Top Ten Military Generals of All Time

The Top Ten Military Generals of All Time

Alexander the Great Alexander III of Macedon, commonly known as Alexander the Great, was a King of the Ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon and a member of the Argead dynasty.

Alexander died when he was 32. He had come to the throne at 20. In 12 years he led a Macedonian army to the edge of the known world and conquered all in his path. If he had not died I doubt western Europe or Africa could have stood in his way and we would know look at his empire on par with the roman or British empire each of which took hundreds of years to build with countless generals.

No other general is even thought of let alone referred to as Great. Great because he took armies further, motivated his men from the front of the line and faced the enemy on their terran but always on his terms.

He took an army to the ends of the earth, literally, and from with that he brought hellenic culture, philosophy, and technology to the world.

He is legend.. Period.

He took a greek army to the far Indies there was nothing left to conquer, the world was his - Rome total war Greek intro

There's a reason why the Persian Empire was the most vast at the time - because they were ruthless and intelligent. This was an empire the likes of which the world had never seen. The Persian Empire stood the tests of time and defeated anyone who dared try to stand against it. Until Alexander the Great. He was undefeated. There wasn't a single force he ever met that he didn't utterly destroy. But what made him the greatest general was not just his ability to win, but his ability to know what to do with a victory. This is where generals like Hannibal flounder. He was always the victor, but not the annihilator. He recognized the importance of the persons he conquered. He didn't strive for assimilation like other generals, in fact quite the opposite. He did spread Greek culture, yes, but he also took with him the cultures of the lands he spent time in. His empire was a beautiful melting pot of races.
The inability of his empire to survive without him says much about him as well. He ...more

Julius Caesar Gaius Julius Caesar, known by his cognomen Julius Caesar, was a Roman politician and military general who played a critical role in the events that led to the demise of the Roman Republic and the rise of the Roman Empire.

Very few generals can boast having one so many pitched battles at such damning odds. He was a brilliant tactician, able to make effective use of his troops to achieve various and often unorthodox tactical advantages. To add to this, he was able to wage and win a civil war against a powerful general with an army of equal discipline and greater numbers AND the weight of legitimacy against him. He could not have done just anything to win the civil war. The politics of civil war in Rome were extremely tricky, and only a brilliant man could win a war while acting within the socio-political constraints of Rome to preserve his popularity and establish his supremacy.

Most others like to mention Alexander "the Great" as the greatest general. Granted, he did some spectacular things, that should be remembered. However, we should not remember generals purely for the spectacular aspects of their leadership. Regardless, if we did, Caesar would still be near the top of the list, ...more

Julius Caesar rocks. Despite being and AMAZING politician, he was an even better strategist. Being able to pull of more wins where you shouldn't have versus obvious wins is something else. Note that the only way to get Caesar out of the picture was assasination, not the usual civil what because they knew Caesar would blow them out of the sky!

Military genius who conquered Gaul and defeated the great Pompeii to become dictator of Rome. He was known as the destroyer of tribes, he killed 500,000 Germans who tried to cross the roman border. His siege of Alesia was a great military achievement.

Here is why I think Caesar is the best military commander in history. If the earth would be under attack by alien forces, I would wish to revive Caesar to lead the resistance.

On the most basic level, he was a brilliant leader of men. He knew every centurion of his army by name, and on more than one occasion his personal appearance on the battlefield saved the day. In fact, he was so beloved by his men that they would do literally anything he asked them for. When one of his legions tried a mutiny after the civil war, his sole threat of discharging them from his service stopped it already.

Then, on the battlefield he was a brilliant general of troops. His tactical genius, readiness to take (even personal) risks, quickness and creativity is unmatched in military history. This was best demonstrated in Alesia, likely the most astonishing win of all time. But also his comeback win at the Sabis, and the defeat of the Alexandrines are prime examples of his brilliancy.

He ...more

Genghis Khan Genghis Khan c. 1162 – August 18 1227, born Temüjin, was the founder and Great Khan of the Mongol Empire, which became the largest contiguous empire in history after his death.

Genghis Khan ruled the largest contigious empire in the world to date: The Mongol Empire. It pretty much covered almost ALL of Asia and some parts of Eastern Europe. The Mongols pretty much killed anyone who got in their way and nobody could've stopped them. Even the Abbasid Islamic Empire couldn't stop them. Of course they were defeated off by the Mamluks, but remember the only reason they didn't conquer Western Europe was because their king got sick. Otherwise, who knows how the history of the world could've changed considering that Western Europe pretty much took over the entire world.

