Famous 18th Century British Leaders

Right IconThis ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Find out more about the greatest 18th Century British Leaders, including George III of the United Kingdom, Benedict Arnold, Thomas Paine, William Wilberforce and Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington.
Vote for Your Favourite 18th Century British Leaders
 1 
Horatio Nelson
14
Birthdate: September 29, 1758
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Burnham Thorpe
Died: October 21, 1805

Horatio Nelson was a British flag officer whose inspirational leadership brought about several British naval victories, especially during the Napoleonic Wars. Regarded as one of Britain's heroic figures, Horatio Nelson's legacy remains influential and several monuments, including the Nelson Monument and Nelson's Column, have been created in his memory.

 2 
John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough
(English Soldier and Statesman Who helped Defeat the 'Monmouth Rebellion' in 1685)
John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough
12
Birthdate: May 26, 1650
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ash, Musbury
Died: June 16, 1722

English statesman and soldier John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough was the second son of Sir Winston Churchill and is remembered for his contribution to wars such as the Monmouth Rebellion and the War of the Spanish Succession. He was once imprisoned in the Tower of London for Jacobitism.

 3 
William Wilberforce
(Abolitionist)
William Wilberforce
8
Birthdate: August 24, 1759
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kingston upon Hull
Died: July 29, 1833
William Wilberforce, an independent MP from Yorkshire, was a champion for the British anti-slavery movement and made a significant contribution to the passage of the 1807 Slave Trade Act and the 1833 Slavery Abolition Act. He supported missionaries in India, founded the Church Mission Society, and was against animal cruelty.
Recommended Lists:
 4 
Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington
(Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1828 - 1830, 1834))
Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington
15
Birthdate: May 1, 1769
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Died: September 14, 1852
Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, served as the British prime minister twice. He also served as the governor of Seringapatam and Mysore, and won the Battle of Assaye. He led the Hundred Days War and along with the Prussian army, won the Battle of Waterloo, defeating Napoleon.
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn
9
Birthdate: November 2, 1767
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Buckingham Palace, England
Died: January 23, 1820

Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn was the father of Queen Victoria. His army career took him to Canada and the West Indies, making him the first royal family member to stay in North America. He was also the governor of Gibraltar and played a major role in Canada’s development.

 6 
Charles Edward Stuart
(Military Leader)
Charles Edward Stuart
13
Birthdate: December 31, 1720
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Palazzo Muti, Rome
Died: January 31, 1788
Charles Edward Stuart, also known as "The Young Pretender” and “Bonnie Prince Charlie,” was the son of Prince James, and the grandson of James II. He is best remembered for his role in the 1745 Jacobite Uprising, and his subsequent failure, which became the subject of many folk songs.
 7 
William Pitt the Younger
(The Youngest & Last Prime Minister of Great Britain and the First Prime Minister of the United Kingdom)
William Pitt the Younger
7
Birthdate: May 28, 1759
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Bromley, England, United Kingdom
Died: January 23, 1806

British statesman, William Pitt the Younger, became the youngest prime minister of Great Britain in 1783 when he was just 24. During his stint as the prime minister, he was also Chancellor of the Exchequer. Several major political events,  including the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, happened during his tenure.  He is ranked highly among all British Prime Ministers.

 8 
Robert Clive
(The First British Governor of the Bengal Presidency in British India)
Robert Clive
8
Birthdate: September 25, 1725
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Styche Hall, England
Died: November 22, 1774

Robert Clive was a military officer and the first British Governor of the Bengal Presidency in British India. Nicknamed Clive of India, Robert Clive is credited with laying the foundation of the East India Company rule in Bengal. He won the Battle of Plassey in 1757, which enabled him to establish Company rule in Bengal.

 9 
John Graves Simcoe
(British Army General Who Founded the City of Toronto and Abolished Slavery in Canada)
John Graves Simcoe
4
Birthdate: February 25, 1752
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Cotterstock, Oundle, England
Died: October 26, 1806

John Graves Simcoe was a British Army general best remembered for founding York (present-day Toronto, Canada). Simcoe, who served as the first lieutenant governor of Upper Canada, was responsible for introducing institutions like trial by jury, courts of law, freehold land tenure, and English common law. John Graves Simcoe also played a key role in abolishing slavery in Canada.

