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1769 ( MDCCLXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Thursday of the Julian calendar, the 1769th year of the Common Era (CE) and (AD) designations, the 769th year of the Anno Domini 2nd millennium, the 69th year of the 18th century, and the 10th and last year of the 1760s decade. As of the start of 1769, the Gregorian calendar was 11 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923.
April 13 – James Cook arrives in Tahiti, on the ship HM Bark , preparing for the Endeavour 1769 Transit of Venus observed from Tahiti on June 3. After the voyage, the data is found to be inaccurate in determining the distance between the Sun and Earth.
April 29 – James Watt is granted a British patent for "A method of lessening the consumption of steam in steam engines" - the separate condenser, a key improvement (first devised by Watt in 1765) which stimulates the  Industrial Revolution. 
May 9 – France conquers Corsica.
May 14 – Charles III of Spain sends Spanish missionaries, who found California missions in San Diego, Santa Barbara, San Francisco and Monterey, and begin the settlement of California.
May 19 – Cardinal Giovanni Vincenzo Antonio Ganganelli is elected as the 249th pope, succeeding the late Clement XIII and choosing to take the regnal name of Pope Clement XIV. 
June 3 – A transit of Venus is followed five hours later by a total solar eclipse, the shortest such interval in historical times. The transit is viewed by King George III of Great Britain, at the Kew Observatory. June 7 – Frontiersman Daniel Boone first begins to explore modern-day Kentucky.
July 3 – Richard Arkwright patents a spinning frame in England, able to weave fabric mechanically. 
July 16 – Father Junípero Serra founds Mission San Diego de Alcalá, the first of the 21 California missions.
July 20 – Recently-appointed as the Governor of Spanish Louisiana, Irish-born soldier of fortune Alejandro O'Reilly sails into the French fort of La Balize with 21 Spanish ships, along with 2,056 soldiers, cannons and ammunition, and informs French Louisiana Governor Charles Philippe Aubry of his royal commission to take Louisiana on behalf of the King of Spain. 
August 3 – The party of Gaspar de Portolà becomes the first white group to set foot in the area now known as Santa Monica, California.
August 16 – Pope Clement XIV issues the papal bull Dominus ac Redemptor, ordering the dissolution of the Jesuits. 
August 18 – Brescia Explosion: The city of Brescia, Italy is devastated when the Church of San Nazaro is struck by lightning. The resulting fire ignites 200,000 lb (90,000 kg) of gunpowder being stored there, causing a massive explosion, which destroys 1/6 of the city and kills 3,000 people. The disaster prompts the Roman Catholic Church to abandon their religious objection to using lightning rods to protect their property.
September – Massive droughts in Bengal lead to the Bengal famine of 1770, in which ten million people, a third of the population, will die, the worst natural disaster in human history (in terms of lives lost). The Maharajah of Mysore forces the British to agree to a treaty of mutual assistance in view of the famine, but the British East India Company increases its demands on the Bengali people to keep profits up.
September 6– 9 – David Garrick holds a festival at Shakespeare Jubilee Stratford-upon-Avon in England. September 10 – Russo-Turkish War (1768-74): Russian forces take the Ottoman fortress of Chocim in Bukovina.
January 2 – Nannette Streicher, German piano maker, composer, music educator and writer (d. 1833)
January 10 – Michel Ney, French marshal (d. 1815)
February 23 – Princess Pauline of Anhalt-Bernburg; German regent and social reformer (d. 1820)
March 1 – François Séverin Marceau-Desgraviers, French general (d. 1796)
March 2 – DeWitt Clinton, American politician and naturalist, 6th Governor of New York (d. 1828)
March 4 – Muhammad Ali of Egypt, Egyptian ruler (d. 1849)
March 10 – Joseph Williamson, English philanthropist, builder of the Williamson Tunnels (d. 1840)
March 23 – William Smith, English geologist, cartographer (d. 1839)
March 29 – Jean-de-Dieu Soult, French marshal (d. 1851)
April 3 – Christian Günther von Bernstorff, Danish and Prussian statesman and diplomat (d. 1835)
April 9 – Jakob Heinrich Laspeyres, German lepidopterist (d. 1809)
April 10 – Jean Lannes, French marshal (d. 1809)
April 13 – Thomas Lawrence, English painter (d. 1830)
April 14 – Barthélemy Catherine Joubert, French general (d. 1799)
May 1 – Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, British general, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (d. 1852)
May 6 – Ferdinand III, Grand Duke of Tuscany (d. 1824)
June 5 – Marianne Kirchgessner, German musician (d. 1808)
June 18 – Robert Stewart, Viscount Castlereagh, British statesman, diplomat, and soldier (d. 1822)
August 15 – Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of the French (d. 1821)
August 23 – Georges Cuvier, French naturalist and zoologist; known as the Father of Paleontology (d. 1832)
August 31 – David Hosack Amer. physician & botanist. A. Hamilton family doctor.