The story of Genghis, at least from his perspective, is miraculous. Son of a Mongol chieftain, he and his family were kicked out of their clan and left to die on the desolate Mongolian plains when his father died without naming his heir and his bondsman took over and expelled the potential threats to his rule. Why did he not kill them? Because the plains should have been enough to do the job. But they didn't, Genghis' family survived, and over many years, Genghis managed to go from nothing to leader of a few outcasts like himself, to leader of a clan, to leader of his former clan and others, etc etc until he managed to fully unite the entirety of the Mongol steppes. This in itself was an amazing achievement.

Needing to solidify his rule, he invaded the Xi Xia of China. In a completely different terrain and facing stone walls most of his people had never encountered, as well as a professional army, Genghis brought them to heel. In his war against the Chin dynasty, facing the ...more

Really, most of these generals were defeated in battle, (Hannibal), were replaced, (Patton), or his men had very low morale, (Alexander the Great). The only way Genghis was truly defeated was... He died. His men were loyal, he had superior tactics, and he was never replaced as the head of the Mongol army. He should be the best general in history. Also, Scipio Africanus and Suleiman the Magnificent should be on here.

Any Guy who wins battles in conditions as different as Russian Steppes, Middle Eastern Arid landscapes and dense Urban settings is a genius. Add to that, that Genghis Khan's army was not the technologically most advanced even at that time; for example their armor was much inferior than the still plated armors or chain-mail armors used by his adversaries. And more often than not, they fought without any huge numerical superiority. Therefore Generalship becomes all the more important.

Hannibal Barca Hannibal, fully Hannibal Barca, was a Punic military commander from Carthage, generally considered one of the greatest military commanders in history.

Hannibal Barka will forever be remembered as the man who brought Rome to its knees. Such a feat has seldom been repeated, and many of my friends would never have even heard of Carthage were it not for him. Every battle he fought, the Romans had every advantage, numbers, terrain, you name it, the Romans had it. But the one thing they didn't have was Hannibal. He was, defeated, it's true. But as I said, Rome still had every advantage. The general who beat him did not beat him purely out of military skill the way Hannibal did.

His strategies and tactics are still studied in most of the modern military academies
He spend 17 years with his army in roman territory, destroying one roman army being their armies outnumbered, worse equipped and tired in almost each occasion.

Traveled through Spain, France, and the Alps to reach Rome then fought outnumbered, without supplies, and with just mercenaries that he kept from killing each other. Winning almost every battle with opposition from his homeland and without naval support. Almost destroying Rome and forcing allies of Rome to defect. If only he could have brought siege weapons across the Alps then history would replace the Romen Empire with the Carthagien Empire.

I mean going over the alps and then winning even after the deaths is quite a feat.

Napoleon Bonaparte Napoléon Bonaparte was a French military and political leader who rose to prominence during the French Revolution and led several successful campaigns during the Revolutionary Wars.

Simply a titan of military history. His enemies like his allies were all in awe of his boldness and talent. Sure, he lost battles, but a great general is not judged on the battles he lost, but the battles he shouldn't have won. And Napoleon from day one of his military career defied the odds.
Maybe the greatest soldier of all time.

First of all at least spell his first name right... He was a godlike figure whose amazing charisma and military genius brought him victory after victory on the European continent, and in Egypt. He was the Alexander the Great of his time, the modern Caesar, and none could stand against him. His great flaw that ultimately led to his defeat was his belief in his own invincibility, that grew out of previous military victories that he had won.

Napoleon has certainly done much more good for the world than bad. Many people label him a tyrant and military dictator, and in some ways he was. However he was the embodiment of the French Revolution. He was building an empire, but at the same time he was spreading the ideals of liberty, equality, and brotherhood, bred out of the French Revolution. He freed enslaved peoples in Croatia and Poland (so much that his name is mentioned in the Polish national anthem) and wrote a law code that remains with France to this day, and is the base for ...more

This guy would have whipped all of these other generals in about ten minutes the only reason he lost was because he had all of europe and I mean all of Europe against him

Let's be honest with ourselves. Did Alexander the Great conquer all of Europe even when battling literally the rest of Europe. No. Not even Caesar could pull that off. Now I pay my respects where they are due, and don't get me wrong; Alex and Caesar are great and all, but Napoleon is on a whole new level.

Tran Hung Dao

If the Mongolian Empire had the strongest army in the world during that period of time, then the one that defeated that army three times must be even more fearful. Therefore, 1 vote for Tran Hung Dao.

Under his command, Dai Viet (currently Vietnam) armies defeated 2 major Mongolian Invasions in 1285 and 1287. His victories over the mighty Mongol Yuan Dynasty under Kublai Khan are considerably the greatest military feats in world history with strategies of protracted people's war.

