The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (2023)

I found 20+ lists of the greatest philosophers and combined them into a single metal list. The results are below: each philosopher on three or more of the original source lists, presented in order of precedence (ie, with the philosophers on most lists at the top). Although most of the lists focused heavily on Western philosophy of various kinds, I was able to find lists of Eastern philosophers as well, and some lists containing both Eastern and Western philosophy. For each philosopher, I have provided philosophical schools, key ideas and concepts, and a list of important books and articles.

NOTE: These are not my personal opinions. This metal list is the result of comparing several lists made by other people.

To see the same list chronologically by the philosopher's date of birth, go toHere.

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(Ancient Greece, 428-348 BC)
Known for: Idealism. platonism. theory of forms. The Allegory of the Cave. The Philosopher King. He founded the Academy (385 BC).
Construction:forgiveness(ca. 399-390 n. Chr.).Crito(ca. 399-390 n. Chr.).Not less(ca. 388-367 n. Chr.).Phaidon(ca. 388-367 n. Chr.).Symposium(ca. 388-367 n. Chr.).To the republic(ca. 388-367 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (1)
Bust of Plato in the Centrale Montemartini, Vatican City. Roman copy of a Greek original from Silanion from 428 BC.

Aristotle(Ancient Greece, 384-322 BC)
Known for: Realism. He founded the Lyceum (335 BC). The Golden middle. The Four Causes. Democracy.
Works (all written around 335-323 BC):Nicomachean Ethics.poetic.Physically.Politics.rhetoric.Metaphysics. About the soul.
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Bust of Aristotle in the National Museum of Rome. Roman marble copy of the Greek bronze original by Lysippus from 330 BC.

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René Descartes(France, 1596-1650)
Known for: Cartesianism. Rationalism. "Cogito ergo sum." Cartesian dualism. mathematical method. normal method. Cartesian coordinate system. Fundamentalism. dream argument. conservation of momentum. wax argument.
Construction:The world(1629-1633, published 1662, 1664).discourse on the method(1637).Geometry(1637).Meditations on First Philosophy(1641).principles of philosophy(1644).passions of the soul(1649).
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This late 17th-century copy of Franz Hals' 1649 Portrait of René Descartes is in the Louvre in Paris.

Immanuel Kant(Deutschland, 1724-1804)
Known for: Idealism. Synthesize rationalism and skepticism. deontological ethics. The categorical imperative. social contract theory.
Construction:Critique of Pure Reason(1781).Prolegomena to any future metaphysics(1783).Foundations of the metaphysics of morality(1785).Critique of practical reason(1788).criticism of the process(1789).
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An 18th-century portrait of Immanuel Kant by an unknown artist.

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Thomas Hobbes(England, 1588-1679)
Known for: Materialism. Empiricism. social contract theory. Classic realism. Determinism. ethical selfishness. Life in the state of nature is "uncomfortable, brutal and short".
Construction:The third section of the elements of philosophy about the citizen(1642).Leviathan(1651).from the body(1655).Gigante(1668, published 1681).
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A 17th-century portrait of Thomas Hobbes by John Michael Wright. It is in the National Portrait Gallery in London.

John Locke(England/GB, 1632-1704)
Known for: Empiricism. Liberalism. social contract theory. The law of nature. Blank page. Primary/Secondary Qualities. Rights to life, liberty and property.
Construction:Two government contracts(1689).An essay on the human mind(1689).Letters on Tolerance(1689-1692).Some Thoughts on Education(1693).About the behavior of understanding(1706).
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This 1697 portrait of John Locke by Sir Godfrey Kneller is now in the State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg.

David Hume(Britain: Scotland, 1711-1776)
Known for: Empiricism. Skepticism.
Construction:A treatise on human nature(1738-1740).An inquiry into the human mind(1748).An Inquiry into the Principles of Morality(1751).Dialogues on Natural Religion(1779).
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David Hume's 1754 portrait by Allan Ramsay is in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.

Friedrich Nietzsche(Deutschland, 1844-1900)
Known for: Idealism. Existentialism. metaphysical voluntarism. Will to Power Superman. Anarchism. Apollonian/Dionysian. Resentment "God is dead." herd instinct. Master-slave morals. revaluation of values. Nietzsche statement.
Construction:Birth of a tragedy(1872).human, too human(1878).gay science(1882).Thus spoke zarathustra(1883).Beyond Good and Evil(1886).On the Genealogy of Morality(1887).Dawn of the idols(1888).the antichrist(1888).look at the man(1888).
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A photograph of Friedrich Nietzsche around 1875, taken by F. Hartmann.

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Thomas Aquinas(Thomas Aquinas) (Italy, 1225-1274)
Known For: Scholastic. Thomism. metaphysical intellectualism. Medieval realism. Almighty paradoxical. five ways analogy of being
Construction:Summa against the pagans(ca. 1259-1265).Theological Summary(1265-1274).About Being and Essence.
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Thomas Aquinas depicted by Gentile da Fabriano in a 14th-century painting, now in the Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan.

Baruch Spinoza(Benedict de Spinoza) (Netherlands, 1632-1677)
Known for: Spinozism. Rationalism. neutral monism. social contract theory. Pantheism. Determinism. Parallelism. separation of church and state.
Construction:Short treatise on God, man and his welfare(a 1660).About improving understanding(1662).The principles of Cartesian philosophy(1663).A theological and political treatise(1670).ethics(1674, published 1677).
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A portrait of Baruch Spinoza from 1665.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau(Swiss/France, 1712-1778)
Known for: Social contract theory. Romance. General Will. child centered learning. popular sovereignty. positive freedom. Amour de soi/amour-propre.
Construction:Discourse on the Arts and Sciences(1750).the social contract(1762).Emilio or On Education(1762).the confessions(1781).
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Portrait of Jean-Jacques Rousseau by Maurice Quentin de la Tour between 1750 and 1775. Seen at the Antoine Lécuyer Museum in Saint Germaine, France.

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Karl Marx
(Germany/Britain, 1818-1883)
Known for: Marxism. Communism. Materialism. appreciation. class struggle. labor theory of value. Alienation and exploitation of work. materialistic view of history.
Construction:The Communist Manifesto(with Friedrich Engels) (1848).Capital city(The Capital) (1867-1883).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (12)
This photo of Karl Marx, taken around 1875, is now in the International Institute for Social History in Amsterdam.

Jeaun Paul Sartre(France, 1905-1980)
Known for: Existentialism. Marxism. Phenomenology. hermeneutics. Humanism. bad faith. "Existence precedes essence." ego transcendence. Nobel Prize in Literature (1964).
Construction:The transcendence of the ego(1937).nausea(1938).Draft theory of emotions(1939).the imagined(1940).being and nothing(1943).No Exit(1944).ways to freedom(Trilogy, 1945-1949).existentialism is a humanism(1946).Find a method (1957).Critique of Dialectical Reason(1960).
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An undated photo of Jean-Paul Sartre.

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(Ancient Greece, ca. 470-399 BC)
Known for: Rationalism. Persistent critical reflection. Socratic method. "All I know is that I don't know anything."
Construction:forgiveness(by Plato, c. AD 399-390).Plato's Socratic Dialogues(ca. 399-367 n. Chr.).
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This marble bust of Socrates in the Louvre, Paris, is probably a 1st-century AD Roman marble copy from a Greek original in bronze by Lysippus.

Augustine von Hippo(Algeria/Roman Empire, 354-430 AD)
Known for: Christian theology. divine grace. The Original Sin. War theory only.
Construction:confessions(ca. 397-400 n. Chr.).to the Christian teaching(397-426 n. Chr.).the city of god(426 d. C.).
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This portrait of St. Augustine by Peter Paul Rubens from 1636-1638 is now in the National Gallery in Prague.

John Stuart's Mill(Britain, 1806-1873)
Known for: Empiricism. Utilitarianism. Classic Liberalism. Hierarchy of Pleasures. damage principle. Direct Reference Theory. Mill's methods.
Construction:a logical system(1843).Essays on some open questions in national economy(1844).The principles of political economy(1848).A few words about non-interference(1859).about freedom(1859).Thoughts on representative government(1861).Utilitarianism(1863).The subjugation of women(1869).Three Essays on Religion(1874).
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A photograph of John Stuart Mill taken at the London Stereoscopic Company c. 1870

Luis Wittgenstein(Austrian/British, 1889-1951)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. Linguistic turn. Logical Atomism. image theory of language. real functions. logical necessity. philosophy of ordinary language. Analysis of the ideal language.
Construction:Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus(1921).Philosophical Investigations(1953).blue and brown books(1958).
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A 1947 photograph of Ludwig Wittgenstein by Ben Richards.

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Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz
(Deutschland, 1646-1716)
Known for: Rationalism. monads. philosophical optimism. "The best of all possible worlds." "Why is there something rather than nothing?" symbolic logic.
Construction:discourse on metaphysics(1686).New essays on the human mind(1704).Theodizee(1710).Monadologie(1714).
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A Gottfried Leibniz portrait by Christoph Bernhard Francke from the 1720s.

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel(Deutschland, 1770-1831)
Known for: Idealism. Romance. natural philosophy. Historicism. Dialectical Phenomenology.
Construction:phenomenology of the Spirit(1807).science of logic(1812-1816).elements of legal philosophy(1821).Lectures on the philosophy of history(1837).
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This 1831 Hegel portrait by Jakob Schlesinger is in the Alte Nationalgalerie in Berlin.

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(China, 551-479 n. Chr.)
Known for: Confucianism. The golden rule.
Construction:the Analects(attrib.) (ca. 475-221 n. Chr.).
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A depiction of Confucius made by Wu Daozi (c. 680-760 AD) during the Tang Dynasty.

Arturo Schopenhauer(Deutschland, 1788-1860)
Known for: Idealism. anthropic principle. philosophical pessimism. Transcendental idealism. metaphysical voluntarism. antinatalism. eternal justice. The Hedgehog Dilemma. Principium individuationis. The will as a thing in itself.
Construction:On the fourfold root of the principle of sufficient reason(1813).The World as Will and Representation(Bd. 1: 1819; Bd. 2: 1844).The art of being right(1831).About the will in nature(1836).About the freedom of the will(1839).Based on morale(1840).Parerg and Paralipomena(1851).
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A photograph of Arthur Schopenhauer from 1859 by Johann Schäfer.

