Famous 18th Century Theologians

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 1 
Jonathan Edwards
(Preacher, Theologian, Philosopher)
Jonathan Edwards
4
Birthdate: October 5, 1703
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: East Windsor, Connecticut, United States
Died: March 22, 1758

Jonathan Edwards was an American philosopher, revivalist preacher, and Congregationalist Protestant theologian. Considered one of America's most prominent and influential philosophical theologians, Jonathan Edwards played a major role in shaping the Evangelical Revival of the 1730s and 1740s. His theological work is credited with paving the way for a new school of theology called the New England theology.

 2 
George Whitefield
(Evangelist, Theologian)
George Whitefield
5
Birthdate: December 16, 1714
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Gloucester, England
Died: September 30, 1770

George Whitefield was an Anglican evangelist and cleric. He is credited with co-founding the evangelical movement and Methodism. Whitefield's teachings of a series of revivals in North America became an important component of the First Great Awakening. Thanks to his ability to captivate large audiences, George Whitefield preached to millions of listeners during his ministry.

 3 
Charles Wesley
4
Birthdate: December 18, 1707
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Epworth, Lincolnshire, England
Died: March 29, 1788

One of the leaders of the Methodist revival movement, Charles Wesley is better known as the author numerous hymns and carols. Love Divine, All Loves Excelling and Christ the Lord Is Risen Today being some of his more popular works.  Averaging ten poetic lines per day for fifty years, he published more than 4,500 hymns, leaving some 3,000 in manuscript.

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 4 
Johann Gottfried Herder
(Philosopher, Theologian, Poet, and Literary Critic)
Johann Gottfried Herder
4
Birthdate: August 25, 1744
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Morąg, Poland
Died: December 18, 1803

German philosopher Johann Gottfried Herder is best remembered as a significant figure of the Sturm und Drang literary movement. Born into poverty and largely self-educated till 17, he later became a disciple of Immanuel Kant and was associated with Enlightenment and Weimar Classicism. He was eventually ennobled.

 5 
John Wesley
(English Clergyman, Theologian, Evangelist and Co-Founder of the Methodist Movement in the Church of England)
John Wesley
4
Birthdate: June 28, 1703
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Epworth, England
Died: March 2, 1791

John Wesley was an English cleric, evangelist, and theologian. He is best remembered for leading a revival movement called Methodism within the Church of England. He is credited with founding societies that eventually became the dominant form of the Methodist movement, which remains relevant today. He continues to be the main theological influence on Methodists all over the world.

 6 
Swedenborg
(Swedish Christian Scientist, Philosopher and Theologian Best Known for His Book ‘Heaven and Hell’)
Swedenborg
4
Birthdate: January 29, 1688
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Stockholm, Sweden
Died: March 29, 1772

Emanuel Swedenborg was a Swedish pluralistic-Christian philosopher, mystic, theologian, and scientist. Swedenborg started hogging the limelight after writing a book on the afterlife titled Heaven and Hell, which released in 1758. A prolific scientist and inventor, Swedenborg experienced spiritual awakening after which he started working on reforming Christianity. He even claimed that he could converse with angels and demons.

Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab
4
Birthdate: 1703 AD
Birthplace: Al Uyaynah, Saudi Arabia
Died: June 22, 1792
 8 
Isaac Watts
(Theologian)
Isaac Watts
3
Birthdate: July 17, 1674
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Southampton, Kingdom of England
Died: November 25, 1748
 9 
Friedrich Schleiermacher
(German Theologian, Philosopher and an Early Leader in Liberal Christianity)
Friedrich Schleiermacher
5
Birthdate: November 21, 1768
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Wrocław, Poland
Died: February 12, 1834

Hailed as an early leader of liberal Christianity, Lutheran philosopher Friedrich Schleiermacher was also an eminent biblical scholar and theologian. Best remembered for his works on hermeneutics and theory of translation, he also had a great impact on the evolution of higher criticism and became known for his attempt to reconcile the criticisms of the Enlightenment with traditional Protestant Christianity.

