Lv 7
Gerry asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 7 years ago

Who are your top 10 favorite Historical figures?

Here are the basic rules for all who answer:

1. No more than 10

2. Tell us why

3. There are no wrong answers.

FYI ~ I will come back later and add my personal 10 with a brief reason "why" and I always choose a B/A and do not thumb answers down as a general rule of thumb.

Thanks in advance!


Ok, here is my list; I'll acknowledge each responder for the time they took as well (later):

1. Sir Winston Churchill ~ a man that needs no introduction and though he garners criticisms today from the UK and USA in certain people; arguably the Free World should forever be in debt to the UK for the fight you all put up and never giving in ~ forever THIS American is grateful.

2. President Dwight D. Eisenhower ~ he operated in the middle and effectively worked without the assistance of media.

3. General Douglas MacArthur ~ at the time he landed in the US from Asia in 1951 he received ticker tape parades from San Francisco to New York; a different perspective resides today unfortunately through revisionism. To this day he is the second most revered General of the U.S.Army in American History (Gen. George Washington being first)

4. General George Washington ~ the most revered leader the United States ever had and one that could never be replaced in our history.

5. General Robert E.

Update 2:

Ok, here is my list; I'll acknowledge each responder for the time they took as well (later):

1. Sir Winston Churchill ~ a man that needs no introduction and though he garners criticisms today from the UK and USA in certain people; arguably the Free World should forever be in debt to the UK for the fight you all put up and never giving in ~ forever THIS American is grateful.

2. President Dwight D. Eisenhower ~ he operated in the middle and effectively worked without the assistance of media.

3. General Douglas MacArthur ~ at the time he landed in the US from Asia in 1951 he received ticker tape parades from San Francisco to New York; a different perspective resides today unfortunately through revisionism. To this day he is the second most revered General of the U.S.Army in American History (Gen. George Washington being first)

4. General George Washington ~ the most revered leader the United States ever had and one that could never be replaced in our history.

5. General Robert E.

Update 3:

5. General Robert E. Lee ~ who married the grand daughter of George Washington and for being all to aware of his celebrity after the American Civil War and using it for brining people together instead of the opposite.

More later as Y!A is cutting off all the remainder of what I previously wrote.

Update 4:

6. Lord Horatio Nelson ~ what young man who wants to join the Navy wouldn't love to follow the leadership and love of nation than this man had to history!

Update 5:

7. Abigail Adams ~ an American woman simply ahead of her time; in some ways she is the epitomy of the Women's Rights Movements throughout American history.

Update 6:

8. Condoleeza Rice ~ she breaks every single mold and every single myth every single day.

Update 7:

9. Andrei Andreyevich Gromyko ~ a true statesman by every sense of the word; once a foe he is a model of what the Foreign Service should represent in every nation.

Update 8:

10. John Adams/Thomas Jefferson ~ round out my list; Adams fiestiness/Jefferson's temperance did more for the political system in the USA than they could ever well have imagined. Opposing minds and best of friends in younger years ~ we're better off as a nation because of both.

Personal addressing to all of you at some point tomorrow! Thank you for sharing what you have thus far!

Update 9:

For Each of You:

Athena ~ gave you a thumbs up for your personal achievement; disappointed however given the many good answers I have seen from you in History. Have a great day.

Laredo ~ I really appreciate your big hearted answer and true to form you never disappoint whatsoever, thank you kindly for sharing your list.

Update 10:

"?" ~ you have a very interesting list and you make some good points. I find the JFK charismatic only in the collective loss of his young age; I completely agree that Jackie, Caroline, and John, Jr. deserved to have their husband/father alive during the course of their life and therein lay the true tragedy. Thank you!

Update 11:

gem2477 ~ Interesting there is not description for QE I; is this because there is so much to choose from within her lifetime or are you still pondering. I like your list as well btw and thank you for sharing here!

Update 12:

Andrew ~ your comments are above "gem2477" Yahoo must have had a glitch or something because all I saw on your name was "?" as opposed to "Andrew" that just posted. Thank you again.

