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1730 (MDCCXXX) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Thursday of the Julian calendar, the 1730th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 730th year of the 2nd millennium, the 30th year of the 18th century, and the 1st year of the 1730s decade. As of the start of 1730, the Gregorian calendar was 11 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923.
- January 29 – Anna Ivanovna (Anna of Russia) becomes empress, following the death of her cousin, Emperor Peter II.
- March 12 – John Glas is deposed from the Church of Scotland; the Glasite sect forms around him.
- April 8 – Shearith Israel, the first synagogue in New York City, is dedicated.
- May 15 – Charles Townshend, 2nd Viscount Townshend, retires from his role in the government of Great Britain, leaving Robert Walpole as sole and undisputed leader of the Cabinet (i.e., prime minister). In the new Walpole ministry, Sir William Strickland, 4th Baronet, becomes Secretary at War, and Henry Pelham is Paymaster of the Forces. Spencer Compton, 1st Earl of Wilmington briefly becomes Lord Privy Seal.
- May – At the urging of Sir William Gooch, the Virginia House of Burgesses passes the Tobacco Inspection Act of 1730 to regulate the quality of Virginian tobacco, and establish inspection warehouses near plantations in the Tidewater region.
- The establishment of Wright's Ferry under the authority of the Province of Pennsylvania triggers Cresap's War – a nine-year-long conflict also known as the Maryland-Pennsylvania boundary dispute – the conflict mainly centers in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania and York County, Pennsylvania on either banks of the Susquehanna River.
- April 16 – Henry Clinton, British general (d. 1795)
- April 26 – John Moore, Archbishop of Canterbury (d. 1805)
- May 13 – Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd Marquess of Rockingham, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (d. 1782)
- May 28 – Maria Angela Ardinghelli, Italian scientific translator (d. 1825)
- June 21 – Motoori Norinaga, Japanese philologist, scholar of the kokugaku school (d. 1801)
- June 30 – Lokenath Brahmachari, Indian saint, yogi and mystic (d. 1890)
- July 10 - Jean-Baptiste Willermoz, French Freemason (d. 1824)
- July 12 – Josiah Wedgwood, English potter, abolitionist (d. 1795)
- July 12 – Anna Barbara Reinhart, Swiss mathematician (d. 1796)
- July 26 – Charles Messier, French astronomer (d. 1817)
- August 27 - Johann Georg Hamann, German philosopher (d. 1788)
- September 17 – Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben, Prussian army officer (d. 1794)
- November 23 – William Moultrie, American general (d. 1805)
- December 14 – James Bruce, Scottish explorer (d. 1794)
- December 25 – Philip Mazzei, Italian physician, friend of Thomas Jefferson (d. 1816)
- December 30 – William Hamilton, British diplomat, antiquary (d. 1803)
- date unknown
- January 1
- January 7 – Árni Magnússon, Icelandic scholar and manuscript collector (b. 1663)
- January 18 – Antonio Vallisneri, Italian scientist (b. 1661)
- January 29 – Emperor Peter II of Russia (b. 1715)
- February 9 – Johann Georg von Eckhart, German historian (b. 1664)
- February 12 – Luca Carlevarijs, Italian painter (b. 1663)
- February 21 – Pope Benedict XIII (b. 1649)
- March 9 – Frances Talbot, Countess of Tyrconnel (b. c. 1647)
- March 20 – Adrienne Lecouvreur, French actress (b. 1692)
- March 22 – Benedetto Pamphili, Italian cardinal, patron of the arts, composer and librettist (b. 1653)
- March 23 – Charles I, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel) (b. 1654)
- May 13 – Sir Justinian Isham, 4th Baronet, English baronet and Member of Parliament (b. 1658)
- May 30 – Arabella Churchill, English mistress of James II of England (b. 1648)
- June 6 – Alain Emmanuel de Coëtlogon, Marshal of France in the reign of Louis XIV and Louis XV (b. 1646)
- June 18 Yinxiang, Qing Dynasty prince (b. 1686)
- June 19 – Thomas Trevor, 1st Baron Trevor, British Baron (b. 1658)
- June 21 – Sarah Basset, Bermudian slave, origin of legend
- June 28 – Joachim Bouvet, French Jesuit active in China (b. 1656)
- July 7 – Olivier Levasseur, French pirate
- July 9 – Issachar Berend Lehmann, German-Jewish banker, Court Jew in Hanover (b. 1661)
- July 18 – François de Neufville, duc de Villeroy, French soldier (b. 1644)
- August 2 – Mathias Steuchius, Swedish archbishop (b. 1644)
- August 10 – Sébastien de Brossard, French composer and music theorist (b. 1655)
- August 12 – Benedicta Henrietta of the Palatinate, German princess (b. 1652)
- August 19 – James Ogilvy, 4th Earl of Findlater (b. 1664)
- September 9 – Charles FitzRoy, 2nd Duke of Cleveland (b. 1662)
- September 10 – Guichard Joseph Duverney, French anatomist (b. 1648)
- September 14 – Sophia Elisabet Brenner, Swedish writer (b. 1659)
- September 27 – Laurence Eusden, English poet (b. 1688)