1798 in literature
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This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1798.
- February – Samuel Taylor Coleridge writes the conversation poem "Frost at Midnight".
- April – Coleridge writes the conversation poems "Fears in Solitude" ("Written ... During the Alarm of an Invasion" and published soon afterwards in a pamphlet) and "The Nightingale".
- April 16 – Coleridge's "The Recantation: An Ode" is published in The Morning Post, describing his disillusionment with the French Revolution.
- April 30 – Richard Cumberland's comedy The Eccentric Lover is first performed at the Covent Garden Theatre in London.
- September 18 – First publication of William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge's anonymous Lyrical Ballads, with a Few Other Poems in Bristol, marking the beginning of English literary Romanticism. Most of the poems are by Wordsworth, including Lines composed a few miles above Tintern Abbey on revisiting the banks of the Wye during a tour, 13 July 1798, but also including the first publication of Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere. First London publication is on October 4.
- October 11 – Elizabeth Inchbald's Lovers' Vows (adapted from Kotzebue's Das Kind der Liebe) is first performed at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London.
- October 12 – The rebuilt Weimarer Hoftheater is inaugurated with the first performance of the first part of Friedrich Schiller's dramatic trilogy Wallenstein, Das Lager ("The Camp"), directed by Goethe.
- Publication of Ivan Kotliarevsky's mock-heroic poem Eneyida (Енеїда), the first printed work in the modern Ukrainian language.
- The National Library of the Netherlands originates when the Batavian Republic opens the former library of the stadtholder to the public.
- The Académie française publishes the 5th edition of its Dictionnaire.
- Thomas Nelson (publisher) originates in Edinburgh as a second-hand religious bookshop.
- Charles Brockden Brown
- Alcuin: a Dialogue
- Wieland: or, The Transformation; an American Tale
- Emily Clark – Ianthé, or the Flower of Caernarvon
- Francis Lathom – The Midnight Bell: a German story, founded on incidents in real life
- Regina Maria Roche – Clermont: a Tale
- Eleanor Sleath – The Orphan of the Rhine: a romance
- Caroline von Wolzogen (anonymously) – Agnes von Lilien (first complete book publication, in 2 vols)
- Mary Wollstonecraft – Posthumous Works (edited by William Godwin) including Maria: or, The Wrongs of Woman
- François Guillaume Ducray-Duminil – Cœlina, ou l'Enfant du mystère (Celina, or the Mystery Child)
- Edward Augustus Kendall
- Keeper's Travels in Search of His Master
- The Sparrow. A Tale
- Richmal Mangnall (anonymously) – Historical and Miscellaneous Questions for the Use of Young People (often known as Mangnall's Questions)
- Samuel Jackson Pratt – Pity's Gift: a collection of interesting tales, to excite the compassion of youth for the animal creation (Selected by a Lady)
- Elizabeth Craven – The Georgian Princess
- Richard Cumberland – The Eccentric Lover
- Elizabeth Inchbald – Lovers' Vows
- Friedrich von Schiller – Wallensteins Lager
- Samuel Taylor Coleridge and William Wordsworth – Lyrical Ballads
- Richard Polwhele (anonymously) – The Unsex'd Females
- Nathan Drake – Literary Hours
- Hannah Webster Foster – The Boarding School; or, Lessons of a Preceptress to Her Pupils
- William Godwin – Memoirs of the Author of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman
- Thomas Malthus (anonymously) – An Essay on the Principle of Population
- January 5 – David Macbeth Moir, Scottish poet and humorist (died 1851)
- January 29 – Henry Neele, English poet and scholar (died 1828)
- February 12 – Catherine Gore, English novelist and dramatist (died 1861)
- February 17 – Auguste Comte, French philosopher (died 1857)
- March 30 – Luise Hensel, German religious author and poet (died 1876)
- June 29 – Count Giacomo Leopardi, Italian poet, essayist and philologist (died 1837)
- June 4 – Giacomo Casanova, Italian librarian and memoirist (born 1725)
- June 20 – Jeremy Belknap, American historian of New Hampshire (born 1744)
- December 16 – Thomas Pennant, Welsh naturalist and travel writer (born 1726)
- Unknown date – Madeleine de Puisieux, French philosopher and feminist writer (born 1720)