Soren Kierkegaard(Denmark, 1813-1855)
Known for: Existentialism. Christian theology. distress. Knights of Faith Remembrance and Repetition. Three stages on the path of life. Subjectivity is the truth.
Construction:either ... or(1843).fear and tremors(1843).The concept of fear(1844).Final unscientific postscript to philosophical fragments(1846).disease to death(1849).
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Un boceto inacabado de 1840 von Søren Kierkegaard von Niels Christian Kierkegaard.

Bertrand Russell(Britain, 1872-1970)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. Linguistic turn. Logic. Utilitarianism. Descriptivist theory of names. Epistemic structural realism. Nobel Prize in Literature (1950).
Construction: "By designation(1905).The problems of philosophy(1912).mathematical principles(mit Alfred North Whitehead) (1910-1913).Why am I not a Christian?(1927).A question of meaning and truth(1940).A History of Western Philosophy(1945).Logic and Knowledge: Essays 1901-1950(1956).
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A 1935 photograph by Bertrand Russell of Granger.

MartinHeidegger(Deutschland, 1889-1976)
Known For: Phenomenology. Existentialism. ontological hermeneutics. To be there.
Construction:Being And Time(1927).Introduction to Metaphysics(1935, published 1953).contributions to philosophy(1936-1938, published 1989).
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An undated photo by Martin Heidegger.

Simone de Beauvoir(France, 1908-1986)
Known for: Existentialism. existential phenomenology. Marxism. Feminism.
Construction:The ethics of ambiguity(1947).the second sex(1949).adulthood(1970).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (25)
A 1946 photograph of Simon de Beauvoir by Henri Cartier-Bresson.

(Video) The Philosopher Tierlist

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Franz Speck
(Viscount St. Alban) (England, 1561-1626)
Known for: Empiricism. The scientific method. inductive reasoning.
Construction:Essays(1call upedition, 1597).The promotion and competition of divine and human learning(1605).Essays(2North Dakotaedition, 1612).A new scientific body(1620).New Atlantic(1627).
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A 1617 portrait of Francis Bacon by Frans Pourbus.

William James(United States, 1842-1910)
Known for: Pragmatism. functional psychology. radical empiricism. doctrine of the will to believe. James Lange Emotion Theory.
Construction: "What is an emotion?(1884).The principles of psychology(1890).The will to believe(1897).diversity of religious experience(1902).pragmatism(1907).Contributions to radical empiricism(1912).
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A 1903 photograph of William James taken at Notman Studios.

Edmund Husserl(Austria/Germany, 1859-1938)
Known For: Phenomenology. logical objectivism. Epoch. Eidetic reduction. living environment. Pre-reflective self-awareness. transcendental subjectivism.
Construction:logical researches(1900).Ideas of a pure phenomenology and a phenomenological philosophy(1call upBuch, 1913).Cartesian Meditations(1931).The Crisis of the European Sciences and Transcendental Phenomenology(1936).
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A photograph of Edmund Husserl c. 1900

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Nikolaus Machiavelli
(Italy, 1469-1527)
Known for: Renaissance humanism. political realism. Classic republicanism.
Construction:The Art of War(1519-1520).Speeches about Livy(1531).Prinz(1532).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (29)
This posthumous portrait of Niccolò Machiavelli, made by Santi di Tito between 1550 and 1603, is now in the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy.

George Berkeley(Bishop Berkeley) (Ireland/GB, 1685-1753)
Known for: Empiricism. Subjective idealism. Skepticism.
Construction:An essay on a new theory of vision(1709).Treatise on the principles of human knowledge(1710).Three dialogues between Hylas and Philonous(1713).Alcifron(1732).there Analyst(1734).
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This portrait of George Berkeley by John Smibert from c. 1730 is now in the National Portrait Gallery in London.

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(Ibn Sina) (Persia, 980-1037 AD)
Known for: Neoplatonism. avikenism. truth test. Thought experiment with floating people.
Construction:AlabamaHikma al– ‘Arudia(Philosophy for the prosodist).The Canon of Medicine(1025).Kitābal-shifā (The Book of Healing; The Healing)(1020).Kitābal-Najāt (The Book of Liberation; The Book of Redemption)(11IsCentury).The Book of Knowledge for 'Ala al-Dawla.Comments and Warnings.
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An Artist's Imagination by Ibn Sina, also known as Avicenna.

Voltaire(François-Marie Arouet) (France/Swiss, 1694-1778)
Known For: Deism. freedom of religion. Free expression. separation of church and state.
Construction:Letters about the English nation(1734).Elements of Newtonian philosophy(1745).Zadig(1747).Essays on the customs and spirit of peoples(1756).open(1759).
Philosophical Dictionary(1764).
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This 1724-1725 Voltaire portrait by Nicolas de Largillière is now in the Palace of Versailles, France.

Jeremy Bentham(GB, 1748-1832)
Known For: Utilitarianism. legal positivism. Liberalism. principle of greatest happiness.
Construction:A snippet about the government(1776).An introduction to the principles of morality and law(1780).usury defense(1787).lawless errors(1796).
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This portrait of Jeremy Bentham by Henry William Pickersgill from c. 1829 is now in the National Portrait Gallery in London.

John Dewey(United States, 1859-1952)
Known for: Pragmatism. reflective thinking. immediate empiricism. pedagogical progressivism. work psychosis.
Construction: "The concept of the reflex arc in psychology(1896).school and society(1899).democracy and education(1916).human nature and behavior(1922).experience and nature(1925).The public and their problems(1927).Art as experience(1934).Logic: The theory of inquiry(1938).freedom and culture(1939).knowledge and the known(mit Arthur Bentley) (1949).
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An undated photo of John Dewey.

Hanna Arendt(Germany/USA, 1906-1975)
Known for: Existential Phenomenology. Classic republicanism. The banality of evil.
Construction:The origins of totalitarianism(1951).the human condition(1958).Eichmann in Jerusalem: An Account of the Banality of Evil(1963).about the revolution(1963).men in dark times(1968).about violence(1970).the life of the spirit(1978).
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An undated photo of Hannah Arendt.

Michel Foucault(France, 1926-1984)
Known for: Poststructuralism. speech analysis. discursive education. panopticon. subjectification.
Construction:the story of madness(1961).The birth of the clinic(1963).the order of things(1966).The archeology of knowledge(1969).discipline and punishment(1975).The History of Sexuality(1976).
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A photograph of Michel Foucault c. 1965

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Laozi(Lao-Tse) (China, ca. 600-531 AD)
Known for: Taoism
Construction:Tao Te Ching(Daodejing) (atrib.) (ca. 624-604 n. Chr.).
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Stone sculpture of the Laozi Song Dynasty at the foot of Qingyuan Mountain (960-1279).

Parmenides(Ancient Greece, born c. 515 BC)
Known For: Eliatic School. Rationalism. "Thinking and being are the same." From nothing, comes nothing. The vacuum. The impossibility of change. The unchanging nature of existence.
Construction:about nature(Kap. 5Iscentury BC).
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This bust of Parmenides, possibly from the 1st century AD, was discovered in 1962 at the archaeological site of Velia, Italy.

Epicurus(Ancient Greece, 341-270 BC)
Known for: Epicureanism. Atomism. Materialism. Hedonism. principle of joy. atomic drift.
Construction:about nature(fragments only) (late 4th centIsearly 5th centuryIscentury BC).letters(quoted inLives of Important Philosophers, von Diogenes Laërtius, c. 250 n. Chr.).
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This marble bust of Epicurus is a 2nd or 3rd century BC Roman copy of a Greek original. It is now in the British Museum in London.

Willard Van Orman Quine(United States, 1908-2000)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. vagueness of translation. Naturalized epistemology. ontological relativity. Quine-Putnam indispensability thesis.
Construction: "about what is there(1948). „Two dogmas of empiricism(1951).From a logical point of view(1953).word and object(1960). „Naturalized epistemology(1969).The roots of the reference(1971).
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An undated photo of Willard Van Orman Quine.

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(Ancient Greece, 535-475 BC)
Known for: Unity of opposites. logos. The way from top to bottom. "Everything flows." "Character is destiny." "The fight is justice."
Construction:about nature(quoted inLives of Important Philosophers, von Diogenes Laërtius, c. 250 n. Chr.).
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The Imagination of Heraclitus by an unknown artist, 17th century.

Marcus Aurel(Roman Empire, 121-180 AD)
Known for: Stoicism.
Construction:meditations(180 d. C.).
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This ancient Roman marble bust of Marcus Aurelius is housed in the Archaeological Museum of Istanbul, Turkey.

Plotinus(Egypt/Roman Empire, ca. 204-270 AD)
Known for: Neoplatonism. Emanations of the One: Nous, soul of the world, human souls, matter. Three hypostases: the one, the intellect and the soul. Henosis (union with the One).
Construction:the Enneads(ca. 270 n. Chr.).
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One of four marble heads, believed to be Plotinus, found at Ostia Antica in Italy.

averroes(Ibn Rushd) (Spain/Morocco, 1126-1198)
Known for: Aristotelianism. Maliki. Reconciliation of Aristotelianism with Islam.
Construction:The inconsistency of the inconsistency(1180).Comments on Aristotle(numerous).About the intellect. to the syllogism. About the connection with the active intellect. Over time. About the heavenly sphere About the movement of the sphere.
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Averroes' Fantasy by Florentine artist Andrea di Bonaiuto da Firenze detailed in his fresco The Triumph of Saint Thomas Aquinas, 1365-1368, in the church of Santa Maria Novella in Florence, Italy.

