Martin Luther King Memorial

Famous Leaders in History

Who are the most famous leaders who have redefined history? In this article, we give you a list of those public figures who have played a prominent role in shaping many important events.
"Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate and doubt, to offer a solution everybody can understand." - Colin Powell
Without a good leader, even the smallest of tasks can turn into a scenario of complete chaos. It is important to have someone at the helm of things who can be in charge and who can ensure that a group works towards a common goal. Christian Bovee very famously marked out six qualities of a good leader. These qualities included the ability to make other people feel important, the ability to promote a vision and objective, the ability to follow a rule, acceptance of mistakes committed by themselves, avoidance of criticism of others in public, and staying true to action. There is a reason that most leaders have a huge following. Following a good leader provides the follower the chance to imitate those qualities that we find admirable. There are many famous leaders who have inspired others by setting an example.

Whether living in the ancient era, or in the modern-day world, these leaders have been responsible for shaping the world as we know it today. The biggest events recorded in the annals of history are in some way or the other connected to these great leaders in history.

Famous Women Leaders in History

These women are inspirational to have fought for the various causes that they believed in and for also fighting gender prejudices along the way. There is not a single list of famous leaders that can be complete without a mention of these women. These women paved the way for us and have been pathbreakers in their own right.
  • Angela Merkel
  • Aung San Suu Kyi
  • Benazir Bhutto
  • Catherine II
  • Cleopatra
  • Dalia Grybauskaite
  • Princess Diana of Wales
  • Eleanor Roosevelt
  • Elizabeth I
  • Golda Meir
  • Hatshepsut
  • Hillary Clinton
  • Hsiao-ch'in
  • Indira Gandhi
  • Janet Jagan
  • Saint Joan of Arc
  • Margaret Thatcher
  • Mary McAleese
  • Queen Beatrix
  • Queen Elizabeth II
  • Queen Isabella of Spain
  • Queen Margrethe 2
  • Queen Victoria
  • Rosa Parks
  • Sheikh Hasina Wajed
  • Sirimavo Bandaranaike
  • Vaira Vike-Freiberga
  • Wu Zetian

Famous Male Leaders in History

These men took up causes and rebellions that a majority had lost faith in. While there are also names of dictators in this list, it cannot be refuted that these men despite the widespread devastation that they caused, managed to garner huge support for their cause. These great leaders stayed true to their beliefs.
  • Abraham Lincoln
  • Adolf Hitler
  • Al Gore
  • Albert John Luthuli
  • Alexander Suvorov
  • Alexander the Great
  • Ariel Sharon
  • Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini
  • Barack Obama
  • Benito Mussolini
  • Benjamin Franklin
  • Bill Clinton
  • Charlemagne
  • Dalai Lama
  • Desmond Tutu
  • Douglas MacArthur
  • Erwin Rommel
  • Fidel Castro
  • Francisco Pizarro
  • Franklin Roosevelt
  • Gamal Abdel Nasser
  • General Dwight Eisenhower
  • Genghis Khan
  • George Patton
  • George W. Bush
  • George Washington
  • Henri La Fontaine
  • Henry Kissinger
  • Hernando Cortes
  • Ho Chi Minh
  • Horatio Nelson
  • Idi Amin
  • Jacques Chirac
  • Jawaharlal Nehru
  • John F. Kennedy
  • Joseph Stalin
  • Julius Caesar
  • Kim Dae Jung
  • Kofi Annan
  • Lech Walesa
  • Mahatma Gandhi
  • Mao Zedong
  • Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Mikhail Gorbachev
  • Napoleon Bonaparte
  • Nelson Mandela
  • Oscar Arias Sanchez
  • Raul Castro
  • Richard Nixon
  • Richard the Lionheart
  • Ronald Reagan
  • Saddam Hussein
  • Stonewall Jackson
  • Subhash Chandra Bose
  • Sun Yat Sen
  • Tarja Halonen
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • Tony Blair
  • Tunku Abdul Rahman
  • Ulysses S. Grant
  • Vladimir Ilyich Lenin
  • Vladimir Putin
  • Winston Churchill
  • Yasser Arafat
  • Yitzhak Rabin

These famous people are some of the greatest leaders that the world has seen. These world figures have motivated people and molded the place we live in. It is because of these leaders that the world has undergone the momentous changes it has witnessed. In many ways, the modern world as we know it would have been a different place without these leaders.
Dalai Lama teaching in Dharamsala
Portrait of Alexander the Great
Winston Churchill
Vladimir Ilyich Lenin
Tunku Abdul Rahman
Ulysses S. Grant
Theodore Roosevelt Statue
Sun Yat Sen
Thomas Jefferson
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose
Portrait of Saddam Hussein
Richard the Lionheart
Stonewall Jackson
Napoleon Bonaparte
Nelson Mandela
Mao Zedong
Joseph Stalin
Jawaharlal Nehru
Ho Chi Minh
George Washington on banknote
General George Patton
Mahatma Gandhi
Julius Caesar
Horatio Nelson
Hernando Cortes
Genghis Khan
Francisco Pizarro
Desmond Tutu
Charlemagne leader
Benjamin Franklin
Abraham Lincoln
Queen Elizabeth II
Saint Joan of Arc
Catherine II
Portrait of Queen Victoria
Queen Isabella of Spain
Hatshepsut leader
Elizabeth I
Dwight Eisenhower
Monument Of Chaopraya Bodindecha
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