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Washington or Lincoln: Who’s the bigger historical figure?

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Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress

Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress

Data and computer science experts have aggregated millions of opinions to determine the most significant historical figures.

“We rank historical figures just as Google ranks web pages, by integrating a diverse set of measurements of reputation into a single consensus value,” Steven Skiena of State University of New York and Charles B. Ward of Google write in The Guardian.

In part, they analyzed Wikipedia pages to measure quantities such as longer entries, greater readership and pages linked to other highly significant figures. And by examining scanned books they calculated how fast a pop icon such as Miley Cyrus would fade from fame and any cultural or historical significance and corrected for it.

Their book, Who’s Bigger? Where Historical Figures Really Rank, has raised some eyebrows. Britney Spears (689) and Barack Obama (111) are overrated, critics say.

Here is the list of their Overall Top 30:

1 Jesus

2 Napoleon

3 Muhammad

4 William Shakespeare

5 Abraham Lincoln

6 George Washington

7 Adolf Hitler

8 Aristotle

9 Alexander the Great

10 Thomas Jefferson

11 Henry VIII

12 Charles Darwin

13 Elizabeth I

14 Karl Marx

15 Julius Caesar

16 Queen Victoria

17 Martin Luther

18 Joseph Stalin

19 Albert Einstein

20 Christopher Columbus

21 Isaac Newton

22 Charlemagne

23 Theodore Roosevelt

24 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

25 Plato

26 Louis XIV

27 Ludwig van Beethoven

28 Ulysses S Grant

29 Leonardo da Vinci

30 Augustus

h/t The Guardian

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