2 David Hume(Philosopher & Historian)
Scottish Enlightenment philosopher, historian, and economist, David Hume, is considered one of the most important philosophers to write in English. His book, A Treatise of Human Nature, is counted among the most influential works in the history of philosophy. His works have influenced numerous thinkers, including German philosopher Immanuel Kant and Christian philosopher Joseph Butler.
3 Thomas Carlyle(Philosopher)
4 Edward Gibbon(Historian)
Eighteenth-century historian and author Edward Gibbon is best remembered for his 6-volume historical work The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, a narrative that charted events from the 2nd century to the Fall of Constantinople. He had also been an MP, representing Lymington and Liskeard.
French Enlightenment political philosopher, historian, judge, and man of letters Montesquieu remains the main source of the separation of powers system that is followed in many constitutions across the globe. His treatise The Spirit of the Laws on political theory greatly influenced work of many others, including drafting of the U.S. Constitution by the founding fathers of the United States.
6 Walter Scott(Novelist and Poet known for his Works Ivanhoe, Rob Roy, and The Lady of the Lake)
Walter Scott was a Scottish novelist, poet, historian, and playwright. Scott's ability as a writer and his knowledge of history made him a pioneering figure in the formation of the historical novel genre. An influential writer, many of his works remain classics of Scottish as well as English-language literature. Scott was admired by other prominent writers like Letitia Elizabeth Landon.
7 François-René de Chateaubriand(Author)
François-René de Chateaubriand was a French writer, diplomat, historian, and politician. Chateaubriand had a major influence on 19th-century French literature. François-René de Chateaubriand is also remembered for defending the Catholic faith by writing The Genius of Christianity when most intellectuals were turning against the Church. Chateaubriand was a food enthusiast; it is believed that Chateaubriand steak is named after him.
8 Horace Walpole(Writer, Novelist, Autobiographer, Politician)
9 Giambattista Vico(Philosopher)
Italian philosopher Giambattista Vico is regarded as a pioneer of what is now known as cultural anthropology, or ethnology. He brought together history and the social sciences in his work Scienza nuova. A poor bookseller’s son, he studied by candlelight but grew up to be a major Counter-Enlightenment figure.
10 Thomas Gray(Poet, Writer, Literary critic)
11 Germaine de Staël(Philosopher)
Germaine de Staël was a French political theorist and woman of letters. She is best remembered for her collaboration with the popular Swiss-French political thinker Benjamin Constant. Germaine, who was way ahead of her time, is widely regarded as a precursor of feminism.
12 Johann Joachim Winckelmann(Art historian)
German art historian Johann Joachim Winckelmann is often referred to as the father of modern archaeology. Born to a cobbler, he studied Greek, theology, and even medicine. He later specialized in Greek and Neoclassical art and had a prominent influence on Western painting, sculpture, and literature.
13 Thomas Hutchinson(Businessman)
14 William Whewell(Economist, Physicist, Historian, Philosopher, Writer, University teacher, Mathematician)
William Whewell was an English polymath, scientist, philosopher, theologian, and historian of science. He worked in a wide range of fields, publishing works in the disciplines of physics, mechanics, geology, economics, and astronomy. He also wrote poetry, sermons, and theological tracts. He is credited with coining the terms linguistics, physicist, consilience, scientist, catastrophism, and uniformitarianism.
15 James Mill(Historian)
James Mill was a Scottish economist, historian, philosopher, and political theorist. Mill is credited with co-founding the Ricardian school of economics. He is also credited with writing The History of British India, which classifies Indian history into three parts: British, Muslim, and Hindu. The classification has played an influential role in the field of Indian historical studies.
16 Thomas Arnold(Educator)
17 Dimitrie Cantemir(Soldier)
18 N. F. S. Grundtvig(Author)
N. F. S. Grundtvig was a Danish author, pastor, poet, historian, teacher, philosopher, and politician. By the end of the 19th century, Grundtvig's philosophy had given rise to a new sense of nationalism, for which he is often counted among the most influential Danish people of all time. He is also remembered for promoting values like compassion, wisdom, and equality.
