Born in 1740

Jan 16 Willoughby Bertie 4th Earl of Abingdon an English peer and music patron.
Jan 22 Noah Phelps Maj. Gen. Noah Phelps , was the son of David Phelps and Abigail Pettibone Phelps, and was descended from the English immigrant William Phelps. The family settled in Simsbury, Connecticut before 1750, and General Phelps became an active and influential man. He was a Yale University graduate, a justice of the Peace, judge of Probate for twenty years, and was a Delegate to the Constitutional Convention of 1787 to ratify the Federal Constitution
Jan 27 Johan Andreas Murray a Swedish physician of German descent and botanist who published a major work on plant-derived medicines.
Feb 4 Adam Philippe Comte de Custine a French general, who was an officer in the Royalist army of Louis XV's. When the French Revolution began he joined the Revolutionary army as a brigadier-general, but resigned his commission when elected states-general. He rejoined the army in 1791 as a lieutenant-general and proved to be modestly successful in that role. However when he failed to relieve Condé-sur-l'Escaut he was found guilty of treason and executed
Feb 4 Carl Michael Bellman a Swedish poet, songwriter, composer and performer. Bellman is a central figure in the Swedish song tradition and remains a powerful influence in Swedish music, as well as in Scandinavian literature, to this day
Feb 11 Pierre Victor baron Malouet a French slave-owner, conservative publicist and monarchist politician, who signed as an "Émigré" the Whitehall Accord.
Feb 13 Sophie Arnould a French operatic soprano.
Feb 15 Ernst Eichner a German composer.
Feb 17 Horace-Bénédict de Saussure a Swiss aristocrat, physicist and Alpine traveller, often considered the founder of alpinism, and considered to be the first person to build a successful solar oven.
Feb 22 Valentin Adamberger a German operatic tenor. His voice was universally admired for its pliancy, agility, and precision, and several composers of note, such as Mozart, wrote music specifically for him
Feb 26 Giambattista Bodoni an Italian typographer, type-designer, compositor, printer and publisher in Parma.
Mar 2 Nicholas Pocock a British artist best known for his many detailed paintings of naval battles during the age of sail.
Mar 16 Johann Jacob Schweppe a German-born naturalised Swiss watchmaker and amateur scientist who developed the first practical process to manufacture carbonated mineral water, based on a process discovered by Joseph Priestley in 1770.
Mar 31 Panoutsos Notaras a leading figure of the Greek War of Independence, serving several times as president of the Greek national assemblies and legislative bodies.
Apr 2 Armand-Gaston Camus a successful advocate before the French Revolution. He was the son of Pierre Camus, a lawyer in the Parlement of Paris
Apr 18 Sir Francis Baring 1st Baronet an English merchant banker, a member of the Baring family, later becoming the first of the Baring baronets.
Apr 26 Jean-Jacques Paulet a French mycologist.
May 2 Elias Boudinot a lawyer and statesman from Elizabeth, New Jersey who was a delegate to the Continental Congress and served as President of Congress from 1782 to 1783. He was elected as a U.S. Congressman for New Jersey following the American Revolutionary War. He was appointed by President George Washington as Director of the United States Mint, serving from 1795 until 1805
May 6 Gabriel Gruber Very Rev. Gabriel Gruber, S.J. was the second Superior General of the Society of Jesus in Russia
May 7 Nikolai Arkharov a Russian police chief best known for having given his name to the Russian term "arkharovtsy", an ironic appellation of policemen.
May 9 Giovanni Paisiello an Italian composer of the Classical era.
May 19 Joseph Franz Weigl a Bavarian and Austrian cellist. He was a cellist in the orchestra of the Esterházy family. He played under the directorship of Joseph Haydn, who also was godfather to the cellist's son, and it is thought that Haydn wrote his cello concerto in C major for him
May 28 Fedot Shubin widely regarded as the greatest sculptor of 18th-century Russia.
Jun 2 Marquis de Sade a French aristocrat, revolutionary politician, philosopher and writer, famous for his libertine sexuality. His works include novels, short stories, plays, dialogues and political tracts; in his lifetime some were published under his own name, while others appeared anonymously and Sade denied being their author. He is best known for his erotic works, which combined philosophical discourse with pornography, depicting sexual fantasies with an emphasis on violence, criminality and blasphemy against the Catholic Church. He was a proponent of extreme freedom, unrestrained by morality, religion or law. The words sadism and sadist are derived from his name
Jun 6 Louis-Sébastien Mercier a French dramatist and writer.
Jun 7 Ferdinand Kobell a German painter and engraver.
Jun 24 Juan Ignacio Molina a Chilean Jesuit priest, naturalist, historian, botanist, ornithologist and geographer. He is usually referred to as Abate Molina , and is also sometimes known by the Italian form of his name, Giovanni Ignazio Molina
Jun 27 John Latham (ornithologist) an English physician, naturalist and author. He was born in Eltham in South East London, and was the eldest son of John Latham , a surgeon there, and his mother was a descendant of the Sothebys, in Yorkshire
Jul 15 Archibald Hamilton 9th Duke of Hamilton a Scottish peer and politician.
