Famous 17th Century Spiritual & Religious Leaders

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 1 Guru Gobind Singh

Guru Gobind Singh
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Famous As: Warrior
Birthdate: December 22, 1666
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Patna
Died: October 7, 1708
Guru Gobind Singh, the son of Guru Tegh Bahadur, became the 10th guru, or spiritual leader, of the Sikhs after his father was killed by Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. He established the concept of the “Five Ks” of Sikhs and formed the Khalsa community. He also finalized the Guru Granth Sahib.

 2 Guru Tegh Bahadur

Guru Tegh Bahadur
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Famous As: Ninth Sikh Guru
Birthdate: April 1, 1621
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Amritsar
Died: November 24, 1675

Guru Tegh Bahadur, the youngest son of Guru Hargobind Sahib, was the ninth Guru of the Sikhs. His 115 hymns find place in the Guru Granth Sahib. He tried to prevent forced conversion of Hindus and Sikhs into Islam, and was, as a result, executed by Mughal emperor Aurangzeb.

 3 Murad IV

Murad IV
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Famous As: Ottoman Sultan
Birthdate: July 26, 1612
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Constantinople, Ottoman Empire
Died: February 8, 1640

Murad IV, who ruled as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1623 to 1640, was infamous for his cruelty. He took over the throne at 11 and subsequently came to be known for his exploits in the Ottoman–Safavid War, which changed the map of the Caucasus.

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 4 Mustafa I

Mustafa I
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Famous As: Saint
Birthdate: 1591 AD
Birthplace: Manisa
Died: January 20, 1639

 5 Osman II

Osman II
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Famous As: Sultan
Birthdate: November 3, 1604
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Istanbul
Died: May 20, 1622

 6 John Bunyan

John Bunyan
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Famous As: Writer, Preacher
Birthdate: November 28, 1628
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Elstow, Bedfordshire, England
Died: August 31, 1688

John Bunyan, the noted author of The Pilgrim’s Progress, was known for his belief in Puritanism. The son of a brazier, he initially quit school to join his father’s trade. He was later inspired by chapbooks, to write his iconic works and has also become a preacher.

 7 Suleiman II

Suleiman II
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Famous As: Sultan
Birthdate: April 15, 1642
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Constantinople
Died: June 22, 1691
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 8 Martin de Porres

Martin de Porres
3
Famous As: Saint
Birthdate: December 9, 1579
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Lima, Peru
Died: November 3, 1639

Martin de Porres was a Peruvian lay brother of the Dominican Order. He was beatified in 1837 by Pope Gregory XVI. He lived an austere life and often went hungry. He abstained from meat and was said to be able to communicate with animals. He is the patron saint of mixed-race people and those who seek racial harmony. 

 9 Cardinal Mazarin

Cardinal Mazarin
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Famous As: Cardinal
Birthdate: July 14, 1602
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Pescina, Italy
Died: March 9, 1661

 10 Sabbatai Zevi

Sabbatai Zevi
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Famous As: Rabbi
Birthdate: August 1, 1626
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: İzmir, Turkey
Died: September 17, 1676
Born to wealthy merchants in Smyrna, Sabbatai Zevi later claimed to be the Jewish Messiah. He gained a huge base of followers and gave rise to the Sabbatean movement. Threatened by the Ottoman sultan, he converted to Islam and later died in oblivion. His followers are known as crypto-Jews.

 11 Guru Har Krishan

Guru Har Krishan
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Famous As: Eighth Sikh Guru
Birthdate: July 23, 1656
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kiratpur Sahib
Died: March 30, 1664

 12 Baal Shem Tov

Baal Shem Tov
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Famous As: Rabbi
Birthdate: August 25, 1698
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Okopy, Ukraine
Died: May 22, 1760

 13 Mustafa II

Mustafa II
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Famous As: Sultan
Birthdate: February 6, 1664
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Died: December 29, 1703

 14 Guru Har Rai

Guru Har Rai
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Famous As: Seventh Sikh Guru
Birthdate: January 16, 1630
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kiratpur
Died: October 6, 1661

 15 Louise Marie Therese

Louise Marie Therese
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Famous As: Nun
Birthdate: November 16, 1664
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Moret-sur-Loing, France
Died: 1732 AD

Louise Marie Therese was a French nun who lived in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. She has been mentioned in many different sources, some dubiously claiming that she was the daughter of the Queen of France, Maria Theresa of Spain. She was a black woman and a Benedictine nun in the abbey of Moret-sur-Loing. 

