1861 in Wales
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- 30 May - In a by-election caused by the death of the sitting MP, Richard Grosvenor becomes MP for Flintshire, holding it on behalf of the Liberals.
- 10 June - The Oswestry and Newtown Railway is completed throughout by opening of the section between Abermule and Newtown, giving through rail communication from England to Llanidloes.
- July - Baner ac Amserau Cymru begins twice-weekly publication.
- date unknown
- Japanese knotweed is recorded at Maesteg - the first record of it growing wild in the UK.
- Excavation of Long Hole Cave in Glamorgan reveals prehistoric flint artefacts.
- Pryce Pryce-Jones starts his mail order company in Newtown, Montgomeryshire.
- John Dillwyn-Llewelyn marries Caroline Hicks Beach.
- Griffith John becomes the first Christian missionary to penetrate into central China.
Arts and literature
- 20–22 August - The first National Eisteddfod of Wales is held at Aberdare. The chair is won by Lewis William Lewis.
- Autobiography and Correspondence of Mrs. Delaney, ed. Augusta Hall, Lady Llanover
- Griffith Jones (Glan Menai) - Hywel Wyn
- John Jones (Vulcan) - Athrawiaeth yr Iawn
- David Owen (Brutus) - Cofiant y Diweddar Barch. Thomas Williams
- Thomas Rees - History of Protestant Nonconformity in Wales: From Its Rise to the Present Time
- William Rees (Gwilym Hiraethog) - Emmanuel
- Jane Williams (Ysgafell) - The Literary Women of England
- Robert Williams (Trebor Mai) - Fy Noswyl
- Hugh Jerman - Deus Misereatur
- 1 January - John Owen Jones (Ap Ffarmwr), journalist (died 1899)
- 2 January (in Oswestry) - William Henry Griffith Thomas, clergyman and academic (died 1924)
- 22 March - Dick Kedzlie, Wales international rugby player (died 1920)
- 7 April - Clara Novello Davies, singer (died 1943)
- 5 May - John Edward Lloyd, historian (died 1947)
- 31 July at Garneddwen - Alfred W. Hughes, surgeon and founder of the Welsh Hospital in South Africa
- 27 August - Reginald Brooks-King, archer (died 1936)
- 10 September - Sir John Lynn-Thomas, surgeon (died 1939)
- 19 September - Evan Roberts, Wales international rugby player (died 1927)
- 26 October - Richard Griffith (Carneddog), writer (died 1947)
- 28 December - David Gwynn, Wales international rugby player (died 1897)
- date unknown
- 6 February - Sir John Owen, 1st Baronet, 84
- 20 April - David Pugh, merchant, landowner and politician, 
- 8 May - Thomas Lloyd-Mostyn, politician, 31
- 17 May - Ellis Owen Ellis, artist, 48?
- 2 August - Sidney Herbert, 1st Baron Herbert of Lea, statesman, 50
- 5 September - William Addams Williams, lawyer, landowner and politician, 74
- 26 September - Morris Davies (Meurig Ebrill), poet, 71
- 25 October - Sir James Graham, 2nd Baronet, former MP for Pembroke, 69
- Christiansen, Rex; Miller, R. W. (1971). The Cambrian Railways. 1 (new ed.). Newton Abbot: David & Charles. ISBN 0-7153-5236-9.
- Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments in Wales (1976). An Inventory of the Ancient Monuments in Glamorgan. Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments in Wales. p. 17. ISBN 978-0-11-700588-4.
- James Duff Brown; Stephen Samuel Stratton (1897). British Musical Biography: A Dictionary of Musical Artists, Authors, and Composers Born in Britain and Its Colonies. S.S. Stratton. p. 117ad.
- Leopold George Wickham Legg; Edgar Trevor Williams (1959). The Dictionary of National Biography, 1941-1950. Oxford University Press. p. 514.
- Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of Peerage, Baronetage and Knightage. Burke's Peerage Limited. 1868. p. 856.
- Richard Williams (1894). Montgomeryshire Worthies. Phillips & Son. pp. 264–5.
- Richard Parry (1861). Llandudno: its history and natural history. p. 23.
- Walter Bagehot (1986). The Collected Works of Walter Bagehot: Miscellany. Harvard University Press. p. 90.
- Fisher, D.R. (2009). The House of Commons, 1820–1832: Addams Williams, William (1787–1861), of Llangibby Castle, Mon. Cambridge ; New York: Cambridge University Press Series: History of Parliament. ISBN 9780521193146. Retrieved 21 May 2012.
- Samuel Maunder (1868). The Biographical Treasury a Dictionary of Universal Biography by Samuel Maunder, Author of The Treasury of Knowledge . Longman, Green, Reader, and Dyer. p. 406.