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Population: 514 Million*
  • Entertainment: Writers include George Tuberville Epitaphs, Epigrams, Songs, Sonets, Francesco Guicciardini Storia d'Italia (posthumous), Edward Hake (translation of Thomas a Kempis' The Imitation of Christ),
    Art includes Pieter Brueghel "Adoration of the Magi", Giovanni da Bologna "Mercury" sculpture, Titian "Jacopo de Strada",
  • Deaths: Rebel Shane O'Neill (assassinated), Composer Waclaw of Szamotuli, Lord Darnley of Scotland (explosion), Austrian Hans Steininger trips on 4.5 foot beard and breaks neck


  • General: Hawkins makes third journey to West Indies accompanied by Francis Drake
    Two million Indians die in S. America of typhus
  • Brazil: Rio de Janeiro founded by Portuguese


  • China: Russians reach Peking
  • India: Akbar the Great conquers Chitor
  • Japan: Nobunaga deposes shogunate and centralizes government


  • England: Lord Darnley murdered – possibly on Earl of Bothwell's orders – Bothwell carries Mary Queen of Scots off to Dunbar and there she marries Bothwell
    Earl of Morton discovers Queen Mary's "Casket of Letters"
    Queen Mary forced to abdicate and makes stepbrother Earl of Moray the regent
    Elizabeth I recognizes eisteddfod (re: literature) Bardic competitions held in Wales – started in 12th century
    Rugby School founded by Lourence Sheriff
  • German States: University of Helmstedt at Brunswick founded
  • Holland: Duke of Alba arrives as military governor in the Netherlands and begins reign of terror – arrests Counts Egmont and Hoorn – Margaret of Parma resigns regency
  • Holy Roman Empire: Maximilian II establishes monastery council to superintend clergy
  • Ireland: Irish rebel Shane O'Neill assassinated
  • Italian States: Construction of S. Trinita Bridge in Florence
  • Scotland: Protestant lords rebel in Scotland against Mary who flees to England where Elizabeth I imprisons her - James VI rules (age 6)
  • Spain: King Philip, angered by image-breaking in Netherlands, sends Army under the duke of Alba - tyrant who fuels hatred of Catholics
    Armed rebellion of Moriscos (Moors)

Middle East


  • General: Alvaro de Mendana, Spanish sailor, sets sail from Callo in Peru across Pacific, discovers Ellice Islands and Solomon Islands