 10 
Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey
(Former Prime Minister of United Kingdom)
Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey
5
Birthdate: March 13, 1764
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Fallodon, Northumberland, England
Died: July 17, 1845
 11 
Robert Walpole
(Prime Minister of Great Britain (1721-42))
Robert Walpole
6
Birthdate: August 26, 1676
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Houghton, Norfolk, England
Died: March 18, 1745
 12 
William Bligh
(Military Leader)
William Bligh
7
Birthdate: September 9, 1754
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Plymouth, United Kingdom
Died: September 7, 1817
Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston
7
Birthdate: October 20, 1784
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Westminster, Middlesex, England
Died: October 18, 1865
 14 
William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham
(Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1766-68))
William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham
4
Birthdate: November 15, 1708
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Westminster, London, England
Died: May 11, 1778
William Cavendish, 5th Duke of Devonshire
5
Birthdate: December 14, 1748
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: July 29, 1811
 16 
Banastre Tarleton
(Former lieutenant colonel at the end of the American Revolution)
Banastre Tarleton
5
Birthdate: August 21, 1754
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Liverpool, Lancashire, England
Died: January 15, 1833

Banastre Tarleton was a British politician and general. He served in the American Revolutionary War where he was a lieutenant colonel. An iconic figure, Tarleton has been portrayed in several films, such as Sweet Liberty, The Patriot, and Amazing Grace. He has also been depicted in many TV series and novels.   

 17 
Spencer Perceval
(Politician, Lawyer)
Spencer Perceval
3
Birthdate: November 1, 1762
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London
Died: May 11, 1812

Spencer Perceval was an English barrister and statesman who served as the United Kingdom's Prime Minister from 1809 to 1812. The only solicitor-general to have served as UK's prime minister, Perceval was also the only British PM to have been murdered. His assassination inspired poems like Universal sympathy on the martyr'd statesman, which was published in 1812.

 18 
John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich
(British Former First Lord of the Admiralty)
John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich
4
Birthdate: November 13, 1718
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: England
Died: April 30, 1792

At age 10, John Montagu succeeded his grandfather, Edward Montagu, as the earl of Sandwich. The Eton- and Cambridge-educated statesman had held several important positions, such as the First Lord of the Admiralty. While gambling, he would often have bread and meat, leading to the delicacy being named “sandwich.”

 19 
Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany
5
Birthdate: August 16, 1763
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: St James's Palace, London, England
Died: January 5, 1827
 20 
Charles Cornwallis, 1st Marquess Cornwallis
(One of the Leading British Generals in the American War of Independence)
Charles Cornwallis, 1st Marquess Cornwallis
8
Birthdate: December 31, 1738
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Grosvenor Square, London, England
Died: October 5, 1805

British army general Charles Cornwallis, 1st Marquess Cornwallis is best remembered for his stints as the governor-general of India and the viceroy of Ireland. Educated at Eton and Cambridge, he later started his army career with the Seven Years’ War. He was also part of the American War of Independence.

 21 
James Wolfe
(Officer)
James Wolfe
3
Birthdate: January 2, 1727
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Westerham, United Kingdom
Died: September 13, 1759
 22 
Thomas Gage
(Military Officer)
Thomas Gage
3
Birthdate: 1721 AD
Birthplace: Firle, England
Died: April 2, 1787
 23 
Lord North
(Prime Minister of Great Britain from 1770 to 1782)
Lord North
3
Birthdate: April 13, 1732
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Piccadilly
Died: August 5, 1792
 24 
Arthur Phillip
(1st Governor of New South Wales (1788 - 1792))
Arthur Phillip
3
Birthdate: October 11, 1738
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Cheapside, London, England
Died: August 31, 1814

British admiral Arthur Phillip was a pioneering leader of the colonization of Australia. He established the first permanent European colonial settlement in Australia. He had also served as the first governor of New South Wales but was unable to establish peace. He was part of the Seven Years' War, too.

 25 
George Canning
(Former British Prime Minister)
George Canning
3
Birthdate: April 11, 1770
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Marylebone
Died: August 8, 1827
 26 
John Burgoyne
(General, dramatist and politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1761 to 1792)
John Burgoyne
3
Birthdate: February 24, 1722
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sutton, Bedfordshire, England
Died: August 4, 1792
 27 
Prince William, Duke of Cumberland
4
Birthdate: April 26, 1721
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Leicester House, London, England
Died: October 31, 1765
 28 
William Blackstone
(British Jurist and Judge Known for Writing the 'Commentaries on the Laws of England')
William Blackstone
3
Birthdate: July 10, 1723
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: London, England
Died: February 14, 1780

William Blackstone was a British politician, jurist, and judge of the 18th century. Best remembered for authoring the Commentaries on the Laws of England, Blackstone is credited with influencing prominent American personalities like Abraham Lincoln, James Kent, Alexander Hamilton, and John Marshall among others. His Commentaries, which were cited often in Supreme Court cases, were repeatedly republished throughout the 1770s.

