history The 30 Biggest Badasses In History  

Chase Christy
1.3k votes 193 voters 7.5k views 30 items Follow Embed

List Rules Vote up the badasses who made history worth learning about. Excludes entertainers (actors, singers, celebrities) and historical figures post-1960.

When you think of the biggest badasses in history, who comes to mind? Rambo, Stone-cold Steve Austin, maybe even the self-proclaimed "American Badass," Kid Rock? Well, if any of those characters fit your criteria for badassery, you went a little wide of the mark. Throughout history, many men and women exemplified what it truly means to be badass without the assistance of big-budget filming and expensive PR campaigns. When was the last time you saw James Bond or Lara Croft emerge from the countryside, aged 19, and prevent France from becoming England? You didn't, because that was Joan of Arc, the first figure taught in Historical Badasses 101.

A badass is defined as a "tough, uncompromising or intimidating person" and many historical figures fit that bill. In fact, being a badass is how many of them made history. Compiled here is a list of historical figures who took toughness and intimidation to the next level.During times when everything was much more dangerous (including people), the most badass people in history rose above it all by simply being even more dangerous. Vlad the Impaler didn't inspire Dracula with his mercy, that's for sure.

Theodore Roosevelt is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The 30 Biggest Badasses In History
Photo:  skeeze/Pixabay/CC0 1.0
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Theodore Roosevelt


Theodore "T.R." Roosevelt Jr. was an American politician, author, naturalist, soldier, explorer, and historian who served as the 26th President of the United States. He was a leader of the Republican Party and founder of the Progressive Party insurgency of 1912. He is known for his exuberant ...more

Also Ranked

#10 on The Most Important Military Leaders In US History

#52 on The All-Time Greatest People in History

#6 on The Most Enlightened Leaders in World History

#17 on The Most Important Leaders in U.S. History

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Attila the Hun is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The 30 Biggest Badasses In History
Photo:  uploaded by Chase Christy
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Attila The Hun


Attila, frequently referred to as Attila the Hun, was the ruler of the Huns from 434 until his death in March 453. Attila was a leader of the Hunnic Empire, which stretched from the Ural River to the Rhine River and from the Danube River to the Baltic Sea. During his reign, he was one of the most ...more

Also Ranked

#40 on The Most Important Leaders in World History

#18 on The Most Important Military Leaders in World History

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Geronimo is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The 30 Biggest Badasses In History
Photo: Freebase/Public domain
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Geronimo


Geronimo was a prominent leader of the Bedonkohe Apache who fought against Mexico and Texas for their expansion into Apache tribal lands for several decades during the Apache Wars. "Geronimo" was the name given to him during a battle with Mexican soldiers. Geronimo's Chiricahua name is often ...more

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Genghis Khan is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The 30 Biggest Badasses In History
Photo: Freebase/Public domain
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Genghis Khan


Genghis Khan, born Temüjin, was the founder and Great Khan of the Mongol Empire, which became the largest contiguous empire in history after his demise. He came to power by uniting many of the nomadic tribes of northeast Asia. After founding the Mongol Empire and being proclaimed "Genghis Khan," he ...more

Also Ranked

#28 on The Most Influential People of All Time

#2 on The Most Important Military Leaders in World History

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Simo Häyhä is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The 30 Biggest Badasses In History
Photo: Freebase/Public domain
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Simo Häyhä


Simo "Simuna" Häyhä, nicknamed "White Death" by the Red Army, was a Finnish marksman. Using a Finnish version of the Mosin–Nagant rifle in the Winter War, he killed at least 505 men, the highest recorded number of confirmed sniper kills in any major war. ...more

Also Ranked

#50 on Historical Figures You Most Want to Bring Back from the Dead

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Joan of Arc is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The 30 Biggest Badasses In History
Photo: Sofi/Flickr
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Joan Of Arc


Joan of Arc, nicknamed "The Maid of Orléans", is considered a heroine of France and a Roman Catholic saint. She was born to Jacques d'Arc and Isabelle, a peasant family, at Domrémy in north-east France. Joan said she received visions of the Archangel Michael, Saint Margaret and Saint Catherine ...more

Also Ranked

#21 on The Most Inspiring (Non-Hollywood) Female Role Models

#21 on The All-Time Greatest People in History

#11 on The Most Powerful Women In The World

#60 on The Most Influential People of All Time

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George S. Patton is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The 30 Biggest Badasses In History
Photo: Freebase/Public domain
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George S. Patton


George Smith Patton, Jr. was a United States Army general, who commanded the Seventh United States Army in the Mediterranean and European Theaters of World War II, but is best known for his leadership of the Third United States Army in France and Germany following the Allied invasion of ...more

Also Ranked

#2 on The Most Important Military Leaders In US History

#24 on The Most Important Leaders in U.S. History

#2 on The Most Beloved US Veterans

#23 on The Most Important Military Leaders in World History

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Spartacus is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The 30 Biggest Badasses In History
Photo: Freebase/GNU Free Documentation License
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Spartacus


Spartacus was a Thracian gladiator who, along with the Gauls Crixus, Oenomaus, Castus and Gannicus, was one of the escaped slave leaders in the Third Servile War, a major slave uprising against the Roman Republic. Little is known about Spartacus beyond the events of the war, and surviving historical ...more

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