25 Greatest Philosophers Who Ever Lived

Philosophy has shaped the world. From science to politics, the great philosophers challenged the ways that we see things. And while you probably know many famous Greek philosophers, the list of philosophers is much longer than that.

From unknown to famous philosophers, get ready for a trip through time because they are the 25 Greatest Philosophers Who Ever Lived!

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AristotleSource: biography.com

A student of Plato in Ancient Greece, Aristotle contributed to numerous areas including metaphysics, logic, poetry, linguistics, and government. He is one of the most well-known philosophers in history.


Immanuel Kant

Immanuel KantSource: iep.utm.edu, Image: https://commons.wikimedia.org (public domain)

Born in Germany, Kant is well known for his ideas about perception. He argued that we cannot know what the world is really like (noumenal world). We can only know what we perceive the world to be like (phenomenal world). Basically, we can’t know whether or not everything is just one big Matrix.



PlatoSource: iep.utm.edu

As you have already seen, Plato was Aristotle’s teacher, and he is famous for starting the Academy in Athens. This was the first institution of higher learning in the Western world.



ConfuciusSource: biography.com

A Chinese philosopher who lived about 500 BC, he focused on relationships and how the family was important and necessary to society. His views shaped later Chinese thought and led to what is now called Confucianism.


David Hume

David HumeSource: plato.stanford.edu, Image: wikimedia commons (public domain)

A Scottish philosopher, Hume was a strong skeptic and empiricist. He claimed that our beliefs don’t come from our reason but rather from our feelings and ideas of how the world should be. In fact, Kant (#24) got many of his ideas from Hume.

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