1840 in the United Kingdom

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Events from the year 1840 in the United Kingdom .


Queen Victoria British monarch who reigned 1837–1901

Victoria was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. On 1 May 1876, she adopted the additional title of Empress of India.

Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Head of UK Government

The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, until 1801 known as the Prime Minister of Great Britain, is the head of government of the United Kingdom. The Prime Minister directs both the executive and the legislature, and together with their Cabinet are collectively accountable for their policies and actions to the Monarch, to Parliament, to their political party and ultimately to the electorate. The office of Prime Minister is one of the Great Offices of State. The current holder of the office, Theresa May, leader of the Conservative Party, was appointed by the Queen on 13 July 2016. May resigned as Conservative Party leader on 7 June 2019, remaining as Prime Minister until a new Prime Minister is appointed.

William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne British Whig statesman

William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne, was a British Whig statesman who served as Home Secretary (1830–1834) and Prime Minister. He is best known for being prime minister in Queen Victoria's early years and coaching her in the ways of politics, acting almost as her private secretary. Historians have concluded that Melbourne does not rank highly as a Prime Minister, for there were no great foreign wars or domestic issues to handle, he lacked major achievements, he enunciated no grand principles, and he was involved in several political scandals in the early years of Victoria's reign.


Penny Black Penny black.jpg
Penny Black
John Frost (Chartist) Welsh Chartist

John Frost was a prominent Welsh leader of the British Chartist movement in the Newport Rising.

Zephaniah Williams Welsh Chartist

Zephaniah Williams was a Welsh coal miner and Chartist campaigner, who was one of the leaders of the Newport Rising of 1839. Found guilty of high treason, he was condemned to death, but his sentence was commuted to life imprisonment in Tasmania. Eventually he was pardoned, and his discovery of coal on that island earned him a fortune.

William Jones (Chartist) Political radical and Chartist

William Jones (1809–1873) was a political Radical and Chartist, who was a former actor, working as a watchmaker at Pontypool in Monmouthshire and also kept a beer house.


Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals charity operating in England and Wales

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) is a charity operating in England and Wales that promotes animal welfare. In 2017, the RSPCA investigated 141,760 cruelty complaints and secured 1,492 convictions. The charity also rescued and collected 114,584 animals, carried out 222,664 microchippings and their branches and centres gave 44,611 animals a second chance of a new home through rehoming. Founded in 1824, it is the oldest and largest animal welfare organisation in the world and is one of the largest charities in the UK. The organisation also does international outreach work across Europe, Africa and Asia.

Ongoing events

First Opium War War between Great Britain and China in the 19th century

The First Opium War, also known as the Opium War or the Anglo-Chinese War, was a series of military engagements fought between the United Kingdom and the Qing dynasty of China over diplomatic relations, trade, and the administration of justice in China.

First Anglo-Afghan War one of the first major conflicts during the Great Game

The First Anglo-Afghan War was fought between the British East India Company and the Emirate of Afghanistan from 1839 to 1842. Initially, the British successfully intervened in a succession dispute between emir Dost Mohammad (Barakzai) and former emir Shah Shujah (Durrani), whom they installed upon conquering Kabul in August 1839. The main British Indian and Sikh force occupying Kabul along with their camp followers, having endured harsh winters as well, was almost completely annihilated while retreating in January 1842. The British then sent an Army of Retribution to Kabul to avenge their defeat, and having demolished parts of the capital and recovered prisoners they left Afghanistan altogether by the end of the year. Dost Mohamed returned from exile in India to resume his rule.


William Harrison Ainsworth English novelist

William Harrison Ainsworth was an English historical novelist born at King Street in Manchester. He trained as a lawyer, but the legal profession held no attraction for him. While completing his legal studies in London he met the publisher John Ebers, at that time manager of the King's Theatre, Haymarket. Ebers introduced Ainsworth to literary and dramatic circles, and to his daughter, who became Ainsworth's wife.