Update 13:

eldots53 ~ really enjoyed all facets of your answer and the people you have chosen to boot! I especially like your description of John Adams as he is a favorite of mine and I have to admit you made me chuckle in that one as well ~ I completely agree with you. The fiesty man from Boston was quite tone setter for this nation and one I very much admire amongst the Founding Fathers of the Nation. Thank you so much for your input and showing up here!

Update 14:

Will ~ many, many good pieces of information here. Amazes me when History is "good" in this forum just how "good" it truly can be. As a good Brit I am curious if you ever heard of Judah P. Benjamin ~ he wrote a fascinating book as a barrister under Queen Victoria's court. Anyway, you have a good mix of people and I especially like the first entry you wrote; this woman was a truly an unsung hero! Thank you for sharing all that you did. Try to keep it to your 12 though as this could go on and on ~ I realize "10" is tough as stated so eloquently by "eldots53" above you.

Update 15:

Mike H ~ Wow! DaVinci, Charlemagne, Edison, Patton, TR, RR, and honorable mentions...."10" isn't enough is it? Most struggled here thus far as did yourself ~ a true sign of genius and genuine interest. So much to learn and merely little time my friend! Your descriptions are sincere, and up front and I very much appreciate your great effort here in this regard! Thank you for sharing your knowledge!

9 Answers

  • Favorite Answer

    1 - Thomas Jefferson - America's Renaissance Man - His love for learning is what I admire most about him. He founded The University of Virginia, was an inventor, writer, surveyor and leader.

    2 - Abraham Lincoln - His strength and compassion saved the Union. No other reason is needed but his rise form poverty to the presidency is remarkable

    3 - Leonardo DaVinci - The original Renaissance Man. Not many people in history accomplished more than Leonardo did.

    4 - Charlemagne - Not only a great conqueror but usually associated with the Carolingian Renaissance. He had a great passion for education and advanced the arts by his support.

    5 - John F Kennedy - His "Profiles in Courage" says it all. He was strong and compassionate president. He really cared about his people. His personal life was a mess but he handled his official duties with skill and courage. I would love to have seen what he could have done with two full terms instead of just three years.

    6 - Thomas Edison - He was not the most intelligent inventor / scientist ever but he was the hardest working. Many of our modern devices got their start in the laboratory of Thomas Edison.

    7 & 8 - Tie between George Patton and Douglas MacArthur - two great strategists but it is their will to win I admire. America has lost that will to win since MacArthur was fired. Guess what we haven't won since he was fired unless you count the first Gulf war and that was really just a huge mismatch.

    9 - Teddy Roosevelt - his love for Nature created the National Parks and helped us preserve at least some of our natural splendor. he also took responsibility for anything that happened in his administration. He is probably my favorite personality on this list.

    10 - Ronald Regan - I probably should have put him higher because I really admired the fact that he restored American pride. That and his work in bringing the end of the Cold War alone puts him on this list for me. Ronnie wasn't the smartest president we have ever had but he knew how to put good people around him. I know most Democrats hate him but as a Independent (a Libertarian really) I admire his strength and determination. Most historians (even Liberal ones) rank him among the best of our Presidents. None of the most respected historians rank him lower than the low 20's and some rank him as high as 5th.

    Note: Condaleeza Rice belongs on this list as does Florence Nightingale, Marie Curie and other notable women. I just can't figure out who to leave off to make room for them.

  • Anonymous
    7 years ago

    1) John F. Kennedy - I like how he changed the presidency and just his overall charisma, that day in Dallas was truly tragic

    2) Abraham Lincoln - ended slavery, led the north through the civil war

    3) FDR - helped the world in WW2 and helped pull America out of the great depression

    4) Benjamin Franklin - one of the most brilliant minds the world has seen, one of the most popular founding fathers, and just seemed like a cool guy

    5) Harry Truman - I liked how he generally didn't give a crap about what people had to say and did what he believed was right (like the executive order to desegregate the army)

    6) Martin Luther King Jr. - stood for what he believed in after death threats, seeing his friends and allies die, and attempts at his life

    7) George Washington - led America through the Revolutionary War and became the first president

    8) Winston Churchill - was a voice of reason when England wanted nothing to do with war, then helped in the ally victory

    9) Alexander the Great - I just find it amazing what this one man did

    10) Thomas Jefferson - one of the first supporters of ridding America of slavery, the Louisiana Purchase, and was the only president to not have a deficit

  • Laredo
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    1. Queen Elizabeth I - England's greatest Queen.

