1639 1640 1641 - 1642 - 1643 1644 1645
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Events of 1642
- January 4 – First English Civil War: Charles I attempts to arrest 6 leading members of the Long Parliament, but they escape.
- March 1 – Georgeana, Massachusetts (now known as York, Maine) becomes the first incorporated city in America.
- March 19 – The citizens of Galway seize an English naval ship, close the town gates and declare support for Confederate Ireland.
- May 17 – Sieur de Maisonneuve founds the Ville Marie de Montreal.
- May 30 – All honours granted by Charles I from this date onward are retrospectively annulled by Parliament.
- July – First English Civil War: Charles I besieges Hull in an attempt to gain control of its arsenal.
- August 4 – Lord Forbes relieves Forthill and besieges Galway.
- August 21 – First Battle of Lostwithiel.
- August 22 – King Charles I raises the royal battle standard over Nottingham Castle, so declaring war on his own Parliament.
- September 2 – Parliament orders the theatres of London closed, effectively ending the era of English Renaissance theatre.
- September 7 – Lord Forbes raises his unsuccessful siege of Galway.
- September 8 – Thomas Granger is executed by hanging at Plymouth, Massachusetts for confessing to numerous acts of bestiality.
- October 23 – First English Civil War – Battle of Edgehill: Royalists and Parliamentarians battle to a draw.
- November 13 – First English Civil War – Battle of Turnham Green: The Royalist forces withdraw in face of the Parliamentarian army and fail to take London.
- November 24 – Abel Tasman becomes the first European to discover the island Van Diemen's Land (later renamed Tasmania).
- December 13 – Abel Tasman is the first recorded European to sight New Zealand.
- The Dutch drive Spain from Taiwan.
- Bro/broo in Sweden is granted the city rights for the second time and takes the name Kristinehamn.
- Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn finishes his painting "The Night Watch".
- The Manchu under their leader Huang Taiji raid the Ming Chinese province of Shandong from their base in Manchuria. Two years later Beijing falls to rebels, the Chongzhen Emperor commits suicide, and the Shunzhi Emperor becomes the first Qing Emperor to rule over China proper.
- A juvenile is executed for the first time in America, for the crime of bestiality with a cow and a horse.
- Kaifeng flood of 1642: Some 300,000 people die when the Ming Dynasty army in China intentionally breaks the dams and dykes of the Yellow River to break the siege by the large rebel force of Li Zicheng.
- Isaac Aboab da Fonseca is appointed rabbi in Pernambuco, Brazil, thus becoming the first rabbi of the Americas.
- January 8 - Galileo Galilei, Italian astronomer and physicist (b. 1564)
- December 4 - Armand Jean du Plessis, Cardinal Richelieu, French statesman (b. 1585)
- Samaha, Joel. "2", Criminal Law, Ninth, Thomas/Watson, 60. ISBN 0-495-095939-7.