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|Centuries:||16th century – 17th century – 18th century|
|Decades:||1600s 1610s 1620s – 1630s – 1640s 1650s 1660s|
|Years:||1636 1637 1638 – 1639 – 1640 1641 1642|
- January 14 – Connecticut's first constitution, the "Fundamental Orders," is adopted.
- January 23 – Francisco Maldonado de Silva, Peruvian Jewish poet, executed by burning at the stake
- March 13 – Harvard University is named for a clergyman named John Harvard.
- November 24 – Jeremiah Horrocks observes the transit of Venus.
- Charles I starts the first of the Bishops Wars against Scotland.
- The Casiquiare canal, a river forming a natural canal between the Amazon River and Orinoco River basins, is first encountered by Europeans.
- The Barbados House of Assembly meets for the first time.
- The first printing press in North America is started in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
- Russian Cossacks advance over Urals to Pacific, to Okhotsk.
- Montreal first settled.