100 Greatest Britons

The 100 Greatest Britons was a television series broadcast by the BBC in 2002. It was based on a television poll conducted to determine who the British people at that time considered the greatest Britons in history.[1][2] The series included individual programmes featuring the top ten, with viewers having further opportunity to vote after each programme.[3] It concluded with a debate and final determination of the ranking of the top ten. Although many living people were included among the top 100, all of the top ten were deceased.

The Poll

The poll resulted in nominees including Guy Fawkes, who was executed for trying to blow up the Parliament of England; Oliver Cromwell, who created a republican England; Richard III, suspected of murdering his nephews; James Connolly, an Irish nationalist and socialist who was executed by the Crown in 1916; and a surprisingly high ranking of 17th for actor and singer Michael Crawford (the second highest-ranked entertainer, after John Lennon). Diana, Princess of Wales was judged to be a greater historical figure than Isaac Newton, William Shakespeare, and Charles Darwin by BBC respondents to the survey.

One of the more controversial figures to be included on the list was occultist Aleister Crowley. His works had a direct influence on the rise in popular occultism and some forms of neopaganism in the 20th century. In addition to the Britons, some notable non-British entrants were listed, including two Irish nationals, the philanthropic musicians Bono and Bob Geldof. The top 19 entries were people of English origin (though Sir Ernest Shackleton and Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, were both born into Anglo-Irish families when what is now the Republic of Ireland was part of the United Kingdom). The highest-placed Scottish entry was Alexander Fleming in 20th place, and the highest Welsh entry was Owain Glyndŵr in 23rd place.[4] Sixty had lived in the 20th century. The highest-ranked living person was Margaret Thatcher, placed 16th.[5] Ringo Starr was the only member of The Beatles not on the list. Isambard Kingdom Brunel occupied the top spot in the polls for some time thanks largely to "students from Brunel University who have been campaigning vigorously for the engineer for weeks."[6] However, a late surge in the final week of voting put Churchill over the top.[6] Of the top 100, 13 were women.

The opening and closing ceremonies of the 2012 Summer Olympics featured the two greatest Britons, Isambard Kingdom Brunel and Winston Churchill as main characters, played by Kenneth Branagh and Timothy Spall, each of them reading a monologue from William Shakespeare's The Tempest.[7][8] The ceremony also included a personal appearance by Tim Berners-Lee,[9] who was placed 99th on the list. There were no black Britons on the list, prompting a separate three-month survey to find the 100 greatest black Britons.[10][11]