Prince Adolphus, Duke of Cambridge
4
Birthdate: February 24, 1774
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Buckingham Palace, London, England
Died: July 8, 1850
 30 
Isaac Brock
(Military Officer)
Isaac Brock
4
Birthdate: October 6, 1769
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: St Peter Port, Guernsey
Died: October 13, 1812
 31 
Laurence Sterne
(Novelist)
Laurence Sterne
3
Birthdate: November 24, 1713
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Clonmel, Ireland
Died: March 18, 1768
Richard Wellesley, 1st Marquess Wellesley
4
Birthdate: June 20, 1760
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Dangan Castle, Ireland
Died: September 26, 1842
 33 
John Wilkes
(English journalist)
John Wilkes
3
Birthdate: October 17, 1725
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Clerkenwell, London
Died: December 26, 1797
William Cavendish-Bentinck, 3rd Duke of Portland
3
Birthdate: April 14, 1738
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Nottinghamshire, England
Died: October 30, 1809
 35 
Jeffery Amherst, 1st Baron Amherst
(Colonial administrator, Military personnel)
Jeffery Amherst, 1st Baron Amherst
3
Birthdate: January 29, 1717
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Sevenoaks
Died: August 3, 1797
 36 
Lord William Bentinck
(Former Governor-General of India)
Lord William Bentinck
4
Birthdate: September 14, 1774
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom
Died: June 17, 1839
 37 
Henry Dundas, 1st Viscount Melville
(British Advocate, Independent Whig Politician and Former Secretary of State for War (1794 - 1801))
Henry Dundas, 1st Viscount Melville
4
Birthdate: April 28, 1742
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: May 28, 1811

His mastery of Scottish politics earned Henry Dundas, 1st Viscount Melville the nickname King Harry the Ninth. Apart from serving as the First Lord of the Admiralty and the Secretary of State for War, he also played a significant role in the British expansion in India. He was also a successful lawyer initially.

Robert Jenkinson, 2nd Earl of Liverpool
4
Birthdate: June 7, 1770
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: London, England
Died: December 4, 1828
 39 
John Jervis, 1st Earl of St Vincent
2
Birthdate: January 9, 1735
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Meaford Hall, Staffordshire, England
Died: March 14, 1823
 40 
Button Gwinnett
(Politician)
Button Gwinnett
3
Birthdate: 1735 AD
Birthplace: Down Hatherley, Gloucestershire, Great Britain
Died: May 19, 1777
 41 
John Byng
(British Royal Navy Officer Who was Court-Martialled & Executed by Firing Squad)
John Byng
3
Birthdate: October 29, 1704
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Southill, Bedfordshire, England
Died: March 14, 1757
 42 
Simon Fraser, 11th Lord Lovat
(Scottish Military Leader & Chief of Clan Fraser of Lovat)
Simon Fraser, 11th Lord Lovat
3
Birthdate: January 5, 1667
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: England
Died: April 9, 1747

Simon Fraser, 11th Lord Lovat was a Scottish military leader who served as the chief of Clan Fraser of Lovat. A Jacobite, Simon Fraser was among the Highlanders who were defeated at the Battle of Culloden and later sentenced to death after being convicted of treason against the Crown.  

 43 
Charles James Napier
(Military General)
Charles James Napier
3
Birthdate: August 10, 1782
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Palace of Whitehall, London, England
Died: August 29, 1853
 44 
Robert Harley, 1st earl of Oxford
3
Birthdate: December 5, 1661
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: May 21, 1724
Thomas Pelham-Holles, 1st Duke of Newcastle
3
Birthdate: July 21, 1693
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: London, England
Died: November 17, 1768
 46 
Thomas Hutchinson
(Businessman)
Thomas Hutchinson
3
Birthdate: September 9, 1711
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: British America
Died: June 3, 1780
 47 
William Whipple
(Politician, Officer)
William Whipple
3
Birthdate: January 14, 1730
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kittery, Maine
Died: November 28, 1785
James Thomas Brudenell, 7th earl of Cardigan
5
Birthdate: October 16, 1797
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Hambleden, England
Died: March 28, 1868
 49 
FitzRoy Somerset, 1st Baron Raglan
(Was a British Army officer. When a junior officer, he served in the Peninsular War)
FitzRoy Somerset, 1st Baron Raglan
4
Birthdate: September 30, 1788
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Badminton, England, United Kingdom
Died: June 28, 1855
 50 
John Stuart, 3rd earl of Bute
3
Birthdate: May 25, 1713
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Parliament Square, Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: March 10, 1792