 16 John Baptist de La Salle

John Baptist de La Salle
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Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: April 30, 1651
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Kingdom of France
Died: April 7, 1719

John Baptist de La Salle, also known as La Salle, is remembered as the founder of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, or the de La Salle Brothers. Apart from setting up charitable boarding schools, he also trained teachers. He is revered as the patron saint of school teachers and educators.

 17 Increase Mather

Increase Mather
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Famous As: Clergyman
Birthdate: June 21, 1639
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Massachusetts Bay Colony, United States
Died: August 23, 1723

Puritan clergyman Increase Mather was educated at Harvard and Trinity and preached his first sermon the day he turned 18. The son of Puritan minister Richard Mather, he penned An Essay for the Recording of Illustrious Providences, which is said to have influenced the Salem witch trials.

 18 William Laud

William Laud
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Famous As: Archbishop of Canterbury
Birthdate: October 7, 1573
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Reading
Died: January 16, 1645

 19 Pope Benedict XIII

Pope Benedict XIII
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Famous As: Servant of God
Birthdate: February 2, 1649
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Gravina in Puglia
Died: February 21, 1730

Pope Benedict XIII served as the ruler of the Papal States and head of the Catholic Church from 1724 to 1730. A man who was not interested in worldly matters, Benedict XIII chose to maintain a monastic lifestyle. He abolished the lottery in the Papal States and built several hospitals. He is also credited with founding the University of Camerino.

 20 Hannah Emerson Duston

Hannah Emerson Duston
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Famous As: Protestant
Birthdate: December 23, 1657
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Haverhill, Massachusetts, United States
Died: March 6, 1736

Hannah Emerson Duston was a Puritan who was taken captive during King William's War by the Abenaki people. She is best remembered for killing and scalping 10 of the Native American family members with the help of two other captives. She later became a folk hero and was honored with a statue.

 21 Pope Innocent X

Pope Innocent X
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: May 6, 1574
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: January 7, 1655

 22 James Ussher

James Ussher
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Famous As: Archbishop
Birthdate: January 1, 1581
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Died: March 21, 1656

 23 Pope Benedict XIV

Pope Benedict XIV
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: March 31, 1675
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bologna, Italy
Died: May 3, 1758

 24 George Fox

George Fox
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Famous As: Author
Birthdate: June 30, 1624
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Leicestershire, Kingdom of England
Died: January 13, 1691

Born to a weaver, George Fox had little formal education and left home at 18, in pursuit of some religious experience. The English missionary later founded the Society of Friends, or Quakers, which is a Protestant branch. He was married to Margaret Fell, known widely as "the mother of Quakerism."

 25 Matthew Henry

Matthew Henry
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Famous As: Author
Birthdate: October 18, 1662
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Flintshire, Wales
Died: June 22, 1714

Born in Wales, to a Church of England cleric who had been ejected by the Act of Uniformity, Matthew Henry grew up to be a Nonconformist minister. He is best remembered for his iconic work Exposition of the Old and New Testaments, a six-volume commentary on the Bible.

 26 Pope Paul V

Pope Paul V
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: September 17, 1550
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: January 28, 1621

 27 Pope Alexander VII

Pope Alexander VII
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: February 13, 1599
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Siena, Italy
Died: May 22, 1667

 28 Thomas Hooker

Thomas Hooker
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Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: July 5, 1586
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Marefield, United Kingdom
Died: July 7, 1647

Thomas Hooker was an English colonial leader. Hooker is credited with founding the Colony of Connecticut and is hence referred to as the Father of Connecticut. Thomas Hooker, who played a major role in the development of colonial New England, was one of the founders of the state of Connecticut as well as the city of Hartford.   

 29 Pope Clement XI

Pope Clement XI
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: July 23, 1649
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Urbino, Italy
Died: March 19, 1721

 30 Richard Baxter

Richard Baxter
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Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: November 12, 1615
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Rowton, Shropshire, England
Died: December 8, 1691

Richard Baxter was an English poet, theologian, hymnodist, controversialist, and Puritan church leader. He was one of the most influential and important leaders of the Nonconformists. Today, he is commemorated in the Church of England with a feast day on 14 June.

