100 People who changed the world

This is a list of 100 people who have changed the world. This list is not a judgement about who is ‘best’.

People who changed the world

christ1. Jesus Christ (circa 5 BCE – 30 CE) Spiritual Teacher, central figure of Christianity

2. Thomas JeffersonJefferson (1743 – 1826) American President 1801 – 1809, principle author of Declaration of Independence

3. Mikhail Gorbachev Gorbachev(1931 – ) Leader of Soviet Union 1985 – 1991, oversaw transition from Communism in Eastern Europe.

4. Lord Buddha buddha (circa 563 BCE – 483 BCE) Spiritual teacher and founder of Buddhism

5. Winston Churchill Churchill(1874 – 1965) Prime Minister of Great Britain during Second World War

6. William Shakespeare Shakespeare(1564 – 1616) English poet and playwright

Muhammad_Salat7. Muhammad  (570 – 632) Founder of Islam

8. Martin Luther King christ (1929 – 1968) Civil Rights leader

9. Abraham Lincoln Lincoln (1809 – 1865) American President during civil war, helped end slavery

mandela10. Nelson Mandela (1918 – 2013) Anti-apartheid leader, first President of democratic South Africa in 1994

  1. St Paul (5 BCE – 67 CE) Christian missionary
  2. Adolf Hitler (1889 – 1945) Dictator of Nazi Germany
  3. George Washington (1732 – 1799) First President of USA
  4. Sri Krishna (circa 2000 BCE) Spiritual teacher, prominent figure in Hinduism
  5. Emperor Constantine (272 – 337) First Roman Emperor to embrace Christianity
  6. Martin Luther (1483 – – 1546) Key figure in Protestant Reformation
  7. Socrates (469 BCE – 399 BCE) Greek philosopher
  8. Mahatma Gandhi (1869 – 1948) Indian nationalist and politician
  9. Karl Marx (1818 –– 1883) German philosopher, founder of Marxism
  10. Napoleon Bonaparte (1769 –– 1821) French military and political leader
  11. Simon Bolivar (1783 – 1830) Liberator of South American countries
  12. Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882 – 1945) US President 1932-1945
  13. Charles Darwin (1809 –– 1882) Developed theory of evolution
  14. Sir Isaac Newton (1642 – 1727) English mathematician and scientist
  15. Confucius (551 BCE– – 479 BCE) Chinese philosopher
  16. Akbar (1542 – 1605) Mughal Emperor
  17. Queen Victoria (1819 –– 1901) British monarch 1837 – 1901
  18. Konrad Adenauer (1876 – 1967) German Chancellor post WWII
  19. Jawaharlal Nehru (1889 – 1964) First Prime Minister of India
  20. Ramses II (1279 BCE – 1213 BCE) Egyptian Pharoah
  21. Benjamin Franklin (1706 – 1790) American writer and polymath
  22. Alexander the Great (356 BCE –– 323 BCE) King of Macedonia
  23. Woodrow Wilson (1856 – 1924) American president during WWI
  24. Christopher Columbus (1451 – 1506) Italian explorer
  25. Marcus Aurelius (121 –– 180) Roman emperor and philosopher
  26. Galileo Galilei (1564 – 1642) Astronomer and physicist
  27. Plato (424 BCE –– 348 BCE) Philosopher
  28. Joan of Arc (1412 – 1431) French saint
  29. Charlemagne (742 – 814) King of Franks and Emperor of the Romans
  30. Aristotle (384BCE –– 322BCE) Greek philosopher
  31. Saladin (1138 –– 1193) Leader of Arabs during Crusades
  32. Babur (1483 – 1531) Founder of Mughal Empire
  33. Sir Walter Raleigh (1552 –– 1618) English explorer
  34. Voltaire (1694 – – 1778) French philosopher
  35. Catherine the Great (1729 –– 1796) Empress of all the Russias 1762 – 1796
  36. Mozart (1756 –– 1791) Austrian composer
  37. Guru Nanak (1469 – 1539) Spiritual teacher, founder of Sikhism
  38. Leonardo da Vinci (1452 –– 1519) Italian scientist, artist, polymath
  39. Louis Pasteur (1822 – 1895) French chemist and Biologist
  40. Leo Tolstoy (1828 –– 1910) Russian writer and philosopher
  41. Albert Einstein (1879 –– 1955) German physicist
  42. Ataturk (1881 – 1938) Founder of the Turkish Republic