August Comte(Isidore Marie Auguste François Xavier Comte) (France, 1798-1857)
Known For: Positivism. praxeology. religion of mankind. Law of the three stages. Altruism.
Construction:The general separation of opinions and desires(1819).Plan of the scientific studies necessary for the reorganization of society(1822).The Positive Philosophy course(1830-1842).An overview of positivism(1848).Positive political system(1851–1854).The Subjective Synthesis, Vol. 1(1856).
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An undated photograph/drawing by August Comte. Hulton File/Fake Images

Karl Popper(Austria/New Zealand/Britain, 1902-1994)
Known for: Critical Rationalism. Realism. Liberalism. empirical falsification. cosmological pluralism. Objective hermeneutics. negative utilitarianism.
Construction:The logic of scientific discovery(1934).The poverty of historicism(1944).The open society and its enemies(1945).conjectures and refutations(1963).objective knowledge(1972).he me and your brain(with John Eccles) (1977).
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A photo of Karl Popper from 1990.

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(Mo Tzu) (China, ca. 470-391 AD)
Known For: Mohism. impartial care. own interest. consequentialism.
Construction:Evil(attrib.) (ca. 476-221 n. Chr.).
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A drawing by Mozi.

Mention(China, 372-289 n. Chr.)
Known for: Confucianism. innate goodness
Works: The Book of Mencius (ca. 309-289 BC).
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A posthumous portrait of Mencius.

Anselmo de Canterbury(Anselm of Aosta) (France/England, c. 1033-1109)
Known For: Scholastic. Christian theology. ontological argument. Satisfaction Theory of Atonement.
Construction:Monologue(1075-1076).Proslogion(1077-1078).Why was God human?(1095-1098).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (49)
A late 16th century engraving by Anselm of Canterbury.

Blaise Pascual(France, 1623-1662)
Known for: Jansenism. Pascal's triangle. Paschal's identity.
Construction: "of the geometric mind(1657/1658).The Provincial Letters(1656-1657).Thoughts(1669).
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A copy of Francois II Quesnel's Portrait of Blaise Pascal c. 1691. It is now in the Palace of Versailles in France.

Charles Sanders Peirce(United States, 1839-1914)
Known for: Pragmatism. abductive thinking. Continuity. Titism Synechism. fallibilism. Scholastic Realism. objective idealism. Logic precedes metaphysics. Logic as formal semiotics. The four disabilities.
Construction: "For the natural classification of arguments(1867). „In a new category list(1867). „On the logic of mathematics(1867).“About logical understanding and expanding(1867). „Nominalism vs Realism(1868). „Questions about specific abilities claimed for humans(1868). „Some Consequences of Four Disabilities(1868). „What does "definitely" mean?'" (1868) "Principles of Validity of the Laws of Logic: Additional Consequences of Four Disabilities(1869).Logic of Relatives(1970). „The Fixation of Faith(1877). „How we make our ideas clear(1878). „The lesson of the possibilities(1878). „The induction probability(1878). „the order of nature(1878). „Deduction, induction and hypothesis(1878).The architecture of theories(1891).The Doctrine of Necessity Examined(1892).law of the mind(1892).What is pragmatism?(1905).pragmatic problems(1905).
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An undated photo of Charles Sanders Peirce.

thank god Frege(Friedrich Ludwig Gottlob Frege) (Germany, 1848-1925)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. logical objectivism. Logic. Transcendental idealism. Realism. Axiomatic logic of predicates. Quantified Variables. principle of compositionality. context principle.
Construction:written term(1879).the basis of arithmetic(1884). „About meaning and reference(1892). „concept and object(1892). „What is a function?(1904). „The thought(1918-1919). „refusal(1918-1919).
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A photograph by Gottlob Frege c. 1879

G. E. moore(George Edward Moore) (British, 1873-1958)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. Common sense. moral intuition. naturalistic error. paradox of analysis. transparency of conscience. Moore's paradox. Principle of organic unity.
Construction: "The nature of the process(1899). „The Refutation of Idealism(1903).ethical principles(1903). „The nature and reality of perceptual objects(1905-1906).ethics(1912). „Some Perceptual Judgments(1918). „Are the properties of things general or particular?(1923). „A defense of common sense(1925).philosophical documents(including "evidence of an outside world“ (1959).
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An undated photo of G.E. Moore

(Video) Bryan Magee - The Great Philosophers

Albert Camus(Algeria/France, 1913-1960)
Known for: Existentialism. Absurdism. Anarchism. Nobel Prize in Literature (1957).
Construction:The stranger(1942).The Myth of Sisyphus(1942).to the wound(1947).The rebel(1951).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (54)
An undated photo of Albert Camus.

John Rawl(United States, 1921-2002)
Known for: Liberalism. justice as fairness. The original location. thoughtful balance. Overlapping consensus.
Construction:a theory of justice(1971).political liberalism(1993).the international law(1999).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (55)
An undated photo of John Rawls first published in the Harvard Gazette.

Jürgen Habermas(Deutschland, 1921- )
Known For: Critical Theory. Pragmatism. Communicative rationality. discourse ethics. Universal pragmatics. rational reconstruction. performative contradiction.
Construction:The structural change of the public(1962).knowledge and human interests(1968).The theory of communicative action(1981). „Modern vs. Postmodern(1981).The philosophical discourse of modernity(1985).Between facts and norms: Contributions to a discursive theory of law and democracy(1992).The inclusion of the other(1996).
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An undated photo by Jürgen Habermas.

Noam Chomsky(United States, 1928- )
Known for: Analytical philosophy. cognitive science. universal grammar. Generative Grammar. Chomsky's hierarchy. minimalist program.
Construction:Logical structure of language theory(1955).syntactic structures(1957).Current questions in language theory(1964).aspects of syntax theory(1965).The political economy of human rights(1979).Established Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media(1988).Necessary Illusions: Mind Control in Democratic Societies(1989).The minimalist program(1995).Objectivity and Liberal Science(1997).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (57)
An undated photo of Noam Chomsky.

jacques derrida(Algeria/France, 1930-2004)
Known for: Poststructuralism. of construction. radical hermeneutics.
Construction:Grammatology(1967).discourse and phenomena(1967).writing and difference(1978).The postcard: from Socrates to Freud and beyond(1980).margins of philosophy(1982).Of the spirit: Heidegger and the question(1987).limited incl.(including "Signature Reignis Context“ (1988).About the right to philosophy(1990).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (58)
An undated photo of Jacques Derrida.

Ricardo Rörty(United States, 1931-2007)
Known for: Pragmatism. post-analytic philosophy. post philosophy. Irony. final vocabulary. Epistemological behaviorism. anti-representationalism.
Construction:Philosophy and the mirror of nature(1979).consequences of pragmatism(1982).contingency, irony and solidarity(1989).Objectivity, relativism and truth(1990).philosophy and social hope(1999).Philosophy as cultural politics(2007).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (59)
A Richard Rorty photograph of Steve Pyke, dated between 1988 and 1991.

Saul Krippe(United States, 1940- )
Known for: Analytical philosophy. Kripke-Platek set theory. reference theories. allowable ordinal number. Kripke structure. Kripke semantics. discounting principle. accessibility ratio. Rule-following paradox. A priori necessary truths.
Construction: "Semantic considerations on modal logic(1963). „Principles of a theory of truth(1975). „A mystery of faith(1979).date and necessity(1980).Wittgenstein on rules and private language(1982).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (60)
An undated photo of Saul Kripke on the beach.

in 5 Listen
the Buddha(Siddhartha Gautama) (Indian, ca. 563/480–483/400 n. Chr.)
Known For: Buddhism. The Middle Way. Dhyana. impermanence. Dependent Origination. Liberating vision.
Construction:Sutta is long(attribute) (includingKhuddaka Nikaya/Dhammapada) (29 v. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (61)
Sandstone sculpture of a Buddha preaching the law (Dharmacakra mudrā) from the Gupta period (AD 240-590). It is located in the Sarnath Archaeological Museum in Sarnath, India.

Zeno of Elea(Ancient Greece, ca. 490-430 BC)
Known For: Eleatic School. Zeno's paradoxes. dialectic. Reduction to the absurd.
Construction:Parmenides(by Plato) (c. AD 380).Physically(by Aristotle) ​​(c. 335 BC).Lives and opinions of important philosophers(von Diogenes Laërtius) (ca. 250 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (62)
An undated engraving of a bust of Zeno by Elea.

sol tzu(Sunzi) (Sun Wu (?)) (China, ca. 544-496 n. Chr. (traditionell), ca. 450-380 n. Chr. (?))
Known For: Military theory. Know when to fight and when not to. Time is of the essence. Know yourself and your enemy. "All war is based on deception." The best victories are won by means other than war. "In the midst of chaos there is opportunity." Success breeds success. A protracted war does nations no good.
Construction:The Art of War(attributed to) (c. 500-450 BC (older version); c. 400-300 BC (revisions and additions by Sun Bin(?)))
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (63)
A statue of Sun Tzu in Yurihama, Tottori, Japan.

Adi Shankara(Adi Shankaracharya) Indien, ca. 788–820 n. Chr.)
Known for: Hinduism. Dashanami Sampradaya. Advaita Vedanta. Unity of Atman and Nirguna Brahman.
Construction:Brahmasutrabhasya (Kommentar zu den Brahma Sutras). Bhagavadgītabhasya (Kommentar zur Bhagavad Gita). Upadesasahasri.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (64)
An Artist's Fantasy by Adi Shankara.

Ramanuja(India, c. 1017-1137)
Known for: Hinduism. Sri Vaishnavism. Vishishtadvaita Vedanta. qualified monism.
Construction:Sri Bhashya. Vedārthasangraha. Bhagavad Gita Bhashya.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (65)
The imagination of a Ramanuja artist.

Al-Ghazali(Persia, 1058-1111)
Known For: Ash'ari Islam. sufism. Theological occasionalism.
Construction:error release(an 1100).goals of the philosophers. The Incoherence of Philosophers (Tahāfut al-Falāsifa). Criterion of Knowledge in the Art of Logic. touchstone of logical thinking. The right balance. The Rebirth of Religious Studies (The Alchemy of Happiness).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (66)
An Artist's Fantasy by Al-Ghazali.