Top 10 on the list

Rank Name Notability Advocate Ref.
1 Sir Winston Churchill Sir Winston S Churchill Prime Minister (1940–1945, 1951–1955). Historically ranked as one of the greatest British prime ministers. Led the nation during World War II, when the country had to defend itself against Hitler's attempts to invade. He was an important figure in post-war national and international politics. Received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1953. Mo Mowlam, British politician.[12] [13]
2 Isambard Kingdom Brunel IKBrunelChains Mechanic and Civil engineer, designer of the Great Western Railway, Clifton Suspension Bridge, SS Great Britain and numerous significant ships, tunnels and bridges. A prominent figure during the Industrial Revolution which began in Britain, he revolutionised public transport and modern engineering.[14] Jeremy Clarkson, TV presenter.[12] [13]
3 Diana, Princess of Wales Diana, Princess of Wales 1997 (2) First wife of Charles, Prince of Wales (marriage 1981–1996), and mother of Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex. Admired for her philanthropic deeds. Rosie Boycott, journalist and feminist activist.[12] [13]
4 Charles Darwin Darwin restored2 Biologist and naturalist. Originator of the theory of evolution through natural selection and author of On the Origin of Species. Andrew Marr, journalist and TV presenter.[12] [13]
5 William Shakespeare Shakespeare Poet and playwright. Creator of Hamlet, Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, and many more. Thought of by many as the greatest of all English-language writers. An influential figure in theatre, his plays have been performed more often than those of any other playwright. His work is praised for its humanity, diversity, psychological depth and countless new words and expressions which have become part of the English language. Fiona Shaw, actress and theatre and opera director.[12] [13]
6 Sir Isaac Newton GodfreyKneller-IsaacNewton-1689 Physicist, mathematician, astronomer, and natural philosopher. Originator of universal gravitation and laws of classical mechanics and laws of motion. His Principia is one of the most influential works in the history of science. Tristram Hunt, historian.[12] [13]
7 Elizabeth I Elizabeth I Rainbow Portrait Queen of England and Ireland. (1558–1603). Brought a period of relative internal stability. She is associated with the defeat of the Spanish Armada. Her reign is known as the Elizabethan era. Michael Portillo, journalist and politician.[12] [13]
8 John Lennon JohnLennonpeace Pop/rock singer-songwriter, musician, activist and member of music quartet The Beatles. One of the most famous, successful, influential, covered and admired pop artists of all time. Hailed for his highly personal and experimental music, rebellious free-spirited attitude and peace activism. Alan Davies, comedian and actor.[12] [13]
9 Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson HoratioNelson1 Naval commander, famous for his service in the Royal Navy, particularly during the Napoleonic Wars. His victory during the Battle of Trafalgar was significant in preventing an invasion by Napoleon Bonaparte's army. Lucy Moore, historian.[12] [13]
10 Oliver Cromwell Oliver Cromwell by Samuel Cooper 1st Lord Protector of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland (1653–1658). Commander of the New Model Army during the English Civil War against King Charles I. Admired for moving the country to a more democratic stateform, though his nomination was controversial due to allegations of genocide in Ireland. Richard Holmes, military historian.[12] [13]