19 Mountstuart Elphinstone(Statesman)
20 François Guizot(Politician, Diplomat, Historian, Translator, Writer, Literary critic, Carpenter)
François Guizot was a French historian and statesman. He was a key figure in French politics in the years leading to the Revolution of 1848. After serving under the "citizen king" Louis Philippe in several roles, he was made the Prime Minister of France in 1847. He played a critical role in expanding public education.
21 Ludvig Holberg(Writer)
One of the forefathers of Norwegian and Danish literature, Ludvig Holberg was a legendary literary figure of the Dano-Norwegian dual monarchy era. Initially a French tutor, he later studied music, before devoting himself to writing. His comedies earned him the nickname of The Molière of the North.
22 Friedrich Carl von Savigny(Jurist)
23 Charles Brockden Brown(Novelist)
24 Nikolay Karamzin(Writer)
25 James Rennell(Geographer)
James Rennell was an English historian and geographer. A pioneer of oceanography, Rennell is often referred to as the Father of Oceanography. Rennell, who served as a Surveyor General of Bengal, India, is credited with producing some of the earliest accurate maps of Bengal. James Rennell is also credited with co-founding the Royal Geographical Society in London in 1830.
26 William H. Prescott(Historian)
27 Elizabeth F. Ellet(Writer)
28 Adam Ferguson(Philosopher)
29 Jean Charles Léonard de Sismondi(Historian)
30 Ernst Moritz Arndt(Historian)
31 Catharine Macaulay(Historian)
32 Johan Rudolf Thorbecke(Statesman)
One of the most significant 19th-century politicians from the Netherlands, Johan Rudolf Thorbecke led the country as its prime minister. The Liberal Party politician began his career as a lecturer. As a prime minister, he encouraged free trade by abolishing excise duties and built many new canals.
33 František Palacký(Historian)
34 William Robertson(Historian)
35 Constantin François de Chassebœuf, comte de Volney(Philosopher)
Constantin François de Chassebœuf, comte de Volney was a French abolitionist, philosopher, orientalist, writer, and politician. Volney was one of the first modern writers to champion the Christ myth theory, which suggests that Jesus Christ had no historical existence. Volney argued that Jesus was a mythical character and that Christianity was an amalgam of numerous ancient mythologies.
36 Charles Burney(Musical Composer)
37 Ludwig Uhland(Poet)
38 Barthold Georg Niebuhr(Statesman)
Barthold Georg Niebuhr was a Danish-German banker, statesman, and historian. A symbol of national spirit in Germany, Barthold Georg Niebuhr helped invigorate a sense of patriotism and nationalism in students at the University of Berlin.
39 Mary Russell Mitford(Author)
40 İbrahim Müteferrika(Diplomat)
41 George Grote(Historian)
42 Hugo Kołłątaj(Politician)
Hugo Kołłątaj was a Polish educationalist and constitutional reformer who played a major role during the Polish Enlightenment. An influential social and political activist, Kołłątaj was one of the authors of the Constitution of 3 May 1791, which aimed at implementing a constitutional monarchy. Hugo Kołłątaj's work also influenced many subsequent reformers.
43 Ignaz von Döllinger(Theologian)
44 Lucas Alamán(Scientist)
A prominent Mexican conservative leader, Lucas Alamán was known as an honest politician, who wished to reform Mexican education, agriculture, and industry. Though trained as a mining engineer, he stepped into politics and served as the country’s foreign minister. He also penned various historical works and established Mexico’s National Museum.
45 Thomas Warton(Literary historian)
46 Pietro Verri(Economist)
Author of numerous literary, historical, and economic works, Pietro Verri was a leader of Milanese academy and moving force behind Società dei Pugni. Also a distinguished public administrator and political economist employed with the Milanese government, he has been credited with abolition of tax farming. Some of his important works are Riflessioni sulle leggi vincolanti and Meditazioni sull’ economia politica.