Politics and World Events
January 29: France's King Louis XVI. At the initiative of Charles Alexandre de Calonne, who was responsible for finances, convenes a meeting of notables to persuade the privileged estates to renounce their tax exemption. This is intended to put the shattered state finances in order.
February 22: The French Assembly of Notables meets at the Palace of Versailles for the first time since 1626. Contrary to what was expected, however, she does not prove to be compliant. Only the Count of Artois, the king's brother, supported his tax plans.
April 9 Charles Alexandre de Calonne is dismissed as finance minister under pressure from the nobility and especially from Queen Marie-Antoinette. The minister known as "Monsieur Deficite" is exiled to Lorraine. His successor will be Étienne Charles de Loménie de Brienne, a member of the Assembly of Notables, on May 1st. In the course of the year, he felt compelled to raise taxes and thus aroused opposition from the parliaments.
May 25: The Assembly of Notables disperses without result.
November 29: The French King Louis XVI. issues an edict of tolerance in favor of the Huguenots.
Other events in Europe
January 1: The Josephine Criminal Law replaces the Constitutio Criminalis Theresiana in Austria. This means that torture and the death penalty have been abolished in ordinary criminal proceedings in the Habsburg hereditary lands.
May 13: The eleven-ship First Fleet, commanded by Arthur Phillip, departs Portsmouth for Australia with 756 prisoners and 550 crew members on board.
August 24 Turkey declares war on Russia. The Russo-Austrian Turkish War begins.
September 13: Prussian invasion of Holland
Grigory Aleksandrovich Potemkin is said to have shown Tsarina Catherine II of Russia the “Potemkin Villages” on a trip to the newly conquered Crimea to show her the development of Novorossiya.
Hamburg crosses the 100,000-inhabitant mark and thus becomes a big city.
May 25 The Philadelphia Convention meets to consider improvements to the Articles of Confederation. Ultimately, the Constitution of the United States grows out of the work of the delegates.
July 14: The Northwest Territory on the Great Lakes is formed with the Northwest Ordinance, with which the US states on the East Coast transfer their claims to areas west of the Appalachian Mountains to the federal government.
September 17: Completion of the US Constitution in Philadelphia
December 7th: Delaware becomes the 1st state of the USA
December 12: Pennsylvania joins the United States as the 2nd of the 13 founding states
December 18: New Jersey becomes the 3rd state of the USA
Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay write the Federalist Papers to convince their fellow citizens of the new constitution.
January: The French expedition led by Jean-François de La Pérouse reaches Macau after crossing the Pacific. Now the previously little-known East Asian sub-seas, the China Sea and the Japan Sea, are being systematically explored and mapped, as is the large Siberian peninsula of Kamchatka, which is of interest because of its abundance of fur.
September 29: In Petropavlovsk, the interpreter Jean Baptiste Barthélemy de Lesseps disembarks to cross Kamchatka and Siberia on his own.
After Sakhalin and the Japanese Kuril Islands have been explored, the South Seas are headed for. On December 11, on Samoa, the second captain and close friend of La Pérouse, the scientist Paul Fleuriot de Langle, is killed by locals.
January 11: Trade treaty between Russia and France.
September 30: The merchant ships Lady Washington and Columbia leave the