 31 Pope Clement XIII

Pope Clement XIII
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: March 7, 1693
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Venice, Italy
Died: February 2, 1769

 32 Pope Clement XII

Pope Clement XII
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: April 7, 1652
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Florence, Italy
Died: February 6, 1740

 33 Louise de Marillac

Louise de Marillac
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Famous As: Saint
Birthdate: August 12, 1591
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Le Meux, Oise, France
Died: March 15, 1660

 34 Pope Clement X

Pope Clement X
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: July 13, 1590
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: July 22, 1676

 35 John Smyth

John Smyth
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Famous As: Baptist minister
Birthdate: 1554 AD
Birthplace: Nottinghamshire, England
Died: August 28, 1612

Also known as the "Se-baptist," or "self-baptizer," John Smyth is considered the pioneer of the Baptist faith in England. Initially a city preacher in Lincoln, he later joined a group of separatists who believed in believer’s baptism, as opposed to infant baptism, and thus formed the branch of Baptist Christianity.

 36 Pope Alexander VIII

Pope Alexander VIII
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: April 22, 1610
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Venice, Italy
Died: February 1, 1691

 37 Marguerite Bourgeoys

Marguerite Bourgeoys
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Famous As: Nun
Birthdate: April 17, 1620
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Troyes, Champagne, Kingdom of France
Died: January 12, 1700

 38 Pope Gregory XV

Pope Gregory XV
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: January 9, 1554
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bologna, Italy
Died: July 8, 1623

 39 Alessandro Valignano

Alessandro Valignano
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Famous As: Missionary
Birthdate: February 15, 1539
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chieti, Italy
Died: January 20, 1606

 40 Pope Innocent XII

Pope Innocent XII
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: March 13, 1615
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Spinazzola, Italy
Died: September 27, 1700

 41 Pope Innocent XIII

Pope Innocent XIII
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: May 13, 1655
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Poli, Italy
Died: March 7, 1724

 42 Popé

Popé
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Famous As: Tewa Religious leader
Birthdate: 1630 AD
Birthplace: Ohkay Owingeh, New Mexico, United States
Died: 1688 AD

Popé was a Tewa religious leader best remembered for leading the Pueblo Revolt against Spanish colonial rule in 1680. The revolt led by him was successful as the Pueblo managed to keep the colonists out of the territory for 12 years. In 2005, Popé was honored with a statue at the National Statuary Hall.

 43 Pope Clement IX

Pope Clement IX
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Famous As: Pope
Birthdate: January 28, 1600
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Pistoia, Italy
Died: December 9, 1669

 44 Takuan Sōhō

Takuan Sōhō
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Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: December 24, 1573
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tajima, Japan
Died: December 27, 1645

 45 Louis Hennepin

Louis Hennepin
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Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: May 12, 1626
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ath, Belgium, Spanish Netherlands
Died: December 5, 1704

Seventeenth-century Franciscan Roman Catholic priest, missionary, and explorer Louis Hennepin was the first to sail through the Great Lakes up to Illinois and to pen a description about the region. Though captured by Sioux Indians, he was later rescued by a French explorer. He spent his final years in a monastery.

 46 Scipione Borghese

Scipione Borghese
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Famous As: Cardinal
Birthdate: September 1, 1577
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Artena, Italy
Died: October 2, 1633

 47 Manasseh ben Israel

Manasseh ben Israel
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Famous As: Rabbi
Birthdate: 1604 AD
Birthplace: Lisbon?, Portugal
Died: November 20, 1657

 48 Patriarch Nikon of Moscow

Patriarch Nikon of Moscow
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Famous As: Russian patriarch
Birthdate: May 7, 1605
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Veldemanovo, Russia
Died: August 17, 1681

 49 Joseph Justus Scaliger

Joseph Justus Scaliger
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Famous As: Scholar
Birthdate: August 5, 1540
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Agen, France
Died: January 21, 1609

Joseph Justus Scaliger was a French Calvinist scholar and religious leader. His works on chronology were regarded as one of the most important contributions of Renaissance scholars. Joseph Justus Scaliger is best remembered for inflating the idea of classical history from ancient Roman and Greek history to include Babylonian, Persian, ancient Egyptian, and Jewish history. 

 50 François Leclerc du Tremblay

François Leclerc du Tremblay
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Famous As: Capuchin Frair
Birthdate: November 4, 1577
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: December 17, 1638