Duns Scotus(John Duns) (Scotland, 1266-1308)
Known For: Scholastic. Theological volunteer work. Medieval realism. clarity of being. Haecceity as a principle of individuation. Immaculate Conception.
Construction:Questions on the books of Aristotle's Metaphysics(ca. 1298-1300).Organisation (Opus Oxford)(ca. 1300-1304).reading(ca. 1300-1304).A report from Paris(ca. 1302-1307).Any questions(ca. 1306-1307).Remarkable Scotus on Metaphysics. Treatise on the First Principle.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (67)
This late 15th-century portrait of Duns Scotus by Justus van Gent is now in the Palazzo Barberini in Rome.

William of Ockham(England, 1285-1347)
Known For: Scholastic. Theological volunteer work. fideism. conceptualism/nominalism. Occam's Razor.
Construction:Commentary on the judgments of Pedro Lombardo(1317-1318).Little Summa of Natural Philosophy(1319-1321).logical addition(a 1323).Brief summary of physics(1322-1323).Exhibition of the Physics of Aristotle(1322-1324).Questions about Aristotle's physics books(before 1324).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (68)
An artist's imagination by William of Ockham Stained glass in a church in Surrey, England.

Montesquieu(Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de La Brède and Montesquieu) (Französisch, 1689-1755)
Known For: Lighting. Liberalism. separation of powers.
Construction:Persian letters(1721).True story(ca. 1723-1738).spirit of law(1748).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (69)
An undated engraving by Montesquieu.

Denis Diderot(France, 1713-1784)
Known for: Materialism. encyclopedists. Lightning. Experimental Science.
Construction:philosophical thoughts(1746).The path of the skeptic(1747).Letter to the blind(1749).To interpret nature(1754).encyclopedia(1751-1765).Rameau's nephew(1763).Alembert's dream(1769).Jacques der Fatalist(1773).The actor's paradox(1770-1778).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (70)
This 1767 portrait of Denis Diderot by Louis-Michel van Loo is now in the Louvre in Paris.

Maria Wollstonecraft(GB, 1759-1797)
Known for: Women's rights. Coeducation.
Construction:Reflections on the upbringing of daughters(1787).A claim to human rights(1790).A claim for women's rights(1792).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (71)
John Opie's portrait of Mary Wollstonecraft from around 1797 is now in the National Portrait Gallery in London.

Henri Bergson(France, 1859-1941)
Known For: Spiritism. Immediate Experience. Intuition. duration theory. philosophy of life. vigour. Nobel Prize in Literature (1927).
Construction:time and free will(1889).matter and memory(1896).Laughter: an essay on the meaning of comics(1900).creative development(1907).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (72)
A photo by Henri Bergson from 1927.

Alfred North Whitehead(British/US, 1861-1947)
Known for: Process philosophy. theology of the process. Extensive abstraction. Error of concretion out of place. Handle.
Construction:General Algebra Treatise(1898).mathematical principles(with Bertrand Russell) (1910-1913).An introduction to mathematics(1911).An inquiry into the principles of natural knowledge(1919).The concept of nature(1920).process and reality(1929).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (73)
An undated photo by Alfred North Whitehead.

Rodolfo Carnap(Germany/USA, 1891-1970)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. Logical Atomism. Logical positivism. physicalism. confirmationism. observation set. Carnap's categorization. "Every complete system of axioms is also categorical." Epistemic structural realism. Ramsay prayers.
Construction:The logical structure of the world(1928).The logical syntax of the language(1934).Philosophy and logical syntax(1935).Introduction to Semantics(1942). „On inductive logic(1945). „The two concepts of probability(1945). „To apply inductive logic(1947).purpose and necessity(1947). „Empiricism, Semantics, Ontology(1950).The continuum of inductive methods(1952).Philosophical foundations of physics(1966).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (74)
An undated photo by Rudolf Carnap.

Theodor W. Adorno(Theodor Ludwig Wiesengrund) (Germany, 1903-1969)
Known For: Critical Theory. western marxism. paradox of aesthetics. maturity. negative dialectics.
Construction:Dialectic of Enlightenment(with Max Horkheimer) (1944).philosophy of new music(1949).The authoritarian personality(1950).minimale Moral(1951).against epistemology(1956).negative dialectics(1966).aesthetic theory(1970).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (75)
An undated photo of Theodor Adorno.

Peter Singer(Australia, 1946- )
Known for: Analytical philosophy. Utilitarianism. Same balancing of interests. Analogy of the drowning child. Effective altruism.
Construction: "hunger, opulence and morality(1972).animal liberation(1975).practical ethics(1979).how should we live Ethics in the age of self-interest(1993).Rethinking Life and Death: The Collapse of Our Traditional Ethics(1994).A Darwinian left(1999).One World: The Ethics of Globalization(2002).The Life You Can Save: Act Now to End Global Poverty(2009).view of the universe(mit Lazari-Radeks Karazyna) (2014).The greatest good you can do(2015).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (76)
A 2015 photo of Peter Singer by Tristan Martin/THOMSON REUTERS FOUNDATION.

Judith Administrator(United States, 1956- )
Known For: Critical Theory. poststructuralism. postmodernism. Third wave feminism. Strange theory. performative turn. Gender as a social construction. gender performativity.
Construction: "Performative acts and gender constitution(1988). „imitation and gender insubordination(1990).Gender Issues: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity(1990).Bodys that matter: on the discursive boundaries of sex(1993).Excitable discourse: a politics of the performative(1997).undo gender(2004).Precarious Living: The Powers of Grief and Violence(2004).be realized(2005).sense of the subject(2015).Notes on a performative assembly theory(2015).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (77)
A photo of Judith Butler from 2012.

in 4 Listen
Pythagoras(Ancient Greece, ca. 570-495 BC)
Known for: Pythagoreanism. communalism. Metempsychosis. universal music. Pythagorean theorem (attrib.). Sphericity of the earth (attrib.). Five regular bodies (attributes). Theory of proportions (attributes).
Construction:Lives and opinions of important philosophers(von Diogenes Laërtius) (ca. 250 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (78)
Bust of Pythagoras from the Musei Capitolini, Rome. Roman marble copy of a 5th century BC Greek bronze original.

Democritus(Ancient Greece, 460-360 BC)
Known For: Atomism. Causality. Materialism. Atomic vacuum. "Equality everywhere is noble." Legitimate Knowledge versus Bastard Knowledge.
Construction:Lives and opinions of important philosophers(von Diogenes Laërtius) (ca. 250 n. Chr.).Reference work in ancient philosophy(Charles Montague Bakewell, Hrsg.) (1907).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (79)
Housed in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, this marble bust of Democritus is attributed to an unknown 18th-century Italian artist.

zhuang zhou(Zhuangzi) (China, ca. 369-286 n. Chr.)
Known for: Taoism (Taoism). "The Dream of the Butterfly". "Wonton's Death". "The Fish Joy Debate". "Drumming in a tub and singing."
Construction:The Book of Zhuangzi(ca. 306-286 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (80)
An Artist's Imagination by Zhuang Zhou.

patanjali(India, ca. 200 AD-300 AD)
Conocido por: el Hinduismus. So install Samadhi. Sadhana. Vibhuti. Kaivalya. Eight Constituents of Yoga (Yamas, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana, Samadhi).
Construction:The Yoga Sutras(atrib.) (antes of AD 400).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (81)
A modern sculpture by Patanjali at Patanjali Yogpeeth in Haridwar, India.

(Video) Top 100 Most Influential Philosophers of all time I Imperial Marshal

Seneca the Younger(Lucius Annaeus Seneca) (Römisches Reich, ca. 4 AD -65 AD)
Known for: Stoicism.
Construction:De Ira (On Fury)(41 DC).About the shortness of life(49 d. C.).About constance the way(55 d.C.).De Vita Beata (On the Happy Life)(58 d. C.).De Otio (On ​​Leisure)(62 DC).To peace of mind(63 DC).natural problems(63 DC).on providence(64 d. ​​​​C.).moral letters(ca. 65 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (82)
This Roman marble bust of Seneca, one side of a double herm of Socrates and Seneca, dates from the first half of the 3rd century AD. It is now in the Pergamon Museum in Berlin.

Nagarjuna(India, ca. 150-250 AD)
Known for: Mahayana Buddhism. Madyamaka school. Prajñāpāramitāsutras. Sunyata (empty). Doctrine of the Two Truths. Causality. Relativity.
Construction:Mūlamadhyamakakārikā (Attribute). Śūnyatāsaptati (Seventy Verses on Emptiness). Vigrahavyāvartanī (The End of Quarrels). Vaidalyaprakaraṇa (Pulverizing the Categories). Vyavahārasiddhi (convention proof).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (83)
This 17th-century statue of Nagarjuna by Tibetan artist Tsapa Namjyal is now in the Walters Museum of Art in Baltimore, Maryland.

Boethius(Anicius Manlius Severinus Boëthius) (Italy, ca. 480-524 AD)
Known for: Neoplatonism. wheel of fortune.
Construction:of arithmetic(ca. 500 n. Chr.)About the institution of music(ca. 510 n. Chr.).The consolation of philosophy(ca. 524).About current differences(ca. 522-523 n. Chr.).of the trinity(ca. 520-521 n. Chr.).Like substances.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (84)
Illustration of the title page by Boethius from a 12th-century copy of his book De Institutione Musica. The manuscript is in the Cambridge University Library.

Al-Farabi(Afghanistan/Persia/Egypt/Iraq/Syria(?), ca. 872-950 AD)
Known for: Fararabismo (Alfararabismo). Neo-Aristotelianism. Neoplatonism. conditional futures. Conditional syllogisms. analog conclusion.
Construction:Kitāb al-mūsīqa (The Big Book of Music). Al-Madīna al-Fāḍila (Principles of the Opinions of the Citizens of the Virtuous City). Kitāb iḥṣāʾ al-ʿulūm (On the Introduction of Knowledge). Kitāb iḥṣāʾ al-īqā'āt (rhythm classification). "Above Nothing". social psychology. Commentary and brief treatise on the interpretation of Aristotle.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (85)
An Artist's Fantasy by Al-Farabi.

