John Locke: was known as the father of liberalism. He was an English
philosopher and physician who were known as one of the most influential enlightenment
thinkers. Voltaire and Rousseau credited
him with ideas they were given and the American Revolutionist gave him credit
for their revolutionary thoughts.
Jean Jacques Rousseau: who was a French philosopher, writer,
and composer. He was very influential in the French Revolution. He spent his whole life studying, and developed
a new of thinking that defied the old ways of religious life
Rene Descartes: was a French philosopher who spent most of
his life living in the Dutch Republic. He was named the “Father of Modern Philosophy”
and impacted Western philosophy just as much. His writings now have become
common texts at most universities.
Diderot is most famously known for being the primary editor of the
encyclopedia. A compilation of human knowledge, which soon became a prominent
symbol of the enlightenment and helped spread the movement throughout Europe.
He believed in free will and thought the progress of the human race would be
doomed if done so through technology.
Isaac Newton developed one of the
single most important scientific theories of all time, gravity. He described
the three laws of motion, which dominated the scientific view of the physical
universe for centuries to follow. This removed last doubts of heliocentrism.
His many mathematical and scientific findings questioned the dominant Catholic
Church and made way for a new way of thinking.
Voltaire: was a strong believer of
freedom of trade and religion. He was a prolific writer, writing plays, essays,
novels, and poems. Voltaire’s religious views were quite radical. He believed
that you did not need any sort of religion to have faith in a god. He was a
deist, so he questioned faith and everything surrounding faith. The government was
also something Voltaire regularly questioned. He believed it to be corrupt and
Houdon: (1741-1828). Jean Houdon was a famous sculptor that was a major
part of the art movement of the Enlightenment. He also did portraits,
the most notable being a painting of the great author, Candide.
William Wilberforce: (1759-1833). William Wilberforce was a leader of a group of people that sought to abolish
slave trade. Slave trade was a large part of daily life, it was not completely abolished until 1807.
Hume: (1711-1766). Dave Hume was one of the great thinkers of the
Enlightenment Period. He was a leader in the refurnishing that lead to
modern economics, which is a large part of daily life. He completed his
education in France.
Ada Byron: lived in the early 1800's. She was a British mathematician who later had a lot of influence with computer programming used for satellites and shuttles. She was essential to finding analytic data through computers.
Nicole-Reine Etable de la Briere Hortense Lepaute: was an early French astronomer, living in the early 1700's. She made insightful predictions about Hailey's comet returning.
Maria Winkelmann Kirch: was a German astronomer, living in the early 1700's. She had extensive knowledge about Jupiter and Saturn and published her theories in 1712. She also discovered the 1702 comet.
Antoine-Augustin Parmentier: promoted potatoes in Europe. He studied methods of refrigeration and food preparation. He also came up with the first smallpox vaccination campaign.