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Year 1165 (MCLXV) was a common year starting on Friday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar.
- November 23 – Pope Alexander III enters Rome.
- December 9 – William the Lion succeeds his brother Malcolm IV as king of Scotland; he will reign until his death in 1214.
- Emperor Rokujō ascends to the throne of Japan at the age of one.
- Byzantine Emperor Andronicus I escapes from prison.
- Henry II of England begins an affair with Rosamund Clifford.
- Battle of Crogen: Henry II of England invades Wales, but is defeated and forced to retreat.
- The Muslims take Caesarea Philippi from the Crusaders.
- Leipzig gains city and market privileges.
- The town of Pistoia obtains the appellation of "imperio fidelissima" from Frederick I, as faithful to the emperor.
- Construction of the Liuhe Pagoda of Hangzhou, China, is completed in this year, during the Song Dynasty.
- The adventurer Gerald the Fearless, vassal of the king of Portugal, seizes the city Evora by surprise. The same year (or soon after), he takes Cacéres, Trujillo, Montánchez, Lobon, Moura, Monsaraz and Alconchel.
- The Archbishop of Lund appoints Fulco as the first Bishop of Estonia, marking the early beginning of the gradual introduction of Christianity in Estonia.