Enlightenment Period


Dante Alighieri

June 1, 1265 - September 14, 1321

Durante degli Alighieri, simply called Dante, was a major Italian poet of the Late Middle Ages.

Geoffrey Chaucer

1343 - October 25, 1400

Geoffrey Chaucer, known as the Father of English literature, is widely considered the greatest English poet of the Middle Ages and was the first poet to be buried in Poets' Corner of Westminster Abbey.


1386 - 1466

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

Prince Henry the Navigator

1394 - 1460

Infante Henrique of Portugal, Duke of Viseu, better known as Henry the Navigator, was an important figure in 15th-century Portuguese politics and in the early days of the Portuguese Empire.

Johannes Gutenberg

1400 - 1468

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

Christopher Columbus

1451 - 1506

Christopher Columbus was an Italian explorer, navigator, colonizer, and citizen of the Republic of Genoa. Under the auspices of the Catholic Monarchs of Spain, he completed four voyages across the Atlantic Ocean.

Leonardo da Vinci

15 April 1452 - 2 May 1519

Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci, more commonly Leonardo da Vinci or simply Leonardo, was an Italian polymath whose areas of interest included invention, painting, sculpting, architecture, science, music, mathematics, engineering, literature, anatomy, geology, astronomy, botany, writing, history, and cartography.


1469 - 1527

Niccolò Machiavelli, or more formally Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli, was an Italian Renaissance historian, politician, diplomat, philosopher, humanist, and writer.


1475 - 1564

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

Lorenzo de Medici

1478 - 1492

Galileo Galilei was an Italian astronomer, physicist, engineer, philosopher, and mathematician who played a major role in the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century.

Ferdinand Magellan

1480 - 1521

Ferdinand Magellan was a Portuguese explorer who organised the Castilian expedition to the East Indies from 1519 to 1522, resulting in the first circumnavigation of the Earth by Juan Sebastián Elcano.

Martin Luther

1483 - 1546

Martin Luther was a German professor of theology, composer, priest, monk and a seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation.


1483 - 1520

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

Miguel de Cervantes

September 29, 1547 - April 22, 1616

Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, was a Spanish writer who is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the Spanish language and one of the world's pre-eminent novelists.


1564 - 1642

Galileo Galilei was an Italian astronomer, physicist, engineer, philosopher, and mathematician who played a major role in the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century.

William Shakespeare

April 1564 - April 23 1616

William Shakespeare was an English poet, playwright, and actor, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist.

Thomas Hobbes

April 5, 1588 - December 9,1679

Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury, in some older texts Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury, was an English philosopher, best known today for his work on political philosophy

John Locke

August 29, 1638 - October 28 1704

John Locke FRS was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers and commonly known as the "Father of Liberalism"

Baron de Montesquieu

1689 - 1755

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


1694 - 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.

Jean Jaques Rousseau

1712 - 1778

Jean-Jacques Rousseau was a Francophone Genevan philosopher, writer, and composer of the 18th century.