    2. Queen Victoria - a lot was accomplished during her reign.

    3. Sir Winston Churchill - one of the UK finest Statesman - held the UK together during World War 2.

    4. Queen Elizabeth II - she is doing a brilliant job and has done for 60 years.

    5. Alexander Graham Bell - discovered the telephone, and where we would be today without it.

    6. Sir Alexander Fleming - discovered penicillin and this saved a lot of people's lives.

    7. President Abraham Lincoln - he was a great President, he took his country to war and then tried to bring it back together again, but sadly was assassinated before his work was completed.

    8. Robert I aka Robert the Bruce - he was one of Scotland's greatest Kings.

    9. King Henry VIII - he married Anne Boleyn and they produced one of England's greatest Queens.

    10. President J F Kennedy - I just admired this American President and it was a sad day when he was assassinated.

  • 7 years ago

    1- Henry VIII - his story is just facinating to me.

    2 - Abraham Lincoln - he stood up for the right thing and gave his life.

    3- George Washington - great leader.

    4- Mary, Queen of Scots - interesting story.

    5- Elizabeth I

    6 - Thomas Jefferson - cool person

    7- Winston Churchill - he was the only one who was against the Nazis, which is awesome.

    8- Anne Frank - just cause I like the story


    9- Adolf Hitler - not because I admire him for what he did, I just think WWII and the Holocaust is facinating.

    10. Romonov Family from Russia

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  • OK, trying for the THIRD time to post this.

    My favorite politicians:

    1. Marc Antony - amazing politician and rhetorician

    2. Ulysses S. Grant - the last US president who was not bought and paid for by Big Business. Two words: Reconstruction Era.

    3. Winston Churchill - I can't figure out if this guy was a contard or a libtard, but I guess it doesn't really matter, he was a total badass!

    There's a special place in my heart for the courageous souls who fought for the rights for oppressed people everywhere, regardless of their political persuasion:

    4. Michael Collins - Irish revolutionary leader, Director of Intelligence for the IRA, one of the founding fathers of the modern Irish state.

    5. Lucy Parsons - radical socialist, labor leader, and activist, she fought for the rights of political prisoners, women, blacks, and the homeless. She was a powerful orater whom the Chicago police called "more dangerous than a thousand rioters." :D

    6. Helen Keller - author, activist, suffragist and lecturer, she was the first deaf-blind person to receive a bachelor's degree. She advocated for people with disabilities and was an outspoken socialist, pacifist. She helped found the ACLU. The FBI had a file on her :D

    7. Mother Jones - labor and community organizer who coordinated worker strikes and helped co-found the International Workers of the World. She was also an activist for children's rights and labor laws. In 1902 she was called "the most dangerous woman in America." :D

    8. Malcolm X - advocate for the rights of African Americans, radical muslim minister and a powerful orater, called by some a black supremist and a racist, call him whatever you want, he was honest!

    9. Mahatma Ghandi- Indian leader who promoted non violent civil disobedience, he led India to Independence from British rule and inspired others who worked for human rights around the world.

    And last but not least:

    10. General George S. Patton - total badass warrior whose primary goal was to eradicate state sponsored capitalism around the globe. If politicians had listened to him, there wouldn't have been a Korean war, a Vietnam War, and the Taliban would be unheard of.

    Cool question, I have many people I'm interested in throughout history, these are a few off the top of my blonde head!

  • 7 years ago

    Fun question, as always, my friend! This took some thinking to keep it to ten, but it's just as well, because it's forcing me to weigh them all. In no particular order:

    1. George Washington. How could the US ask for a better leader? Modest and a believer in the true republic that he sacrificed so much of his time, effort, and personal wealth to help create, he truly has reason to stand first in the love of his countrymen.

