AP European History

Time Periods

Early Renaissance

1330 - 1450


1350 - 1600

Northern Renaissance

1420 - 1520

High Renaissance

1480 - 1520

Spanish Golden Age

1492 - 1659


October 31, 1517 - 1648

Late Renaissance and Mannerism

1520 - 1580

Scientific Revolution

1550 - 1700

Elizabethan Age

1558 - 1603

Baroque Period

1580 - 1720

"Dutch Century"

1600 - 1700

Dutch Art

1620 - 1670

Louis XIV (French Golden Age)

May 14, 1643 - September 1, 1715

The Enlightenment

1650 - 1800

Rococo period

1700 - 1775

First Industrial Revolution

1760 - 1830


1765 - 1850


1770 - 1848

"The Long Century"

1789 - 1918

Pax Britannica

1815 - 1914

Age of Metternich

1815 - 1848

Victorian Era

June 20, 1837 - January 22, 1901

French Realism

1840 - 1880

Second Industrial Revolution

1840 - 1870

Age of Imperialism

1850 - 1914

Impressionism and Post Impressionism

1870 - 1905

German Expressionism

1905 - 1925

World Wars

1918 - 1945

The Cold War

1945 - 1991

Pop Art

1954 - 1970

European Unity

1957 - 2016

Wars and Treaties

Hundred Years War

1337 - 1453

The Hundred Years' War, a series of conflicts waged from 1337 to 1453, pitted the Kingdom of England against the Valois Capetians for control of the French throne. Each side drew many allies into the fighting.
The war had its roots in a dynastic disagreement dating back to the time of William the Conqueror, who became King of England in 1066 while retaining possession of the Duchy of Normandy in France. As the rulers of Normandy and other lands on the continent, the English kings owed feudal homage to the King of France. In 1337, Edward III of England refused to pay homage to Philip VI of France, leading the French King to claim confiscation of Edward's lands in Aquitaine.

War of the Roses

1455 - 1485

Fight between the Yorks and Lancasters over the English throne
Henry Tudor (Lancaster) won and started the Tudor dynasty.

Treaty of Tordesillas


Divided the New World and Asia between Spain and Portugal; enacted by a Spanish pope

Hapsburg-Valois Wars

1494 - 1559

The Italian Wars, often referred to as the Great Italian Wars or the Great Wars of Italy and sometimes as the Habsburg–Valois Wars or the Renaissance Wars, were a series of conflicts from 1494 to 1559 that involved, at various times, most of the city-states of Italy, the Papal States, most of the major states of Western Europe (France, Spain, the Holy Roman Empire, England, and Scotland) as well as the Ottoman Empire. Originally arising from dynastic disputes over the Duchy of Milan and the Kingdom of Naples, the wars rapidly became a general struggle for power and territory among their various participants, and were marked with an increasing number of alliances, counter-alliances, and betrayals.

Sack of Rome


Schmalkaldic Wars

1546 - 1555

Schmalkaldic League was an alliance of Lutheran German princes against Charles V
War ended in a truce. Peace of Augsberg- rulers of a German region can choose Catholicism of Lutheranism for their region.
Charles was winning at first, but the Henry II of France supported the princes.

Peace of Augsburg

  1. Ended the religious civil war between Roman Catholics and Lutherans in the German states
  2. Gave each German prince the right to determine the religion of his state, either Roman Catholic or Lutheran
  3. Failed to provide for the recognition of Calvinists or other religious groups

French Wars of Religion

1562 - 1598

Religious issues
Nobles, towns and provinces are trying to resist centralization
Edict of Nantes clarified the religious situation with the Huguenots

Dutch War of Independence

1568 - 1648

The Eighty Years' War, or Dutch War of Independence (1568–1648), began as a revolt of the Seventeen Provinces against the political and religious hegemony of Philip II of Spain, the sovereign of the Habsburg Netherlands.
After the initial stages, Philip II deployed his armies and regained control over most of the rebelling provinces. However, under the leadership of the exiled William of Orange, the northern provinces continued their resistance and managed to oust the Habsburg armies and, in 1581, established the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands. The war continued in other areas, although the heartland of the republic was no longer threatened. The war ended in 1648 with the Peace of Münster, when the Dutch Republic was recognised as an independent country.

Battle of Lepanto

October 7, 1571

Anglo-Spanish War

1585 - 1604

The Anglo–Spanish War (1585–1604) was an intermittent conflict between the kingdoms of Spain and England that was never formally declared. The war was punctuated by widely separated battles, and began with England's military expedition in 1585 to the Netherlands under the command of the Earl of Leicester in support of the resistance of the States General to Habsburg rule.

The English enjoyed major victories at Cádiz in 1587, and over the Spanish Armada in 1588, but gradually lost the initiative after the severe defeats of the English Armada in 1589 and the Drake-Hawkins and Essex-Raleigh expeditions in 1595 and 1597 respectively. Two further Spanish armadas were sent in 1596 and 1597 but were frustrated in their objectives because of adverse weather.

The war became deadlocked around the turn of the 17th century during campaigns in Brittany and Ireland. It was brought to an end with the Treaty of London, negotiated in 1604 between representatives of the new king of Spain, Philip III, and the new king of England, James I. England and Spain agreed to cease their military interventions in the Spanish Netherlands and Ireland, respectively, and the English ended high seas privateering.

Edict of Nantes

1598 - 1685
  1. Issued by Henry IV of France
  2. Granted religious toleration to French Protestants
  3. Marked the first formal recognition by a European national monarchy that two religions could coexist in the same country
  4. Revoked by Louis XIV in 1685

Thirty Years War

1618 - 1648

France felt surrounded by the Hapsburgs.
Spain wanted to recapture the Netherlands.
Hapsburgs wanted to get rid of protestants and centralize authority.
Immediate cause: Defenestration of Prague
Treaty of Westphalia- German rulers can choose Calvinism, and winning countries gain land.

