1812 in literature
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This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1812.
- January 2 – Samuel Taylor Coleridge's lecture on Hamlet is given as part of a series of lectures on drama and Shakespeare; it has influenced Hamlet studies ever since.
- January 15 – Lord Byron takes his seat in the Parliament of the United Kingdom.
- March 20 – First two cantos of Lord Byron's poem Childe Harold's Pilgrimage are published by John Murray in London. This sells out in five days, giving rise to Byron's comment "I awoke one morning and found myself famous".
- May–July – Auction in London of the library of the Duke of Roxburghe (d. 1804). On June 17 a presumed first edition of Boccaccio's Decameron, printed by Christopher Valdarfer of Venice in 1471, is sold to the Marquis of Blandford for £2,260, the highest price ever given for a book at this time; this is followed by a social meeting of bibliophiles under the chairmanship of 2nd Earl Spencer, the origin of the Roxburghe Club, formed by Thomas Frognall Dibdin.
- June 24 to December 14 – French invasion of Russia, which will form the climax of Tolstoy's 1869 novel War and Peace and feature in other works of literature.
- October 10 – The rebuilt Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in London opens.
- December 9–20 – Leigh Hunt is tried and convicted of libel for calling the Prince Regent "a violator of his word, a libertine over head and ears in debt and disgrace" in The Examiner on March 22.
- December 26 – Frederick Marryat promoted to lieutenant after distinguished service at sea in the War of 1812.
- Sarah Burney – Traits of Nature
- Maria Edgeworth:
- The Absentee
- Emilie de Coulanges
- Jean-Baptiste Benoît Eyriès – Fantasmagoriana
- The Brothers Grimm – Grimm's Fairy Tales, volume 1 (Kinder- und Hausmärchen)
- Ann Hatton – The Fortress del Vechii
- Frances Margaretta Jacson (misascribed to Mary Brunton) – Things by their Right Names
- Charles Maturin – The Milesian Chief
- Rebecca Rush – Kelroy
- George Soane – The Eve of San Marco
- Louisa Stanhope – The Confessional of Valombre
- Elizabeth Thomas – The Vindictive Spirit
- Jane West – The Loyalists: An Historical Novel
Children and young people
- Joanna Baillie – Orra
- Theodor Körner
- Die Braut (The Bride)
- Der grüne Domino (The Green Domino)
- Der Nachtwächter (The Night Watchman)
- Adam Oehlenschläger – Stærkodder
- August von Kotzebue – Der arme Poet (The Poor Poet)
- Anna Laetitia Barbauld – Eighteen Hundred and Eleven
- Lord Byron – Childe Harold's Pilgrimage
- Percy Bysshe Shelley – The Devil's Walk: A Ballad
- James and Horace Smith (anonymously) – Rejected Addresses
- William Tennant – Anster Fair
- John Galt – Cursory Reflections on Political and Commercial Topics
- Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel – Die objektive Logik
- Sir Richard Colt Hoare – The Ancient History of South Wiltshire
- Mirza Abu Taleb Khan – Masir Talib fi Bilad Afranji (The Travels of Taleb in the Regions of Europe)
- James Maitland, 8th Earl of Lauderdale – The Depreciation of the Paper-currency of Great Britain Proved
- John Nichols – The Literary Anecdotes of the 18th Century, volume 1
- Percy Bysshe Shelley – Declaration of Rights
- February 7 – Charles Dickens, English novelist and editor (died 1870)
- February 15 – Chandos Wren-Hoskyns (Chandos Hoskyns), English agricultural author and landowner (died 1876)
- February 19 – Zygmunt Krasiński, Polish poet (died 1859)
- May 7 – Robert Browning, English poet (died 1889)
- May 12 – Edward Lear, English humorous poet and caricaturist (died 1888)
- June 9 – Camilla Dufour Crosland, English writer and poet (died 1895)
- June 18 – Ivan Goncharov, Russian novelist and critic (died 1891)
- June 27 – Andrei Mocioni, Hungarian/Romanian journalist and literary patron (died 1880)
- July 5 – Antonio García Gutiérrez, Spanish dramatist (died 1884)
- August 22 – Geraldine Jewsbury, English novelist and woman of letters (died 1880)
- October 29 – Louise Granberg, Swedish playwright (died 1907)
- December 23 – Samuel Smiles, Scottish self-help author (died 1904)
- February 13 – Jacques Marie Boutet, French dramatist and actor (born 1745)
- February 24 – Hugo Kołłątaj, Polish historian and philosopher (born 1750)
- March 18 – John Horne Tooke, English controversialist and cleric (born 1736)
- March 24 – Johann Jakob Griesbach, German Biblical commentator (born 1745)
- May 12 – Martha Ballard, American diarist (born c. 1734)
- July 14 – Christian Gottlob Heyne, German librarian and classicist (born 1729)
- October 28 – Susanna Duncombe, English poet and painter (born 1725)
- November 11 – Platon Levshin, Russian church historian (born 1737)
- November 16 – John Walter, English founder of The Times, London (born c. 1738)
- December 22 – Pierre Henri Larcher, French classicist and archeologist (born 1726)
- Unknown date – Zalkind Hourwitz, Polish essayist (born 1738)
The following works are set partly or wholly in this year
- Adam Mickiewicz's epic poem Pan Tadeusz (1834)
- Ivan Turgenev's short story "The Jew" (1847)
- Charlotte Brontë's novel Shirley (1849)
- Leo Tolstoy's novel War and Peace (1869)
- Georgette Heyer's novel Regency Buck (1935)
- Tom Stoppard's play Arcadia (1993)
- Palmer, Alan; Veronica (1992). The Chronology of British History. London: Century Ltd. pp. 240–241. ISBN 0-7126-5616-2.
- Spengler-Axiopoulos, Barbara (2006-07-01), Der skeptische Kosmopolit (in German), NZZ
- Roe, Nicholas (2004). "Hunt, (James Henry) Leigh (1784–1859)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/14195. Retrieved 2013-12-02. (subscription or UK public library membership required)