Full list

  1. Sir Winston Churchill
  2. Isambard Kingdom Brunel
  3. Diana, Princess of Wales
  4. Charles Darwin
  5. William Shakespeare
  6. Sir Isaac Newton
  7. Elizabeth I
  8. John Lennon
  9. Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson
  10. Oliver Cromwell
  11. Sir Ernest Shackleton, explorer. Made important contributions to the exploration of Antarctica.
  12. Captain James Cook, explorer. Made maps of Newfoundland prior to making three voyages to the Pacific Ocean, during which he achieved the first recorded European contact with the eastern coastline of Australia and the Hawaiian Islands, and the first recorded circumnavigation of New Zealand.
  13. Robert Baden-Powell, soldier and activist. Founder of Scouting.
  14. Alfred the Great, king of Wessex (871–899). Successfully stopped the Viking advance in England, encouraged education, proposing that primary education be taught in English, and improved his kingdom's legal system, military structure and people's quality of life.
  15. Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, general during the Napoleonic Wars (defeated Napoleon at Waterloo) and Prime Minister (1828–1830, 1834).
  16. Margaret Thatcher, Prime Minister (1979–1990). First woman to have held the office.
  17. Michael Crawford, TV, film and theatre actor (Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em on television, and originated the title role in The Phantom of the Opera on the West End).
  18. Queen Victoria, queen (1837–1901). Her reign is known as the Victorian era.
  19. Sir Paul McCartney, musician (The Beatles).
  20. Sir Alexander Fleming, physician and chemist. Discovered penicillin. Received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1945.
  21. Alan Turing, mathematician and pioneering computer scientist. Invented the Turing Test and devised cryptanalytical techniques, including those which cracked the Enigma machine.
  22. Michael Faraday, physicist. Discovered electromagnetic induction, diamagnetism and electrolysis.
  23. Owain Glyndŵr, Welsh ruler, the last native "prince of Wales"
  24. Elizabeth II, queen (1952–).
  25. Stephen Hawking, astrophysicist. Achieved groundbreaking work in the field of quantum gravity and theoretical cosmology. Author of A Brief History of Time.
  26. William Tyndale, scholar. Translated the Bible into English.
  27. Emmeline Pankhurst, activist for women's rights. Helped achieve women's right to vote in the United Kingdom.
  28. William Wilberforce, politician and activist. Led the anti-slavery movement.
  29. David Bowie, musician (Space Oddity, Ziggy Stardust, Heroes, Let's Dance)
  30. Guy Fawkes, member of the Gunpowder Plot. Tried but failed to blow up the English Parliament. The event is the origin of the annual Bonfire Night.
  31. Leonard Cheshire, military pilot and philanthropist.
  32. Eric Morecambe, comedian and actor (Morecambe and Wise).
  33. David Beckham, association football player.
  34. Thomas Paine, philosopher (The Age of Reason).
  35. Boudica, Celtic queen of Britannia. Led resistance against the Roman army.
  36. Sir Steve Redgrave, rower. Won gold medals at five consecutive Olympic Games (1984–2000).
  37. Sir Thomas More, author and philosopher (Utopia).
  38. William Blake, poet and painter (Songs of Innocence and Experience, Jerusalem: The Emanation of the Giant Albion, Milton: A Poem in Two Books).
  39. John Harrison, inventor of the marine chronometer.
  40. Henry VIII, king (1509–1547).
  41. Charles Dickens, novelist (Oliver Twist, A Christmas Carol, Great Expectations, David Copperfield).
  42. Sir Frank Whittle, engineer and inventor. Invented the turbojet engine.
  43. John Peel, radio presenter.
  44. John Logie Baird, engineer and inventor. Invented the television.
  45. Aneurin Bevan, politician. Minister of Health (1945–1951). Spearheaded the establishment of the National Health Service, providing medical care to all UK citizens regardless of wealth.
  46. Boy George, pop singer (Culture Club).
  47. Sir Douglas Bader, military aviator.
  48. Sir William Wallace, knight and resistance leader during the Wars of Scottish Independence.
  49. Sir Francis Drake, explorer and captain. Helped defeat the Spanish Armada under Lord Howard.
  50. John Wesley, religious activist. Founder of Methodism.
  51. King Arthur, mythical king.
  52. Florence Nightingale, humanitarian activist and founder of modern nursing. Nursed wounded soldiers during the Crimean War.
  53. T. E. Lawrence, better known as "Lawrence of Arabia", soldier and author of Seven Pillars of Wisdom.
  54. Robert Falcon Scott, explorer. Failed to reach the South Pole before Roald Amundsen and died on the way back. Became a national hero to the British because of his perseverance.
  55. Enoch Powell, politician.
  56. Sir Cliff Richard, pop singer.
  57. Alexander Graham Bell, inventor. Invented the telephone.
  58. Freddie Mercury, rock singer (Queen) Born in Zanzibar of Indian Parsi descent.
  59. Dame Julie Andrews, film actress (Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music).
  60. Sir Edward Elgar, composer (Pomp and Circumstance Marches).
  61. Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, queen during WWII.
  62. George Harrison, rock guitarist (The Beatles).
  63. Sir David Attenborough, biologist and TV documentary presenter.
  64. James Connolly, activist, politician and Marxist insurgent leader.
  65. George Stephenson, civil engineer. "Father of the Railways". Invented the first practical steam locomotive and built the first public railway.
  66. Sir Charlie Chaplin, comedian, actor and film director (The Kid, The Gold Rush, City Lights, The Great Dictator, Modern Times)
  67. Tony Blair, Prime Minister (1997–2007).
  68. William Caxton, printer. Introduced the printing press in England.
  69. Bobby Moore, association football player. Captain of the England team that won the 1966 World Cup
  70. Jane Austen, novelist (Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility).
  71. William Booth, humanitarian activist. Founder of the Salvation Army.
  72. Henry V, king (1413–1422). Against all odds defeated the French at the Battle of Agincourt.
  73. Aleister Crowley, poet, novelist and occultist.
  74. Robert the Bruce, king of the Scots (1306–1329).
  75. Bob Geldof, pop singer (The Boomtown Rats) and humanitarian activist (Live Aid, Live 8). Born in Dún Laoghaire and not actually British.
  76. The Unknown Warrior, soldier whose remains are buried at Westminster Abbey.
  77. Robbie Williams, pop singer (Take That).
  78. Edward Jenner, physician. Inventor of the smallpox vaccine.
  79. David Lloyd George, 1st Earl Lloyd George of Dwyfor, Prime Minister (1916–1922).
  80. Charles Babbage, mathematician, philosopher, mechanical engineer and inventor. Invented the first programmable mechanical computer.
  81. Geoffrey Chaucer, poet (The Canterbury Tales).
  82. Richard III, king (1483–1485).
  83. J. K. Rowling, novelist (Harry Potter).
  84. James Watt, inventor. Improved the steam engine, making it economical for use in factories, which was fundamental to the Industrial Revolution which originated in Great Britain
  85. Sir Richard Branson, businessman (Virgin).
  86. Bono, rock singer (U2). Born in Dublin, Ireland, and is not British.
  87. John Lydon (Johnny Rotten), rock/punk singer (The Sex Pistols, Public Image Ltd.)
  88. Bernard Law Montgomery, 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein ('Monty'), WWII general.
  89. Donald Campbell, speed record breaker. Only person to set both world land and water speed records in the same year (1964).
  90. Henry II, king (1154–1189). Born in Le Mans, France. Although King of England (as well as many other titles), not actually British.
  91. James Clerk Maxwell, physicist. Developed the theory of electromagnetic radiation.
  92. J. R. R. Tolkien, novelist (The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings).
  93. Sir Walter Raleigh, Explorer. Explored in central America and sent expeditions to North America.
  94. Edward I, king (1272–1307). The "Hammer of the Scots". Edward turned the longbow into England's most deadly weapon against the Scottish and French with devastating results most notably at the Battle of Falkirk.
  95. Sir Barnes Wallis, engineer and inventor. Invented the bouncing bomb, earthquake bomb and geodetic airframe.
  96. Richard Burton, theatre and film actor.
  97. Tony Benn, politician.
  98. David Livingstone, explorer. Discovered the origins of the Nile.
  99. Sir Tim Berners-Lee, computer scientist. Inventor of the World Wide Web.
  100. Marie Stopes, eugenicist and campaigner for women's rights. Pioneer in the field of birth control.

