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The 100


The 100 The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History The cover of the 1992 edition. Author(s)

Michael H. Hart






1st Edition (1978) 2nd Edition (1992)





Publication date


Published in English


Media type




OCLC Number



The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History is a 1978 book by Michael H. Hart, reprinted in 1992 with revisions. It is a ranking of the 100 people who, according to Hart, most influenced human history.[2] The first person on Hart's list is the Prophet of Islam Muhammad.[3] Hart asserted that Muhammad was "supremely successful" in both the religious and secular realms. He also believed that Muhammad's role in the development of Islam was far more influential than Jesus' collaboration in the development of Christianity. He attributes the development of Christianity to St. Paul, who played a pivotal role in its dissemination. The 1992 revisions included the demotion of figures associated with Communism, such as Vladimir Lenin and Mao Zedong, and the introduction of Mikhail Gorbachev. Hart took sides in the Shakespearean authorship issue and substituted Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford for William Shakespeare. Hart also substituted Niels Bohr and Henri Becquerel with Ernest Rutherford, thus correcting an error in the first edition. Henry Ford was also promoted from the "Honorary Mentions" list, replacing Pablo Picasso. Finally, some of the rankings were re-ordered, although no one listed in the top ten changed position. Hart wrote another book in 1999, entitled A View from the Year 3000,[4] voiced in the perspective of a person from that future year and ranking the most influential people in history. Roughly half of those entries are fictional people from 2000–3000, but the remainder are actual people. These were taken mostly from the 1992 edition, with some re-ranking of order.

Hart's Top 10 (from the 1992 edition)

The 100




Time Frame



Influence The central human figure of Islam, regarded by Muslims as a prophet of God and the last messenger. Active as a social reformer, diplomat, merchant, philosopher, orator, legislator, military leader, humanitarian, philanthropist.

1 Muhammad

c. 570–632

Secular and religious leader

2 Isaac Newton



English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, natural philosopher, alchemist, and theologian. His law of universal gravitation and three laws of motion laid the groundwork for classical mechanics.

3 Jesus Christ

7–2 BC – 26–36 AD

Spiritual leader

The central figure of Christianity, revered by Christians as the Son of God and the incarnation of God. Also regarded as a major prophet in Islam.

4 Buddha

563–483 BC

Spiritual leader

Spiritual teacher and philosopher from ancient India. Founder of Buddhism and is also considered an Gautama Buddha in Hinduism.

5 Confucius

551–479 BC


Chinese thinker and social philosopher, founder of Confucianism, whose teachings and philosophy have deeply influenced Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese and Indonesian thought and life.

6 Paul of Tarsus 5–67 AD

Christian apostle

One of the most notable of early Christian missionaries, credited with proselytizing and spreading Christianity outside of Palestine (mainly to the Romans) and author of numerous letters of the New Testament of the Bible.

7 Cài Lún

50–121 AD

Political official in imperial China

Widely regarded as the inventor of paper and the papermaking process.


Johannes Gutenberg



German printer who invented the mechanical printing press.


Christopher Columbus



Italian navigator, colonizer and explorer whose voyages led to general European awareness of the American continents.

Albert Einstein



German theoretical physicist, best known for his theory of relativity and specifically mass–energy equivalence, expressed by the equation E = mc2.


The 100

References [1] http:/ / worldcat. org/ oclc/ 644066940 [2] Michael H. Hart The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History. first published in 1978 (http:/ / books. google. com/ books?id=CUxmAAAAMAAJ), reprinted with minor revisions 1992 (http:/ / books. google. com/ books?id=jvbNRbDKY1wC). ISBN 978-0-8065-1068-2 [3] The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History (http:/ / www. howard. k12. md. us/ glenwood/ sapple/ sapple/ toptenlistweb. pdf) [4] Michael H. Hart. A view from the year 3000: a ranking of the 100 most influential persons of all time; first published in 1999 (http:/ / books. google. com/ books?id=8xEHAAAACAAJ& dq)

External links • Religious Affiliation of History's 100 Most Influential People (


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The 100  
The 100