  43. Pablo Picasso (1881 – 1973) Spanish painter and sculptor
  44. Pope John Paul II (1920 – 2005) Polish Pope from 1978-2005
  45. Margaret Thatcher (1925 – 2013) British Prime Minister 1979 – 1990
  46. Mohammed Ali (1942 – 2016) American boxer and human rights activist
  47. John F. Kennedy (1917 –– 1963) American President 1961 – 1963
  48. Boris Yeltsin (1931 –– 2007) First President of Russia 1991 – 1999
  49. Indira Gandhi (1917 –– 1984) Prime Minister of India 1980 – 1984
  50. William Tyndale (1494 – 1536)  Translated Bible into English
  51. Tim Berners Lee (1955 – ) Inventor of World Wide Web
  52. Rosa Parks (1913 – 2005) Civil Rights activist
  53. Benazir Bhutto (1953 – 2007) Prime Minister of Pakistan 1993 – 1996
  54. J.S. Bach (1685 – 1750) German composer
  55. 14th Dalai Lama (1938 – ) Spiritual and political leader of Tibetans
  56. Malcolm X (1925 – 1965) Black Civil Rights activist
  57. Lech Walesa (1943 – ) Leader of Polish solidarity movement
  58. Charles de Gaulle (1890 – 1970) French politician
  59. Joseph Stalin (1879 – 1953) Leader of the Soviet Union 1922 – 1952
  60. Marie Curie (1867 – 1934) Chemist and physicist
  61. Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807 – 1882) Independence leader in Italy and South America
  62. Johann Gutenberg (1395 – 1468 Inventor of the printing press
  63. Oliver Cromwell (1599 – 1658) British Parliamentarian
  64. Vladimir Lenin (1870 – 1924) Leader of Russian Revolution in 1917
  65. Sigmund Freud (1856 – 1939) Austrian neurologist, psychoanalyst
  66. Mother Teresa (1910 – 1997) Macedonian Catholic nun and missionary
  67. Bill Gates (1955 – ) Founder of Microsoft
  68. Ernest Hemingway ( 1899 – 1961) American author
  69. John Lennon (1940 – 1980) British musician and member of the Beatles
  70. Genghis Kahn (1162 – 1227) Ruler of Mongol Empire
  71. Haile Selassie (1892 – 1975) Emperor of Ethiopia 1930 – 1974
  72. John M Keynes (1883 – 1946) Influential economist
  73. Susan B. Anthony (1820 – 1906) American political activist
  74. George Orwell (1903 – 1950) English author
  75. Thomas Edison (1847 – 1931) Inventor and businessman
  76. Kofi Annan (1938 –  ) United Nations Secretary General 1997 – 2006
  77. Dwight Eisenhower (1890 – 1969) Supreme Allied Commander WWII
  78. Eleanor Roosevelt (1884 – 1962) helped to draft UN declaration of human rights
  79. Dr. B.R. Ambedkar (1891 – 1956) Indian political activist and social reformer who drafted Indian constitution
  80. Lyndon Johnson (1908 – 1973) US President 1963 – 1969
  81. William Wilberforce (1759 – 1833) Campaigner against slavery
  82. Nikola Tesla (1856 – 1943) Scientist, inventor
  83. Alexander Fleming (1881–1955) Scottish biologist who discovered antibiotics
  84. Samuel Johnson (1709 – 1784) British author and creator of the English dictionary
  85. Eva Peron (1919 – 1952) First Lady of Argentina 1946 – 1952
  86. Henry Ford (1864 – 1947) American industrialist
  87. Princess Diana (1961 –– 1997) Humanitarian
  88. Oscar Wilde (1854 – 1900) Irish author, playwright
  89. Beethoven (1770 – 1827) German composer
  90. Aung San Suu Kyi (1945 – ) Burmese opposition leader

Citation: Pettinger, Tejvan. “People who changed the world”, Oxford, www.biographyonline.net, First published 2008. Last updated 2! November 2016

 

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Note: It is hard to select a ‘top 100’. It is also even harder to rank people in terms of influence. I agree there could easily be a different order and ranking. But, hopefully, this will be of help for researching some of the famous people who have made a big difference to the world.

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