<i>Guy Fawkes</i> (novel) novel by William Harrison Ainsworth

The novel Guy Fawkes first appeared as a serial in Bentley's Miscellany, between January and November 1840. It was subsequently published as a three-volume set in July 1841, with illustrations by George Cruikshank. The first of William Harrison Ainsworth's seven "Lancashire novels", the story is based on the Gunpowder Plot of 1605, an unsuccessful attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament. Ainsworth relied heavily on historical documents describing the trial and execution of the conspirators, of whom Fawkes was one, but he also embellished the known facts. He invented the character of Viviana Radcliffe, daughter of the prominent Radcliffe family of Ordsall Hall – who becomes Fawkes's wife – and introduced supernatural elements into the story, such as the ability of the alchemist, John Dee, to raise the spirits of the dead.

<i>The Tower of London</i> (novel) book by William Harrison Ainsworth

The Tower of London is a novel by William Harrison Ainsworth serially published in 1840. It is a historical romance that describes the history of Lady Jane Grey from her short-lived time as Queen of England to her execution.


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Thomas Hardy
Victoria, Princess Royal Vicky.jpg
Victoria, Princess Royal


Related Research Articles

1840 Year

1840 (MDCCCXL) was a leap year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar and a leap year starting on Monday of the Julian calendar, the 1840th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 840th year of the 2nd millennium, the 40th year of the 19th century, and the 1st year of the 1840s decade. As of the start of 1840, the Gregorian calendar was 12 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923.

Chartism British democratic movement (1838-1857)

Chartism was a working-class movement for political reform in Britain that existed from 1838 to 1857. It took its name from the People's Charter of 1838 and was a national protest movement, with particular strongholds of support in Northern England, the East Midlands, the Staffordshire Potteries, the Black Country, and the South Wales Valleys. Support for the movement was at its highest in 1839, 1842, and 1848, when petitions signed by millions of working people were presented to the House of Commons. The strategy employed was to use the scale of support which these petitions and the accompanying mass meetings demonstrated to put pressure on politicians to concede manhood suffrage. Chartism thus relied on constitutional methods to secure its aims, though there were some who became involved in insurrectionary activities, notably in South Wales and in Yorkshire.

Penny Black worlds first adhesive postage stamp

The Penny Black was the world's first adhesive postage stamp used in a public postal system. It was first issued in Great Britain on 1 May 1840, but was not valid for use until 6 May. It features a profile of Queen Victoria.

William Whewell English philosopher & historian of science

Rev Dr William Whewell DD HFRSE was an English polymath, scientist, Anglican priest, philosopher, theologian, and historian of science. He was Master of Trinity College, Cambridge. In his time as a student there, he achieved distinction in both poetry and mathematics.

Postage stamps and postal history of Great Britain

Postage stamps and postal history of Great Britain surveys postal history from the United Kingdom and the postage stamps issued by that country and its various historical territories until the present day.

The year 1840 in science and technology involved some significant events, listed below.

Newport Rising

The Newport Rising was the last large-scale armed rebellion against authority in Great Britain, when, on 4 November 1839, nearly 10,000 Chartist sympathisers, led by John Frost, marched on the town of Newport, Monmouthshire. The men, including many coal-miners, most with home-made arms, were intent on liberating fellow Chartists who were reported to have been taken prisoner in the town's Westgate Hotel. About 22 demonstrators were killed when troops opened fire on them. The leaders of the rebellion were convicted of treason and were sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered. The sentence was later commuted to transportation.

Events from the year 1837 in the United Kingdom. This marks the beginning of the Victorian era.

Events from the year 1859 in the United Kingdom.

Events from the year 1841 in the United Kingdom.

Events from the year 1839 in the United Kingdom.

Events from the year 1877 in the United Kingdom.

This article is about the particular significance of the year 1840 to Wales and its people.

Shire Hall, Monmouth Grade I listed building in Monmouth. Courthouse

The Shire Hall in Agincourt Square, Monmouth, Wales, is a prominent Grade I listed building in the town centre. It was built in 1724, and was formerly the centre for the Assize Courts and Quarter Sessions for Monmouthshire. In 1839/40, the court was the location of the trial of the Chartist leader John Frost and others for high treason for their part in the Newport Rising. The building was also used as a market place. The Shire Hall is owned by Monmouthshire County Council and has audiovisual guides for visitors to Courtroom 1. It is currently used as a Tourist Information Centre and as the offices for Monmouth Town Council, and is open to the public in part.

Events from the year 1840 in Scotland.

Events from the year 1839 in Scotland.


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