Jul 27 Jeanne Baré a member of Louis Antoine de Bougainville's expedition on the ships La Boudeuse and Étoile in 1766–1769. Baret is recognized as the first woman to have completed a voyage of circumnavigation
Aug 2 Jean Baptiste Camille Canclaux a French general during the French Revolution, a commander in chief, and a pair de France.
Aug 10 Leopold III Duke of Anhalt-Dessau a German prince of the House of Ascania. From 1751 until 1807 he was Reigning prince of the Principality of Anhalt-Dessau and from 1807 the first Duke of the Duchy of Anhalt-Dessau
Aug 10 Samuel Arnold (composer) an English composer and organist.
Aug 15 Matthias Claudius a German poet, otherwise known by the penname of “Asmus”.
Aug 20 Henry Jerome de Salis an English churchman. He was Rector of Antholin in the City of London and Vicar of Wing in Buckinghamshire. He was also known as: Revd Henry Jerome de Salis, MA; the Hon. & Rev. Henry Jerome De Salis, Count of the Holy Roman Empire; de Salis; Rev. Henry Jerome de Salis, and, from 1809, Rev. Count Henry Jerome de Salis
Aug 23 Ivan VI of Russia proclaimed Emperor of Russia in 1740, as an infant, although he never actually reigned. Within less than a year, he was overthrown by the Empress Elizabeth of Russia, Peter I's daughter. Ivan spent the rest of his life as a prisoner and was killed by his guards during an attempt made to free him
Aug 26 Montgolfier brothers Joseph-Michel Montgolfier and Jacques-Étienne Montgolfier were the inventors of the Montgolfière-style hot air balloon, globe aérostatique. The brothers succeeded in launching the first manned ascent, carrying Étienne into the sky. Later, in December 1783, in recognition of their achievement, their father Pierre was elevated to the nobility and the hereditary appellation of de Montgolfier by King Louis XVI of France
Aug 31 J. F. Oberlin Oberlin was a French pastor from Alsace and a philanthropist. He has been known as John Frederic Oberlin in English, Jean-Frédéric Oberlin in French, and Johann Friedrich Oberlin in German
Sep 7 Johan Tobias Sergel a Swedish neoclassical sculptor, born in Stockholm.
Sep 10 Ivan Lepyokhin a Russian naturalist, zoologist, botanist and explorer.
Sep 10 Nicolau Tolentino de Almeida the foremost Portuguese satirical poet of the 18th century. Beginning at age 20, Tolentino studied law for three years at the University of Coimbra; he then ended those studies to teach rhetoric. He was sent to Lisbon in 1776 to fill a post, and was named professor of rhetoric a year later. His interests soon shifted once again, from teaching, to public office. He wrote against the Marquis of Pombal, and therefore gained the favor of Pombal's successor. He was awarded with a sinecure office in the royal administration. In 1790, he was honored with the title of knight of the royal family
Sep 12 Johann Heinrich Jung a German author.
Sep 17 John Hamilton Mortimer a British figure and landscape painter and printmaker, known for romantic paintings set in Italy, works depicting conversations, and works drawn in the 1770s portraying war scenes, similar to those of Salvator Rosa.
Sep 17 John Cartwright (political reformer) an English naval officer, Nottinghamshire militia major and prominent campaigner for parliamentary reform. He subsequently became known as the Father of Reform. His younger brother Edmund Cartwright became famous as the inventor of the steam power loom
Sep 23 Empress Go-Sakuramachi the 117th monarch of Japan, according to the traditional order of succession.
Oct 20 Isabelle de Charrière a Dutch writer of the Enlightenment who lived the latter half of her life in Switzerland. She is now best known for her letters and novels, although she also wrote pamphlets, music and plays. She took a keen interest in the society and politics of her age, and her work around the time of the French Revolution is regarded as being of particular interest
Oct 29 James Boswell a Scottish lawyer, diarist, and author born in Edinburgh. He is best known for the biography he wrote of one of his contemporaries, the English literary figure Samuel Johnson, which the modern Johnsonian critic Harold Bloom has claimed is the greatest biography written in the English language
Oct 31 Philip James de Loutherbourg a Franco-English painter who became known for his large naval works, his elaborate set designs for London theatres, and his invention of a mechanical theatre called the "Eidophusikon". He had an interest in faith-healing and the occult and was a companion of Cagliostro
Nov 4 Augustus Toplady an Anglican cleric and hymn writer. He was a major Calvinist opponent of John Wesley. He is best remembered as the author of the hymn "Rock of Ages". Three of his other hymns – "A Debtor to Mercy Alone", "Deathless Principle, Arise" and "Object of My First Desire" – are still occasionally sung today, though all three are far less popular than "Rock of Ages"
Nov 21 Józef Klemens Czartoryski a Polish nobleman who owned the Korets Castle. Knight of the Order of the White Eagle, awarded in 1767