Thirty Years War (Bohemian Phase)

1618 - 1625

Defenestration of Prague


Thirty Years War (Danish Phase)

1625 - 1630

Thirty Years War (Swedish Phase)

1630 - 1635

Thirty Year War (French Phase)

1635 - 1648

English Civil War

1642 - 1649

Charles needed money to put down Scots revolt, but needed money so he had to call Parliament
Radicals won, king was executed and Oliver Cromwell set up a military dictatorship, with himself as Lord Protector

Louis XIV's Dutch Wars

1643 - 1715

Louis XIV wanted “natural frontiers”
After 2 wars, France gained very few land (Franche Comte)

Peace of Westphalia

  1. Ended the Thirty Years War
  2. Recognized Calvinism as a legally permissible faith
  3. Recognized the sovereign independent authority of over 300 German states
  4. Continued the political fragmentation of Germany
  5. Granted Sweden additional territory, confirming its status as a major power
  6. Acknowledged the independence of the United Provinces of the Netherlands

Treaty of the Pyrenees


ended war between Spain and France that had continued as an extension of the Thirty Years War

Battle of Vienna

September 11, 1683 - September 12, 1683

War of the League of Augsburg

1689 - 1697

Louis annexed Alsace-Lorraine, and Stasburg, so other countries formed the League of Augsburg
Treaty of Ryswick- France lost most of its land, but kept Stasbourg and parts of Alace

The Great Northern War

1700 - 1721

The Great Northern War (1700–1721) was a conflict in which a coalition led by the Tsardom of Russia successfully contested the supremacy of the Swedish Empire in Central, Northern, and Eastern Europe. The initial leaders of the anti-Swedish alliance were Peter the Great of Russia, Frederick IV of Denmark–Norway and Augustus II the Strong of Saxony-Poland-Lithuania. Frederick IV and Augustus II were forced out of the alliance in 1700 and 1706 respectively, but rejoined it in 1709. George I of Brunswick-Lüneburg (Hanover) joined the coalition in 1714 for Hanover and in 1717 for Britain, and Frederick William I of Brandenburg-Prussia joined it in 1715.

War of Spanish Succession

1702 - 1713

Spanish ruler left the throne of Spain to Louis XIV’s grandson. Other countries feared a coalition of Spain and France would ruin the balance of power in Europe.
Peace of Utrecht and Treaty of Rastaat- Philip became the ruler of Spain, but the thrones of France and Spain could never unite. Prussia gained respect, and England gained a lot of land (Gibralter and America).

Pragmatic Sanction

  1. Guaranteed the succession of Hapsburg emperor Charles VI's eldest daughter, Maria Theresa, to the throne
  2. Guaranteed the indivisibility of the Hapsburg lands
  3. Violated when Frederick the Great of Prussia invaded Silesia in 1740

Peace of Utrecht

  1. Ended Louis XIV's efforts to dominate Europe
  2. Allowed Philip V to remain on the throne of Spain but stipulated that the crowns of Spain and France should never be worn by the same monarch
  3. Granted the Spanish Netherlands (now called the Austrian Netherlands) to the Austrian Hapsburgs along with Milan, Naples, and Sicily
  4. Granted England a number of territories including Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, and Gibraltar
  5. Granted England the asiento, the lucrative right to supply the Spanish Americas with African slaves

War of Austrian Succession

1740 - 1790

Prussia seized Silesia from Austria (Maria Theresa), defying the Pragmatic Sanction
Treaty of Aix la Chapelle- status quo except Prussia kept Silesia

Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle


Ended the war of the Austrian Succession

Seven Years’ War

1756 - 1763

Treaty of Hubertsburg- status quo and Prussia kept Silesia
Treaty of Paris- France lost its N. American possessions to Britain
Switch sides- Austria and France were allies in this war
Russia was allied with Austria (and they were winning) but then switched sides

Treaty of Paris (1763)


ended the Seven Years War

The Russo-Swedish War

1788 - 1790

The Russo-Swedish War of 1788–90, known as Gustav III's Russian War in Sweden, Gustav III's War in Finland and Catherine II's Swedish War in Russia, was fought between Sweden and Russia from June 1788 to August 1790.

Tennis Court Oath


Third Estate promised to meet until they make a new constitution for France

French Revolution

1789 - 1799

Monetary problems à calling the estates general
Thermador Reaction, Directory
Louis XVI, Robespierre, Danton, Jacobins, Gironde, Mountain,
Storming the Bastille, women’s march to Versailles, Tennis Court Oath, National Assembly, Legislative Assembly, National Convention, Paris Commune, Committee of Public Safety, Reign of Terror

French Revolution (Moderate Phase)

1789 - 1792

French Revolution (Reign of Terror)

1793 - 1794

French Revolution (Thermodorian Reaction)

1794 - 1798

Napoleonic Wars

1803 - 1815

Napoleon wanted to expand the French Empire and rule over more territory
Napoleon’s final defeat at Waterloo. Congress of Vienna- balance of power, legitimacy, conservatism, created the Concert of Europe.
Creation of the Confederation of the Rhine, Duchy of Warsaw. When Napoleon conquered an area, he would proclaim French Revolutionary ideals

French Revolution 1830


King Charles X issued the July ordinances, which limited the power of the people and increased the power of the king and aristocrats à July Revolution
Louis Philippe became king and promised to abide by the 1814 constitution

Revolutions of 1848


Occurred in France, Germany, Italy, and Austria-Hungary

Crimean War

1853 - 1856

Ottoman Empire was weak and the powers wanted to see what they could take. Immediate- Russia wanted to protect Christians in Palestine, but France had that right already
Suffering and death (Florence Nightingale)
Russia gave up land and control of the Black Sea, and realized they needed to modernize
France gained prestige
Ended the Concert of Europe

Treaty of Frankfurt


ended Franco-Prussian War; forced France to create 3rd Republic to ratify it

Russo-Japanese War

February 8, 1904 - September 5, 1905

The Russo-Japanese War (8 February 1904 – 5 September 1905) was "the first great war of the 20th century."[3] It grew out of rival imperial ambitions of the Russian Empire and the Empire of Japan over Manchuria and Korea. The major theatres of operations were Southern Manchuria, specifically the area around the Liaodong Peninsula and Mukden; and the seas around Korea, Japan, and the Yellow Sea.

