|Centuries:||19th century – 20th century – 21st century|
|Decades:||1940s 1950s 1960s – 1970s – 1980s 1990s 2000s|
|Years:||1971 1972 1973 – 1974 – 1975 1976 1977|
|1974 by topic:|
|Birth and death categories|
|Establishments and disestablishments categories|
|Works and introductions categories|
|Ab urbe condita||2727|
|British Regnal year||22 Eliz. 2 – 23 Eliz. 2|
|Chinese calendar|| 癸丑年十二月初九日
— to —甲寅年十一月十八日
|- Vikram Samvat||2030–2031|
|- Shaka Samvat||1896–1897|
|- Kali Yuga||5075–5076|
|- Ǹrí Ìgbò||974–975|
|Japanese calendar|| Shōwa 49
|Julian calendar||Gregorian minus 13 days|
|Minguo calendar||ROC 63
|Thai solar calendar||2517|
Year 1974 (MCMLXXIV) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. It was also the 1974th year of the Common Era, the 974th year of the 2nd millennium, the 74th year of the 20th century, and the 5th year of the 1970s.
- January 26 – Bülent Ecevit, of CHP forms the new government of Turkey (37th government, partner MSP )
- February 1
- February 2 – The General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon makes its first flight at Edwards AFB, CA.
- February 8 – After a record 84 days in orbit, the crew of Skylab 4 returns to Earth.
- February 17 – A soccer stampede occurs in Cairo, killing 49.
- March 3 – Turkish Airlines Flight 981 travelling from Paris to London crashes in a wood near Paris, killing all 346 aboard.
- March 4
- March 8 – Charles de Gaulle Airport opens in Paris, France.
- March 10 – A Japanese World War II soldier, Second Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda, surrenders in the Philippines.
- March 18 – End of 1973 oil crisis: Most OPEC nations end a 5-month oil embargo against the United States, Europe and Japan.
- March 29 – The Terracotta Army of Qin Shi Huang is discovered at Xi'an, China.
- April 3-4 – An enormous outbreak of tornadoes strikes the central parts of the United States, killing around 319 people. Known as the " Super Outbreak", the event was the largest and deadliest outbreak of tornadoes for almost 40 years until an even larger outbreak surpassed it in 2011.
- April 4 – Hank Aaron ties Babe Ruth for the all-time home run record with his 714th at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati.
- April 6
- Swedish pop group ABBA win the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest with Waterloo.
- California Jam is held at the Ontario Motor Speedway in Ontario, California, attracting 250,000 fans.
- April 8 – Hank Aaron became the all-time MLB home run leader with his 715th at Atlanta in front of a national television audience.
- April 11 – The Kiryat Shmona massacre took place in Israel.
- April 15 – As "Tania", Patty Hearst is photographed wielding an M1 carbine while robbing the Sunset District branch of the Hibernia Bank in San Francisco
- April 24 – Stephen King publishes Carrie, his first novel under his own name.
- April 25 – Carnation Revolution: A coup in Portugal restores democracy.
- May 4
- May 17 – Dublin and Monaghan bombings: The Protestant terrorist group, the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF), explode numerous bombs in Dublin and Monaghan, in the Republic Of Ireland. The attacks kill 33 civilians and wound almost 300, which is the highest number of casualties in any single day during " The Troubles".
- May 18
- May 30 – NASA's ATS-6 satellite is launched.
- June 13 – The 1974 FIFA World Cup begins in West Germany.
- June 26 – The Universal Product Code is scanned for the first time, to sell a package of Wrigley's chewing gum at the Marsh Supermarket in Troy, Ohio.
- July 7 – West Germany beats the Netherlands 2–1 to win the 1974 FIFA World Cup.
- July 15 – News anchor Christine Chubbuck commits suicide during a live broadcast on WXLT-TV in Sarasota, Florida.
- July 20 – Turkish invasion of Cyprus.
- August 4 – A bomb explodes in an Italicus Express train between Italy and West Germany, killing 12 and wounding 48. Italian neo-fascist terrorists take responsibility.
- August 8 – Watergate scandal: U.S. President Richard Nixon announces his resignation (effective August 9).
- August 9 – Vice President Gerald Rudolph Ford succeeds Richard Milhous Nixon as the 38th President of the United States of America.
- August 14 – Turkey invades Cyprus for the second time, occupying 37% of the island's territory.
- August 30 – An express train bound for Germany from Belgrade derails in Zagreb, Yugoslavia (now Croatia), killing more than 150 passengers.
- September 8 – TWA Flight 841 crashes into the Ionian Sea 18 minutes after take off from Athens, after a bomb explodes in the cargo hold, and kills 88 people.
- September 12 – Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia is deposed by the Derg.
- September 13 – Japanese Red Army members seize the French Embassy in The Hague, Netherlands.
- September 23 – Ceefax (one of the first public service information systems) is started by the BBC.
- October 11 – The UK Labour government of Harold Wilson wins the second general election of the year, forming a three-seat majority. Wilson, who has led the party for a total of 11 years, has now won four of the five general elections he has contested.
- October 30 – The Rumble in the Jungle takes place in Kinshasa, Zaire, where Muhammad Ali knocks out George Foreman in 8 rounds to regain the Heavyweight title, which had been stripped from him 7 years earlier.
- November 1
- World Tourism Organization (WTO or WToO) established.
- German electronic band Kraftwerk release their studio album Autobahn.
