1991 (MCMXCI) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar, the 1991st year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 991st year of the 2nd millennium, the 91st year of the 20th century, and the 2nd year of the 1990s decade.

From left, clockwise: Boris Yeltsin, elected as Russia's first president, waves the new flag of Russia after the 1991 Soviet coup d'état attempt, orchestrated by Soviet hardliners; Mount Pinatubo erupts in the Philippines, making it the second-largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century; MTS Oceanos sinks off the coast of South Africa, but the crew notoriously abandons the vessel before the passengers are rescued; Dissolution of the Soviet Union: The Soviet flag is lowered from the Kremlin for the last time and replaced with the flag of the Russian Federation; The United States and soon-to-be dissolved Soviet Union sign the START I Treaty; A tropical cyclone strikes Bangladesh, killing nearly 140,000 people; Lauda Air Flight 004 crashes after one of its thrust reversers activates during the flight; A United States-led coalition initiates Operation Desert Storm to remove Iraq and Saddam Hussein from Kuwait

Quick facts: Millennium , Centuries , Decades , Years ...
Millennium: 2nd millennium
Quick facts: ...
1991 in various calendars
Gregorian calendar1991
Ab urbe condita2744
Armenian calendar1440
Assyrian calendar6741
Baháʼí calendar147–148
Balinese saka calendar1912–1913
Bengali calendar1398
Berber calendar2941
British Regnal year39 Eliz. 2  40 Eliz. 2
Buddhist calendar2535
Burmese calendar1353
Byzantine calendar7499–7500
Chinese calendar庚午年 (Metal Horse)
4687 or 4627
辛未年 (Metal Goat)
4688 or 4628
Coptic calendar1707–1708
Discordian calendar3157
Ethiopian calendar1983–1984
Hebrew calendar5751–5752
Hindu calendars
 - Vikram Samvat2047–2048
 - Shaka Samvat1912–1913
 - Kali Yuga5091–5092
Holocene calendar11991
Igbo calendar991–992
Iranian calendar1369–1370
Islamic calendar1411–1412
Japanese calendarHeisei 3
Javanese calendar1923–1924
Juche calendar80
Julian calendarGregorian minus 13 days
Korean calendar4324
Minguo calendarROC 80
Nanakshahi calendar523
Thai solar calendar2534
Tibetan calendar阳金马年
(male Iron-Horse)
2117 or 1736 or 964
(female Iron-Goat)
2118 or 1737 or 965
Unix time662688000 – 694223999

It was the final year of the Cold War that had begun in 1947. During the year, the Soviet Union collapsed, leaving fifteen sovereign republics and the CIS in its place. In July 1991, India abandoned its policies of socialism and autarky and began extensive neoliberal changes to its economy. This increased GDP, but also increased economic inequality over the next two decades.[1] A UN-authorized coalition force from 34 nations fought against Iraq, which had invaded and annexed Kuwait in the previous year, 1990. The conflict would be called the Gulf War and would mark the beginning of a since-constant American military presence in the Middle East. The clash between Serbia and the other Yugoslav republics would lead into the beginning of the Yugoslav Wars, which ran through the rest of the decade.

In the context of the apartheid, the year after the liberation of political prisoner Nelson Mandela, the Parliament of South Africa repeals the Population Registration Act, 1950 overturning the racial classification of the population, a key component of apartheid.[2]

The year 1991 saw the rise of a 10 years long boost of the US domestic economy with the Dow Jones Industrial Average remarkably closing in April at above 3,000 for the first time.[3] This situation would only be cut short by the Dot-com bubble of 2000–2002.

In August, the World Wide Web, originally conceived during the previous year, was released outside CERN to other research institutions starting in January 1991 and publicly announced in August, also establishing the first website ever, "info.cern.ch". This step was a key factor that lead to the mid-1990s public breakthrough of the internet, which would eventually accelerate the already ongoing globalization around the globe.

In terms of popular culture, during this year alternative rock saw a new height of popularity when some of the earliest music exponents of the virtually unknown grunge sound were released, including the influential Nevermind album by Seattle-based band Nirvana in September 1991.[4] It was also in 1991 that hip-hop music reached an unprecedented mainstream level of success.[5] Electronic music derivative forms were also starting to gain momentum and would define, alone with the previous scenes, the sound for most of the decade.

Oops something went wrong: