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|Centuries:||18th century – 19th century – 20th century|
|Decades:||1770s 1780s 1790s – 1800s – 1810s 1820s 1830s|
|Years:||1805 1806 1807 – 1808 – 1809 1810 1811|
Year 1808 (MDCCCVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a leap year starting on Wednesday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar).
Events of 1808
January - March
- January 1 - Importation of slaves into the United States is banned; this is also the earliest day under the United States Constitution that an amendment could be made restricting slavery.
- January 12 - The organizational meeting that led to the creation of the Wernerian Natural History Society, a former Scottish learned society, was held in Edinburgh.
- January 22 - The Bragança Portuguese Royal Family arrives in Brazil, running away from the French army.
- 26 January - Rum Rebellion: On the twentieth anniversary of the foundation of the colony of New South Wales, disgruntled military officers of the New South Wales Corps (the "Rum Corps") overthrow and imprison Governor William Bligh and seize control of the colony.
- February - Russia issues an ultimatum to Sweden, to join France, Denmark and Russia and attacks Finland.
- February 2 - French troops occupy Papal States (Vatican).
- February 6 - Ship Topaz (from Boston April 5, 1807 hunting seals) rediscovers Pitcairn Islands: only one HMS Bounty mutineer was still alive, Alexander Smith ( John Adams).
- February 11 - Anthracite coal first burned as fuel by Jesse Fell in Wilkes-Barre, PA. Discovery leads to use of coal as key fuel source of America's industrial revolution.
- February 21 - Russian troops cross border to Finland without declaration of war - the Finnish War begins
- March 2 - Russian troops occupy Helsinki and threaten Sveaborg
- March 8 - Empire of the Brazil. With the arrival of the portuguese royal family in Brazil (1808), the colony was called New Portugal.
- March 11 - Russian troops occupy Tampere
- March 2 - The inaugural meeting of the Wernerian Natural History Society, a former Scottish learned society, was held in Edinburgh.
- March 22 - Russian troops occupy Turku
- March 26 - Charles IV of Spain abdicates in favour of his son, Ferdinand VII
April - June
- April 6 - John Jacob Astor incorporates the American Fur Company.
- April 13- Antonio Meucci is born
- April 16 - Troops under colonel Carl von Döbeln clash with Russian troops in Pyhäjoki, Finland
- May 2 - Peninsular War: The people of Madrid rise up against the French troops.
- May 3:
- June 12 - Landing of Swedish troops to Ala-Lemu fails
- June 19 - Second landing of Swedish troops fails in Ala-Lemu
- June 22 - French General Dupont surrenders to Spanish irregular forces following the Battle of Bailén.
July - September
- July 5 - Battle of Buenos Aires - local Hispanic forces repel the British army.
- July 14 - Troops under colonel Adlercreutz force Russians to withdraw in Lapua
- August 10 - Troops under Carl von Döbeln defeat Russian attack in Kauhajoki
- August 21 - British troops under Duke of Wellington defeat French under General Junot at the Battle of Vimiero
- September 27 - Congress of Erfurt between the emperors Napoleon I of France and Alexander I of Russia starts
- September 29 - Truce between Swedish and Russian troops in Finland. It ended on October 19 of the same year.
October - December
- November 15 - Change of emperor of the Ottoman Empire from Mustafa IV (1807-1808) to Mahmud II (1808-1839)
- November 19 - New truce ends fighting in Finland
- November 23 - French Marshal Lannes defeats a Spanish army at the Battle of Tudela
- November - Swedish troops evacuate Finland. Tsar Alexander I of Russia proclaims Finland a part of Russia.
- November - James Madison defeats Charles C. Pinckney in U.S. presidential election
- December - Napoleon invades Spain
- December 9 - At 20:34 UTC Mercury occults Saturn. There are no observation records.
- December 20 - The original Covent Garden Theatre in London is destroyed by a fire, along with most of the scenery, costumes and scripts.
- December 22 - Ludwig van Beethoven conducts and performs in concert at the Theatre an der Wien, Vienna, with the premiere of his Fifth Symphony, Sixth Symphony, and Fourth Piano Concerto (performed by Beethoven himself).
- British siege of Mauritius begins.
- Academy of Fine Arts, Munich founded.
- Napoleonic Wars
- Russo-Turkish War, 1806-1812
|Ab urbe condita||2561|
|British Regnal year||48 Geo. 3 – 49 Geo. 3|
|Chinese calendar|| 丁卯年十二月初四日
— to —戊辰年十一月十五日
|- Vikram Samvat||1864–1865|
|- Shaka Samvat||1730–1731|
|- Kali Yuga||4909–4910|
|- Ǹrí Ìgbò||808–809|
|Japanese calendar|| Bunka 5
|Juche calendar||N/A (before 1912)|
|Julian calendar||Gregorian minus 12 days|
|Minguo calendar||104 before ROC
|Thai solar calendar||2351|
January - June
- January 6 - Joseph Pitty Couthouy, American naval officer (d. 1864)
- January 19 - Lysander Spooner, American philosopher (d. 1887)
- January 27 - David Strauss, German theologian (d. 1874)
- February 5 - Carl Spitzweg, German painter (d. 1885)
- February 26 - Honouré Daumier, French painter, illustrator, and sculptor (d. 1879)
- April 20 - Napoleon III, Emperor of the French (d. 1873)
- May 22 - Gérard de Nerval, French writer (d. 1855)
- June 3 - Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States (d. 1889)
- June 16 - James Frederick Ferrier, scottish metaphysical writer and philosopher
- June 17 - Henrik Wergeland, Norwegian author (d. 1845)
- June 20 - Samson Raphael Hirsch, German rabbi (d. 1888)
July - December
- July 9 - Alexander William Doniphan, American lawyer and military leader (d. 1887)
- September 29 - Henry Bennett, American politician (d. 1868)
- October 6 - King Frederick VII of Denmark (d. 1863)
- October 20 - Karl Andree, German geographer (d. 1875)
- November 1 - John Taylor, American religious leader (d. 1887)
- November 2 - Jules Barbey d'Aurevilly, French writer (d. 1889)
- December 29 - Andrew Johnson, 17th President of the United States (d. 1875)
January - June
- February 14 - John Dickinson, American lawyer and governor of Delaware and Pennsylvania (b. 1732)
- March 13 - King Christian VII of Denmark (b. 1749)
- May 18 - Elijah Craig, American minister and inventor
- May 28 - Richard Hurd, English bishop and writer (b. 1720)
- April - Omie Wise, Subject of a Murder ballad (b. 1789)
July - December
- September 3 - John Montgomery, American delegate to the Continental Congress (b. 1722)
- September 5 - John Home, Scottish writer (b. 1722)
- September 6 - Louis-Pierre Anquetil, French historian (b. 1723)
- September 13 - Saverio Bettinelli, Italian writer (b. 1718)
- September 17 - Benjamin Bourne, American politician (b. 1755)
- November 10 - Guy Carleton, 1st Baron Dorchester, British soldier and governor of Quebec (b. 1724)
- November 17 - David Zeisberger, Moravian missionary (b. 1721)
- Theophilus Lindsey, English theologian (b. 1723)