 10 
John Witherspoon
(Scottish-American Presbyterian Minister, Educator and a Founding Father of the United States)
John Witherspoon
4
Birthdate: February 5, 1723
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Gifford, Scotland
Died: November 15, 1794

John Witherspoon was a Scottish American slaveholder, Presbyterian minister, and Founding Father of the United States. A signatory to the Declaration of Independence, Witherspoon also signed the Articles of Confederation. He also played a crucial role in shaping public policy in the United States of America.

 11 
Richard Allen
(American Clergyman Who was the First Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church)
Richard Allen
3
Birthdate: February 14, 1760
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: March 26, 1831

Born to slave parents, American clergyman Richard Allen became a Methodist convert at 22. He later founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church and served as its first bishop. Apart from establishing the first church for Blacks in the U.S., he worked on various aspects to improve the lives of Blacks.

 12 
Maria Gaetana Agnesi
(First Woman to Write a Mathematics Handbook and the First Woman Appointed as a University Mathematics Professor)
Maria Gaetana Agnesi
3
Birthdate: May 16, 1718
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Milan, Italy
Died: January 9, 1799

Italian mathematician Maria Gaetana Agnesi, daughter of an affluent silk trader, was well-versed in a number of languages as a child. Most of her work was regarding algebra, calculus, and the Witch of Agnesi. She was also the first female academic to write a math book and to teach math.

 13 
Edward Everett
(Former American senator)
Edward Everett
3
Birthdate: April 11, 1794
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts
Died: January 15, 1865

Edward Everett was an American politician, diplomat, educator, pastor, and orator. Widely regarded as one of the great orators of the Civil War and antebellum eras, Everett is remembered for his two-hour speech at the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg in 1863, where Abraham Lincoln delivered his popular Gettysburg Address. Edward Everett also taught ancient Greek literature at Harvard University.

 14 
William Paley
(Christian apologist, philosopher, and utilitarian)
William Paley
3
Birthdate: 1743
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Peterborough, England
Died: May 25, 1805
 15 
Bernard Bolzano
(Mathematician)
Bernard Bolzano
3
Birthdate: October 5, 1781
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Prague, Czechoslovakia
Died: December 18, 1848
 16 
François Fénelon
(Catholic Archbishop and the Author of 'The Adventures of Telemachus')
François Fénelon
3
Birthdate: August 6, 1651
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Sainte-Mondane, France
Died: January 7, 1715

François Fénelon was a French writer, poet, theologian, and Catholic archbishop. He is best remembered for his book The Adventures of Telemachus, which was published in 1699. François Fénelon also served as a tutor of Louis, Duke of Burgundy, guiding the character formation of Louis, Grand Dauphin's eldest son.

 17 
Ahmad al-Tijani
(Theologian)
Ahmad al-Tijani
3
Birthdate: 1735 AD
Birthplace: Aïn Madhi, Algeria
Died: 1815 AD
 18 
Shah Waliullah Dehlawi
(Muslim Scholar)
Shah Waliullah Dehlawi
3
Birthdate: February 21, 1703
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Delhi, India
Died: August 20, 1762

Trained in Islamic education by his father, who established the Madrasah-i Rahimiyah, Shah Waliullah Dehlawi had memorized the Qur'an by age 7. He grew up to be a prominent Islamic theologian who modernized Islam with ideas such as taṭbīq and the practice of ijtihad. Asrār al-dīn remains his best-known work.

 19 
Alexander Campbell
5
Birthdate: September 12, 1788
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Broughshane, County Antrim, Ireland
Died: March 4, 1866

Alexander Campbell was a Scots-Irish immigrant who went on to become an ordained minister in America. He then joined forces with his father and led a reform effort, which came to be known as the Restoration Movement. Also referred to as the Stone-Campbell Movement, it helped develop non-denominational Christian churches. 