Although the BBC's original ranked list has been removed from their web server and what remains is only an alphabetical list of the Top 100,[15] several other sources have preserved the original ranked list.[16][17][18]

There was some question as to whether the Richard Burton listed at #96 was the actor or the explorer. A BBC press release makes clear that the actor was intended.[19]

See also


  1. ^ "100 great British heroes". BBC News. 21 August 2002. (contains the top 100, sorted alphabetically)
  2. ^ "BBC reveals 100 great British heroes". BBC News. 22 August 2002.
  3. ^ "Ten greatest Britons chosen". BBC News. 20 October 2002.
  4. ^ Bloomfield, Steve (29 February 2004). "Rebel 'plot' to topple greatest Welshman". The Independent. Retrieved 11 January 2018.
  5. ^ Winnett, Robert (20 October 2002). "Three lead race to be greatest Briton". The Times. Retrieved 11 January 2018.
  6. ^ a b "Churchill leads great Britons poll". Daily Mail. 23 November 2002. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
  7. ^ "Brunel reads from Shakespeare's The Tempest". ITV News. 27 July 2012. Retrieved 24 August 2012.
  8. ^ "Timothy Spall plays Churchill at closing ceremony". BBC News. 16 January 2013. Retrieved 24 August 2012.
  9. ^ Friar, Karen (28 July 2012). "Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee stars in Olympics opening ceremony". ZDNet. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  10. ^ "Nurse named greatest black Briton". BBC News. 10 February 2004. Retrieved 23 March 2015.
  11. ^ Solambey F. "The 100 greatest Black Britons". Afrokanlife. Archived from the original on 30 March 2015. Retrieved 27 March 2015.
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "BBC TWO reveals the ten greatest Britons of all time" (Press release). BBC. 19 October 2002. Retrieved 11 October 2015.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Great Britons". BBC History. Archived from the original on 4 February 2004. Retrieved 11 October 2015.
  14. ^ "Why the Industrial Revolution Happened Here". BBC. 10 July 2017.
  15. ^ "The complete list of the top 100 in alphabetical order" (Press release). BBC. 21 August 2002.
  16. ^ "100 Greatest Britons (BBC Poll, 2002)". Alchemipedia. 8 December 2009.
  17. ^ "Great Britons 1-10". BBC. Archived from the original on 2004-02-04. Retrieved 1 August 2012.
  18. ^ "Great Britons 11-100". BBC. Archived from the original on 2002-12-04. Retrieved 1 August 2012.
  19. ^ "BBC TWO reveals the nation's top 100 Greatest Britons of all time" (Press release). BBC. 21 August 2002.

