily Clark – Ianthé, or the Flower of Caernarvon
- Francis Lathom – The Midnight Bell: a German story, founded on incidents in real life
- Regina Maria Roche – Clermont: a Tale
- Eleanor Sleath – The Orphan of the Rhine: a romance
- Caroline von Wolzogen (anonymously) – Agnes von Lilien (first complete book publication, in 2 vols)
- Mary Wollstonecraft – Posthumous Works (edited by William Godwin) including Maria: or, The Wrongs of Woman
- François Guillaume Ducray-Duminil – Cœlina, ou l'Enfant du mystère (Celina, or the Mystery Child)
- Edward Augustus Kendall
- Keeper's Travels in Search of His Master
- The Sparrow. A Tale
- Richmal Mangnall (anonymously) – Historical and Miscellaneous Questions for the Use of Young People (often known as Mangnall's Questions)
- Samuel Jackson Pratt – Pity's Gift: a collection of interesting tales, to excite the compassion of youth for the animal creation (Selected by a Lady)
- Elizabeth Craven – The Georgian Princess
- Richard Cumberland – The Eccentric Lover
- Elizabeth Inchbald – Lovers' Vows
- Friedrich von Schiller – Wallensteins Lager
- Samuel Taylor Coleridge and William Wordsworth – Lyrical Ballads
- Richard Polwhele (anonymously) – The Unsex'd Females
- Nathan Drake – Literary Hours
- Hannah Webster Foster – The Boarding School; or, Lessons of a Preceptress to Her Pupils
- William Godwin – Memoirs of the Author of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman
- Thomas Malthus (anonymously) – An Essay on the Principle of Population
- January 5 – David Macbeth Moir, Scottish poet and humorist (died 1851)
- January 29 – Henry Neele, English poet and scholar (died 1828)
- February 12 – Catherine Gore, English novelist and dramatist (died 1861)
- February 17 – Auguste Comte, French philosopher (died 1857)
- March 30 – Luise Hensel, German religious author and poet (died 1876)
- June 29 – Count Giacomo Leopardi, Italian poet, essayist and philologist (died 1837)
- April 12 – Madeleine de Puisieux, French philosopher and feminist writer (born 1720)
- June 4 – Giacomo Casanova, Italian librarian and memoirist (born 1725)
- June 20 – Jeremy Belknap, American historian of New Hampshire (born 1744)
- December 16 – Thomas Pennant, Welsh naturalist and travel writer (born 1726)