Russian Revolution of 1905


Establishment of the Duma

1st Balkan War

1912 - 1913

Serbia, Montenegro, and Greece, who organized a Balkan League to defeat the Ottomans
Received provinces of Macedonia and Albania

2nd Balkan War


The Balkan League could not decide on how to divide the conquered Ottoman provinces of Macedonia and Albania à Greece, Serbia, Romania, and the OE attacked Bulgaria
Bulgaria only obtained a small part of Macedonia, and the remainder was divided between Serbia and Greece

World War One

1914 - 1918

MANIA: Militarism, Alliances, Nationalism, Imperialism, and Assassination

February Revolution of 1917

March 1917

Czar Nicolas II is killed and provisional government established

October Revolution of 1917

November 1917

The Bolsheviks, led by Lenin, come to power in Russia: Peace, Land, and Bread

Balfour Declaration

November 2, 1917

Promised Jewish homeland

Treaty of Brest-Litovsk


Russia out of the war so that Communists can consolidate power; Russia loses lots of territory

  1. Ended Bolshevik Russia's participation in World War I
  2. Negotiated by Vladimir Lenin because he was unwilling to risk Bolshevik gains by continuing a war that could no longer be won
  3. Nullified following Germany's defeat by the Allies

Treaty of Versailles

  1. Refused to allow either defeated Germany or Communist Russia to participate in peace conference negotiations
  2. Forced Germany to sign a war-guilt clause that was used to justify imposing large war reparations payments
  3. Changed the map of Europe by returning Alsace-Lorraine to France by dissolving Austria-Hungary into the separate states of Austria, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia
  4. Created the League of Nations to discuss and settle disputes without resorting to war
  5. Left a legacy of bitterness between the victors and Germany

Locarno Pact


European great powers pledge their support of international peace through negotiations and no hard feelings over First World War – “spirit of Locarno”

  1. Recorded an agreement between France and Germany to respect mutual frontiers
  2. Marked the beginning of a brief period of reduced tensions among the European powers

Munich Agreement

  1. Ceded the Sudetenland to Adolf Hitler
  2. Discredited the British policy of appeasement

World War Two

1939 - 1945

Nazi-Soviet Nonaggression Pact

  1. Created a nonaggression agreement in which Hitler and Joseph Stalin promised to remain neutral if the other became involved in a war
  2. Divided Eastern Europe into German and Soviet zones

North Atlantic Pact

  1. Established the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to coordinate the defense of its members
  2. Implemented Harry Trumans's policy of containing the Soviet Union
  3. Forced to move its headquarters from Paris to Brussels when Charles de Gaulles withdrew French forces from "American-controlled" NATO

Treaty of Rome

  1. Created the European Economic Community, generally known as the common market
  2. Marked the beginning of European economic integration

Helsinki Accords

  1. Ratified the European territorial boundaries established after World War II
  2. Established "Helsinki watch committees" to monitor human rights in the 35 nations that signed the Helsinki Accords
  3. Marked the high point of Cold War détente

Maastricht Treaty

  1. Created the European Union, the world's largest single economic market
  2. Created a central bank for the European Union

Treaty of Lisbon


Amends the Treaty of Rome and Treaty of Maastricht

Major Events

Council of Constance

1414 - 1418

Resolved the Babylonian Captivity of the Papacy (Great Schism)

Spanish Inquisition

November 1, 1478 - July 15, 1834

Consisted of a Grand Inquisitor, who headed the Council of the Supreme and General Inquisition, made up of six members. Under it were up to 21 tribunals in the empire.

Colombus's First Voyage




Queen Isabella of Castile and King Ferdinand of Aragon take Spain back from the Muslims

Diet of Worms


Called for Martin Luther to answer to Holy Roman Emperor Charles V

Council of Trent

1545 - 1563

Outlined the Catholic Church's position in regard to the Reformation. It stated that Catholic doctrine would remain the same, but reforms would be made in Church practices.

Diplomatic Revolution


Reversal of longstanding alliances in Europe between the War of the Austrian Succession and the Seven Years War

First Partition of Poland

August 5, 1772

Second Partition of Poland

January 23, 1793

Third Partition of Poland

October 24, 1795

Congress of Vienna

1814 - 1815
  1. Enacted a settlement that was acceptable to both the victors and to France
  2. Created a balance of power that lasted until the unification of Germany in 1871
  3. Underestimated the forces of liberalism and nationalism
  4. Used the principle of legitimacy to restore the Bourbons to the French throne
  5. United Belgium with the Netherlands to form a single kingdom of the the Netherlands
  6. Created a loose confederation of 39 German states dominated by Austria

Tanzimat Era

1840 - 1876

Frankfurt Assembly

1848 - 1849

German nationalists got together and unsuccessfully try to unify Germany; “Windbag Assembly”

Emancipation Act of 1861


Czar Alexander II frees the serfs but burdens them in debt

Italian Unification


Italy unified, except for the Papal States

Full Italian Unification


Pope joins unified Italy

Wars of German Unification


Bismarck fought three wars to isolate Austria and France and gain territory to create a unified Germany
A unified Germany was created

Congress of Berlin


Bismarck-led meeting over Balkans issues – showed problems between Great Powers that would resurface and lead to WWI

Second Berlin Conference


Bismarck is the “honest broker” again – solve African imperial problems, esp. Belgian Congo

  1. Established rules for dividing Africa amongst the European powers. A European state could no longer simply declare a region of Africa its colony. It first had to exercise effective control over the territory.
  2. Declared the Congo to be the "Congo Free State," under the personal control of Leopold II of Belgium
  3. Established rules governing the race for African colonies

Tehran Conference


Big Three meet about 2nd front in France & Eastern Europe after the war

Potsdam Conference


Stalin, Atlee & Truman – Stalin reneges on promises, Truman atomic bombs Japan

Yalta Conference


Big Three meet about postwar Europe, UN and Japan

Vatican II

1962 - 1965

Created modern Catholicism. Mass said in Vernacular, collegiality with other religions, etc.