The greatest general ever. One of the famous hero I Vietnamese history

Tran Hung Dao is not the greatest general in history... That's fact... He indeed defeated and humiliated Mongol army thrice... But do you think the mongol army only focusing on the viet alone... That was just a small portion of their army and their plan...

Mongol have many enemies because of their ruthlessness and barbaric ways... The rebellion within China from the han people, army from numerous Indian kingdoms who always on guard and watch closely every mongol steps, the massive army of Muslim empire from ayyubid sultanate, zengid sultanate, Egypt ayyubid caliphate, remnants of khwarizm empire, and the turkish mamlukes, which hungry for redemption after the fall of samarkand and baghdad, the Georgian, Armenian and people of kiev who despised them, and of course numerous warlords within the mongol army itself who vying for power...

Zhu yuanzhang waged war on yuan dynasty of mongol and get rid of them ones and for all from China and established the glorious ming dynasty, ...more

Yes and they cannot taken over a small country at that time dude

Nguyen Hue

Nguyen Hue or King Quang Trung was very talent in war strategies and tactics. He moved fifty thousands soldiers from Hue to Ha Noi (more than 600km apart) on foot in 3 days in the year of late 1780. He defeated Chinese Tang's army in 200, 000 soldier in one day. He defeated Thai's invasive army of fifty thousands soldiers also in few hours in another occasion. He defeated French's navy without a warship. He never lost one battle in his whole life.

Nguyen Hue (1752-1792), also known as Emperor Quang Trung is a military genius. He was known for breaking the 30 armies of China's Manchu (in 1789) and 20 Siamese armies (in 1785).
The people of Vietnam are respected him! Forever...

Because he had never lost to any enemies in his life

He is one of the greatest general ever.

Võ Nguyên Giáp

He is one of the most prominent general of all time! Without him, Vietnam couldn't defeat French Colonial and America!

I come from Vietnam, I love my country and I love the World where we are living! Protect it - Make love not War!

Oh yes, the general who haven't ever been defeated. Even he defeated two capitalist empire - France and America.

General Vo Nguyen Giap is a military genius!
Everyone respected him forever...

Robert E. Lee Robert Edward Lee was an American and Confederate soldier, best known as a commander of the Confederate States Army. He commanded the Army of Northern Virginia in the American Civil War from 1862 until his surrender in 1865.

Lee was a decent defensive general, but poor when on offense. His offensive campaigns basically destroyed the Army of Northern Virginia by bleeding it to death.

How many enemy armies did he destroy? His famous victories are very overrated. Shortly after Chancellorsville the army he defeated was stopping him at Gettysburg with heavy losses.

His great strength was not defeating the Union armies he faced, but in defeating the enemy commander, causing them to retreat after taking a stinging but, non-decisive blow. All the Union armies he defeated were capable of fighting again, very soon after their defeats.

When Lee faced a general he could not intimidate (Grant) he was forced to fight a skillful but ultimately losing campaign. In that campaign he inflicted defeats comparable to his earlier ones, the difference was that the opposing general was not intimidated. Once that happened his army was doomed, since he was never able to inflict a decisive defeat tat destroyed ...more

One fact that is often forgotten about Lee is that he was not the commander of the confederate forces in the Civil War. He commanded one army, and with that single army conducted the total defense of the CSA. He was not allowed any command over the total war strategy used by his country, and had no control over resources, troop movements, and logistics that go into winning a war. The fact that his country mismanaged resources, did not collaborate in a cohesive defense, and offered not means of production for a prolonged war, illustrates how important and effective Lee's tactics really were. While the union were able to focus their whole war strategy in concert against the south, Lee became the south as he won victory after victory against larger, better equipped, better trained, and better fed troops. No other commander on this list had to fight with such handicaps, and no other commander would have seen Lee's success if they had to. It's easy to say that since the confederacy lost, ...more

Lee is overrated, and certainly isn't in the same class as the greatest of world history. Gettysburg was winnable, and likely the war with it due to the spectre of the peace democrats looming over the 1864 election. But due to mistakes by Lee and by his subordinates like Ewell and Hill, whose blunders he is as much responsible for as their triumphs, he was outmaneuvered by George Meade and lost both the battle and war decisively- the only war in which he was ever a major player.

Moreover, Lee's level and frequency of success declined markedly and immediately upon the death of Stonewall Jackson. While there were obviously other factors in play, I believe it's reasonable to give Jackson a healthy share of the credit for Lee's early success, or alternatively to fault Lee for his inability to coach up lesser officers to execute adequately to maintain that success.