Peter Abaelard(France, 1079-1142)
Known For: Scholastic. Conceptualism.
Construction:Peter Abayard's glosses on porphyry(an 1120).Logic for beginners(before 1121).dialect(before 1125).Logic in response to our colleagues' request(ca. 1124-1125).A treatise on understanding(before 1128).Sic et Non (yes and no). Theology of the "Highest Good" Christian Theology(ca. 1120-1140)."scientific" theology(ca. 1120-1140).Dialogue of a philosopher with a Jew and a Christian(1136-1139). mithicaorScito Te Ipsum (Ethik oder Erkenne dich selbst)(before 1140).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (86)
A stone statue of Peter Abelard by Jules Cavelier, made before 1853, is now in the Louvre in Paris.

zhu xi(China, 1130-1200)
Known for: Confucianism. Neo-Confucianism. Vitality (Qi). beginning (li). The Highest Ultimate (Taiji). The investigation of things. mind heart. knowledge/action.
Construction:Commentary on the four books(ca. 1180-1200).Master Zhu's Classified Dialogues(Zhuzi Yulei).Daxue (great learning).Collected Writings of Zhu Xi(zhuzi wenji). Reflections on the things at hand(dismount).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (87)
The Artist's Imagination by Zhu Xi.

Maimonides(Moses ben Maimon) (Spain/Egypt, 1135-1204)
Known For: Judaism. Jewish scholar. negative theology. True beliefs versus necessary beliefs.
Construction:Commentary on the Mishnah(1168).Guide for the Desperate(ca. 1186-1190).Treatise on Logic(Attribute).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (88)
In 1985, Paraguay issued a postage stamp bearing the image of Maimonides.

Nichiren(Japan, 1222–1282)
Known for: Nichiren Buddhism. mahayana. tendai. Nam Myōhō Renge Kyōchanting. The Five Reproductive Guides. The three great secret dharmas. The three exams.
Construction:On Establishing the Right Teaching for Earth Peace (Rissho Ankoku Ron)(ca. 1258-1260). TOpening the Eyes (Kaimoku-sho)(1272).The object of devotion to observing the mind (Kanjin-no Honzon-sho)(1273).The Choice of Time (Senji-sho)(1275).About Paying Thanks (Ho'on-sho)(1276).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (89)
This 14th or 15th-century Nichiren painting is housed in a Buddhist temple in Kuon-ji, Japan.

Wang-Yangming(China, 1472-1529)
Known for: Neo-Confucianism. school of the spirit. innate knowledge. unity of knowledge and action.
Construction:Instructions for practical life. recording of the speeches. Investigating the Great Learning.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (90)
A picture of Wang Yangming.

Thomas Paine(UK/France/EU, 1737-1809)
Known For: Lighting. Liberalism. republicanism.
Construction:Common sense(1776).the American crisis(1776-1783).the rights of man(1791-1792).the age of reason(1793-1794).Agrarian Justice(1797).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (91)
this c. 1792 portrait of Thomas Paine by Laurent Dabos is now in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C.

Mao Zedong(China, 1893–1976)
Known for: Maoism. Marxism. New Democracy. people's war. mass line. theory of the three worlds. agrarian socialism.
Construction:Strategic problems of the Chinese War of Independence(1936).it is guerrilla warfare(1937).in practice(1937).To the contradiction(1937).About the long war(1938).To the new democracy(1940).dialectical materialism(1940).serve the people(1944).Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-Tung(1964).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (92)
A photo of Mao Zedong from 1939.

Maurice Merleau-Ponty(France, 1908-1961)
Known For: Phenomenology. western marxism. Structuralism. poststructuralism. anonymous community. motor intentionality. The flesh of the world. "The perceiving mind is the embodied mind." invagination.
Construction:The structure of behavior(1942).phenomenology of perception(1945).humanism and terror(1947).meaningless and meaningless(1948).awareness and language acquisition(1949-1940).praise of philosophy(1953).Phenomenology and the human sciences(1958).Sign(1960).The visible and the invisible(1964).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (93)
An undated photo by Maurice Merleau-Ponty.

Gilles Deleuze(France, 1925-1995)
Known for: Poststructuralism. postmodernism. affect. Sentence. deterritorialization. airline. level of immanence. schizoanalysis. Transcendental Empiricism. clarity of being. the virtual.
Construction:difference and repetition(1968).the logic of meaning(1968).Capitalism and Schizophrenia: Anti-Oedipus(ifFElix Guattari) (1972). "One manifest less(with Carmelo Bene) (1978).thousand plateaus(with Felix Guattari) (1980).conversations(1990).Critical and clinical studies(1993).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (94)
An undated photo by Gilles Deleuze.

Slawoj Zizek(Slovenia/Yugoslavia, 1949- )
Known for: Freudo-Marxism. School of Psychoanalysis in Ljubljana. Lacanian psychoanalysis. Hegelianism. dialectical materialism. Ideology as unconscious fantasy. false consciousness.
Construction:The sublime object of ideology(1989).the abyss of freedom(1997).about belief(2001).Welcome to the desert of the real(2002).organs without a body(2003).Parallaxeansicht(2006).life in the end times(2010).Less Than Nothing: Hegel and the Shadow of Dialectical Materialism(2012).Absolute regression: towards a new basis of dialectical materialism(2014).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (95)
Undatiertes Photo by Slavoj Žižek.

in 3 Listen
(Zarathustra) (Persia/Iran, ca. 1200-900 – 1133-833 BC)
Known for: Zoroastrianism. manichaeism. Mithraism. Ahmadia. fight betweenaschaanddruj. Mazda-Yasna-Ethic.
Construction:Gathas. Avesta.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (96)
Zoroaster (with globe) in detail from Raphael's The School of Athens (1509).

Thales of Miletus(Ancient Greece, ca. 624-546 BC)
Known for: Empiricism. Naturalism. Monism. Water as Arché (universal substance and primal principle of nature). Thales' theorem. cutting set. Use of deductive reasoning in geometry.
Works: commented on by Herodotus and Aristotle.Lives of Important Philosophers(von Diogenes Laërtius) (ca. 250 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (97)
This marble bust of Thales of Miletus, made during the Roman Empire, is now in the Capitoline Museums in Rome.

Have(India, ca. 600-500 AD (?))
Known for: Hinduism. Vaisheshika school. Atomism. Realism. Six Padārthas: dravya (substance), guna (quality), karman (movement), samanya (universal), visesa (particular), and samavaya (inherence).
Construction:Vaisheshka Sutra (Kanada-Sutras).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (98)
The imagination of an artist from Canada.

Mahavira(Vardhamana) (India, 599/497–527/425 n. Chr.)
Known for: Jainism. The Do No Harm doctrine applies to all living things. Anekantavada (multiple reality). Syadvada (all judgments are conditional). Nayavada. Five vows: Ahimsa (do no harm); satya (truthfulness); asteya (not steal); brahmacharya (chastity); Aparigraha (detachment).
Construction:Jainist religion(Attribute)Samavayanga-Sutra. Acharanga-Sutra.The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (99)
A statue of Mahavira. It may have come from a 16th-century Jain temple in the Dilwara temple complex on Mount Abu in Rajasthan, India.

Diogenes the Cynic(Ancient Greece, ca. 412-323 BC)
Known for: Cynicism. It is solved by walking. "Cosmopolitan." praise from dogs.
Construction:Lives and opinions of important philosophers(von Diogenes Laërtius) (ca. 250 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (100)
Diogenes Seated in His Bathtub is an 1860 painting by Jean-Léon Gérôme. It is now in the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland.

Chanakya(Kauṭilya; Vishnugupta) (Indian, ca. 350–275 AD)
Known For: Political Science. Economics. Four necessary fields of knowledge: (1) the Vedas, the Anvikshaki (philosophy of Samkhya, Yoga and Lokayata); (3) political science; (4) Economy (a variety of agriculture, livestock and trade). Raja-Rishi (wise king).
Construction:Arthasastra(Attribute).Chanakya Niti(Attribute)
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (101)
The imagination of a Chanakya artist.

Zeno of Citium(Zeno the Stoic) (Ancient Greece, ca. 334-262 BC)
Known for: Stoicism. Three branches of philosophy: physics, ethics, logic. rationality of human nature. ethics of virtue. global citizenship. Happiness arises when right reason coincides with universal reason (Logos).
Construction:Zeno's Republic(lost).Lives and opinions of important philosophers(von Diogenes Laërtius) (ca. 250 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (102)
A marble bust of Zeno from Citium housed in the Capitoline Museums in Rome.

Xun Kuang(Xunzi) (China, ca. 313-238 n. Chr.)
Known for: Confucianism. Human nature is inherently bad and corrected by ethical standards. The path changes over time. Knight-king (junzi) supported by a class of scholars (ru).
Construction:El Xunzi.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (103)
An Artist's Imagination from Xun Kuang.

hanfei(Han Feizi) (China, ca. 280-233 n. Chr.)
Known for: Legalism. Human nature is driven by self-interest. The government must guide the citizens out of self-interest, using rewards and punishments. Possession of authority brings the right to obedience. Rulers should not rule arbitrarily, but enact laws that all must obey. The ruler must use statesmanship (shu) in order to rule. Governments have to adapt to people's changing circumstances.
Construction:El Han Feizi(Attribute).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (104)
An undated portrait of Han Fei.

Cicero(Marcus Tullius Cicero) (Römische Republik, 106-43 BC)
Known for: Stoicism. eclecticism. peripatetic.
Construction:De Oratore (About the Speaker)(55 n. Chr.).De Re Publica (On the Commonwealth)(51 n. Chr.).Stoic paradoxes(46 n. Chr.).On the Nature of the Gods(45 n. Chr.).Clashes in Tuscany(45 n. Chr.).About the extremes of good and evil(45 n. Chr.).with homework(44 n. Chr.).De Legibus (On Laws).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (105)
This marble bust of Cicero from the 1st century B.C. C. is in the Capitoline Museums in Rome.

Lucrez(Titus Lucretius Caro) (Roman Republic, ca. 99-55 BC)
Known for: Epicureanism. Atomism.
Construction:De Rerum Natura (On the Nature of Things)(ca. 55 n. Chr.).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (106)
An engraving showing a marble bust of Lucretius.

sixth empirical(Roman Empire, ca. 160-210 AD)
Known for: Pyrrhonism. Skepticism. empirical school.
Construction:Schemes of Pyrrhonism. against mathematicians(two versions).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (107)
This marble bust has been identified by some as Sextus Empiricus and by others as the ancient Greek playwright Euripides.

