Pope John Paul II

1920 - 2005

Photo of Pope John Paul II

Icon of person Pope John Paul II

Pope John Paul II (Latin: Ioannes Paulus II; Polish: Jan Paweł II; Italian: Giovanni Paolo II; born Karol Józef Wojtyła, Polish: [ˈkarɔl ˈjuzɛv vɔjˈtɨwa]; 18 May 1920 – 2 April 2005) was head of the Catholic Church and sovereign of the Vatican City State from 1978 until his death in 2005. In his youth, Wojtyła dabbled in stage acting. He graduated with excellent grades from an all-boys high school in Wadowice, Poland, in 1938, soon after which World War II broke out. Read more on Wikipedia

Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of Pope John Paul II has received more than 15,090,547 page views. His biography is available in 143 different languages on Wikipedia (up from 142 in 2019). Pope John Paul II is the 17th most popular religious figure (down from 16th in 2019), the 4th most popular biography from Poland and the most popular Polish Religious Figure.

Pope John Paul II was the pope of the Catholic Church from 1978 to 2005. He was the first non-Italian pope in 455 years and is the second-longest serving pope in history. Pope John Paul II is most famous for his leadership of the Catholic Church during the collapse of communism and for his role in the downfall of the Soviet Union.

Memorability Metrics

  • 15M

    Page Views (PV)

  • 84.75

    Historical Popularity Index (HPI)

  • 143

    Languages Editions (L)

  • 13.21

    Effective Languages (L*)

  • 4.38

    Coefficient of Variation (CV)


Among religious figures, Pope John Paul II ranks 17 out of 3,187Before him are Saint Joseph, John the Baptist, Saint Nicholas, Tutankhamun, Jacob, and Aaron. After him are Francis of Assisi, Saint George, Andrew the Apostle, Isaac, Elijah, and John Calvin.

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Among people born in 1920, Pope John Paul II ranks 1After him are Federico Fellini, Isaac Asimov, Yul Brynner, Charles Bukowski, Rosalind Franklin, Toshiro Mifune, Ray Bradbury, Farouk of Egypt, Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, Paul Celan, and Mario Puzo. Among people deceased in 2005, Pope John Paul II ranks 1After him are Edward Heath, Rosa Parks, Rainier III, Prince of Monaco, George Best, Arthur Miller, Fahd of Saudi Arabia, Claude Simon, Rinus Michels, Peter Drucker, Hans Bethe, and Paul Ricœur.

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In Poland

Among people born in Poland, Pope John Paul II ranks 4 out of 1,694Before him are Nicolaus Copernicus (1473), Frédéric Chopin (1810), and Marie Curie (1867). After him are Arthur Schopenhauer (1788), Catherine the Great (1729), Rosa Luxemburg (1871), David Ben-Gurion (1886), Lech Wałęsa (1943), Paul von Hindenburg (1847), L. L. Zamenhof (1859), and Manfred von Richthofen (1892).


Among religious figures born in Poland, Pope John Paul II ranks 1After him are Maximilian Kolbe (1894), Faustina Kowalska (1905), Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906), Saint Casimir (1458), Angelus Silesius (1624), Stanislaus of Szczepanów (1030), Stanislaus Kostka (1550), Itzhak Stern (1901), Hyacinth of Poland (1185), Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947), and Stefan Wyszyński (1901).