Lives of Major Figures

Thomas Aquinas

January 28, 1225 - March 7, 1274

Thomas Aquinas was an Italian Dominican friar and priest and an immensely influential philosopher and theologian in the tradition of scholasticism. His influence on Western thought is considerable, and much of modern philosophy was conceived in development or refutation of his ideas, particularly in the areas of ethics, natural law, metaphysics, and political theory. Unlike many currents in the Church of the time, Thomas embraced several ideas put forward by Aristotle — whom he referred to as "the Philosopher" — and attempted to synthethise Aristotelian philosophy with the principles of Christianity.


July 20, 1304 - July 19, 1374

Francesco Petrarca, commonly anglicized as Petrarch, was an Italian scholar and poet in Renaissance Italy, and one of the earliest humanists. Petrarch's rediscovery of Cicero's letters is often credited for initiating the 14th-century Renaissance. He is the Father of Humanism

Charles VI of France

December 3, 1368 - October 21, 1422

Charles VI, called the Beloved and the Mad, was King of France from 1380 to his death. He was a member of the House of Valois. Charles VI was only 11 when he inherited the throne in the midst of the Hundred Years' War

Jan Hus

1369 - July 6, 1415

Jan Hus, often referred to in English as John Hus or John Huss, was a Czech priest, philosopher, reformer, and master at Charles University in Prague. His followers were referred to as the Hussites


1377 - April 15, 1446

Filippo Brunelleschi was one of the foremost architects and engineers of the Italian Renaissance. He is perhaps most famous for his development of linear perspective and for engineering the dome of the Florence Cathedral

Lorenzo Ghiberti

1378 - December 1, 1455

Lorenzo Ghiberti, born Lorenzo di Bartolo, was a Florentine Italian artist of the Early Renaissance best known as the creator of the bronze doors of the Baptistry of Florence Cathedral, called by Michelangelo the "Gates of Paradise".


1386 - December 13, 1466

Donato di Niccolò di Betto Bardi, better known as Donatello, was an early Renaissance Italian sculptor from Florence

Cosimo de'Medici

September 27, 1389 - August 1, 1464

Cosimo di Giovanni de' Medici was the first of the Medici political dynasty, de facto rulers of Florence during much of the Italian Renaissance; also known as "Cosimo 'the Elder'" and "Cosimo Pater Patriae".

Jan van Eyck

1395 - 1441

Jan van Eyck was a Flemish painter active in Bruges and is generally considered one of the most significant Northern European painters of the 15th century. The few surviving records indicate that he was born around 1390, most likely in Maaseik.

Johannes Gutenberg

1395 - February 3, 1468

Johannes Gensfleisch zur Laden zum Gutenberg was a German blacksmith, goldsmith, printer, and publisher who introduced printing to Europe.

Louis XI of France

July 3, 1423 - August 30, 1483

Louis XI, called the Prudent, was a monarch of the House of Valois who ruled as King of France from 1461 to 1483. He succeeded his father Charles VII.

Pope Alexander VI

January 1, 1431 - August 18, 1503

Pope Alexander VI, born Roderic Llançol i de Borja was Pope from 11 August 1492 to his death on 18 August 1503. Father of Lucrezia Borgia and Cesare Borgia. He used his daughter as a political pawn

Pope Julius II

December 5, 1443 - February 21, 1513

Pope Julius II, nicknamed "The Fearsome Pope" and "The Warrior Pope", born Giuliano della Rovere, was Pope from 1 November 1503 to his death in 1513. Notice that he chose to take the name Julius (like the Roman Emperor), exemplifying the secularity of the Papacy during the Renaissance

Sandro Botticelli

1445 - May 17, 1510

Alessandro di Mariano di Vanni Filipepi, better known as Sandro Botticelli, was an Italian painter of the Early Renaissance.

Lorenzo the Magnificent

January 1, 1449 - April 9, 1492

Lorenzo de' Medici was an Italian statesman and de facto ruler of the Florentine Republic during the Italian Renaissance.

Leonardo da Vinci

April 15, 1452 - May 2, 1519

Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci was an Italian Renaissance polymath: painter, sculptor, architect, musician, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist, and writer.

Girolamo Savonarola

September 21, 1452 - May 23, 1498

Girolamo Savonarola was an Italian Dominican friar and preacher active in Renaissance Florence, and known for his prophecies of civic glory and calls for Christian renewal. His rejection of neoplatonism very influential on Botticelli

Henry VII of England

January 28, 1457 - April 21, 1509

Henry VII was King of England and Lord of Ireland from his seizing the crown on 22 August 1485 until his death on 21 April 1509, as the first monarch of the House of Tudor. He ended the War of the Roses by marrying Elizabeth of York.

Desiderius Erasmus

October 27, 1466 - July 12, 1536

Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus, known as Erasmus of Rotterdam, or simply Erasmus, was a Dutch Renaissance humanist, Catholic priest, social critic, teacher, and theologian. Erasmus was a classical scholar who wrote in a pure Latin style.

Niccolò Machiavelli

May 3, 1469 - June 21, 1527

Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli was an Italian historian, politician, diplomat, philosopher, humanist, and writer based in Florence during the Renaissance.

Nicolaus Copernicus

February 19, 1473 - May 24, 1543

Nicolaus Copernicus was a Renaissance mathematician and astronomer who formulated a heliocentric model of the universe which placed the Sun, rather than the Earth, at the center.

