|Covid-19|January 3 – The Treaty of Tripoli (a peace treaty between the United States and Tripoli) is signed at Algiers (see also 1796).
January 7 – The parliament of the Cisalpine Republic adopts the Italian green-white-red tricolour as the official flag (this is considered the birth of the flag of Italy).
January 13 – Action of 13 January 1797, part of the French Revolutionary Wars: Two British Royal Navy frigates, HMS Indefatigable and HMS Amazon, drive the French 74-gun ship of the line Droits de l'Homme aground on the coast of Brittany with over 900 deaths.
January 14 – Battle of Rivoli: French forces under General Napoleon Bonaparte defeat an Austrian army (28,000 men) under Feldzeugmeister József Alvinczi near Rivoli (modern-day Italy), ending Austria's fourth and final attempt to relieve the fortress city of Mantua.
January 26 – The Treaty of the Third Partition of Poland is signed in St. Petersburg by the Russian Empire, Austria and the Kingdom of Prussia.
February 2 – Siege of Mantua: Field marshal Dagobert von Wurmser capitulates the fortress city to the French. Only 16,000 men of the garrison are capable of marching out as prisoners of war.
February 3 – Battle of Castel Bolognese: A French corps (9,000 men) under General Claude Victor-Perrin defeats the forces from the Papal States at Castel Bolognese near Faenza, Italy.
February 12 – First performance of Gott erhalte Franz den Kaiser, with the music composed in January by Joseph Haydn which also becomes the tune to the German national anthem, Deutschland, Deutschland über alles.
February 14 – The Battle of Cape St Vincent, part of the French Revolutionary Wars: The British Royal Navy under Admiral Sir John Jervis defeats a larger Spanish fleet off Cape St. Vincent, Portugal.
February 18 – Spanish Governor José María Chacón peacefully surrenders the colony of Trinidad to a British naval force commanded by Sir Ralph Abercromby.
February 19 – Treaty of Tolentino: Pope Pius VI signs a peace treaty with Revolutionary France. He is forced to deliver works of art, treasures, territory, the Comtat Venaissin and 30 million francs.
February 22 – The last invasion of Britain begins: French forces under the command of American Colonel William Tate land near Fishguard in Wales.
February 25 – William Tate surrenders to the British at Fishguard.
February 26 – The Bank of England (national bank of Britain) issues the first one-pound and two-pound notes (discontinued March 11, 1988).
March 4 – John Adams is sworn in as the second President of the United States.
March 16 – Battle of Valvasone: The Austrian army led by Archduke Charles fights a rear guard action at the crossing of the Tagliamento River but is defeated by Napoleon Bonaparte at Valvasone.
April 16 – Spithead and Nore mutinies in the British Royal Navy.
April 17 – Battle of San Juan: Sir Ralph Abercromby unsuccessfully invades San Juan, Puerto Rico in what will be one of the largest British attacks on Spanish territories in the western hemisphere, and one of the worst defeats of the British Royal Navy for years to come.
April 17 – Veronese Easter: Citizens of Verona, Italy, began an unsuccessful eight-day rebellion against the French occupying forces.
April 18 – Armistice of Leoben: On behalf of the French Republic a delegation under Napoleon Bonaparte signs a peace treaty with the Holy Roman Empire at Leoben.
May 10 – The first ship of the United States Navy, the frigate USS United States, is commissioned.
May 12 – War of the First Coalition: Napoleon Bonaparte conquers Venice, ending the city and Republic of Venice's 1,100 years of independence. The last doge of Venice, Ludovico Manin, steps down. The Venetian Ghetto is thrown open.
May 30 – William Wilberforce marries Barbara Ann Spooner.
June 29 – Napoleon Bonaparte creates in a decree the birth of the Cisalpine Republic. He appoints ministers and establishes the first constitution.
July 24 – Horatio Nelson is wounded at the Battle of Santa Cruz, losing an arm.
August 29 – Massacre of Tranent: British troops attack protestors against enforced recruitment into the militia at Tranent in Scotland, killing 12.
From c. October – The XYZ Affair inflames tensions between France and the United States.
October 11 – Battle of Camperdown: the British Royal Navy defeats the fleet of the Batavian Republic off the coast of Holland.
October 17 – The Treaty of Campo Formio ends the War of the First Coalition.
October 21 – In Boston Harbor, the 44-gun United States Navy frigate USS Constitution is launched to fight Barbary pirates off the coast of Tripoli; the ship will remain in commission in the 21st century.
November 16 – The Prussian heir apparent, Frederick William, becomes King of Prussia as Fredrick William III.
December 17 – Napoleon leads a successful French charge against Fort l'Aiguilette to secure Toulon.
Foundation of the secret Lautaro Lodge as the Logia de los Caballeros Racionales ("Lodge of Rational Knights"), perhaps in Cádiz; membership will include many leaders of the Spanish American wars of independence such as Francisco de Miranda, Bernardo O'Higgins and José de San Martín.