External links

100 Greatest Romanians

In 2006, Romanian Television (Televiziunea Română, TVR) conducted a vote to determine whom the general public considered the 100 Greatest Romanians of all time, in a version of the British TV show 100 Greatest Britons. The resulting series, Great Romanians (Romanian: Mari Români), included individual programmes on the top ten, with viewers having further opportunities to vote after each programme. It concluded with a debate. On 21 October, TVR announced that the "greatest Romanian of all time" according to the voting was Stephen the Great.

100 Welsh Heroes

100 Welsh Heroes was an opinion poll run in Wales as a response to the BBC's 100 Greatest Britons poll of 2002. It was carried out mainly on the internet, starting on 8 September 2003 and finishing on 23 February 2004. The results were announced on 1 March (St David's Day) 2004 and subsequently published in a book.

100 greatest

100 greatest may refer to:

100 Greatest, a Channel 4 TV strand in the United Kingdom

100 Greatest African Americans, a biographical dictionary

100 Greatest of All Time, a TV series ranking the greatest tennis players

100 Greatest Britons, a BBC TV programme

100 Greatest Discoveries, a TV series produced by THINKFilm for The Science Channel, hosted by Bill Nye

100 Greatest Greeks, part of the TV series Great Greeks

"The 100 Greatest Guitar Solos", a list compiled by magazine Guitar World

100 Greatest Marvels of All Time, a series of paperback books published by Marvel Comics in 2001

The 100 Greatest Metal Guitarists, a book by British author Joel McIver

100 Greatest Romanians, a TV programme

The Top 100 NHL Players of All-Time, by the magazine The Hockey News

The 100 Greatest NHL Players, the top 100 NHL players as chosen by members of the hockey community to commemorate the NHL's 100th anniversary

Atlantic Canada's 100 Greatest Books (book)

The Australian rugby league's 100 greatest players

Historiens 100 viktigaste svenskar (The 100 Greatest Swedes), a book

Time 100: The Most Important People of the Century, a compilation by Time magazine

The Greatest (TV series)

Belg der Belgen

In 2005, the Belgian newspaper, Het Nieuwsblad conducted a vote to discover the greatest Belgian of all time, under the title Belg der Belgen. The series is based on BBC's 100 Greatest Britons. On 1 December 2005, Father Damien (Jozef de Veuster) was chosen as Greatest Belgian of all time.

El Español de la Historia

El Español de la Historia ("The Spaniard of History") was an Antena 3 show which aired on May 2007, based on the original BBC series 100 Greatest Britons. The show asked 3,000 citizens about the Greatest Spanish man or woman in history via an opinion poll.

It was presented by Matías Prats and Susanna Griso, in just one session. The winner was the (then reigning monarch) King of Spain, Juan Carlos I.