Cardinal Thomas Wolsey

March 1473 - November 29, 1530

Thomas Wolsey was an English political figure and cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. When Henry VIII became King of England in 1509, Wolsey became an advisor to the King.

Isabella d'Este

May 18, 1474 - February 13, 1539

Isabella d'Este was Marchesa of Mantua and one of the leading women of the Italian Renaissance as a major cultural and political figure.


March 6, 1475 - February 18, 1564

Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni, commonly known as Michelangelo, was an Italian sculptor, painter, architect, poet, and engineer of the High Renaissance who exerted an unparalleled influence on the development of Western art.

Cesare Borgia

September 13, 1475 - March 12, 1507

Cesare Borgia, Duke of Valentinois, was an Italian condottiero, nobleman, politician, and cardinal. He was the son of Pope Alexander VI and his long-term mistress Vannozza dei Cattanei.

Pope Leo X

December 11, 1475 - December 1, 1521

Pope Leo X, born Giovanni di Lorenzo de' Medici, was Pope from 9 March 1513 to his death in 1521. The second son of Lorenzo the Magnificent, ruler of the Florentine Republic, he was elevated to the cardinalate in 1489.

Pope Clement VII

May 26, 1478 - September 25, 1534

Pope Clement VII, born Giulio di Giuliano de' Medici, was Pope from 19 November 1523 to his death in 1534. He was pope when Charles V sacked Rome and while Martin Luther rose to prominence.

Baldassare Castiglione

December 6, 1478 - February 2, 1529

Baldassare Castiglione, count of Casatico, was an Italian courtier, diplomat, soldier and a prominent Renaissance author.


1483 - April 6, 1520

Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino, better known simply as Raphael, was an Italian painter and architect of the High Renaissance.

Martin Luther

November 10, 1483 - February 18, 1546

Martin Luther OSA was a German monk, Catholic priest, professor of theology and seminal figure of the 16th-century movement in Christianity known later as the Protestant Reformation.

Ulrich Zwingli

January 1, 1484 - October 11, 1531

Ulrich Zwingli was a leader of the Reformation in Switzerland. In 1518, Zwingli became the pastor of the Grossmünster in Zurich where he began to preach ideas on reforming the Catholic Church.

Thomas Cromwell

1485 - July 28, 1540

Thomas Cromwell, 1st Earl of Essex, KG, was an English lawyer and statesman who served as chief minister to King Henry VIII of England from 1532 to 1540. Cromwell was one of the strongest advocates of the English Reformation.

Catherine of Aragon

December 16, 1485 - January 7, 1536

Catherine of Aragon was Queen of England from 1509 until 1533 as the first wife of King Henry VIII; she was previously Princess of Wales as the wife of Prince Arthur.

Thomas Cranmer

July 2, 1489 - March 21, 1556

Thomas Cranmer was a leader of the English Reformation and Archbishop of Canterbury during the reigns of Henry VIII, Edward VI and, for a short time, Mary I.

Ignatius of Loyola

October 23, 1491 - July 31, 1556

Ignatius of Loyola was a Spanish knight from a local Basque noble family, hermit, priest since 1537, and theologian, who founded the Society of Jesus and, on 19 April 1541, became its first Superior General.

Hans Holbein the Younger

1497 - 1543

Hans Holbein the Younger was a German artist and printmaker who worked in a Northern Renaissance style. He is best known as one of the greatest portraitists of the 16th century

Charles V of the Holy Roman Empire

February 24, 1500 - September 21, 1558

Charles V was ruler of the Holy Roman Empire from 1519 and, as Charles I, of the Spanish Empire from 1516 until his voluntary retirement and abdication in favor of his younger brother Ferdinand I as Holy Roman Emperor and his son Philip II as King of Spain in 1556. His mother was Joanna the Mad

Anne Boleyn

1501 - May 19, 1536

Anne Boleyn was Queen of England from 1533 to 1536 as the second wife of King Henry VIII and Marquess of Pembroke in her own right.

Duke of Alba

October 29, 1507 - December 11, 1582

Fernando Álvarez de Toledo y Pimentel or Ferdinandus Toletanus Dux Albanus, known as the Grand Duke of Alba in Spain and the Iron Duke in the Netherlands, was a Spanish noble, general, and diplomat.

John Calvin

July 10, 1509 - May 27, 1564

John Calvin was an influential French theologian and pastor during the Protestant Reformation. He was a principal figure in the development of the system of Christian theology later called Calvinism.

John Knox

1514 - November 24, 1572

John Knox was a Scottish clergyman and a leader of the Protestant Reformation who is considered the founder of the Presbyterian denomination in Scotland. He hated Mary, Queen of Scots.

Andreas Vesalius

December 31, 1514 - October 15, 1564

Andreas Vesalius was a Brabantian anatomist, physician, and author of one of the most influential books on human anatomy, De humani corporis fabrica. Vesalius is often referred to as the founder of modern human anatomy.

Henry II of France

March 31, 1519 - July 10, 1559

Henry II was a monarch of the House of Valois who ruled as King of France from 31 March 1547 until his death in 1559.

Catherine de' Medici

April 13, 1519 - January 5, 1589

Catherine de' Medici, daughter of Lorenzo II de' Medici and of Madeleine de La Tour d'Auvergne, was an Italian noblewoman who was Queen of France from 1547 until 1559, as the wife of King Henry II.

Philip II of Spain

May 21, 1527 - September 13, 1598

Philip II was King of Spain from 1556 and of Portugal from 1581. From 1554 he was King of Naples and Sicily as well as Duke of Milan. During his marriage to Queen Mary I, he was also King of England and Ireland.


February 28, 1533 - September 13, 1592

Michel Eyquem de Montaigne was one of the most influential writers of the French Renaissance, known for popularizing the essay as a literary genre.

Queen Elizabeth I of England

September 7, 1533 - March 24, 1603

Elizabeth I was queen regnant of England and Ireland from 17 November 1558 until her death. Sometimes called "The Virgin Queen", "Gloriana" or "Good Queen Bess", Elizabeth was the fifth and last monarch of the Tudor dynasty.

