Book - 1878
Good condition set of four.
January — Cleopatra's Needle arrives in London.
14 January — Alexander Graham Bell demonstrates the telephone to Queen Victoria.
23 January — Disraeli orders British fleet to the Dardanelles.
8 February — The British fleet enters Turkish waters and anchors off Constantinople. Russia threatens to occupy Constantinople but does not act.
11 February — First weekly Weather report published in the UK.
24 February — Anti-Russian demonstrations in Hyde Park, London.
12 March — Britain annexes Walvis Bay.
15 March — Restoration of the Scottish hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church, carried out on the instructions of Pope Leo XIII.
24 March — The Royal Navy frigate HMS Eurydice (1843) capsizes off the Isle of Wight, killing all but two of the 319 crew.
25 March — Russia rejects a British proposal to lay the Treaty of San Stefano before a European congress.
27 March — In anticipation of war with Russia, Disraeli mobilizes the reserves and calls Indian troops to Malta.
28 March — Stoke City F.C. move into their new stadium at the Victoria Ground, beating Talke Rangers 1-0 in a friendly in their first game there.
25 May — First performance of Gilbert and Sullivan's opera HMS Pinafore, at the Opera Comique on the Strand, London.
31 May — The Imperial German Navy ironclad turret ship SMS Grosser Kurfürst (1875) is accidentally rammed and sunk by SMS König Wilhelm on manoeuvres off Folkestone with the loss of more than 275 crew (an event witnessed by Arthur Sullivan).
1 June — The North British Railway's first Tay Bridge across the Firth of Tay at Dundee in Scotland is opened to public rail services; it is the world's longest bridge at this date.
4 June — Cyprus Convention: The Ottoman Empire cedes Cyprus to the United Kingdom but retains nominal title.
7 June — An underground explosion at Wood Pit, Haydock, kills at least 189.
10 June — Konrad Korzeniowski, the future novelist Joseph Conrad, sets foot on English soil for the first time, at Lowestoft from the SS Mavis.
4 July — Public Health (Water) Act obliges parishes to provide a supply of "wholesome water" within reasonable distance of every home.
7 August — The Christian Mission, co-founded by (the now) General William and Catherine Booth in London in 1865, has its name changed to The Salvation Army.
3 September — Over 640 die when the crowded pleasure boat Princess Alice collides with the Bywell Castle in the River Thames.
11 September — An underground explosion at Abercarn in Monmouthshire kills 268 coal miners.
12 September — Cleopatra's Needle erected on the Victoria Embankment.
October — The University of London becomes the first in the UK to admit women on equal terms with men.
14 October — The world's first recorded floodlit football fixture is played at Bramall Lane in Sheffield.
28 October — The first floodlit rugby match is played in Salford.
21 November — Second Afghan War commences when the British attack Ali Masjid in the Khyber Pass.
26 November — James McNeill Whistler's libel case against critic John Ruskin over a review of the painting of the Thames Nocturne in Black and Gold – The Falling Rocket (in which Whistler is described as "flinging a pot of paint in the public's face") is decided in the High Court of Justice in London. Whistler wins a farthing in nominal damages and only half of the substantial costs.
18 December — Joseph Swan of Newcastle announces his invention of an incandescent light bulb.
30 December — Henry Irving's production of Hamlet, with himself in the title rôle playing opposite Ellen Terry as Ophelia, opens at the Lyceum Theatre, London.