January – The beginning of the Khmelnytsky Uprising in Ukraine, at this time part of the Republic of Both Nations (Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth).
January 17 – England's Long Parliament passes the Vote of No Addresses, breaking off negotiations with King Charles I and thereby setting the scene for the second phase of the English Civil War.
January 30 – The Dutch and the Spanish sign the Peace of Münster, ending the Eighty Years' War. The Spanish Empire recognizes the Dutch Republic of United Netherlands as a sovereign state (governed by the House of Orange-Nassau and the States General), which was previously a province of the Spanish Empire. (Ratified May 15.)
March 31 – A major earthquake strikes Van in Ottoman Armenia.
April 19 – First Battle of Guararapes: the Portuguese army defeats the Dutch army in the north of Brazil.
June–September – Semyon Dezhnyov makes the first recorded voyage through the Bering Strait between Asia and North America.
16 July–19 July – The Battle of Prague takes place in the Thirty Years' War. The west bank of Prague (including Prague Castle) is occupied and looted by Swedish armies. The song "1 6 4 8" from Sabaton's album Carolus Rex is about this event.
Arabs besiege Portuguese in Muscat.
The First Fronde, the Fronde Parlementaire, an insurrection, begins in France.
The Cambridge Platform, a new, localized system of Christian church governance, was agreed upon and written down in New England.
August 12 – Mehmed IV (1648–1687) succeeds Ibrahim I (1640–1648) as Ottoman Emperor.
September 12 – Battle of Stirling takes place in Scotland: "Engagers" achieve victory over the Kirk Party.
October 24 – Signing of the Treaties of Münster and Osnabrück conclude the Peace of Westphalia, ending the Thirty Years' War. Rulers of the Imperial States have powers to decide their state religion, Protestant, Catholic or Calvinist, with the minorities of each of those faiths granted toleration of worship, and there is general recognition of exclusive sovereignty, including that of the Dutch Republic and Switzerland. France and Sweden gain territory, and the latter is granted an indemnity. However, France remains at war with Spain until 1659.
October 31 – A treaty is signed between the Arabs and the Portuguese. The terms include a provision that the Portuguese should build fortresses at Kuriyat, Dibba Al-Hisn (Sharjah) and Muttrah (Oman).
November 11 – France and the Netherlands agree to divide the Caribbean island of Saint Martin between them.
December 11 – "Pride's Purge" in England, with elements of the New Model Army, under the leadership of Oliver Cromwell invading London and expelling a majority of the Long Parliament, resulting in the creation of the Rump Parliament.
In India, building of the Red Fort in Shahjahanabad is completed.
Sabbatai Zevi declares himself the Messiah at Smyrna.
George Fox founds the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) in England.
The Dutch artist Rembrandt produced the works Rembrandt drawing at a window and Beggars at the Door.
January 1 – Matthijs Wulfraet, Dutch painter (d. 1727)
January 14 – Clara Elisabeth von Platen, German noblewoman (d. 1700)
February 1 – Elkanah Settle, English poet and playwright (d. 1724)
February 23 – Arabella Churchill, English mistress of James II of England (d. 1730)
February 26 – George Albert II, Count of Erbach-Fürstenau, held the fiefs of Fürstenau (d. 1717)
March 2 – John Hales, English politician (d. 1723)
March 5 – David Caspari, German Lutheran theologian (d. 1702)
March 7 – Charles-Amador Martin, Catholic priest (d. 1711)
March 12 – Charles de Sévigné, French Baron (d. 1713)
March 13 – Anne Henriette of Bavaria, Duchess of Guise (d. 1723)
March 31 – Sebastiaen van Aken, Flemish painter (d. 1722)
April 4 – Grinling Gibbons, Dutch-British sculptor and wood carver known for his work in England (d. 1721)
April 5 – Nicolas Pasquin, early pioneer in New France now Quebec (d. 1708)
April 7 – John Sheffield, 1st Duke of Buckingham and Normanby, English statesman and poet (d. 1721)
April 8 – Charles, Count of Marsan, French noble (d. 1708)
April 9 – Henri de Massue, Marquis de Ruvigny, 1st Earl of Galway, French soldier and diplomat (d. 1720)
April 13 – Jeanne Marie Bouvier de la Motte Guyon, French mystic (d. 1717)
April 16 – Antoine de Pas de Feuquières, French soldier (d. 1711)
April 18 – Jeanne Guyon, French mystic and one of the key advocates of Quietism (d. 1717)
April 20 – Maurice Bocland, English Member of Parliament (d. 1710)
April 23 – Philip Verheyen, Flemish physician (d. 1710)