    2. John Adams. Principled, irascible, and passionate fellow Bay Stater, he too made tremendous sacrifices to set our nation out on a strong footing (and HE did it without any hypocritical jaw-flapping about democracy while holding slaves, and lived modestly, it's well worth noting). John Adams had the courage to swim against the tide and kept us out of war with France, and also had the foresight to promote the establishment of a real professional military. (turning and nodding in the direction of West Point....).

    4. Winfield Scott. Good old Fuss and Feathers - he was the nation's longest serving professional general, and provided for stable and sensible foundation of excellent leadership for 47 crucial years of our nation's early years. And even though no one wanted to listen to him at the beginning of the Civil War, his strategic vision was spot on. Too bad he was too corpulent to make it into the field then...

    5. Tecumseh Sherman. A savvy commander, loved and respected by his men, I admire his principled positions. When in 1872, one of his own nephews, a paymaster in the army, was accused of financial impropriety, he wrote the young man that he would be the first to prosecute the case if it weren't already in progress. And then he wrote the Paymaster General that neither he nor his brother (Senator John Sherman) wanted him to receive any special treatment, but felt he should be held to a higher standard than others. He said what he meant, and meant what he said - a forthright man of principle, therefore my kinda guy.

    6. Robert E. Lee. Another man of principle, whose leadership I respect even though I am a Union gal all the way. His position at the end of the war was honorable and encouraged healing.

    7. George H. Thomas. A very underrated general who was probably ahead of his time, who carefully reconnoitered and communicated and cared about his men. (If you haven't read "The Warrior Generals: Combat Leadership in the Civil War" by Thomas Buell, you would enjoy it immensely, I have no doubt.)

    8. Mark Twain. He has brought me so much joy with so many of his writings, and remains a part of our nation's literary and folk heritage. But he wasn't just a funny entertainer; he had a strong sense of social justice and his work combating the atrocities carried out under King Leopold in the Belgian Congo speak well of his principles.

    9. Alexander Hamilton. He set our nation on a solid financial foundation and we owe him a debt of gratitude.

    10. Winston Churchill. For his indomitable leadership during WWII....and also for his most wonderful writings. Reading his history is like sitting down in his library for a chat with the erudite gentleman.

  • Not necessarily in order, only as they came to mind ...

    Boadicea, Warrior Queen of the Iceni --- She burned Roman London to the ground, scared the hell out of her enemies, and damned near beat the Roman Empire.

    Tomyris, Warrior Queen of the Massagetae -- took the head of Persian emperor Cyrus the Great.

    Thea Philopator, AKA Cleopatra VII, Pharaoh of Egypt -- next to Ramses the Great, the greatest ruler of Ancient Egypt -- the ruler that would do anything to preserve Egypt

    Anna Eleanor Roosevelt, Former First Lady/Co-President -- and the first modern women in the White House, advocate, human rights activist, one of the Top Ten greatest individuals of the 20th Century

    Ṣalāḥ ad-Dīn Yūsuf ibn Ayyūb AKA Saladin, First Sultan of Egypt and Syria, -- and founder of the Ayyubid dynasty. One of the greatest leaders and military commanders in history, so noble a man, so chivalrous, so honorable --- even his enemies held him in the highest respect.

    Queen Elizabeth I of England, -- A young woman in her 20s in a time of incredible strife, took over a bankrupt country, defeated the greatest military power in the world --- then preceded to begin building the largest empire in history.

    Sappho, She and Homer founded Western literature.

    Esther, Hebrew queen and heroine, Prevented a genocide, then turned around and slaughtered the would-be killers. Set a helluva example.

    William Shakespeare, All the world's a stage and he built it.

    Marie Curie --- You have to add either Curie or Ghandi -- it's in the rule book for top ten greatest lists

  • 7 years ago

    Cool Question Gerry....I am afraid I am little late to the game, and many of my notables have been picked already.......but, here goes..........

    1. Stephen Hawking. I just admire his intelligence, first and foremost, but also his spirit, that even with that broken down body.........he's still in there, plugging away, and giving it his all. You have to admire that. (and I can relate to a body that just won't cooperate with what the mind is willing to do!)

