In the year 1579...
- The long Livonian War continues as Polish king Stephen Báthory invades Russia, recapturing Polotsk and laying siege to Pskov.
- Portuguese forces attack the Mbundu kingdom of Ndongo in what is now Angola, but are repulsed by a fierce resistance.
- Irish noblemant Gerald Fitzgerald, 15th earl of Desmond initiates a four year rebellion against the English that draws support from the Spanish and the French.
- Dutch protestant forces are in revolt against Catholic Spanish authority. Seven provinces of the northern Netherlands sign a pact for common defense against Philip II of Spain, the Union of Utrecht, and are henceforward known as the United Provinces, forming the nucleus of the what will become the Dutch Republic. Meanwhile, Spanish governor-general Alessandro Farnese captures Maastricht.
- Japanese hegemon Oda Nobunaga completes the massive Azuchi Castle, revolutionizing Japanese castle-building techniques and providing a tangible symbol of his virtually absolute power over central Japan.
- On a voyage that would eventually be the first English circumnavigation of the world, Sir Francis Drake explores the west coast of North America, including San Francisco Bay, Point Reyes, and parts of Oregon. Stopping to make repairs, he names the region New Albion and claims it for the English crown before setting off across the Pacific.
- Publication of the Kralice Bible, the first Bible in Czech, begins and will be completed in 1593.
- Inspired by the works of Virgil, English poet Edmund Spenser publishes 12 pastoral eclogues in The Shepheardes Calender.
- Sir Thomas North publishes his translation of Plutarch, Lives of the Noble Grecians and Romans from the French of Jacques Amyot. The widely read work would will serve as the inspiration for several of Shakespeare's plays, including Antony and Cleopatra and Julius Caesar.
- English writer Stephen Gosson publishes his attack on plays, poetry, and other arts, The School of Abuse, which would evoke replies in defense from Thomas Lodge and in Sir Philip Sidney’s Apology for Poetry.
- The Vindiciae contra tyrannos, credited to French Huguenot leader Philippe de Mornay, is published, advocating the people’s right to resist an evil king.
- Scottish humanist George Buchanan publishes De jure regni apud Scotos arguing that the King rules by popular will and for the general good.
These people were born in 1579:
These people died in 1579:
1578 - 1579 - 1580
How they were made