October 6 – Isaac Brock, British general, administrator (d. 1812)
December 13 – James Scarlett Abinger, English judge (d. 1844)
December 26 – Ernst Moritz Arndt, German writer, poet (d. 1860)
January 5 – Charles Sackville, 2nd Duke of Dorset, English cricketer (b. 1711)
February 2 – Pope Clement XIII (b. 1693)
March 6 – Andrew Lauder, Burgess of the Royal Burgh of Lauder (1 August 1737) (b. 1702)
March 28 – Johann Friedrich Endersch, German cartographer (b. 1705)
April 5 – Marc-Antoine Laugier, French Jesuit priest, architectural theorist (b. 1713)
April 13 – Anna Canalis di Cumiana, morganatic spouse of Victor Amadeus II of Savoy (b. 1680)
April 20 – Chief Pontiac, Ottawa chief (murdered) (b. c. 1719)
April 21 – John Gilbert Cooper, British poet and writer (b. 1722)
May 14 – Iyoas I, Emperor of Ethiopia.
June 1 – Edward Holyoke, American President of Harvard University (b. 1689)
June 28 – Elisabeth Stierncrona, Swedish noble (b. 1714)
August 1 – Jean-Baptiste Chappe d'Auteroche, French astronomer (b. 1722)
August 2 – Daniel Finch, 8th Earl of Winchilsea, English politician (b. 1689)
August 29 – Edmond Hoyle, English game expert (b. 1672)
September 22 – Antonio Genovesi, Italian philosopher (b. 1712)
September 23 – Michel Ferdinand d'Albert d'Ailly, French astronomer (b. 1714)
September 27 – Anna Karolina Orzelska, Polish adventurer (b. 1707)
November 3 – Diane Adélaïde de Mailly, third of the five famous French de Nesle sisters (b. 1713)
November 16 – Henry Paget, 2nd Earl of Uxbridge (b. 1719)
November 23 – Constantine Mavrocordatos, Prince of Wallachia and Prince of Moldavia (b. 1711)
November 27 – Kamo no Mabuchi, Japanese poet, philologist (b. 1697)
December 8 – Joseph Friedrich Ernst, Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (b. 1702)
December 13 – Christian Fürchtegott Gellert, German poet (b. 1715)
December 30 – Nicholas Taaffe, 6th Viscount Taaffe, Austrian soldier (b. 1685) date unknown
^ Sir Eric Roll,
An Early Experiment in Industrial Organization: History of the Firm of Boulton and Watt 1775-1805 (Frank Cass and Company, 1930) p13
^ a b c Denis De Lucca,
Jesuits and Fortifications: The Contribution of the Jesuits to Military Architecture in the Baroque Age (BRILL, 2012) pp315-316
^ "The Ethics and Philosophy of By-Elections", by J.G. Swift MacNeill, in
The Fortnightly Review (April 1, 1920) p557
^ Patent 913; specification accepted January 5.
Palmer, Alan; Palmer, Veronica (1992). The Chronology of British History. London: Century Ltd. pp. 224-225. ISBN . 0-7126-5616-2
Williams, Hywel (2005). . London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson. p. Cassell's Chronology of World History 325. ISBN . 0-304-35730-8
^ Joan Garvey and Mary Lou Widmer,
Beautiful Crescent: A History of New Orleans (Pelican Publishing, 2012) pp62-63
Terry, Martin; Hall, Susan (2008). Cook's Endeavour Journal: The Inside Story. Canberra: National Library of Australia. p. 90.
Jones, Oakah L., Jr. (1997). "Spanish Penetrations to the North of New Spain". In Allen, John Logan (ed.). North American Exploration, Volume . Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. p. 62. 2: A Continent Defined
Barrow, John (1807). Some Account of the Public Life, and a Selection from the Unpublished Writings of the Earl of Macartney. II. London: Cadell and Davies. p. 151.