1870 in literature
This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1870.
- March 7 – Thomas Hardy meets his first wife, Emma Gifford, in Cornwall.
- March 28 – Serialisation of Kenward Philp's The Bowery Detective in The Fireside Companion (New York) begins, the first known story to include the word detective in the title.
- April—September – Serialisation of Charles Dickens' last novel The Mystery of Edwin Drood, left unfinished due to his death on June 9 at Gads Hill Place in Kent from a stroke aged 58.
- Spring – Serial publication begins of Aleksis Kivi's only novel Seitsemän veljestä ("Seven Brothers"), the first significant Finnish language novel.
- August 24/25 – Libraries of the University of Strasbourg and the City of Strasbourg at Temple Neuf are destroyed by fire during the Siege of Strasbourg in the Franco-Prussian War resulting in the loss of 3,446 medieval manuscripts, including the original 12th-century Hortus deliciarum compiled by Herrad of Landsberg, and rare Renaissance books.
- September 17 – First performance of Alexander Pushkin's play Boris Godunov (1825) at the Mariinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg, given by the artists of the Alexandrinsky Theatre.
- c. September 20 – Friedrich Engels moves permanently to London from Manchester.
- December 18 – The Russian literary weekly Niva («Ни́ва», "Cornfield") is first published by Adolf Marks in Saint Petersburg.
- Karl May begins a second 4-year prison sentence for thefts and frauds, at Waldheim, Saxony.
- The David Sassoon Library in Bombay is completed.
- Thomas Bailey Aldrich – The Story of a Bad Boy
- Thomas Archer – The Terrible Sights of London
- Rhoda Broughton – Red as a Rose is She
- Wilkie Collins – Man and Wife
- José Maria de Eça de Queiroz and Ramalho Ortigão – O Mistério da Estrada de Sintra (The Mystery of the Sintra Road)
- Charles Dickens – The Mystery of Edwin Drood
- Benjamin Disraeli – Lothair
- Fyodor Dostoevsky – The Eternal Husband («Вечный муж», Vechny muzh)
- Edward Jenkins – Ginx's Baby: his birth and other misfortunes
- Mór Jókai – Fekete gyémántok (Black Diamonds, i. e. coal)
- Aleksis Kivi – Seitsemän veljestä (Seven Brothers)
- Jonas Lie – Den Fremsynte (The Visionary or Pictures From Nordland)
- George Meredith – The Adventures of Harry Richmond (begins serial publication)
- William Morris – The Earthly Paradise
- Leopold von Sacher-Masoch – Venus in Furs (Venus im Pelz)
- Bayard Taylor – Joseph and His Friend: A Story of Pennsylvania
- Anthony Trollope – The Vicar of Bullhampton
- Jules Verne
- Charlotte M. Yonge – The Caged Lion
- James Albery – Two Roses
- Ludwig Anzengruber (as L. Gruber) – Der Pfarrer von Kirchfeld (The Priest of Kirchfeld)
- Henry James Byron – Uncle Dick's Darling
- Pietro Cossa – Nero
- Lydia Koidula
- Maret ja Miina (or Kosjakased; The Betrothal Birches)
- Saaremaa Onupoeg (The Cousin from Saaremaa)
- Lord Newry – Ecarte
- George Sand and Sarah Bernhardt – L'Autre
- Aleksey Konstantinovich Tolstoy – Tsar Boris («Царь Борис», published)
- Bret Harte – The Heathen Chinee
- Edward Lear – Nonsense Songs, Stories, Botany, and Alphabets (dated 1871), including "The Owl and the Pussycat"
- Giovanni Marradi – Canzone moderne
- Dante Gabriel Rossetti – Poems, including "Jenny" and a fragment of "The House of Life"
- January 3 – Henry Handel Richardson (Ethel Florence Lindesay Richardson), Australian novelist (died 1946)
- March 5 – Frank Norris, American novelist (died 1902)
- April 7 – Gustav Landauer, German philosopher and revolutionary (murdered 1919)
- June 25 – Erskine Childers, Irish novelist (executed 1922)
- July 27 – Hilaire Belloc, French-born English writer, poet and satirist (died 1953)
- October 18 – Petre P. Negulescu, Romanian philosopher (died 1951)
- October 22 (October 10 OS) – Ivan Bunin, Russian-born writer, recipient of Nobel Prize in Literature (died 1953)
- October 29 – Gerald Duckworth, English publisher (died 1937)
- December 17 – Ioan A. Bassarabescu, Romanian short story writer and politician (died 1952)
- December 18 – Saki (Hector Hugh Munro), English short story writer and dramatist (killed in action 1916)
- February 25 – Henrik Hertz, Danish poet (born 1797)
- April 24 – Louisa Stuart Costello, Irish writer on history and travel (born 1799)
- June 9 – Charles Dickens, English novelist (born 1812)
- June 11 – William Gilmore Simms, American poet, novelist and historian (born 1806)
- July 19 – Benjamin Thorpe, scholar of Old English (born c. 1782)
- July 20 – Jules de Goncourt, French novelist and critic (syphilis, born 1830)
- July 24 – Anders Abraham Grafström, Swedish poet and historian (born 1790)
- September 12 – Fitz Hugh Ludlow, American author and explorer (born 1836)
- November 4 – Comte de Lautreamont (Isidore Lucien Ducasse), French poet and writer (born 1846)
- December 5 – Alexandre Dumas, père, French novelist (born 1802)
- "Luke Fildes". TheFamousArtists.com.
- "Emma Gifford". Spartacus Educational. Archived from the original on 2013-08-02. Retrieved 2013-07-23.
- Obituary, The Times (London), August 1870.
- "History of the BNU". Strasbourg: BNU (Bibliothèque nationale universitaire). Retrieved 2014-01-21.
- "Outstanding Dates". The Life and Work of Karl Marx. Retrieved 2013-07-23.
- Cox, Michael, ed. (2004). The Concise Oxford Chronology of English Literature. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-860634-6.
- Pages from the Goncourt Journals (2006). NYRB Classics. ISBN 159017190X.
- Bachelard, Gaston (1986). "Lautréamont". Dallas Institute.