history The Most Influential People of All Time  

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List Rules Vote on humans who have had the most influence on the history of the world--good or bad. They can be from any period of time.

This is a list of the most influential people of all of human history. This means that the individuals on this list have had a significant effect on how regular people live their lives today and have had a large impact on how modern society works. The names on this list include religious figures, scientists and inventors, and some of the most important leaders in world history. Vote for your top choices and re-rank this list your way.

What makes an individual worthy of a spot on a list of the most influential people ever? Certainly, some of the greatest minds of all time deserve to be ranked highly. Examples include Leonardo da Vinci, Sir Isaac Newton, and certainly Albert Einstein. Each one of these incredible people used the power of their minds to change the world. Not surprisingly, several names on this list are also among the most famous role models we'd like to meet in person.

And modern-era figures also deserve to be listed here. Can anyone argue that Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg aren't among the most influential contemporary Americans? It's time to add your opinions on who you believe are the most influential people who ever lived, with your votes and your rankings.

1
+ - 35,392 25,570
Jesus Christ is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Jesus Christ Carpenter, Prophet, Preacher

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2
+ - 23,302 18,645
Isaac Newton is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Isaac Newton Mathematician, Physicist, Chemist

3
+ - 23,973 18,584
Albert Einstein is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Albert Einstein Mathematician, Physicist, Scientist

4
+ - 21,213 15,767
Leonardo da Vinci is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Leonardo da Vinci Military Engineer, Musician, Scientist

5
+ - 17,552 15,394
Aristotle is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Aristotle Tutor, Polymath, Scientist

6
+ - 36,789 29,239
Muhammad is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Muhammad Merchant, Prophet

7
+ - 16,437 13,472
Galileo Galilei is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Galileo Galilei Mathematician, Physicist, Scientist

8
+ - 15,506 15,085
Charles Darwin is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Charles Darwin Biologist, Scientist, Naturalist

9
+ - 14,100 12,970
Plato is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Plato Mathematician, Physicist, Writer

10
+ - 13,635 12,936
Alexander the Great is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time

11
+ - 13,556 11,750
Socrates is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Socrates Philosopher

12
+ - 13,139 11,919
William Shakespeare is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
William Shakespeare Poet, Lyricist, Author

13
+ - 16,997 15,000
Mahatma Gandhi is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Mahatma Gandhi Politician, Writer, Philosopher

14
+ - 15,351 13,123
Martin Luther King, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Martin Luther King, Jr. Civil rights activist, Writer, Minister of religion

15
+ - 14,592 12,072
Abraham Lincoln is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Abraham Lincoln Statesman, Politician, Lawyer

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16
+ - 14,917 12,345
Moses is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Moses Prophet

17
+ - 35,122 49,658
Adolf Hitler is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Adolf Hitler Politician, Soldier, Writer

18
+ - 11,231 11,160
Gautama Buddha is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Gautama Buddha Philosopher

19
+ - 10,032 10,618
George Washington is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
George Washington Surveyor, Politician, Soldier

20
+ - 9,878 12,316
Karl Marx is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Karl Marx Sociologist, Politician, Historian

21
+ - 9,504 9,092
Julius Caesar is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Julius Caesar Politician, Author

22
+ - 10,900 9,155
Nikola Tesla is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Nikola Tesla Futurist, Physicist, Inventor

23
+ - 7,886 8,091
Napoleon Bonaparte is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Napoleon Bonaparte Politician, Military Officer

24
+ - 6,756 7,129
Martin Luther is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Martin Luther Priest, Theologian, Professor

25
+ - 6,033 6,540
Johannes Gutenberg is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Johannes Gutenberg Engraver, Inventor, Printer

26
+ - 7,578 7,934
Thomas Edison is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Thomas Edison Businessperson, Entrepreneur, Film Producer

27
+ - 8,844 7,762
Nelson Mandela is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Nelson Mandela Statesman, Politician, Peace activist

28
+ - 9,103 7,972
Genghis Khan is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Genghis Khan Warrior

29
+ - 5,742 5,465
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Pianist, Musician, Composer

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30
+ - 4,592 3,762
Marie Curie is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Marie Curie Physicist, Chemist, Scientist

31
+ - 4,458 3,892
Ludwig van Beethoven is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Ludwig van Beethoven Songwriter, Pianist, Musician

32
+ - 4,396 4,901
Homer is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Homer Poet, Author, Writer

33
+ - 5,781 5,153
Henry Ford is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Henry Ford Business magnate, Businessperson, Entrepreneur

34
+ - 6,445 6,292
Bill Gates is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Bill Gates Programmer, Software Architect, Businessperson

35
+ - 5,870 6,718
Confucius is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Confucius Philosopher

36
+ - 5,399 5,596
Thomas Jefferson is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Thomas Jefferson Statesman, Inventor, Author

37
+ - 6,289 5,894
Paul the Apostle is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Paul the Apostle Missionary, Prophet, Tentmaker

38
+ - 5,897 5,213
Benjamin Franklin is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Benjamin Franklin Statesman, Librarian, Politician

39
+ - 4,861 4,144
Michelangelo is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Michelangelo Sculptor, Painter, Poet

40
+ - 5,209 4,635
Pythagoras is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Pythagoras Mathematician, Philosopher, Astronomer

41
+ - 4,352 5,686
Christopher Columbus is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Christopher Columbus Navigator, Sailor, Explorer

42
+ - 3,797 5,215
John F. Kennedy is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
John F. Kennedy Politician, Soldier, Screenwriter

43
+ - 3,257 4,155
Charlemagne is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Charlemagne Politician

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44
+ - 4,709 6,657
Vladimir Lenin is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Vladimir Lenin Politician, Economist, Revolutionary

45
+ - 4,927 5,247
Winston Churchill is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Winston Churchill Statesman, Painter, Politician

46
+ - 5,045 4,715
Wright brothers is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time

47
+ - 2,360 2,358
Archimedes is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Archimedes Mathematician, Physicist, Inventor

48
+ - 4,016 4,710
Nicolaus Copernicus is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Nicolaus Copernicus Mathematician, Diplomat, Physician

49
+ - 2,448 3,360
Johann Sebastian Bach is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Johann Sebastian Bach Musician, Harpsichordist, Composer

50
+ - 4,115 4,309
Alexander Graham Bell is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Most Influential People of All Time
Alexander Graham Bell Businessperson, Physicist, Entrepreneur