Vasubandhu(India, ca. 300-400 AD)
Known For: Buddhism. Mahayana Buddhism. Yogacara. Only semblance (vijñapti-mātra). Sautrantica. Kṣanikavāda. Camp Consciousness (ālayavijñāna). logical epistemology.
Construction:Abhidharmakośakārikā (Commentary on the Treasury of the Abhidharma). Vimśatikāvijñaptimātratāsiddhi (Twenty Verses for Representation Only). Triṃśikā-vijñaptimātratā (thirty verses for representation only). Trisvabhāvanirdeśa (Exhibit of the Three Natures). A Method of Reasoning (Vada-vihi).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (108)
An undated drawing by Vasubandhu.

Hypatia of Alexandria(Egypt/Roman Empire, ca. 350/370-415 AD)
Known for: Neoplatonism.
Construction:Commentary on the Arithmetic of Diophantus.
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (109)
Still from the 2009 historical drama Ágora, film directed by Alejandro Amenábar. Actress Rachel Weisz plays Hypatia of Alexandria in the film.

(Video) Top 10 Philosophers

Wetzstein(Japan, 1133-1212)
Known For: Buddhism. Jōdo-shū (Pure Land Buddhism). Membutsu. Shichikajō-kishōmon (deposit for seven items).
Construction:Senchaku Hongan Nembutsushū(1198).A sheet of document(1212).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (110)
A 12th-century portrait of Honen by Fujiwqara Takanobu.

Shinran(Japan, 1173-1261)
Known For: Buddhism. Jōdo Shinshū (Pure Land School of Buddhism). Primacy of belief over practice. Shinjitsu no Shinjin (true belief).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (111)
This 15-foot bronze statue of Shinran stood in front of a Buddhist temple in Hiroshima, Japan, in 1945 when the atomic bomb was dropped on that city. The statue was transplanted to New York City in 1955 and now stands in front of the New York Buddhist Temple on Riverside Drive.

dogen(Dogen Zenji) (Japan, 1200-1253)
Known for: Zen Buddhism, Sōtō school. Buddha nature (Busshō). Time being (Uji). Perfect Expression (Dōtoku). zazen Shikantaza. Practice lighting unit.
Construction:Bendōwa (A Lecture on the Effort of the Way)(1231).Shōbōgenzō (Eihei Kōroku)(1231-1253).Eihei Shingi..
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (112)
A portrait of Doge.

Madhvacharya(Purna Prajña; Ananda Teertha) (Indian, 1238–1317)
Known for: Hinduism. Dwaita Vedanta. Dualism (distinction between Atman and Brahman). Three Pramāna (correct means of knowledge): (1) Pratyaksha (perception); (2) anumāna (conclusion); (3) śabda (expert instruction). Kevala-pramana. Two types of tattvas (realities): (1) svatantra tattva (independent reality; (2) asvatantra tattva (dependent reality) "Atat tvam asi" (You are not that) Established Udupi Sri Krishna Matha.
Construction:Sarvamula Granthas(including theAnuvyakhyana).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (113)
An Artist's Imagination by Madhvacharya.

Erasmus(Desiderius Erasmus Rotterdam) (Netherlands, 1466-1536)
Known For: Humanism. About media. free will. counter-reformation.
Construction:A Handbook for Christian Gentlemen(1503).praise of madness(1511).Copy: Basics of Abundant Style(1512).July Banished from Heaven(1514).Sileni Alcibiades(1515).Education of a Christian prince(1516).Free Arbitration Diatribe Sive Collatio (Freedom of Will)(1524).Declaration of the Apostles Creed(1533).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (114)
This 1524 portrait of Erasmus by Hans Holbein the Younger is now in the National Gallery in London.

Thomas more(England, 1478-1535)
Known For: Humanism. Roman Catholicism. Utilitarianism. Euthanasia.
Construction:Utopia(1516).The Answer to Luther(1523).A dialogue about heresies(1530).The refutation of Tyndale's answer(1532-1533).forgiveness(1533).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (115)
This 1527 portrait of Sir Thomas More by Hans Holbein the Younger is now in the Frick Collection in New York.

Johann Gottlieb Fichte(Deutschland, 1762-1814)
Known for: Idealism. Romance. Post-Kantian transcendental idealism. Nationalism. absolute consciousness. Mutual Recognition. The principle of mutual determination. The primacy of the practical. Original unit (primal drive). Thesis-antithesis-synthesis. Self-awareness as a social phenomenon.
Construction:An attempt to criticize all revelations(1792).The vocation of the scholar(1794.Foundations of science of knowledge(1794-1795).Foundations of natural law(1797).Fundamentals of Transcendental Philosophy(1796-1799).the vocation of man(1800).the science of knowledge(1804).About the nature of the scholar(1806).Speeches to the German Nation(1808).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (116)
An engraving by Johann Gottlieb Fichte by Johann Friedrich Jugel after a Fichte portrait by Heinrich Anton Dähling from 1808.

Federico Schelling(Deutschland, 1775-1854)
Known for: Idealism. Romance. natural philosophy. "Absolute idealism". philosophy of identity. positive philosophy. "Unconscious Infinity".
Construction: "New derivation from natural law(1797).Ideas for a natural philosophy(1797).About the soul of the world(1798).system of transcendental idealism(1800). „Presentation of My Philosophy System(1801).Philosophical investigations into the nature of human freedom(1809).Introduction to the philosophy of mythology(1856).philosophy of mythology(1857).philosophy of revelation(1858).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (117)
This portrait of Friedrich Schelling by Joseph Karl Stieler from 1835 is now in the Neue Pinakothek in Munich.

Herbert Spencer(Britain, 1820-1903)
Known For: Positivism. Classic Liberalism. social darwinism. laissez faire. Utilitarianism. "Survival of the Fittest". School of Synthetic Philosophy.
Construction: "About the real sphere of government(1842).Social statics, or the essential conditions for human happiness, specified and developed the first of these(1851). „The philosophy of style(1852). „Progress: Its Law and Cause(1857).First principles of a new system of philosophy(1862).principles of biology(1864).man against state(1884).The principles of ethics(1879-1897).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (118)
An undated photo of Herbert Spencer.

Sigmund Freud(Austria, 1856-1939)
Known for: Psychoanalysis. free association. Transfer. Oedipus complex. It, ego and superego. Repression. Unconsciously. seduction theory. Oral, anal and phallic phase.
Construction:Studies in Hysteria(with Josef Breuer) (1895).The Interpretation of Dreams(1899).The psychopathology of everyday life(1901).Jokes and their relation to the unconscious(1905).Three essays on the theory of sexuality(1905).totem and taboo(1913). „The history of the psychoanalytic movement(1914). „sadness and melancholy(1917). „Beyond the pleasure principle(1920).Group psychology and self-analysis(1921).The EGO and identification(1923).The future of an illusion(1927).civilization and its dissatisfaction(1930).Moses and monotheism(1937).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (119)
A photo of Sigmund Freud around 1900.

Jörg Santayana(Jorge Agustín Nicolás Ruiz de Santayana y Borrás) (Spanish/USA/Italian, 1863-1952)
Known for: Pragmatism. Naturalism. epiphenomenalism. Materialism. Skepticism. natural nobility.
Construction:the sense of beauty(1896).The life of reason: the stages of human progress(1905-1906).skepticism and animal belief(1923).the realms of being(1942).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (120)
An undated photo of George Santayana.

Sun Yat-sen(Sun Wen; Sun Deming) (China, 1866–1925)
Known For: Three People's Principles (Nationalism, Democracy, Welfare).
Construction:The scheme of national reconstruction(1918).The Foundations of National Reconstruction(1924).The beginning of nationalism(1953).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (121)
An undated toned photo by Sun Yat-sen.

Mohandas K. Gandhi(Mahatma Gandhi) (Indian, 1869-1948)
Known for: Nonviolent civil disobedience (ahisma). Satyagraha. Brahmacharya. Swaraj (self-government). Sarvodaya.
Construction:Hind Swaraj or Indian Self-Government(1909).The Story of My Experiments with Truth(1925-1928).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (122)
A 1946 photograph of Gandhi with his spinning wheel by Margaret Bourke-White

Nishida Kitaro(Japan, 1870–1945)
Known For: Kyoto School. Non-dualistic concrete logic (basho logic). The absolute nothing.
Construction:An investigation of the good(1911).thinking and experiencing(1915).Intuition and reflection in self-knowledge(1913-1917).The consciousness problem(1918-1919).art and morals(1920-1923). (1923-1927).From acting to seeing(1923-1927).The system of universals in self-consciousness(1928-1929).Self-knowledge and determination of nothingness(1930-1932).Basic problems of philosophy (world of acts)(1933).Basic Problems of Philosophy, continued (The World as Dialectics)(1934). „The logic of the place of nothingness and the religious world view(1945).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (123)
An undated photo of Nishida Kitaro.

Ramana Maharshi(If, 1879-1950)
Known for: Hinduism. Advaita Vedanta. Self-enquiry (vichara). Bhaki (devotion). The Self as sat-chit-anada (being-consciousness-bliss).
Works: Nān Yār? (Who Am I?) (1902, pub. 1923). Five Hymns to Arunachala (1914). Forty Verses on Reality (1928). Five Verses on the Self (1947).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (124)
An undated photo by Ramana Maharshi.

Hans-Georg Gadamer(Deutschland, 1900-2002)
Known for: Ontological Hermeneutics. Hermeneutic Phenomenology. practical philosophy. "All products of a tradition are within that tradition." merging of horizons. Language is the unity of the infinite and the finite. Consciousness is historically effected.
Construction:truth and method(1960).The Idea of ​​the Good in Plato-Aristotelian Philosophy(1978).Reason in the Age of Science(1981).Dialogue and Dialectics: Eight Hermeneutical Studies on Plato(1934-1974, published 1983).The Enigma of Health: The Art of Healing in the Scientific Age(1993).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (125)
Undated photo by Hans-Georg Gadamer.

