- February 11 - John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir, Governor-General of Canada (1935-1940).
- Leon Trotsky, Russian revolutionary
- The Complex Number Calculator, a calculator for complex arithmetic based on relays, was completed. (see History of computing).
- The first transposons are discovered in corn (zea mays) by Barbara McClintock.
- March 6 - Winter War between Finland and the Soviet Union ends. Finland loses 10% territory.
- WWII: Germany invades France in May, which surrenders in June and Vichy France is established. The British evacuate thousands of troops from Dunkirk.
- Germany begins a bombing campaign against Britain in preparation for an invasion, in what becomes known as the [[World War II/Battle of Britain|Battle of Britain