- November 13 – Ronald DeFeo, Jr., murders his entire family in their home in Amityville on Long Island in event that will give rise to the story of The Amityville Horror.
- November 16 – Arecibo message: The radio telescope at the Arecibo Observatory on Puerto Rico sends an interstellar radio message towards Messier 13, the Great Globular Cluster in Hercules. The message will reach its destination around the year 27,000.
- November 21 – Birmingham pub bombings: In Birmingham, England, two pubs are bombed, killing 21 people in an attack widely believed at the time to be linked to the Provisional Irish Republican Army. The Birmingham Six are later sentenced to life in prison for this, but their convictions are quashed after a lengthy campaign.
- November 22 – The United Nations General Assembly grants the Palestine Liberation Organization observer status.
- November 24 – A skeleton from the hominid species Australopithecus afarensis is discovered and named Lucy.
- November 28 – In a rare public performance, former Beatle John Lennon joins Elton John on stage at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
- December 1 – A Boeing 727 carrying TWA Flight 514 crashes 25 miles (40 km) northwest of Dulles International Airport during bad weather, killing all 92 people on board.
- December 9 – The Paris summit, reuniting the European communities' heads of state and government, commences.
- December 13 – Malta becomes a republic.
- December 17 – WIPO becomes a specialized agency of the United Nations.
- December 24– December 25 – Darwin, Australia is almost completely destroyed by Cyclone Tracy.
- December 30 – Japanese soldier Teruo Nakamura surrenders on the Indonesian island of Morota, 34 years after beginning service in World War II
- Pepsico becomes the first American company to sell products in the Soviet Union.
- January 15 – Harold D. Cooley U.S. House of Representatives
- January 27 – Georgios Grivas, Greek-Cypriot colonel (b. 1898)
- January 31
- February 2 – Imre Lakatos, Hungarian philosopher (b. 1922)
- February 4 – Satyendra Nath Bose, Indian mathematician and physicist (b. 1894)
- February 15 – Kurt Atterberg, Swedish composer (b. 1887)
- February 22 – Samuel Byck, American airplane hijacker and murderer (b. 1930)
- March 4 – Adolph Gottlieb, American abstract expressionist painter (b. 1903)
- March 9 – Earl Wilbur Sutherland Jr., American physiologist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1915)
- March 17 – Louis Kahn, Estonian architect (b. 1901)
- March 22 – Peter Revson, American race car driver (b. 1939)
- March 29 – Joe Stecher, professional wrestler (b. 1893)
- April 2 – Georges Pompidou, President of France (b. 1911)
- April 18
- April 19 – Ayub Khan, President of Pakistan (b. 1907)
- April 24
- April 30 – Agnes Moorehead, American actress (b. 1900)
- May 24 – Duke Ellington, American jazz pianist and bandleader (b. 1899)
- May 25
- June 9 – Miguel Ángel Asturias, Guatemalan writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1890)
- June 10 – Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester, Governor-General of Australia (b. 1900)
- June 18 – Georgy Zhukov, Soviet general (World War II) (b. 1896)
- June 22 – Darius Milhaud, French composer (b. 1892)
- June 28 – Frank Sutton, American actor (b. 1923)
- July 1 – Juan Domingo Perón, President of Argentina (b. 1895)
- July 4 – Georgette Heyer, British writer (b. 1902)
- July 9 – Earl Warren, Governor of California and Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court (b. 1891)
- July 11 – Pär Lagerkvist, Swedish writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1891)
- July 13 – Patrick Blackett, English physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1897)
- July 14 – Dame Sibyl Hathaway, Seigneur of Sark (b. 1884)
- July 15 – Christine Chubbuck, American TV personality (b. 1944)
- July 24 – Sir James Chadwick, English physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1891)
- July 29
- August 8 – Baldur von Schirach, Nazi German Hitler Youth leader (b. 1907)
- August 26 – Charles Lindbergh, American aviator (Spirit of St. Louis) (b. 1902)
- August 27 – Otto Strasser, Nazi German politician (b. 1897)
- September 3 – Harry Partch, American composer (b. 1901)
- September 4
- September 21 – Walter Brennan, American actor (b. 1894)
- October 1 – Stephen Latchford, American diplomat and aviation expert (b. 1883)
- October 4 – Anne Sexton, American poet and writer (b. 1928)
- October 9 – Oskar Schindler, Sudetgerman businessman (b. 1908)
- October 13 – Ed Sullivan, American television host (b. 1901)
- October 24 – David Oistrakh, Ukrainian violinist (b. 1908)
- November 7 – Eric Linklater, British author (b. 1899)
- November 13 – Vittorio De Sica, Italian actor and film director (b. 1901)
- November 17 – Erskine Hamilton Childers, 4th President of Ireland (b. 1905)
- November 21 – Frank Martin, Swiss composer (b. 1890)
- November 23
- November 25
- November 29
- December 2 – Max Weber, Swiss Federal Councilor (b. 1897)
- December 5 – Pietro Germi, Italian film director (b. 1914)
- December 14 – Walter Lippmann, American writer and journalist (b. 1889)
- December 15 – Anatole Litvak, Ukrainian-born film director (b. 1902)
- December 20 – André Jolivet, French composer (b. 1905)
- December 24 – Sentarō Ōmori, Japanese admiral (b. 1892)
- December 26 – Jack Benny, American comedian (b. 1894)
- December 27