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Famous Biographers

Updated August 30, 2019 44.5k views97 items
A list of famous biographers who have documented the lives of some of the most important people of all time. All types of biographers have been listed including presidential biographers, historic biographers, and those who write non-fiction about Hollywood celebrities. With the introduction of the Nook, Kindle, and iPad with iBooks, reading is hot again. The famous biographers on this list have written accounts of people's lives that are often even better than fiction. This list is intended to help long-time readers, as well as newcomers alike with discovering (and rediscovering) some of the best biographers of all time.
  • Plutarch

    Dec. at 75 (45-120)
    Plutarch (; Greek: Πλούταρχος, Ploútarkhos, Koine Greek: [ˈplutarkʰos]; c. AD 46 – c. 120),...  more
  • Samuel Johnson

    Dec. at 75 (1709-1784)
    Samuel Johnson (18 September 1709 [OS 7 September] – 13 December 1784), often referred to as...  more
  • Thomas Carlyle

    Dec. at 86 (1795-1881)
    Biographies written: John Sterling and Frederick the Great
    Thomas Carlyle (4 December 1795 – 5 February 1881) was a Scottish philosopher, satirical...  more
  • Cornelius Nepos

    Dec. at 76 (99 BC-23 BC)
    Cornelius Nepos (; c. 110 BC – c. 25 BC) was a Roman biographer. He was born at Hostilia, a...  more
  • Biographies written: Winston Churchill
    Sir Martin John Gilbert (25 October 1936 – 3 February 2015) was a British historian and...  more
  • Norman Mailer

    Dec. at 84 (1923-2007)
    Biographies written: Marilyn Monroe, Lee Harvey Oswald, Gary Gilmore
    Norman Kingsley Mailer (January 31, 1923 – November 10, 2007) was an American novelist,...  more
  • Elizabeth Gaskell

    Dec. at 55 (1810-1865)
    Biographies written: Charlotte Brontë
    Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell (née Stevenson; 29 September 1810 – 12 November 1865), often...  more
  • Thomas Moore

    Dec. at 73 (1779-1852)
    Biographies written: Lord Byron, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, and Lord Edward Fitzgerald
    Thomas Moore (28 May 1779 – 25 February 1852) was an Irish poet, singer, songwriter, and...  more
  • Leslie Stephen

    Dec. at 72 (1832-1904)
    Biographies written: Alexander Pope, Samuel Johnson, Jonathan Swift George Eliot and Thomas Hobbes
    Sir Leslie Stephen (28 November 1832 – 22 February 1904) was an English author, critic,...  more
  • Carl Sandburg

    Dec. at 89 (1878-1967)
    Biographies written: Abraham Lincoln
    Carl August Sandburg (January 6, 1878 – July 22, 1967) was an American poet, biographer,...  more
  • Biographies written: Katherine Mansfield
    Kathleen Jones (7 April 1922 – 13 October 2010 ) was a professor of social policy and Head of...  more
  • Biographies written: Harry Truman, John Adams, and Theodore Roosevelt
    David Gaub McCullough (; born July 7, 1933) is an American author, narrator, popular...  more
  • Biographies written: William Hogarth, Elizabeth Gaskell, and Thomas Bewick
    Jennifer Sheila Uglow OBE (née Crowther, born 1947) is a British biographer, historian, critic...  more
  • James Boswell

    Dec. at 55 (1740-1795)
    Biographies written: Samuel Johnson
    James Boswell, 9th Laird of Auchinleck (; 29 October 1740 – 19 May 1795), was a Scottish...  more
  • Merle Miller

    Dec. at 67 (1919-1986)
    Biographies written: Harry S. Truman and Lyndon B. Johnson
    Merle Dale Miller (May 17, 1919 – June 10, 1986) was an American writer, novelist, and author...  more
  • Biographies written: Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, and Nancy Reagan
    Catherine "Kitty" Kelley (born April 4, 1942) is an American journalist and author of several...  more
  • Biographies written: Ulysses S. Grant, John Marshall, and Lucius D. Clay
    Jean Edward Smith (born October 13, 1932) is a biographer and the John Marshall Professor of...  more
  • Biographies written: Alice Cooper, The Stooges
    Jeffrey Morgan may refer to: Jeffrey Morgan (writer), Canadian writer Jeffrey Morgan...  more
  • Lytton Strachey

    Dec. at 52 (1880-1932)
    Giles Lytton Strachey (; 1 March 1880 – 21 January 1932) was an English writer and critic. A...  more
  • Biographies written: Anthony Burgess
  • Romain Rolland

    Dec. at 78 (1866-1944)
    Biographies written: Gandhi, Michelangelo, Beethoven, and Leo Tolstoy
    Romain Rolland (French: [ʁɔlɑ̃]; 29 January 1866 – 30 December 1944) was a French dramatist,...  more
  • Biographies written: Jerry Lee Lewis, Dean Martin, and Sonny Liston
    Nick Tosches (; born October 23, 1949) is an American journalist, novelist, biographer, and...  more
  • Biographies written: Abraham Lincoln
    Thomas James DiLorenzo (; born August 8, 1954) is an American economics professor at Loyola...  more
  • Biographies written: Hilaire Belloc, John Milton, Leo Tolstoy, C. S. Lewis, Jesus Iris Murdoch, Sir Walter Scott, and John Betjeman
    Andrew Norman Wilson (born 27 October 1950) is an English writer and newspaper columnist known...  more
  • Virginia Spencer Carr

    Dec. at 83 (1929-2012)
    Biographies written: Paul Bowles, Carson McCullers, and John Dos Passos
    Virginia Spencer Carr (July 21, 1929 – April 10, 2012) was a biographer of Carson McCullers,...  more