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Famous Leaders in History

Tulika Nair Oct 6, 2018
Who are the most famous leaders who have redefined history? Here is 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
Christian Bovee 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.

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.

Catherine II

Elizabeth I

Hillary Clinton

Saint Joan of Arc

Queen Isabella of Spain

Queen Victoria

  • Angela Merkel
  • Aung San Suu Kyi
  • Benazir Bhutto
  • Cleopatra
  • Dalia Grybauskaite
  • Princess Diana of Wales
  • Eleanor Roosevelt
  • Golda Meir
  • Hatshepsut
  • Hsiao-ch'in
  • Indira Gandhi
  • Janet Jagan
  • Margaret Thatcher
  • Mary McAleese
  • Queen Beatrix
  • Queen Elizabeth II
  • Queen Margrethe 2
  • 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

Alexander the Great

Barack Obama

Benjamin Franklin

Bill Clinton


Dalai Lama

Francisco Pizarro

General Dwight Eisenhower

Genghis Khan

George Patton

George Washington

Hernando Cortes

Horatio Nelson

Jawaharlal Nehru

Joseph Stalin

Julius Caesar

Mahatma Gandhi

Mao Zedong

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Napoleon Bonaparte

Nelson Mandela

Stonewall Jackson

Thomas Jefferson

Ulysses S. Grant

Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

Vladimir Putin

Winston Churchill

  • Adolf Hitler
  • Al Gore
  • Albert John Luthuli
  • Alexander Suvorov
  • Ariel Sharon
  • Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini
  • Benito Mussolini
  • Desmond Tutu
  • Douglas MacArthur
  • Erwin Rommel
  • Fidel Castro
  • Franklin Roosevelt
  • Gamal Abdel Nasser
  • George W. Bush
  • Henri La Fontaine
  • Henry Kissinger
  • Ho Chi Minh
  • Idi Amin
  • Jacques Chirac
  • John F. Kennedy
  • Kim Dae Jung
  • Kofi Annan
  • Lech Walesa
  • Mikhail Gorbachev
  • Oscar Arias Sanchez
  • Raul Castro
  • Richard Nixon
  • Richard the Lionheart
  • Ronald Reagan
  • Saddam Hussein
  • Subhash Chandra Bose
  • Sun Yat Sen
  • Tarja Halonen
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Tony Blair
  • Tunku Abdul Rahman
  • 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.