This article is about the year 1771.
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1771 (MDCCLXXI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (dominical letter F) of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Saturday (dominical letter B) of the Julian calendar, the 1771st year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 771st year of the 2nd millennium, the 71st year of the 18th century, and the 2nd year of the 1770s decade. Note that the Julian day for 1771 is 11 calendar days difference, which continued to be used from 1582 until the complete conversion of the Gregorian calendar was entirely done in 1929.
- January 5 – Great Kalmyk (Torghut) Migration under Ubashi Khan from the east bank of the Lower Volga River back to the homeland of Dzungaria, at this time under Qing dynasty rule.
- January 9 – Emperor Go-Momozono accedes to the throne of Japan, following his aunt's abdication.
- February 12 – Upon the death of Adolf Frederick, he is succeeded as King of Sweden by his son Gustav III. At the time, however, Gustav is unaware of this, since he is abroad in Paris. The news of his father's death reaches him about a month later.
- March – War of the Regulation: North Carolina Governor William Tryon raises a militia to put down the long running uprising of backcountry militias against North Carolina's colonial government.
- March 12 – The North Carolina General Assembly establishes Wake County (named for Margaret Wake, the wife of North Carolina Royal Governor William Tryon) from portions of Cumberland, Johnston and Orange counties. Bloomsbury (later known as Wake Courthouse) is made the informal county seat.
- March 15 – Society of Civil Engineers first meets (in London), the world's oldest engineering society.
- May 11 – War of the Regulation: North Carolina Governor William Tryon marches his militia out of Hillsborough to come to the aid of General Hugh Waddell's beleaguered forces. Tryon's army stops at Alamance Creek, 5 miles (8.0 km) away from the Regulator army.
- May 16 – War of the Regulation: The Battle of Alamance commences after Regulators reject an appeal by Governor Tryon to peacefully disperse. Governor Tryon's forces crush the rebellion, causing many Regulators to move to frontier areas outside of North Carolina.
- May 23 – Battle of Lanckorona: A force of 4,000 Russians under Alexander Suvorov defeat a Polish formation of 1,300 men.
- May – The Three battles of Sarbakusa: an alliance of three of the most powerful aristocrats of Ethiopia – Goshu of Amhara, Wand Bewossen, and Fasil of Damot – defeats Ras Mikael Sehul and Emperor Tekle Haymanot I, taking control of Ethiopia.
- The territory of Baden-Baden is inherited by Charles Frederick, Margrave of Baden-Durlach, reunifing the territories of Baden.
- The trade monopoly with Iceland is transferred to the Danish crown.
- The North Carolina General Assembly passes an act establishing the town of Martinsborough, named for Royal Governor Josiah Martin, on the land of Richard Evans, which will serve as the county seat of Pitt County.
- Construction of the Putuo Zongcheng Temple complex in Chengde, China is completed during the reign of the Qianlong Emperor.
- Limoges porcelain manufacture established in France.
- Slovene literature: István Küzmics, the Hungarian Slovene writer and evangelical pastor, publishes (in Halle) the Nouvi Zákon, a translation of the New Testament into the Prekmurje Slovene language, with discrete South Slavic artwork.
- March 20 – Heinrich Clauren, German author (d. 1854)
- March 25 – Germanos III of Old Patras, Greek Metropolitan Bishop of Patras (d. 1826)
- April 3 – Hans Nielsen Hauge, Norwegian revivalist and entrepreneur (d. 1824)
- April 13 – Richard Trevithick, English inventor (d. 1833)
- April 18 – Karl Philipp, Prince of Schwarzenberg, Austrian field marshal (d. 1820)
- April 27 – Jean Rapp, French general (d. 1821)
- May 16 – Louis Henri Loison, French general (d. 1816)
- June 5 – Ernest Augustus I of Hanover (d. 1851)
- August 15 – Sir Walter Scott, Scottish novelist and poet (d. 1832)
- September 5 – Archduke Charles of Austria, Austrian general and statesman (d. 1847)
- September 17 – Johann August Apel, German writer and jurist (d. 1816)
- September 23 – Emperor Kōkaku of Japan (d. 1840)
- October 9 – Frederick William, Duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel (d. 1815)
- October 23 – Jean-Andoche Junot, French general (d. 1813)
- November 14 – Marie François Xavier Bichat, French anatomist and physiologist (d. 1802)
- Unknown – William Lloyd, Welsh Anglican priest turned schoolteacher and Methodist preacher (d. 1841)
- January 5 – John Russell, 4th Duke of Bedford, British statesman (b. 1710)
- January 11 – Jean-Baptiste de Boyer, Marquis d'Argens, French writer (b. 1704)
- February 12 – Adolf Frederick, King of Sweden (b. 1710)
- February 20 – Jean-Jacques d'Ortous de Mairan, French geophysicist (b. 1678)
- March 8 – Louis August le Clerc, French-born sculptor (b. 1688)
- May 21 – Christopher Smart, English poet (b. 1722)
- June 8 – George Montagu-Dunk, 2nd Earl of Halifax, English statesman (b. 1716)
- July 30 – Thomas Gray, English writer (b. 1716)
- September 17 – Tobias Smollett, Scottish novelist (b. 1721)
- November 6 – John Bevis, English physician and astronomer (b. 1695)
- November 13 – Konrad Ernst Ackermann, German actor (b. 1712)
- December 6 – Giovanni Battista Morgagni, Italian anatomist (b. 1682)
- December 23 – Marie-Marguerite d'Youville, Canadian saint (b. 1701)
- December 26 – Claude Adrien Helvétius, French philosopher (b. 1715)
- December 27 – Henri Pitot, Italian-born French engineer (b. 1695)