Francis Drake

1540 - January 27, 1596

Sir Francis Drake, vice admiral was an English sea captain, privateer, navigator, slaver, and politician of the Elizabethan era. Drake carried out the second circumnavigation of the world, from 1577 to 1580.

Mary, Queen of Scots

December 8, 1542 - February 8, 1587

Mary, Queen of Scots, also known as Mary Stuart or Mary I of Scotland, was queen regnant of Scotland from 14 December 1542 to 24 July 1567 and queen consort of France from 10 July 1559 to 5 December 1560.

Tycho Brahe

December 14, 1546 - October 24, 1601

Tycho Brahe, born Tyge Ottesen Brahe, was a Danish nobleman known for his accurate and comprehensive astronomical and planetary observations. He was born in Scania, then part of Denmark, now part of modern-day Sweden.

Henry IV of France

December 13, 1553 - May 14, 1610

Henry IV, also known by the epithet "Good King Henry", was King of Navarre (as Henry III) from 1572 to 1610 and King of France from 1589 to 1610. He was the first French monarch of the House of Bourbon.

Baptised as a Catholic but raised in the Protestant faith by his mother Jeanne d'Albret, Queen of Navarre, he inherited the throne of Navarre in 1572 on the death of his mother. As a Huguenot, Henry was involved in the French Wars of Religion, he barely escaped assassination at the time of the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre, and he later led Protestant forces against the royal army.

Francis Bacon

January 22, 1561 - April 9, 1626

Francis Bacon, 1st Viscount St. Alban, QC, was an English philosopher, statesman, scientist, jurist, orator, essayist, and author. He served both as Attorney General and Lord Chancellor of England.

Galileo Galilei

February 15, 1564 - January 8, 1642

Galileo Galilei, often known mononymously as Galileo, was an Italian physicist, mathematician, engineer, astronomer, and philosopher who played a major role in the scientific revolution.

Johannes Kepler

December 27, 1571 - November 15, 1630

Johannes Kepler was a German mathematician, astronomer, and astrologer. A key figure in the 17th century scientific revolution, he is best known for his laws of planetary motion. He worked under Tycho Brahe

William Harvey

April 1, 1578 - June 3, 1657

William Harvey was an English physician. He was the first to describe completely and in detail the systemic circulation and properties of blood being pumped to the brain and body by the heart, though earlier writers had provided precursors of the theory.

Ferdinand II of HRE

July 9, 1578 - February 15, 1637

Ferdinand II, a member of the House of Habsburg, was Holy Roman Emperor, King of Bohemia, and King of Hungary. His rule coincided with the Thirty Years' War.

René Descartes

March 31, 1596 - February 11, 1650

René Descartes was a French philosopher, mathematician and writer who spent most of his life in the Dutch Republic.

Blaise Pascal

June 19, 1623 - August 19, 1662

Blaise Pascal was a French mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer and Christian philosopher. He was a child prodigy who was educated by his father, a tax collector in Rouen

Sir Isaac Newton

January 4, 1643 - March 31, 1727

Sir Isaac Newton PRS MP was an English physicist and mathematician who is widely recognised as one of the most influential scientists of all time and as a key figure in the scientific revolution.

Pierre Bayle

November 18, 1647 - December 28, 1706

Pierre Bayle was a French philosopher and writer best known for his seminal work the Historical and Critical Dictionary, published beginning in 1695.

Sir Robert Walpole

August 26, 1676 - March 18, 1745

Robert Walpole, 1st Earl of Orford, KG, KB, PC, known before 1742 as Sir Robert Walpole, was a British statesman who is generally regarded as the first Prime Minister of Great Britain.


January 18, 1689 - February 10, 1755

Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu, generally referred to as simply Montesquieu, was a French social commentator and political thinker who lived during the Age of Enlightenment.


November 21, 1694 - May 30, 1778

François-Marie Arouet was a French Enlightenment writer, historian and philosopher famous for his wit, his attacks on the established Catholic Church, and his advocacy of freedom of religion, freedom of expression, and separation of church and state.

Madame Geoffrin

June 26, 1699 - October 6, 1777

Marie Thérèse Rodet Geoffrin has been referred to as one of the leading female figures in the French Enlightenment. From 1750–1777, Madame Geoffrin played host to many of the most influential Philosophes and Encyclopédistes of her time.


June 28, 1712 - July 2, 1778

Jean-Jacques Rousseau was a Genevan philosopher, writer, and composer of the 18th century. His political philosophy influenced the French Revolution as well as the overall development of modern political, sociological, and educational thought.

Denis Diderot

October 5, 1713 - July 31, 1784

Denis Diderot was a French philosopher, art critic and writer. He was a prominent person during the Enlightenment, and is best known for serving as co-founder, chief editor and contributor to the Encyclopédie along with Jean le Rond d'Alembert.


1723 - 1789

Paul Heinrich Dietrich, Baron d'Holbach was a French-German author, philosopher, encyclopedist and a prominent figure in the French Enlightenment. He was born Paul Heinrich Dietrich in Edesheim, near Landau in the Rhenish Palatinate, but lived and worked mainly in Paris, where he kept a salon. He was well known for his atheism[2] and for his voluminous writings against religion, the most famous of them being The System of Nature (1770).

Adam Smith

June 5, 1723 - July 17, 1790

Adam Smith was a Scottish moral philosopher and a pioneer of political economy. One of the key figures of the Scottish Enlightenment, Smith is best known for two classic works: The Theory of Moral Sentiments (1759), and An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations (1776). The latter, usually abbreviated as The Wealth of Nations, is considered his magnum opus and the first modern work of economics. Smith is cited as the "father of modern economics" and is still among the most influential thinkers in the field of economics today

Immanuel Kant

April 22, 1724 - February 12, 1804

Immanuel Kant was a German philosopher who is widely considered to be a central figure of modern philosophy. He argued that human concepts and categories structure our view of the world and its laws, and that reason is the source of morality.