Ayn Rand(Russia/USA, 1905-1982)
Known for: Objectivism. Rational/ethical egoism. Laissez-faire capitalism.
Construction:we the living(1936).Anthem(1938).the spring(1943).Atlas shrugged(1957).For the new intellectual(1961).The virtue of egoism(1964).Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal(1966).Introduction to objectivist epistemology(1979).Philosophy: who needs it(1982).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (126)
An undated photo of Ayn Rand.

Claude Lévi-Strauss(France, 1908-2009)
Known for: Structuralism. Structural Anthropology. Culinary Triangle. DIY. My theme. alliance theory.
Construction:The elementary structures of kinship(1949).sad tropes(1955).Structural Anthropology(1958).the wild spirit(1962).mythologies(1964-1971).myth and meaning(1978).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (127)
An undated photo by Claude Lévi-Strauss.

simon because(France, 1909-1943)
Known for: Modern Platonism. decreation. The need for roots. patriotism of compassion. Unjust character of suffering. metaxu. methodical thinking. Attention. Reading.
Construction: "Science and Perception in Descartes„(1929-1930).“capital and workers(1932). „Perspectives: Are we heading for the proletarian revolution?(1933). „Reflections on Technology, National Socialism, U.S.R.S.S. and some other questions” (1933) “Reflections on the causes of freedom and social oppression(1934). „Let's Not Start Another Trojan War" ("The Power of Words")(1936). „The Iliad or the Poem of Strength(1940). „The Pythagorean theorem(1941). „Essay on the concept of reading(1941). „Reflections on the right use of school instruction in relation to the love of God(1942). „The person and the sacred“ („human personality“) (1942-1943). „Draft People's Declaration of Commitment(1943).the need for roots(1943, published 1949).gravity and grace(1947).Lectures on philosophy(Publication 1978).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (128)
A photograph by Simone Weil from c. 1921

donald davidson(United States, 1917-2003)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. far-reaching interpretation. Anomalous Monism. Truth Constrained Semantics. principle of charity. reasons as causes. understanding as translation. Rejection of the third dogma of empiricism.
Construction: "Actions, reasons and causes(1963). „truth and meaning(1967). „causal relationships(1967). „by saying that(1968). „The individualization of events(1969). „true to the facts(1969). „mental events(1970). „How is weak will possible?(1970). „Agency(1971). „radical interpretation(1973). „About the idea of ​​a conceptual scheme(1974). „thinking and speaking(1975). „The Method of Truth in Metaphysics(1977). „Intention(1978). „What do metaphors mean?(1978). „Preis(1979). „rational animals" (1982). "A coherence theory of truth and knowledge(1983). „First person authority(1984). „Action adverbs(1985). „A good jumble of epitaphs(1986). „Know your own thoughts(1987). „three kinds of knowledge(1991). „law and cause(1995).Essays on actions and events(2001).truth and preaching(2005).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (129)
A 1990 photo of Donald Davidson by Steve Pyke.

JOY. anscombe(Elizabeth Anscombe) UK, 1919-2001)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. raw facts. "Below a description." Setting direction. consequentialism.
Construction:Intention(1957). „modern moral philosophy(1958).causality and determination(1971). „The first person(1975).Times, beginnings and causes(1975).From Parmenides to Wittgenstein(1981).Metaphysics and Philosophy of Mind(1981).ethics, religion and politics(1981).Human life, action and ethics(Release 2005).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (130)
An undated photo by G.E.M. anscombe

Thomas Kuehn(United States, 1922-1996)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. Historical turning point. paradigm shift. incommensurability. normal science. Kuhn loss.
Construction:The Copernican Revolution: Planetary Astronomy in the Development of Western Thought(1957). „The role of measurement in modern physics“ (1961).The Structure of Scientific Revolutions(1962). „The role of dogma in scientific inquiry(1963). „Discovery logic or research psychology?(1970).The essential field of tension: selected studies on scientific tradition and change(1977). „Objectivity, value judgment and choice of theory(1977). „metaphor in science(1979). „Rationality and choice of theory(1983).Blackbody Theory and Quantum Discontinuity, 1894-1912(1987). „The problem of historical philosophy of science(1992).The Way from Structure: Philosophical Essays, 1970-1993(2000).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (131)
An undated photo by Thomas Kuhn from Bill PierceTime Life Pictures/Getty Images.

Judith Jarvis Thompson(United States, 1929- )
Known for: Analytical philosophy. The violinist's argument. moral objectivity.
Construction: "A defense of abortion(1971). „The tram problem(1985).Rights, restitution and risk(1986). „friendliness and utilitarianism(1993).the realm of rights(1992).Moral relativism and moral objectivity(with Gilbert Harman) (1996).friendliness and advice(2001).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (132)
A 2010 photo of Judith Jarvis Thomson by Steve Pyke.

irigaray-Light(Belgium/France, 1930- )
Known For: Feminism. "Women in the Market".
Construction:speculum of the other woman(1974).This gender that is not one(1977).elementary passions(1982).confidence(1983).An ethics of sexual difference(1984).Conversations are never neutral(1985).genders and genealogies(1987).Je, tu, nous: On the way to a culture of difference(1990).be from(1997).Between East and West: From Singularity to Community(1999).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (133)
An undated photo of Luce Irigaray.

Amartya Sen(If, 1933- )
Known For: Focus on skills. economy of well-being. social choice theory. Nobel Prize in Economics (1998).
Works: Collective Choice and Social Welfare (1970). Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Rights and Deprivations (1981). Choice, Welfare, and Measurement (1983). Resources and Skills (1985). Inequality reexamined (1992). Development as Freedom (1999). The Idea of ​​Justice (2009).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (134)
A photograph of Amartya Sen from c. 1998

Thomas Nagel(Yugoslavia/United States, 1937- )
Known for: Analytical philosophy. Rationalism. Radical skepticism. practical reasoning. Individualism.
Construction:The possibility of altruism(1970). „What is it like to be a bat?(1974).deadly questions(1979).The view out of nowhere(1986).What does it all mean?: A brief introduction to philosophy(1987).equality and partisanship(1991).The last word(1997).other thoughts(1999).Concealment and Disclosure(2002).spirit and cosmos(2012).The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (135)
A photograph by Thomas Nagel from 1978.

Robert Nozick(United States, 1938-2002)
Known for: Analytical philosophy. libertarianism. utility monster. experience the machine. loose condition. paradox of deontology. right theory. Deductive conclusion. Four conditions for knowledge.
Construction:Anarchy, State and Utopia(1974).philosophical explanations(1981).life examined(1989).The essence of rationality(1993).Socratic separations(1997).Invariances: the structure of the objective world(2001).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (136)
An undated photo by Robert Nozick.

Juan McDowell(South Africa/UK/US, 1942- )
Known for: Analytical philosophy. therapeutic philosophy. Perceptual content is conceptually "all the way down."
Construction:mind and world(1994).spirit, value and reality(1998).meaning, knowledge and reality(1998).Keeping an Eye on the World: Essays on Kant, Hegel, and Sellars(2009).The Engaged Intellect: Philosophical Essays(2009).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (137)
An undated photo of John McDowell.

(Video) Top 10 Greatest Philosophers of All Time

Marta Nussbaum(United States, 1947- )
Known for: Analytical philosophy. capacity approach. Feminism. multiculturalism.
Construction:The fragility of the good(1986).sex and social justice(1998).Hiding from Humanity: Disgust, Shame and the Law(2004).Frontiers of justice: disability, nationality, belonging to a species(2006).From Disgust to Humanity: Sexual Orientation and Constitutional Law(2010).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (138)
A photo of Martha Nussbaum from 2008.

Westkorn(United States, 1953- )
Known for: Neopragmatism. Existentialism. african philosophy. Historicism.
Construction:prophetic fragments(1988).The American Flight from Philosophy: A Genealogy of Pragmatism(1989).The ethical dimensions of Marxist thought(1991).Prophetic Thinking in Postmodernism: Beyond Eurocentrism and Multiculturalism(1993).race issues(1994).democracy matters(2004).The Rich and the Rest of Us: A Manifesto on Poverty(my Tavis Smiley) (2012).
The Greatest Philosophers of All Time Ranked (139)
An undated photo of Cornel West.


Who is considered the greatest philosopher of all time? ›

Aristotle (384–322 BCE), who follows Socrates and Plato as the third member of the great triumvirate of ancient Greek philosophers, is arguably the most important thinker who ever lived.

Who are the 3 big philosophers? ›

The Socratic philosophers in ancient Greece were Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. These are some of the most well-known of all Greek philosophers. Socrates (470/469–399 B.C.E.) is remembered for his teaching methods and for asking thought-provoking questions.

What is the famous line of Plato? ›

Here are some of Plato's most famous quotes: “Love is a serious mental disease.” “When the mind is thinking it is talking to itself.” “Human behavior flows from three main sources: desire, emotion and knowledge.”

Who is the greatest of all ancient philosophers? ›

1. Socrates (469- 399 BC) Socrates was born in Alopece and is credited with being one of the founders of western philosophy and is the best known of the Ancient Greek philosophers.

Who is the greatest philosopher alive today? ›

10 Contemporary Philosophers to Read Today
  • Slavoj Žižek (b. 1949)
  • Gayatri Spivak (b. 1942)
  • Judith Butler (b. 1956)
  • Gu Su (b. 1955)
  • Thomas Nagel (b. 1937)
  • John McDowell (b. 1942)
  • Saul Kripke (b. 1940)
  • David Chalmers (b. 1966)

Who is known as King of philosophy? ›

Alexander the Great, as a student of Aristotle, has often been described as a philosopher king.

Who is the most loved philosopher? ›

Top 10 Philosophers
  • Aristotle. Aristotle, one of the most famous Greek philosophers, was also a polymath who lived in Ancient Greece in 384-322 BC. ...
  • Lao-Tzu. ...
  • John Locke. ...
  • Karl Marx. ...
  • Confucius. ...
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson. ...
  • Immanuel Kant. ...
  • Epicurus.

