1851 in France
Events from the year 1851 in France.
- 1 March - Victor Hugo uses the phrase United States of Europe in a speech to the National Assembly.
- 1 July - Serial poisoner Hélène Jégado is arrested in Rennes.
- 2 December - French coup d'état of 1851 is staged by President Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte, dissolving the National Assembly.
- 6 December - Trial of Hélène Jégado begins; she is eventually sentenced to death and executed by guillotine.
- 21 December - Constitutional referendum held, approving President Louis Napoléon Bonaparte, who had been limited to a single four-year term, serving for ten additional years.
- Messageries Maritimes merchant shipping company founded as Messageries nationales, initially for service to the Middle East.
- 27 March - Vincent d'Indy, composer (died 1931)
- 21 April - Charles Barrois, geologist and palaeontologist (died 1939)
- 6 May - Aristide Bruant, singer, comedian and nightclub owner (died 1925)
- 21 May - Léon Bourgeois, politician, Prime Minister, awarded Nobel Peace Prize in 1920 (died 1925)
- 30 September - Auguste Molinier, historian (died 1904)
- 2 October - Ferdinand Foch, Marshal of France, military theorist and writer (died 1929)
- 28 February - Guillaume Dode de la Brunerie, Marshal of France, (born 1775)
- 19 October - Marie-Thérèse-Charlotte of France, eldest child of King Louis XVI of France (born 1778)
- 26 November - Jean-de-Dieu Soult, Marshal General of France and three times Prime Minister of France (born 1769)