Richard Arkwright

December 23, 1732 - August 3, 1792

Sir Richard Arkwright was a self-made man and a leading entrepreneur during the early Industrial Revolution.

James Watt

January 30, 1736 - August 25, 1819

James Watt, FRS, FRSE was a Scottish inventor and mechanical engineer whose improvements to the Newcomen steam engine were fundamental to the changes brought by the Industrial Revolution in both his native Great Britain and the rest of the world.


March 15, 1738 - November 28, 1794

Cesare, Marquis of Beccaria-Bonesana was an Italian jurist, philosopher and politician best known for his treatise On Crimes and Punishments (1764), which condemned torture and the death penalty, and was a founding work in the field of penology and the Classical School of criminology. He promoted criminal justice.

Henry Cort

1741 - May 23, 1800

Henry Cort was an English ironmaster. During the Industrial Revolution in England, Cort began refining iron from pig iron to wrought iron using innovative production systems. In 1783 he patented the puddling process for refining iron ore.

Edmund Cartwright

April 24, 1743 - October 30, 1823

Edmund Cartwright was an English inventor. He graduated from Oxford University very early and went on to invent the power loom.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

January 27, 1756 - December 5, 1791

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, baptised as Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart, was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. Mozart showed prodigious ability from his earliest childhood.

Thomas Robert Malthus

February 14, 1766 - December 23, 1834

The Reverend Thomas Robert Malthus FRS was an English cleric and scholar, influential in the fields of political economy and demography. Malthus himself used only his middle name Robert.

Muhammad Ali

March 4, 1769 - August 2, 1849

Muhammad Ali Pasha al-Mas'ud ibn Agha was a commander in the Ottoman army, who became Wāli, and self-declared Khedive of Egypt and Sudan with the Ottoman's temporary approval.

Georg Hegel

August 27, 1770 - November 14, 1831

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel was a German philosopher, and a major figure in German Idealism. His historicist and idealist account of reality revolutionized European philosophy and was an important precursor to Continental philosophy and Marxism.

Robert Owen

May 14, 1771 - November 17, 1858

Robert Owen was a Welsh social reformer and one of the founders of utopian socialism and the cooperative movement.

David Ricardo

April 18, 1772 - September 11, 1823

David Ricardo was a British political economist. He was one of the most influential of the classical economists, along with Thomas Malthus, Adam Smith, and James Mill. He began his professional life as a broker and financial market speculator.

Andrew Ure

May 18, 1778 - January 2, 1857

Andrew Ure was a Scottish doctor, scholar, chemist. and early business theorist.

Benjamin Disraeli

December 21, 1804 - April 19, 1881

Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield, KG, PC, FRS, was a British Conservative politician, writer and aristocrat who twice served as Prime Minister.

William Ewart Gladstone

December 29, 1809 - May 19, 1898

William Ewart Gladstone, was a British Liberal politician. In a career lasting over sixty years, he served as Prime Minister four separate times, more than any other person.

Charles Dickens

February 7, 1812 - June 9, 1870

Charles John Huffam Dickens was an English writer and social critic. He created some of the world's most memorable fictional characters and is generally regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian period.

Henry Bessemer

January 19, 1813 - March 15, 1898

Sir Henry Bessemer was an English engineer, inventor, and businessman. Bessemer's name is chiefly known in connection with the Bessemer process for the manufacture of steel.

David Livingstone

March 19, 1813 - May 1, 1873

David Livingstone was a Scottish Congregationalist pioneer medical missionary with the London Missionary Society and an explorer in Africa. His meeting with H. M. Stanley on 10 November 1871 gave rise to the popular quotation "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?" Perhaps one of the most popular national heroes of the late 19th century in Victorian Britain, Livingstone had a mythic status, which operated on a number of interconnected levels: Protestant missionary martyr, working-class "rags to riches" inspirational story, scientific investigator and explorer, imperial reformer, anti-slavery crusader, and advocate of commercial empire.

Queen Victoria

May 24, 1819 - January 22, 1901

Queen Victoria was the monarch of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. From 1 May 1876, she used the additional title of Empress of India.

Friedrich Engels

November 28, 1820 - August 5, 1895

Friedrich Engels was a German social scientist, author, political theorist, philosopher, and father of Marxist theory, alongside Karl Marx.

Paul Krugar

October 10, 1825 - July 14, 1904

Stephanus Johannes Paulus Kruger, better known as Paul Kruger, and affectionately known as Uncle Paul, was State President of the South African Republic.

Jules Ferry

April 5, 1832 - March 17, 1893

Jules François Camille Ferry was a French statesman and republican. He was a promoter of laicism and colonial expansion. He promoted education.

Leopold II of Belgium

April 9, 1835 - December 17, 1909

Leopold II was the second King of the Belgians, and is chiefly remembered for the founding and exploitation of the Congo Free State.

Georges Clémenceau

September 28, 1841 - November 24, 1929

Georges Benjamin Clemenceau was a French statesman who led the nation in the First World War. A leader of the Radical Party, he played a central role in politics during the Third Republic.

Alexander III of Russia

March 10, 1845 - November 1, 1894

Alexander III, or Alexander Alexandrovich Romanov was Emperor of Russia, King of Poland and Grand Prince of Finland from 13 March [O.S. 1 March] 1881 until his death on 20 October [O.S. 8 October] 1894.

Cecil Rhodes

July 5, 1853 - March 26, 1902

The Rt Hon Cecil John Rhodes DCL was a British businessman, mining magnate, and politician in South Africa. Rhodes was named the chairman of De Beers at the company's founding in 1888.