April 26 – King Peter II of Portugal (d. 1706)
May 12 – Philip Foley, English politician (d. 1716)
May 14 – René de Froulay de Tessé, French Marshal and diplomat (d. 1725)
May 15 – William, Landgrave of Hesse-Rotenburg (from 1683) (d. 1725)
May 23 – Johan Teyler, Dutch painter (d. 1709)
May 24 – Albert V, Duke of Saxe-Coburg, a duke of Saxe-Coburg (d. 1699)
June 18 – Petrus Houttuyn, Dutch botanist (d. 1709)
July 2 – Arp Schnitger, German organ builder (d. 1719)
July 19 – Jakub Kresa, Mathematician (d. 1715)
July 21 – John Graham, 1st Viscount Dundee, Scottish general (d. 1689)
July 25 – Joseph Anthelmi, French ecclesiastical historian (d. 1697)
July 30 – Anne Marie Thérèse de Lorraine, Abbess of Remiremont (d. 1661)
August 5 – Guichard Joseph Duverney, French anatomist (d. 1730)
August 9 – Johann Michael Bach, German composer (d. 1694)
August 11 – Jeremiah Shepard, American Puritan minister and the youngest son of Thomas Shepard (d. 1720)
August 14 – Alphonse Henri, Count of Harcourt, French noble (d. 1718)
Gerard Hoet, Dutch painter (d. 1733)
Tsarevich Dmitry Alexeyevich of Russia, first son and heir of Tsar Alexis of Russia (d. 1649)
August 30 – Jean-Baptiste Morvan de Bellegarde, French Jesuit (d. 1734)
September 2 – Magdalena Sibylle of Saxe-Weissenfels, German noblewoman (d. 1681)
September 3 – Sarah Cloyce, American accused of witchcraft (d. 1703)
September 6 – Johann Schelle, German composer (d. 1701)
September 10 – Nicolas Desmarets, Controller-General of Finances under Louis XIV of France (d. 1721)
Louis Nicolas le Tonnelier de Breteuil, French noble (d. 1728)
Caspar Neumann, German professor and clergyman (d. 1715)
September 24 – Richard Graham, 1st Viscount Preston, English politician (d. 1695)
Charles Gustav of Baden-Durlach, German general (d. 1703)
Michelangelo Tamburini, Superior General of the Society of Jesuits (d. 1730)
October 3 – Élisabeth Sophie Chéron, French musician (d. 1711)
October 6 – Henrietta Catharina, Baroness von Gersdorff, German noblewoman; poet (d. 1726)
October 13 – Françoise Madeleine d'Orléans, French princess (d. 1664)
October 19 – Domenico Viva, Italian jesuit theologian (d. 1726)
October 22 – Aleijda Wolfsen, Dutch Golden Age painter (d. 1692)
October 29 – John Verelst, Dutch Golden Age painter (d. 1734)
November 12 – Louis-Hector de Callière, French politician (d. 1703)
November 15 – Juan María de Salvatierra, Italian Jesuit priest and missionary (d. 1717)
November 16 – Charles Duncombe, British politician (d. 1711)
November 24 – Humphrey Humphreys, British bishop (d. 1712)
November 27 – Petrus Codde, First Old Catholic bishop (d. 1710)
December 5 – Charles François d'Angennes, Marquis de Maintenon, French nobleman, Caribbean buccaneer (d. 1691)
December 6 – Leonard Goffiné, German Catholic priest and writer (d. 1719)
December 15 – Gregory King, English statistician (d. 1712)
December 20 – Tommaso Ceva, Italian Jesuit mathematician from Milan (d. 1737)
December 23 – Robert Barclay, Scottish Quaker (d. 1690)
John Coode, Colonial governor of Maryland (d. 1709)
Lionel Copley, Colonial governor of Maryland (d. 1693)
Anne de Rohan-Chabot, short term mistress of Louis XIV of France (d. 1709)
Kong Shangren, Qing Chinese dramatist and poet (d. 1718).
February 2 – George Abbot, English writer (b. c. 1605)
February 28 – Christian IV, King of Denmark and Norway (b. 1577)
March 12 – Tirso de Molina, Spanish writer (b. 1571)
March 14 – Ferdinando Fairfax, 2nd Lord Fairfax of Cameron, English general (b. 1584)
April 12 – Countess Catharina Belgica of Nassau, regent of Hanau-Münzenberg (b. 1578)
May 20 – King Władysław IV Vasa of Poland (b. 1595)
May 26 – Vincent Voiture, French poet (b. 1597)
August 18 – Ibrahim I, Ottoman Sultan (b. 1615)
August 20 – Edward Herbert, 1st Baron Herbert of Cherbury, English diplomat, poet, and philosopher (b. 1583)
September 1 – Marin Mersenne, French mathematician (b. 1588)
November 17 – Thomas Ford, English composer (b. c. 1580)
date unknown – Emerentia Krakow, Swedish war heroine.
Cvijeta Zuzorić, Croatian poet (b. 1552)
1648 (MDCXLVIII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (dominical letter ED) of the Gregorian calendar and a leap year starting on Saturday (dominical letter BA) of the Julian calendar, the 1648th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 648th year of the 2nd millennium, the 48th year of the 17th century, and the 9th year of the 1640s decade. As of the start of 1648, the Gregorian calendar was 10 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923. It is the year of the Peace of Westphalia.