I defy anyone to point out a military leader who had been provided more underwhelming materials and supplies and was as successful as Lee. I am a Californian, born to a New York couple. So this isn't shrouded in southern pride. He was simply better. But not able to overcome the shortcomings and short supply of his forces. And, 'yes,' Stonewall Jackson was an incredibly adept general and was a serious loss to Lee. Perhaps even a better general than Lee (debatable). But Lee has to go down as one of the all time greatest generals in history.

George Washington George Washington was the first President of the United States, the Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War, and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States.

Washington prevailed in a civil war against the most powerful Empire the World has ever seen, the British Empire that at one time ruled a quarter of the worlds population and covered a third of its arable land mass.
He ran the British out of Boston without firing a shot, but by moving artilery through the black of night and build a fortress for it that over looked Boston harbor. He was able to strategically retreat at the right times knowing that it was more important to hold his force together than to win a battlefield victory against an enemy that outnumbered him often as much as ten to one.

Despite the odds against him, he prevented the British from marching north along the Hudson river to cut America in half from the New England colonies where most of the American manufacturing was located then. He did that with smoke and mirrors, harassing the outlying areas of British control leaving them feeling insecure about the logistical base in New York.

Then when the time ...more

Brilliant! He should be in the Top 5, he helped to create the most significant country in history. He did this by defeating the largest empire on earth.

I agree George Washington was a great leader however, he was not one of the greatest 100 generals even. General Washington had extreme luck in every series of events that happened throughout the Revolutionary War. Back to even his British military career he was just about average. Same as in the Revolutionary War he never did anything great just good enough to accomplish what needed to be accomplished. He did benefit from being an inspiring leader and that is a list he would be in the top ten he did have the ability to inspire men to follow him this showed in all of the parts of his life.

That along with the odds make him a great but underrated general. - Stalin

George Washington was one of the greatest generals of all time definitely higher up on this list but at least its #9. Still, after the American Revolutionary War, when George Washington was going to retire, the king of England heard this and said, "If he does this, he will be the greatest man ever." I think that would be a bit amazing if the leader of the opposing army said that about me, I would be feeling pretty good about myself.

The Contenders

David IV of Georgia David IV, also known as David the Builder, of the Bagrationi dynasty, was a king of Georgia from 1089 until his death in 1125.

In 1121 he, with his army of 55.000 men won against seljuks. Their army composed of 600.000 soldiers. The battle of Didgori is often regarded as battle of "miraculous victory". Before the battle David ordered his troops to block their way back addressing soldiers that they would either win or die there. Over 70 percent of seljuks were killed and rest were taken in prisoners.

He was very young when was crowned. He inherited not only political and economical problems, but disastrous results from earthquakes of previous years. But in several years he managed to gain victory on Seljuks, who were hazardous for Europe and thus he saved not only his own country, but Europe too.
His name was widely spread in contemporary world and in Europe he was compared to St. Peter. He was savior also of Armenia and Shirvan (territory of modern Azrebaijan). These countries were quite week by that time, they asked the king David the Builder, to take them under his protection. By the way, the king was the only, who managed to free Ani, former capital of Armenia, and give it back to Armenians. So, his strategic point of view was covering quite a wide territories and what's main - he was not an Emperor, but maintained national state structure in each country, who went under his protection.
He managed to begin the Golden Age of Georgia, which lasted almost 2 centuries. ...more

One of the greatest Military General world have ever seen... King who rebiult from ruins his country and made it strongets in East Europe... He deserves being FIRTS!

Greatest king and human of the whole Caucasus and nearby places.

George S. Patton George Smith Patton Jr. was a General of the United States Army who commanded the U.S. Seventh Army in the Mediterranean theater of World War II, and the U.S. Third Army in France and Germany following the Allied invasion of Normandy in June 1944.

Sorry, can't agree with this selection. Great generals defeated foes who outnumbered them, or by employing amazing tactics. Germany was at the verge of defeat at the hands of the Russians even before D-Day. So the western Allies attacked France when much of Germany's armed forces were busy in the East. Patton therefore wasn't taking on a superior foe, but a half defeated and depleted enemy. In France the Allies had complete air superiority and harassed German ground forces incessantly. Patton had little Luftwaffe opposition. And for the most part, he was well supplied, unlike the Germans. Of course he accomplished many things and helped defeat the Nazis. But he doesn't belong on a list with Alexander the Great and Hannibal. Of course, we'll never know if he could have defeated Germany's best troops if they were well supplied, only had to do battle on one front, and had a strong Luftwaffe to support them.