Who are the most respected philosophers? ›

Major Philosophers and Their Ideas
  1. Saint Thomas Aquinas (1225–1274) ...
  2. Aristotle (384–322 BCE) ...
  3. Confucius (551–479 BCE) ...
  4. René Descartes (1596–1650) ...
  5. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 82) ...
  6. Michel Foucault (1926-1984) ...
  7. David Hume (1711–77) ...
  8. Immanuel Kant (1724–1804)
Sep 7, 2022

Who is the father of philosophy? ›

Socrates is considered by many to be the founding father of Western philosophy—as well as one of the most enigmatic figures of ancient history.

What is Aristotle's most famous quote? ›

I count him braver who overcomes his desires than he who conquers his enemies, for the hardest victory is over self.

What are 5 famous quotes? ›

Quotes by Famous People
  • The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall. - ...
  • The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing. - ...
  • Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. ...
  • If life were predictable it would cease to be life, and be without flavor. -
Jan 2, 2023

What is the famous line of Immanuel Kant? ›

All our knowledge begins with the senses, proceeds then to the understanding, and ends with reason. There is nothing higher than reason.

Who were the 4 philosophers that influenced the founders the most? ›

Among the most influential philosophers were John Locke, Jean Jacques Rousseau, and Baron de Montesquieu.

What are the 7 philosophers? ›

Descartes, Leibniz, Spinoza, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant: these are the seven philosophers who stand out from the rest in what is known as the `modern' period in philosophy. Their thought defines the mainstream of classical or early modern philosophy, largely responsible for shaping philosophy as we now know it.

Who is the greatest philosopher of the 20th century? ›

Bertrand Russell

Who is the greatest American philosopher? ›

1. William James. William James made important early contributions to both psychology and physiology. Those two fields were where he focused much of his life, but he always threw in some philosophical analysis and would turn increasingly towards philosophy as he aged.

Do philosophers believe in God? ›

“To be honest, most of philosophy isn't concerned in any direct sense with God or God's existence,” Jensen said. “It is one part of philosophy that we study, but we're not obsessed with it. In no way is it the purpose of philosophy to attack religion.”

Who is the hardest philosopher to understand? ›

They do not produce delusions in others, without first being subject to them themselves. Hegel, Bertrand Russell observed, is “the hardest to understand of the great philosophers.” Hegel would not have liked very much that Russell had to say about his philosophy in A History of Western Philosophy (1945).

Who founded philosophy? ›

Philosophy as we know it today developed in ancient Greece in the 6th century BC. Thales was the first philosopher. Ancient Greek philosophy reached its peak in the classical period because of philosophers such as Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle.

Who is known as philosopher queen? ›

Ahilyabai Holkar, queen of the Malwa kingdom, died on 13 August 1795. Mathew Lyons | Published in History Today Volume 70 Issue 8 August 2020. Statue of Ahilyabai Holkar, Maharashtra, India.

Who is the most complex philosopher? ›

Hegel is considered the hardest philosopher, but his views aren't actually that outlandish.

Who was a philosopher in the Bible? ›

Jesus was a prophetic philosopher, a Jewish thinker among Jewish thinkers in a Hellenized Jewish world, prophetic in his tone and philosophical in his reasoning. One place we see this at work is near the end of the Gospel of Matthew.

Who is the best philosopher in understanding the self? ›

The philosophical framework for understanding the self was first introduced by ancient Greek philosophers Socrates and Plato.
  • Rational is what makes man human. ...
  • Aristotle suggests that the rational nature of the self is to lead a good, flourishing, and fulfilling life.

Which philosopher believed people are good? ›

' Just over a century later, Jean-Jacques Rousseau countered that human nature is essentially good, and that we could have lived peaceful and happy lives well before the development of anything like the modern state.

What philosophers call the greatest in ethics? ›

Utilitarianism promotes "the greatest amount of good for the greatest number of people." When used in a sociopolitical construct, utilitarian ethics aims for the betterment of society as a whole. Utilitarianism is a reason-based approach to determining right and wrong, but it has limitations.

What is the highest good philosophy? ›

The so-called “highest good” in a standard understanding consists of “happiness distributed in exact proportion to morality (as the worth of a person and his worthiness to be happy)” (KpV, 05: 110). 1 To put it in simple terms: a morally good man should be able to obtain the happiness he deserves.

Who was the very first philosopher? ›

Thales. The earliest person who is cited by ancient sources as a philosopher is Thales, who lived in the city of Miletus in Asia Minor around the late 7th or early 6th century BCE.

Who is the first philosopher in the world? ›

Abstract. The first philosopher is usually said to have been Thales.

Who is the mother of philosophy? ›

Quotes Thoughts On The Business Of Life

Leisure is the mother of philosophy.

What is Socrates famous quote? ›

There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance.

What did Alexander say about Aristotle? ›

According to Plutarch, Alexander said he owed his father his life, and he owed Aristotle the dignity of his life. It is a lesser-known fact that the perspectives of the two visionaries on the specific paths for uniting humanity were not identical, and in the course of time, they began to diverge more and more.

How did Aristotle died? ›

Aristotle's Death and Legacy

After the death of Alexander the Great in 323 B.C., anti-Macedonian sentiment again forced Aristotle to flee Athens. He died a little north of the city in 322, of a digestive complaint. He asked to be buried next to his wife, who had died some years before.

What is the best motto in life? ›

Mottos to Live By
  • When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
  • Life every day like it's your last.
  • Be yourself. ...
  • Be the change you wish to see in the world.
  • Let go of who you think you're supposed to be and embrace who you are.
  • If you are not obsessed with your life, change it.
  • Set some goals, then demolish them.
Jul 13, 2022

What is the most inspiring quote ever? ›

What is the most inspiring quote ever?
  • “Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall” – Confucius.
  • “Magic is believing in yourself. ...
  • “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them” – Walt Disney.
  • “The real test is not whether you avoid this failure…
Aug 19, 2021

What did Einstein think of Kant? ›

Einstein wrote: "Until some time ago, it could be regarded as possible that Kant's system of a priori concepts and norms really could withstand the test of time. This was defensible as long as the content of later science held to be confirmed*) did not violate those norms.

What was Jean Paul Sartre's famous saying? ›

Man is condemned to be free; because once thrown into the world, he is responsible for everything he does.

What was Thomas Hobbes famous quote? ›

No man's error becomes his own Law; nor obliges him to persist in it. During the time men live without a common power to keep them all in awe, they are in that conditions called war; and such a war, as if of every man, against every man.

Who are the 3 Enlightenment thinkers? ›

Enlightenment philosophers John Locke, Charles Montesquieu, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau all developed theories of government in which some or even all the people would govern. These thinkers had a profound effect on the American and French revolutions and the democratic governments that they produced.

Who are the 7 founding fathers? ›

Fact #1: These seven men are the principle Founding Fathers: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay and James Madison. While there were many others who contributed to the founding of the United States, these seven are considered by most as the Founding Fathers.

Who is the most influential thinker of the modern philosophy? ›

René Descartes (1596–1650) is traditionally considered the father of modern philosophy for rejecting completely the worldview of Aristotelian Scholasticism and developing in its place a new science based on mechanistic principles, a new metaphysics based on an original form of mind-body (or mind-matter) dualism, a new ...

Who is the greatest thinker of all time? ›

Aristotle (384–322 BCE), who follows Socrates and Plato as the third member of the great triumvirate of ancient Greek philosophers, is arguably the most important thinker who ever lived.

What are the 4 types of philosophy? ›

There are four pillars of philosophy: theoretical philosophy (metaphysics and epistemology), practical philosophy (ethics, social and political philosophy, aesthetics), logic, and history of philosophy.

Who were the 5 Enlightenment philosophers? ›

The Enlightenment is commonly associated with men whose writing and thinking combined philosophy, politics, economics and science, notably John Locke, Thomas Hobbes, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Adam Smith, Immanuel Kant, Isaac Newton and Thomas Jefferson.

Who are the three greatest world philosophers? ›

Philosophy: Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.

Who was greatest Plato or Aristotle? ›

Though many more of Plato's works survived the centuries, Aristotle's contributions have arguably been more influential, particularly when it comes to science and logical reasoning. While both philosophers' works are considered less theoretically valuable in modern times, they continue to have great historical value.

Why is Aristotle the greatest philosopher? ›

Aristotle was one of the greatest philosophers who ever lived and the first genuine scientist in history. He made pioneering contributions to all fields of philosophy and science, he invented the field of formal logic, and he identified the various scientific disciplines and explored their relationships to each other.

Why is Plato the greatest philosopher? ›

Scholars widely consider him one of the most important figures in Western philosophy and human history. He is best known for his theories of Forms, known as Platonism. In this philosophy, Plato rejected the materialism common to ancient philosophy in favor of metaphysics.

Why did Aristotle disagree with Plato? ›

Q: What was the disagreement between Plato and Aristotle? While Plato believed that the objects had universal and perfect forms, Aristotle believed that it was not necessary that forms were always attached to the objects and every object had to be analyzed individually.

Why is Aristotle better than Socrates? ›

While Socrates casted fatalistic and monolithic dispositions in his analysis and elaborated his thoughts in dialectic form, Aristotle, in contrast, embraced freedom of choice and diversity (pluralism) and articulated the importance of contingent particularity of historical experiences.

Why is Socrates the greatest philosopher? ›

A legendary figure even in his own time, he was admired by his followers for his integrity, his self-mastery, his profound philosophical insight, and his great argumentative skill. He was the first Greek philosopher to seriously explore questions of ethics.

Is Aristotle the most influential person in history? ›

Not surprisingly, Greeks have topped the prestigious list of the 100 most influential people in history.
The 100 Most Influential People In History.
3Jesus ChristIsrael
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Nov 8, 2017

What is Plato's most theory? ›

It is most of all from Plato that we get the theory of Forms, according to which the world we know through the senses is only an imitation of the pure, eternal, and unchanging world of the Forms.

Who is greater Plato or Socrates? ›

Arguably, without Plato, there's no Aristotle, and without Socrates, there's no Plato, so Socrates is the most seminal philosopher by that logic.

What does Plato teach us? ›

Plato regards education as a means to achieve justice, both individual justice and social justice. According to Plato, individual justice can be obtained when each individual develops his or her ability to the fullest. In this sense, justice means excellence. For the Greeks and Plato, excellence is virtue.


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