 20 
John Keble
3
Birthdate: April 25, 1792
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Fairford, Gloucestershire, England
Died: March 29, 1866
 21 
Johann Kaspar Lavater
(Poet, Philosopher, Physiognomist and Theologian)
Johann Kaspar Lavater
3
Birthdate: November 15, 1741
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Zürich, Switzerland
Died: January 2, 1801

Best known for his research on physiognomy, Johann Kaspar Lavater was also a theologian and an author. He had penned books such as Aussichten in die Ewigkeit and several epic and lyric poems. He died of a grenade wound during the French occupation of Switzerland.

 22 
Albert Barnes
(Theologian)
Albert Barnes
4
Birthdate: December 1, 1798
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Rome, New York, United States
Died: December 24, 1870
 23 
Richard Bentley
(Theologian)
Richard Bentley
2
Birthdate: January 27, 1662
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Oulton, England
Died: July 14, 1742
 24 
Al-Shawkani
(Islamic jurist, Theologian)
Al-Shawkani
0
Birthdate: 1759 AD
Birthplace: Yemen
Died: 1839 AD
 25 
Ferdinand Christian Baur
2
Birthdate: June 21, 1792
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Schmiden, Germany
Died: December 2, 1860
 26 
Elias Hicks
(Quaker minister)
Elias Hicks
2
Birthdate: March 19, 1748
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Hempstead, New York, United States
Died: February 27, 1830
 27 
Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi
(Syrian Author and Pan-Arab Solidarity Supporter)
Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi
2
Birthdate: 1855 AD
Birthplace: Aleppo, Ottoman Empire
Died: June 13, 1902
Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi was a Syrian author and one of the most important intellectuals of his time. A Pan-Arab solidarity supporter, Al-Kawakibi's criticisms of the Ottoman Empire was the basis for Pan-Arab nationalism. Among his most influential books are Mother of All Villages and The Nature of Despotism. Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi’s ideas influenced many Pan-Arab nationalists like Gamal Abdel Nasser.
 28 
İbrahim Müteferrika
2
Birthdate: 1674 AD
Birthplace: Cluj-Napoca, Romania
Died: 1745 AD
 29 
Thomas Ken
(British Cleric and Former Bishop of Bath and Wells)
Thomas Ken
2
Birthdate: 1637
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Little Berkhampstead, Hertfordshire, England
Died: March 19, 1711

Anglican bishop and hymn writer Thomas Ken had also been King Charles II’s chaplain. He was one of the seven bishops who opposed King James II’s Declaration of Indulgence that was focused on promoting Roman Catholicism. He was eventually forced to retire due to his opposition to William and Mary.

 30 
Timothy Dwight IV
(Theologian)
Timothy Dwight IV
4
Birthdate: May 14, 1752
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Northampton, Massachusetts, United States
Died: January 11, 1817
 31 
William Prout
(Chemist)
William Prout
2
Birthdate: January 15, 1785
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Horton, England
Died: April 9, 1850
 32 
August Hermann Francke
(German Theologian)
August Hermann Francke
2
Birthdate: March 22, 1663
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Lübeck, Germany
Died: June 8, 1727

Remembered as one of the chief figures of German Pietism, August Hermann Francke had also been a professor of theology at the University of Halle. Though criticized by radical Lutherans, his social activism saw him providing education and essentials for the poor at his Francke Foundations.  

 33 
Ignaz von Döllinger
2
Birthdate: February 28, 1799
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bamberg, Germany
Died: January 10, 1890
 34 
Shaykh Ahmad
(Religious leader)
Shaykh Ahmad
2
Birthdate: 1753
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Al-Hasa, Saudi Arabia
Died: June 27, 1826
 35 
Johann Albrecht Bengel
(German Priest and Theologian Known for His Edition of the 'Greek New Testament')
Johann Albrecht Bengel
2
Birthdate: June 24, 1687
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Winnenden, Germany
Died: November 2, 1752

It is unfortunate that German Lutheran clergyman Johann Albrecht Bengel is only remembered for his work on Greek New Testament. One of the greatest biblical scholars, he was also a devout Christian, who founded Swabian Pietism. He was also a pioneer in the modern textual criticism, in scientific exegesis and in modern eschatological study.