The show was widely criticized and ignored by some historians in that it focused mainly on personalities of recent history and today's Spanish world. Some key figures of Spanish history were largely ignored.


Favorit may refer to:

Berliner Fußball-Club Favorit, a German football club succeeded by VfL Nord Berlin following World War II

El Favorit, a Catalan spin-off of the TV show 100 Greatest Britons

Favorit FM, a Romanian radio station operated by Centrul Național Media

Favorit TV, a Romanian TV channel operated by Centrul Naţional Media

S-300PMU-2 "Favorit", a type of S-300 system

Grandes Chilenos de Nuestra Historia

Grandes Chilenos de Nuestra Historia (English: Great Chileans of Our History; sometimes simply called Grandes Chilenos) was a Chilean TV program produced and broadcast by state channel Televisión Nacional de Chile during 2008. It was based on the style of BBC's 100 Greatest Britons. Former President Salvador Allende was elected the "Greatest Chilean".

Greatest Bengali of all time

Soon after the completion of 100 Greatest Britons poll in 2002, the BBC organized a similar opinion poll to find out who is the greatest Bengali personality in Bengali nation's history of thousand years. In 2004, BBC's Bengali Service conducted the opinion poll with the title Greatest Bengali of all time started from February 11 continued onto March 22. The poll was participated by Bengalis around the world including from Bangladesh, India (states of West Bengal, Tripura, Assam) and overseas Bengali communities.A total of 140 nominations had been produced from the poll. BBC started to announce the top 20 names from 26 March declaring one name each day starting from 20th position. On the final day of 14 April, which was also the Pahela Baishakh (Bengali New Year day), BBC announced Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the founding father of Bangladesh as the Greatest Bengali of all time voted by Bengalis worldwide.

Greatest Britons

Greatest Britons was a one-off awards show on ITV, celebrating the best of British talent. It is distinct from 100 Greatest Britons.

Greatest Britons recognises the most creative and successful people from across the UK who've achieved worldwide fame within their professional fields. The winners of most of the awards are decided by an expert panel of judges. The award of Greatest Living Briton is voted for by the public.

The awards aired on Monday 21 May 2007, with Kate Thornton as host, and they were produced by Shine Limited in association with The Sun and Marks & Spencer.

Greatest Britons spin-offs

The following is a list of spin-offs of the 2002 100 Greatest Britons program produced by the BBC.

Greatest Painting in Britain Vote

The Greatest Painting in Britain Vote was a survey made by BBC Radio 4's Today programme in Summer 2005 with the aim of discovering the best-loved painting in Britain, in the manner of 100 Greatest Britons and The Big Read. It was criticised for the conservatism of the final selection as well as the unsuitability of the idea for the non-visual medium of radio.

The winner, voted for by the public from a shortlist of 10, was announced on air on 5 September 2005.

Il più grande italiano di tutti i tempi

Il più grande italiano di tutti i tempi ("The greatest Italian of all times") was an Italian television show based on the British 100 Greatest Britons transmitted on Rai 2 in January and February 2010.

It was presented by Francesco Facchinetti and Martina Stella, in four sessions. The winner was Leonardo da Vinci.

The show was widely criticized and ignored by some historians in that it focussed mainly on personalities of recent history and today's Italian world. Some key figures of Italian history were largely ignored, including every figure from Ancient Rome. Also, the show had a very low share rate, 6%, due to the "unacceptable choice of representatives of the Italian culture such as Laura Pausini, definitely less important than genii such as Michelangelo and Donatello.

Name of Russia (Russia TV)

Name of Russia (Russian: Имя Россия, "The Name Russia") was a project of the Russia TV channel aimed to elect the most notable personality in Russian history through Internet, radio and television voting. The program is similar to British 100 Greatest Britons and other similar projects held in different countries.