January 1 – Utagawa Kuniyoshi, Japanese woodblock print or ukiyo-e (d. 1861)
January 10 – Annette von Droste-Hülshoff, German writer (d. 1848)
January 31 – Franz Schubert, Austrian pianist and composer (d. 1828)
February 10 – George Chichester, 3rd Marquess of Donegall (d. 1883)
February 15 – Henry Engelhard Steinway, German-American piano manufacturer (d. 1871)
March 19 – John Braithwaite (engineer), English engineer and inventor (d. 1870)
March 22 – Emperor Wilhelm I of Germany (d. 1888)
March 27 – Alfred de Vigny, French author (d. 1863)
April 2 – Franz Graf von Wimpffen, Austrian general and admiral (d. 1870)
April 7 – Pierre Leroux, French philosopher and political economist (d. 1871)
May 6 – Joseph Brackett, American religious leader and composer (d. 1882)
May 18 – Frederick Augustus II of Saxony (d. 1854)
May 17 – Ernst Meyer, Danish painter (d. 1861)
May 19 – Maria Isabel of Portugal, Queen of Spain (d. 1818)
June 11 – José Trinidad Reyes, Honduran Father, National Hero, and founder of Autonomous National University of Honduras (d. 1855)
July 17 – Paul Delaroche, French painter (d. 1856)
July 18 – Robert Christison, Scottish toxicologist and physician (d. 1882)
July 20 – Sir Paweł Strzelecki, Polish explorer and geologist (d. 1873)
August 1 – Joseph Gensoul, French surgeon (d. 1858)
August 30 – Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, English writer (d. 1851)
September 10 – Carl Gustav Mosander, Swedish chemist (d. 1858)
September 17 – Heinrich Kuhl, German naturalist and zoologist (d. 1821)
October 3 – Leopold II, Grand Duke of Tuscany (d. 1870)
November 14 – Sir Charles Lyell, British geologist (d. 1875)
November 29 – Gaetano Donizetti, Italian composer (d. 1848)
December 3 – Margaretta Morris, American entomologist (d. 1867)
December 11 – Hiram Paulding, American admiral (d. 1878)
December 13 – Heinrich Heine, German poet (d. 1856)
December 17 – Joseph Henry, American scientist (d. 1878)
December 27 – Manuela Sáenz, Colombian national heroine (d. 1856)
date unknown - Mary Buckland, British paleontologist and marine biologist (d. 1857)
Sojourner Truth, African-American abolitionist and women's rights activist (d. 1883)
January 13 – Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel-Bevern, queen of Prussia, (b. 1715)
February 11 – Antoine Dauvergne, French composer (b. 1713)
February 22 – Karl Friedrich Hieronymus Freiherr von Münchhausen, German officer and adventurer (b. 1720)
March 2 – Horace Walpole, English politician and writer (b. 1717)
March 16 – Cristina Roccati, Italian scholar in physics (b. 1732)
March 26 – James Hutton, Scottish geologist (b. 1726)
March 31 – Olaudah Equiano, Nigerian ex-slave and slavery abolitionist (b. 1745)
April 29 – Elizabeth Ryves, Irish writer and translator (b. 1750)
May 17 – Michel-Jean Sedaine, French dramatist (b. 1719)
May 25 – John Griffin, 4th Baron Howard de Walden, British field marshal (b. 1719)
François-Noël Babeuf, French revolutionary leader (executed) (b. 1760)
Augustin Alexandre Darthé, French revolutionary leader (executed) (b. 1769)
June 17 – Mohammad Khan Qajar, Iranian king (b. 1742)
July 9 – Edmund Burke, Irish philosopher (b. 1723)
July 11 – Ienăchiță Văcărescu, Wallachian writer (b. 1740)
July 14 – Emmanuel de Rohan-Polduc, 70th Grandmaster of the Knights Hospitaller (b. 1725)
August 3 – Jeffery Amherst, British military commander (b. 1717)
August 22 – Dagobert Sigmund von Wurmser, Alsatian-born Austrian general (b. 1724)
September 10 – Mary Wollstonecraft, feminist author (b. 1759)
October 9 – Vilna Gaon, Lithuanian rabbi (b. 1720)
November 14 – Ivan Shuvalov, founder of the Moscow University (b. 1727)
November 16 – King Frederick William II of Prussia (b. 1744)
November 18 – Jacques-Alexandre Laffon de Ladebat, French shipbuilder and merchant (b. 1719)
November 29 – Samuel Langdon, American President of Harvard University (b. 1723)
December 11 – Richard Brocklesby, English physician (b. 1722)
date unknown – Wang Zhenyi (astronomer)
1797 (MDCCXCVII) was a common year starting on Sunday (dominical letter A) of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Thursday (dominical letter D) of the Julian calendar, the 1797th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 797th year of the 2nd millennium, the 97th year of the 18th century, and the 8th year of the 1790s decade. As of the start of 1797, the Gregorian calendar was 11 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923.