 36 
Hosea Ballou
(Former Universalist clergyman, theological writer)
Hosea Ballou
2
Birthdate: April 30, 1771
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Richmond, New Hampshire, United States
Died: June 6, 1852
 37 
Wilhelm Gesenius
(Biblical critic)
Wilhelm Gesenius
2
Birthdate: February 3, 1786
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Nordhausen, Germany
Died: October 23, 1842
 38 
Johann Konrad Dippel
1
Birthdate: August 10, 1673
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Mühltal, Germany
Died: April 25, 1734

Remembered as the “mad scientist,” Johann Konrad Dippel is considered by many as the person who had inspired Mary Shelley to write Frankenstein. He used the pseudonym Christianus Democritus to write various scientific texts and claimed his concoction Dippel's oil was the "elixir of life" that promised immortality.

 39 
Jeremy Collier
(British Theatre Critic, Non-juror Bishop and Theologian)
Jeremy Collier
2
Birthdate: September 23, 1650
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Stow cum Quy, England
Died: April 26, 1726

A non-juror bishop, theologian, celebrated author and theatre critic, Jeremy Collier refused to take oath of allegiance to King William III and was sent twice to prison for supporting James II. Despite that, he publicly gave absolution on the scaffold to King’s enemies and suffered reprisal for it. He published several works, some which became quite controversial.

Saint Nicodemus the Hagiorite
2
Birthdate: 1749 AD
Birthplace: Náxos, Greece
Died: July 14, 1809
 41 
Hermann Samuel Reimarus
2
Birthdate: December 22, 1694
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Hamburg, Germany
Died: March 1, 1768
 42 
Joseph von Görres
2
Birthdate: January 25, 1776
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Koblenz, Germany
Died: January 29, 1848
 43 
Samuel Hopkins
(Theologian)
Samuel Hopkins
1
Birthdate: September 17, 1721
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Waterbury, Connecticut, United States
Died: December 20, 1803
 44 
Andrew Fuller
(British Baptist Minister and Theologian)
Andrew Fuller
2
Birthdate: February 6, 1754
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Wicken, Cambridgeshire, England
Died: May 7, 1815

Remembered as one of the founders of the Baptist Missionary Society, Andrew Fuller had initially been a pastor at the Soham and Kettering Baptist Churches. He then formed his own society with William Carey and others and became its first secretary. He also assisted missionary activities in Jamaica and India.

 45 
Franz Xaver von Baader
(German Philosopher and Theologian)
Franz Xaver von Baader
2
Birthdate: March 27, 1765
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Munich, Germany
Died: May 23, 1841

Roman Catholic philosopher Franz Xaver von Baader followed in his doctor father’s footsteps to study medicine initially but soon switched to mining engineering. He later deviated permanently to politics and religion. Rejecting Western philosophy, he propagated the Scholastic school and penned his thoughts in journals and short essays, using mystical symbols.

 46 
Anthim the Iberian
(Theologian)
Anthim the Iberian
1
Birthdate: 1650 AD
Birthplace: Kingdom of Kartli
Died: September 12, 1716
 47 
Muhammad ibn Ali as-Senussi
1
Birthdate: 1787 AD
Birthplace: Mostaganem, Algeria
Died: 1859 AD
 48 
Samuel Simon Schmucker
1
Birthdate: February 28, 1799
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Hagerstown, Maryland, United States
Died: July 26, 1873

Samuel Simon Schmucker was a theologian and Lutheran pastor. He played a key role in the founding of the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg as well as Gettysburg College. He also played a major role in the founding of the Evangelical Lutheran General Synod of the United States of America. He was also well-known for his efforts as an abolitionist.

 49 
Firmin Abauzit
1
Birthdate: November 11, 1679
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Uzes, France
Died: March 20, 1767
 50 
Robert Sandeman
(Theologian)
Robert Sandeman
1
Birthdate: April 29, 1718
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Perth, Scotland
Died: April 2, 1771