    2. Well, JFK was my political hero, He inspired us into space....inspired the Peace Corps, wanted to pull out of Vietnam, stared the Russians down in Cuba......and his Navy days, exploits are the stuff of LEGENDS. Favorite quote of his "When any man is asked, what he did to make his life worthwhile, I think he can say with pride , "I served in the United State Navy!" Dang tootin'!

    3.Christopher Columbus, defied the odds and the wisdom of the time, to do what he thought was possible against all those that thought it was impossible. He ends up discovering a whole continient...(and really, how many people can say that? ) and PROVED everyone wrong. It changed eeveryone else's perceptions of the world at the time. Well Done!

    4. Shakespeare. Who's works are more well known, more celebrated, more REQUIRED reading in high school or college or just so full of so much of, death, dreams,love , hate, tragedy, triumph. war, peace.......he covered it ALL , in works that stand up to this day.

    5.Leonardo Da Vinci......what more needs to be said? In Italy, there is an amusement park, with rides based on many of his inventions. His paintings, among some of the most revered. His inventions, endless. His talent, without question.

    6. Thomas Edison. I once heard a story that he tried to perfect the light bulb 127 times, before finally finding the right fillament that would work. 127 failures.......but he never lost hope....and he gave us Paris, the City of Lights, among all the other inventions.

    7. I would also tip my hat to Alfred Nobel. People do not know he invented MANY things, that changed life for the better. He was the first to put rubber casings on his wagon wheels, to cut down on the clatter and noise, and to give a smoother ride. He also perfected the coil telephone wire. Before that, they were straight and brittle, and would break often. Yes, inventing DYNAMITE was his biggie.....which changed the way war was waged forever....but he felt so bad about his role in that.....he created the Nobel Prizes in his will....for those who BETTER mankind. His was quoted as saying that the one thing he wished he could "Un-invent" was dynamite.

    8. I will throw in William Wallace, and Rob Roy as personal favorites. Scotland FOREVER!

    9. While perhaps not "favorites".....I will acknowledge people like Napoleon, Hitler, Ghengis Khan, Alexander the Great and Ceaser....(et al). You have to admire people who attempt to dominate the whole frigging world. Whether it be cunning military genius, or just plain CRAZY, as in the case of Hitler.......still you have to tip your hat to anyone who can start a WORLD WAR, single handedly.

    To have that kind of sheer CHUTZPAH.....takes some cajones.

    and to round out the list.......10.) Well, no matter who he WAS or WASN' cannot ignore the impact on the world made by Jesus, of Nazareth. Most sane historians agree that he LIVED....whether you accept whether who he claimed to be or not.....and what has made a bigger impact on the world, than the religion of Christianity?

    So, Yeah, gotta tip my hat to Jesus.......He's certainly left his mark on the world.

    Source(s): Honorable mention should go to Truman, who *didn't* use Nuclear power in Korea and wisely saw the folly of doing so. Churchill......for never, never, never, never, NEVER giving up.....and of course, ol Abe Lincoln......probably the LAST politician to ever be referred to as "Honest" !
  • Mod
    Lv 6
    7 years ago

    Although, aware that I won't be BA as told earlier. Free to have a bit of fun then. Break the chains that bind you as they say. All for "Unity" and brotherhood? err, sure.. LOL Oh, "W", F-me? Die trying. ;) Seriously, God bless you. Over 3 coins? in a fountain?

    As requested, here goes...

    Elsa Schiaparelli

    Christian Dior

    Roy Halston Frowick

    Calvin Klein

    Ralph Lauren - although questionable because of USA Olympic China uniforms. Hey, he tried to redeem himself when caught out. Don't so many try in life and can see right through it?

    Gianni Versace

    Valentino Garavani

    Giorgio Armani

    Yves Saint Laurent

    Coco Chanel - love her!

    Why these folks? Because all their stuff is really perdy. LOL

  • Athena
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    Well, mine for one. I worked hard on it and like my curves.

    Nice bust, slim waste, flared hips.

    Hard to find clothes somethings, but overall I like what I have.

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