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Noun1.1840s - the decade from 1840 to 18491840s - the decade from 1840 to 1849  
decade, decennary, decennium - a period of 10 years
References in classic literature ?
In Petersburg in the eighteen-forties a surprising event occurred.
Kasatsky belonged to those men of the eighteen-forties (they are now no longer to be found) who while deliberately and without any conscientious scruples condoning impurity in themselves, required ideal and angelic purity in their women, regarded all unmarried women of their circle as possessed of such purity, and treated them accordingly.
The author has arranged the material in six chapters, examining the general history of the city, mystery surrounding specific chapters of its past, its rise as a treaty port in the eighteen-forties, fifties, sixties, the role of public debt in republican China, the past glories and present hopes of the city, and the longstanding rivalry the city has maintained with Hong Kong.