O Maior Brasileiro de Todos os Tempos

O Maior Brasileiro de Todos os Tempos (English: The Greatest Brazilian of All Time) was a public poll contest organized by the Brazilian broadcasting station SBT and hosted by Carlos Nascimento to rank the most outstanding Brazilian personalities. Based on BBC's 100 Greatest Britons, it featured individual documentaries advocating the top ten candidates.

After three months of voting and more than a million votes recorded, one hundred persons were selected, appointed by the thousands of Brazilians.

The final episode aired on October 3, 2012. Chico Xavier was elected the greatest Brazilian of all time.

Os Grandes Portugueses

Os Grandes Portugueses (English: The Greatest Portuguese) was a public poll contest organized by the Portuguese public broadcasting station RTP and hosted by Maria Elisa. Based on BBC's 100 Greatest Britons, it featured individual documentaries advocating the top ten candidates. The final vote took place on 25 March 2007, the winner being António de Oliveira Salazar, Portugal's dictator between 1932 and 1968.

Top 100 historical figures

Top 100 historical figures may refer to:

The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History, a 1978 book

100 Greatest Britons, a BBC series about historical figures from the United Kingdom

Great South Africans, a South African TV series to determine the "100 Greatest South Africans"

Time 100, an annual list of the 100 most influential people in the American world

Velikite Balgari

Velikite Balgari (Bulgarian: „Великите българи“, The Great Bulgarians) was the Bulgarian spin-off of the 2002 program 100 Greatest Britons produced by the BBC. Aired on the Bulgarian National Television's Kanal 1, its first stage began on 9 June 2006 and finished on 10 December, with a show on 23 December announcing the names of the Top 100 as chosen by popular vote. The Top 10 were announced in alphabetical order. In the second stage, which lasted until 17 February 2007, the viewers determined the order in the Top 10. Documentaries dedicated to every Top 10 personality were aired during the second stage.

Velyki Ukraïntsi

The Greatest Ukrainians (Ukrainian: Великі українці) was a Ukrainian TV project. The programme was the result of a vote conducted to determine whom the Ukrainian public considers the greatest Ukrainians have been in history.

The show is running under a license from the BBC and originally appeared on British TV under the name 100 Greatest Britons and was a successful show. Such countries as Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands and many others have also created their own versions.

William Caxton

William Caxton (c. 1422 – c. 1491) was an English merchant, diplomat, and writer. He is thought to be the first person to introduce a printing press into England, in 1476, and as a printer was the first English retailer of printed books.

Neither his parentage nor date of birth is known for certain, but he may have been born between 1415 and 1424, perhaps in the Weald or wood land of Kent, perhaps in Hadlow or Tenterden. In 1438 he was apprenticed to Robert Large, a wealthy London silk mercer.

Shortly after Large's death, Caxton moved to Bruges, Belgium, a wealthy cultured city, where he was settled by 1450. Successful in business, he became governor of the Company of Merchant Adventurers of London; on his business travels, he observed the new printing industry in Cologne, which led him to start a printing press in Bruges in collaboration with Colard Mansion. When Margaret of York, sister of Edward IV, married the Duke of Burgundy, they moved to Bruges and befriended Caxton. It was the Duchess who encouraged Caxton to complete his translation of the Recuyell of the Historyes of Troye, a collection of stories associated with Homer's Iliad, which he did in 1471.

On his return to England, heavy demand for his translation prompted Caxton to set up a press at Westminster in 1476, although the first book he is known to have produced was an edition of Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales; he went on to publish chivalric romances, classical works, and English and Roman histories, and to edit many others. He is credited with two other firsts: he printed perhaps the earliest English translation verses of the Bible, and was the first to translate Aesop's Fables in 1484. Caxton was not an adequate translator, and under pressure to publish as much as possible as quickly as possible, he sometimes simply transferred French words into English; but because of the success of his translations, he is credited with helping to promote the Chancery English he used to the status of standard dialect throughout England.

In 2002, Caxton was named among the 100 Greatest Britons in a BBC poll.

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