The 100 Greatest Men of All Time

“Greatness” does not always mean “goodness.” Among the great men in this book are some who left a blank mark on world history. Shi Huangdi, Emperor of China in the third century BC, ruled his empire ruthlessly. Death was the only punishment for disobeying his laws. Peter the Great, Tsar of Russia, had his son tortured to death for treason… These, and others whose stories have a dark side, have been included because, for good or evil, they left their mark on the age they lived in.

Humanitarians
Albert Schweitzer 1875-1965 Lutheran
Chiune Sugihara 1900-1986
Raoul Wallenberg 1912-c.1947
Martin Luther King, Jr. 1929-1968 Baptist
Desmond Tutu 1931- Anglican
The Dalai Lama 1935- Tibetan Buddhism
Han Dongfang 1963-
Thinkers and Philosophers
Lao Zi [Lao Tzu] c. 600 B.C. Taoism
Confucius 551-479 B.C. Confucianism
Socrates 469-399 B.C. Greek philosophy
Plato c. 427-347 B.C. Platonism / Greek philosophy
Aristotle 384-322 B.C. Platonism / Greek philosophy
Niccolo Machiavelli 1469-1527 Catholic
John Locke 1632-1704 raised Puritan (Anglican); Liberal Christian
Jean-Jacques Rousseau 1712-1778 born Protestant;
converted as a teen to Catholic;
later Deist
Karl Marx 1818-1883 Jewish; Lutheran;
Atheist; Marxism/Communism
Kings, Emperors and Politicians
Hammurabi c. 1792-1750 B.C.
Alexander the Great 356-323 Greek state paganism
Asoka c. 300-232 B.C. Buddhism
Shi Huangdi 259-210 B.C.
Julius Caesar c. 100-44 B.C. Roman state paganism
Charlemagne 742-814 A.D. Catholic
Kublai Khan 1214-1294
Peter the Great 1672-1725 Russian Orthodox
George Washington 1732-1799 Episcopalian
Napoleon Bonaparte 1769-1821 Catholic (nominal)
Simon Bolivar 1783-1830 Catholic (nominal); Atheist
Abraham Lincoln 1809-1865 Regular Baptist (childhood);
later ambiguous -
Deist, general theist or
a very personalized Christianity
Mahatma Gandhi 1869-1948 Hindu (mother was a Jain)
Kemal Ataturk 1881-1938
Franklin D. Roosevelt 1882-1945 Episcopalian
Nelson Mandela 1918-
Mikhail Gorbachev 1931- Russian Orthodox
Religious Leaders
Zoroaster c. 628-c. 551 B.C. Zoroastrianism
Muhammad c. 570-632 A.D. Islam
Buddha c. 563-c. 483 B.C. Hinduism; Buddhism
Moses c. 13th century B.C. Judaism
Jesus Christ c. 6 B.C.-c. 30 A.D. Judaism; Christianity
Martin Luther 1483-1546 Catholic; Lutheran
Musicians and Composers
Johann Sebastian Bach 1685-1750 Lutheran
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart 1756-1791 Catholic
Ludwig van Beethoven 17770-1827 Catholic
Richard Wagner 1813-1883
Arturo Toscanini 1867-1957 Catholic
George Gershwin 1898-1937 Jewish
Louis Armstrong 1898-1971 Baptist
The Beatles formed 1960
Writers
Homer c. 700-c. 800 B.C. Greek paganism
Virgil 70-19 B.C.
Dante Alighieri 1265-1321 Catholic
William Shakespeare 1564-1616 Catholic; Anglican
Moliere 1622-1673 Catholic
Charles Dickens 1812-1870 Anglican
Mark Twain 1835-1910 Presbyterian
Bertolt Brecht 1898-1956
Painters, Sculptors and Architects
Michelangelo 1475-1564 Catholic
Rembrandt 1606-1669 Dutch Reformed
Christopher Wren 1632-1723 Anglican
Katsushika Hokusai 1760-1849
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775-1851
Vincent van Gogh 1853-1890 Dutch Reformed
Frank Lloyd Wright 1869-1959 Unitarian
Pablo Picasso 1881-1973 Catholic
Le Corbusier 1887-1965
Stage, Screen and Photography
Charlie Chaplin 1889-1977 Anglican; agnostic
Jean Renoir 1894-1979 Catholic
Sergei Eisenstein 1898-1948 Russian Orthodox; Marxist; Freudian
Henri Cartier-Bresson 1908-
Orson Welles 1915-1985 Protestant Christian
Steven Spielberg 1947- Judaism
Scientists
Euclid c. 330-c. 260 B.C. Platonism / Greek philosophy
Archimedes c. 287-212 B.C. Greek philosophy
Leonardo da Vinci 1452-1519 Catholic
Galileo Galilei 1564-1642 Catholic
Isaac Newton 1642-1727 Anglican (rejected Trinitarianism, i.e., Athanasianism;
believed in the Arianism of the Primitive Church)
James Watt 1736-1819 Presbyterian (lapsed)
Michael Faraday 1791-1867 Sandemanian
Charles Darwin 1809-1882 Anglican (nominal); Unitarian
Louis Pasteur 1822-1895 Catholic
Joseph Lister 1827-1912 Quaker
Sigmund Freud 1856-1939 Jewish; atheist; Freudian psychology/psychoanalysis
Albert Einstein 1879-1955 Jewish
Alexander Fleming 1881-1955 Catholic
Linus Pauling 1901-1994 Lutheran
James Watson and Francis Crick 1928-; 1916-
Inventors
Zai Lun c. 50-118 A.D.
Johannes Gutenberg 1400-1468 Catholic
Samuel Morse 1791-1872 Christianity
Nikolaus Otto 1832-1891
Alfred Nobel 1833-1896
Alexander Graham Bell 1847-1922 Unitarian
Thomas Alva Edison 1847-1931 Congregationalist; agnostic
Orville Wright and Wilbur Wright 1871-1948; 1867-1912 United Brethren
Guglielmo Marconi 1847-1937 Catholic and Anglican
Explorers and Pioneers
Marco Polo c. 1254-1324 Catholic
Christopher Columbus 1451-1506 Catholic
Ferdinand Magellan 1480-1521 Catholic
Roald Amundsen 1872-1928
Yuri Gagarin 1934-1968
Neil Armstrong 1930-