In the year 1600...
- Japanese warlord Tokugawa Ieyasu eliminates the last major threat to his hegemony over Japan by defeating Ishida Mitsunari at the Battle of Sekigahara, paving the way for the establishment of the Tokugawa Shogunate and nearly three centuries of peace.
- King Charles IX of Sweden invades Livonia, initiating the long Swedish-Polish Wars that would last until the Peace of Oliva in 1660.
- The Dutch Revolt continues as Dutch forces under Maurice of Nassau defeat Spanish forces under Albert Ernst of Austria in a dramatic cavalry contest on coastal dunes at the Battle of Nieuwpoort.
- Mughal emperor Akbar annexes the kingdom of Ahmednagar.
- Transylvanian nobles in revolt against Romanian ruler Michael the Brave and call upon the Holy Roman Empire for aid and an imperial army under General George Basta defeats Michael at the Battle of Miraslau, temporarily ending his reign over the region. Meanwhile the Poles and the Ottomans are invading Michael's other dominion of Walachia. Michael defeats the Ottomans at Oltenia but suffers a defeat at the hands of the Poles near Ploesti.
- In the mysterious Gowrie Conspiracy, Scottish lords John and Alexander Ruthven, are murdered at their estates in Perth by the retinue of Scottish king James VI (the future James I of England), with the King's acquiescence, perhaps as punishment for a plot against the throne.
- The British East India Company is chartered by Queen Elizabeth I in hopes of breaking the Dutch monopoly of the spice trade in Asia.
- Will Adams becomes the first Englishman to visit Japan, when his typhoon-battered ship lands in Bungo province. At first imprisoned on suspicion of piracy, Adams would later be elevated to the rank of samurai as one of Ieyasu's advisors on foreign affairs. Adams was the model for protagonist John Blackthorne in James Clavell's bestselling novel, Shogun.
- English scientist William Gilbert recognizes that the Earth behaves like a giant magnet, describes the electrification of many substances, and coins the term "electricity" from the Greek word for amber.
- William Shakespeare writes Twelfth Night and Hamlet.
- England's Helicon, a collection of pastoral poetry, is first published.
- English playwright Thomas Dekker writes his best-known play, The Shoemaker’s Holiday.
- Ottavio Rinuccini’s Euridice is the first opera for which the music is still extant.
These people were born in 1600:
These people died in 1600:
1599 - 1600 - 1601