The Most Famous

HISTORIANS from Turkey

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This page contains a list of the greatest Turkish Historians. The pantheon dataset contains 341 Historians, 24 of which were born in Turkey. This makes Turkey the birth place of the 5th most number of Historians behind France and United States.

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Turkish Historians of all time. This list of famous Turkish Historians is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Turkish Historians.

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1. Herodotus (-484 - -425)

With an HPI of 90.91, Herodotus is the most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 128 different languages on wikipedia.

Herodotus (; Ancient Greek: Ἡρόδοτος, Hēródotos, Attic Greek pronunciation: [hɛː.ró.do.tos]; c. 484 – c. 425 BC) was an ancient Greek historian who was born in Halicarnassus in the Persian Empire (modern-day Bodrum, Turkey). He is known for having written the book The Histories (Ancient Greek: Ἱστορίαι Historíai), a detailed record of his "inquiry" (Ancient Greek: ἱστορία historía) on the origins of the Greco-Persian Wars. He is widely considered to have been the first writer to have treated historical subjects using a method of systematic investigation specifically, by collecting his materials and then critically arranging them into a historiographic narrative. On account of this, he is often referred to as "The Father of History," a title first conferred on him by the first-century BC Roman orator Cicero.Despite Herodotus's historical significance, little is known about his personal life. His Histories primarily deals with the lives of Croesus, Cyrus, Cambyses, Smerdis, Darius, and Xerxes and the battles of Marathon, Thermopylae, Artemisium, Salamis, Plataea, and Mycale; however, his many cultural, ethnographical, geographical, historiographical, and other digressions form a defining and essential part of the Histories and contain a wealth of information. Herodotus has been criticized for the fact that his book includes many obvious legends and fanciful accounts. Many authors, starting with the late fifth-century BC historian Thucydides, have accused him of making up stories for entertainment. However, Herodotus states that he is merely reporting what he has seen and been told, on several occasions saying that he does not himself believe the story that he reports. A sizable portion of the information he provides has since been confirmed by historians and archaeologists.

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2. Cassius Dio (155 - 235)

With an HPI of 78.07, Cassius Dio is the 2nd most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 56 different languages.

Lucius Cassius Dio (; c. 155 – c. 235 AD) or Dio Cassius (Ancient Greek: Δίων Κάσσιος Dion Kassios) was a Roman statesman and historian of Greek and Roman origin. He published 80 volumes of the history on ancient Rome, beginning with the arrival of Aeneas in Italy. The volumes documented the subsequent founding of Rome (753 BC), the formation of the Republic (509 BC), and the creation of the Empire (27 BC), up until 229 AD. Written in Ancient Greek over 22 years, Dio's work covers approximately 1,000 years of history. Many of his 80 books have survived intact, or as fragments, providing modern scholars with a detailed perspective on Roman history.

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3. Hecataeus of Miletus (-550 - -476)

With an HPI of 76.78, Hecataeus of Miletus is the 3rd most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 49 different languages.

Hecataeus of Miletus (; Greek: Ἑκαταῖος ὁ Μιλήσιος; c. 550 BC – c. 476 BC), son of Hegesander, was an early Greek historian and geographer.

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4. Arrian (89 - 175)

With an HPI of 75.39, Arrian is the 4th most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 44 different languages.

Arrian of Nicomedia (; Greek: Ἀρριανός Arrianos; Latin: Lucius Flavius Arrianus; c. 86/89 – c. after 146/160 AD) was a Greek historian, public servant, military commander and philosopher of the Roman period.The Anabasis of Alexander by Arrian is considered the best source on the campaigns of Alexander the Great. However, more recently, even though modern scholars have generally preferred Arrian to other extant primary sources, this attitude towards Arrian is beginning to change in the light of studies into Arrian's method.

Photo of Niketas Choniates

5. Niketas Choniates (1155 - 1217)

With an HPI of 73.87, Niketas Choniates is the 5th most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 38 different languages.

Niketas or Nicetas Choniates (Greek: Νικήτας Χωνιάτης; c. 1155 – 1217), whose actual surname was Akominatos (Ἀκομινάτος), was a Greek Byzantine government official and historian – like his brother Michael Akominatos, whom he accompanied to Constantinople from their birthplace Chonae (from which came his nickname, "Choniates" meaning "person from Chonae"). Nicetas wrote a history of the Eastern Roman Empire from 1118 to 1207.

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6. Ali ibn al-Athir (1160 - 1233)

With an HPI of 72.60, Ali ibn al-Athir is the 6th most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 35 different languages.

Abu al-Hassan Ali ibn Muhammad ibn Muhammad ash-Shaybani, better known as Ali 'Izz al-Din Ibn al-Athir al-Jazari (Arabic: علي عز الدین بن الاثیر الجزري‎) (1160-1233) was an Arab or Kurdish historian and biographer who wrote in Arabic and was from the Ibn Athir family. At the age of twenty-one he settled with his father in Mosul to continue his studies, where he devoted himself to the study of history and Islamic tradition. According to the 1911 Edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica, he was born in Jazirat Ibn Umar, Seljuk Empire . The city is situated in modern-day Turkey.

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7. Socrates of Constantinople (380 - 440)

With an HPI of 72.54, Socrates of Constantinople is the 7th most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 34 different languages.

Socrates of Constantinople (Greek: Σωκράτης ὁ Σχολαστικός; c. 380 – after 439), also known as Socrates Scholasticus, was a 5th-century Christian church historian, a contemporary of Sozomen and Theodoret. He is the author of a Historia Ecclesiastica ("Church History", Ἐκκλησιαστική Ἱστορία) which covers the history of late ancient Christianity during the years 305 to 439.

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8. Libanius (314 - 393)

With an HPI of 71.67, Libanius is the 8th most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 31 different languages.

Libanius (Greek: Λιβάνιος, Libanios; c. 314 – 392 or 393) was a Greco-Syrian teacher of rhetoric of the Sophist school. During the rise of Christian hegemony in the later Roman Empire, he remained unconverted and in religious matters was a pagan Hellene.

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9. Ephorus (-400 - -330)

With an HPI of 69.99, Ephorus is the 9th most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 31 different languages.

Ephorus of Cyme (; Greek: Ἔφορος ὁ Κυμαῖος, Ephoros ho Kymaios; c. 400 – 330 BC) was an ancient Greek historian known for his universal history.

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10. Eutropius (320 - 400)

With an HPI of 69.66, Eutropius is the 10th most famous Turkish Historian.  His biography has been translated into 34 different languages.

Eutropius (fl. AD 363–387) was a Roman historian.

Pantheon has 24 people classified as historians born between 550 BC and 1953. Of these 24, 1 (4.17%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living historians include Taner Akçam. The most famous deceased historians include Herodotus, Cassius Dio, and Hecataeus of Miletus. As of October 2020, 2 new historians have been added to Pantheon including Constantine Lascaris and Charles Barbier de Meynard.

Living Historians

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Deceased Historians

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Newly Added Historians (2020)

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Which Historians were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 3 most globally memorable Historians since 1700.