- January 9 & 16 – James Bradley, in a letter written to Edmond Halley and read before the Royal Society, describes his discovery of aberration of starlight.
- August 1 – Fr. Nicolas Sarrabat, a professor of mathematics at Marseille, discovers the Comet of 1729, possibly the largest comet, with the highest apparent magnitude, on record.
- English optician Chester Moore Hall (1703–1771) develops an achromatic lens (or achromat) commonly used as the objective of small refracting telescopes.
- June 8 – The Botanic Gardens of Pamplemousses on Mauritius are started by Pierre Barmond.
- Mark Catesby begins part publication in London of The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands, containing the figures of birds, beasts, fishes, serpents, insects, and plants ... together with their descriptions in English and French, the first published account of the flora and fauna of North America, and the first work of natural history to use folio-size coloured plates.
- Stephen Gray discovers electrical conduction.
- Pierre Bouguer publishes Essai d'optique sur la gradation de la lumière, defining the quantity of light lost by passing through a given extent of the earth's atmosphere, thus making some of the earliest measurements in photometry and becoming the first known discoverer of what is now known as the Beer–Lambert law.
- Date clarified in: Sarton, George (November 1931). "Discovery of the Aberration of Light". Isis. 16 (2): 233. doi:10.1086/346611. ISSN 0021-1753. JSTOR 224710.
- Hepper, F. Nigel (2004). "Catesby, Mark (1683–1749)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2011-03-23. (subscription or UK public library membership required)
- Steinbock, R. Ted (2006). "Isaac Newton and the Scientific Revolution" (PDF). Centre College. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2006-09-19.
- Westfall, Richard S. "Gray, Stephen". The Galileo Project.
- Lamontagne, Roland (1964). La vie et l’oeuvre de Pierre Bouguer. Presses de l'Université de Montréal.
- Appendix 8: Chocolate Timeline. Chocolate. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. 2008. pp. 855–928. doi:10.1002/9780470411315.app8. ISBN 978-0-470-41131-5.