Lord George Curzon

January 11, 1859 - March 20, 1925

He was the viceroy of India

Kaiser Wilheim II

January 27, 1859 - June 4, 1941

Crowned in 1888, he dismissed the Chancellor, Otto von Bismarck, in 1890 and launched Germany on a bellicose "New Course" in foreign affairs that culminated in his support for Austria-Hungary in the crisis of July 1914 that led to the First World War. He was militaristic and wanted Germany to have "its place in the sun."

David Lloyd George

January 17, 1863 - March 26, 1945

David Lloyd George, 1st Earl Lloyd-George of Dwyfor, OM PC was a British Liberal politician and statesman. Prime Minister of Great Britain during the First World War

Rudyard Kipling

December 30, 1865 - January 18, 1936

Joseph Rudyard Kipling was an English short-story writer, poet, and novelist. He is chiefly remembered for his tales and poems of British soldiers in India and his tales for children.

Neville Chamberlain

March 18, 1869 - November 9, 1940

Arthur Neville Chamberlain FRS was a British Conservative politician who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from May 1937 to May 1940. He let Hitler have Czechoslovakia with the policy of appeasement.

Vladimir Lenin

April 22, 1870 - January 21, 1924

Vladimir Ilyich Lenin was a Russian communist revolutionary, politician and political theorist.

Winston Churchill

November 30, 1874 - January 24, 1965

Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, DL, FRS, RA was a British politician who was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1940 to 1945 and again from 1951 to 1955. He was one of the Big Three during WWII

Joseph Stalin

December 18, 1878 - March 5, 1953

Joseph Stalin or Iosif Vissarionovich Stalin, was the leader of the Soviet Union from the mid-1920s until his death in 1953. He killed lots of people.

John Maynard Keynes

June 5, 1883 - April 21, 1946

John Maynard Keynes, 1st Baron Keynes, CB, FBA was a British economist whose ideas have fundamentally affected the theory and practice of modern macroeconomics, and informed the economic policies of governments.

Benito Mussolini

July 29, 1883 - April 28, 1945

Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini was an Italian politician, journalist, and leader of the National Fascist Party, ruling the country as Prime Minister from 1922 until his ousting in 1943.

Adolf Hitler

April 20, 1889 - April 30, 1945

Adolf Hitler was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the Nazi Party. He was chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945 and dictator of Nazi Germany from 1934 to 1945.

Charles de Gualle

November 22, 1890 - November 9, 1970

Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle was a French general and statesman who led the Free French Forces during World War II. He later founded the French Fifth Republic in 1958 and served as its first president from 1959 to 1969.

Josip Tito

May 7, 1892 - May 4, 1980

Marshal Josip Broz Tito was a Yugoslav revolutionary and statesman, serving in various roles from 1943 until his death in 1980.

Francisco Franco

December 4, 1892 - November 20, 1975

Francisco Franco Bahamonde was the dictator of Spain from 1939 to his death in 1975. Coming from a military background, he became the youngest general in Europe in the 1920s

Nikita Khrushchev

April 15, 1894 - September 11, 1971

Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev was a politician who led the Soviet Union during part of the Cold War.
Krushchev "krushed" the Hungarians.

Imre Nagy

June 7, 1896 - June 16, 1958

Imre Nagy was a Hungarian communist politician who was appointed Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the People's Republic of Hungary on two occasions.

Joseph Goebbels

October 29, 1897 - May 1, 1945

Paul Joseph Goebbels was a German politician and Reich Minister of Propaganda in Nazi Germany from 1933 to 1945.

Leonid Brezhnev

December 19, 1906 - November 10, 1982

Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev was the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, presiding over the country from 1964 until his death in 1982. He enacted the Brezhnev Doctrine, which states that the Soviet Union will intervene in the affairs of the countries Eastern Europe if they stray from Communism.

François Mitterrand

October 26, 1916 - January 8, 1996

François Maurice Adrien Marie Mitterrand was the 21st President of France and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra, serving from 1981 until 1995.

Nicolae Ceaușescu

January 26, 1918 - December 25, 1989

Nicolae Ceaușescu was a Romanian communist politician. He was General Secretary of the Romanian Communist Party from 1965 to 1989, and as such was the country's second and last Communist leader.

Alexander Dubček

November 27, 1921 - November 7, 1992

Alexander Dubček was a Slovak politician and, briefly, leader of Czechoslovakia. He attempted to reform the communist regime during the Prague Spring.

Margaret Thatcher

October 13, 1925 - April 8, 2013

Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, LG OM PC FRS, was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990 and the Leader of the Conservative Party from 1975 to 1990. She was the UK's first female Prime Minister and a contemporary of US President Ronald Reagan.

Helmut Kohl

April 3, 1930 - 2016

Helmut Josef Michael Kohl is a German conservative politician and statesman. He served as Chancellor of Germany from 1982 to 1998 and as the chairman of the Christian Democratic Union from 1973 to 1998. He oversaw the reunification of Germany after the fall of the Berlin Wall

Boris Yeltsin

February 1, 1931 - April 23, 2007

Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin was a Russian politician and the first President of the Russian Federation, serving from 1991 to 1999.

Mikhail Gorbachev

March 2, 1931 - 2016

Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev is a former Soviet statesman. He was the seventh and last undisputed leader of the Soviet Union, having served as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991, and as the country's head of state from 1988 until its dissolution in 1991. He was the only general secretary in the history of the Soviet Union to have been born after the October Revolution.

Jacques Chirac

November 29, 1932 - 2016

Jacques René Chirac is a French politician who served as President of France from 1995 to 2007. He previously served as Prime Minister of France from 1974 to 1976 and from 1986 to 1988 (making him the only person to hold the position of Prime Minister twice under the Fifth Republic), and as Mayor of Paris from 1977 to 1995.

John Major

March 29, 1943 - 2016

Sir John Major, KG, CH is a British Conservative politician who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Conservative Party from 1990 to 1997.

Lech Wałęsa

September 29, 1943 - 2016

Lech Wałęsa is a Polish politician, trade-union organizer, philanthropist and human-rights activist. He was the leader of Solidarity.