During the War in Africa, which ironically ended today on May 11, 1943 with the signing of the Axis surrender to the allies, was because of Patton's bold moves. Before World War II, he was involved in the tank design for the Americans towards the end of World War I. He was the reason why we had the tank division of World War II. Granted, he slapped soldiers with PTSD, (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder), but he was important in defeating the Desert Fox. His use of artillery to batter the Germans was the reason for taking Africa, and he was the cause for the Axis losing so much of their supplies. This has caused many to call Patton's victories "inferior," but in actuality, it was he who caused that shortage in the first place. He also helped quench the Germans in Sicily, by making an extremely bold attack, by coming through the shore, and beating the British General Montgomery to Sicily. He then helped strike quickly and at irregular times, to help prevent the ability for the Germans to ...more

Offensive in planning, attacking, and commitment. Even his logistical methods were far advanced than those he fought with or against. Decision in the heat of battle was something given to only those to whom it was in all human interest to succeed. A vision of the battlefield gained from the vision of the past. Patton used that vision to defeat his enemy. His lust for achieving glory was his only defeating quality. He fought Rommel on even tactics and won at every turn. Hitler was not affraid of Patton but his generals were. He was certain to reach Berlin if not for Allied political positions that held up the war and increased loss of life. Patton for the age and the moment in the world at war was the best leader and the best combat soldier to win.

Great choice. Would think he would be rated higher on the list.


humble and not a tyrant, even fed the enemies

Saladin planned his attacks well, only fought with reason and gave his enemies freedom after his enemies killed even his own family.

It's our wits that makes us man.

Out of his time, a highly sophisticated general, who in his high manners, ethics and moral in combat, reflected the true image of Jesus, Mohammad and the holy land! Even though the night templers used all the dirty tactics against him, sacked innocent women, babies etc. Drank the blood of their victims, rapped women and burnt holy shrines, he refused to act like them and instead respected and protected everyone including his enemies. Christians as well as Muslims fought under his leadership to free the holy land. He won the hearts of everyone, that even was praised by Richard the lion heart!

Fredrick the Great

This man took the worst of situations and made the very best of them. Prussia had a strong military and that was about it. It had divided territory, a weak economy, a small population, and had a small land area compared to powers such as France and Russia. He proved to the world that Prussia was a force to be reckoned with and could easily contend with the larger European powers of the time.

Google Rossbach and Leuthen,

He was one of the best tacticians to have existed.

When Napoleon entered Berlin on 27 October 1806, he visited the tomb of Frederick the Great and instructed his marshals to remove their hats there, saying, "If he were alive we wouldn't be here today".

He pioneered what he called 'The Oblique Attack', was studied and admired by Napoleon, and was able to defend Prussia against three European Empires allied against him with limited resources at his disposal.

Sun Tzu

Defined what it meant to be a general, and taught the greatest how to be great. This man wrote the literal War Bible, of which also every great wartime leader after his time read. The "Art of War" was read all across the world, and influenced many great (and slightly bad) men to create true strength behind their armies, and lead forward with pride. He was such a fine general, that he has transgressed to a sort of myth, as while his book exist, it is unknown whether he truly existed. That, is to be a legend.

Wrote the Art of War which shaped military history forever and predicted the outcomes of many battles.

Never lost a battle, even when outnumbered 10 to 1. Put himself on Deadly Ground (read the book) with his troops, thereby leading by example. And my personal favorite, turned a group of hookers (read: king's concubines) into a fighting force just to pass the interview and get the job!

The Art of War might not seem like much today, but that is only because EVERY SINGLE GREAT GENERAL IN KNOWN HISTORY, either followed the strategies of this beast, or simply used the same by coincidence.

As much as I like Saladin for his mercy, Julius Caesar for his overall greatness and Genghis Khan for his bad assery and the fact that he brought great changes that has made our modern world today much better, none of these guys can compare to Sun Tzu, the General that defined success in warfare.

That might be the only thing I know about him (having read his book), but that is all I need to know to claim that there is, nor will ever be any general that compares to this one.

Erwin Rommel the Desert Fox Erwin Johannes Eugen Rommel, popularly known as the Desert Fox, was a German field marshal of World War II. He worked under Adolf Hitler's Third Reich as a leading general and gained fame from his battles in North Africa.

Excellent leader as well as great human being. His army did not committed any war crimes. Under his command axis army was almost have have won north African campaign. With his small army and badly outnumbered he was able to pull out remarkable victories.

Erwin Rommel - easily the greatest military mind of the 20th century, with day light second, and certainly in the top few for all time. Many do not realise how incredibly close he came to single handedly winning WW2 for the axis, despite far inferior forces and supplies at his disposal.

Rommel was a magnificent rebel of Nazism. Fought as a soldier, a patriotic man and an honourable opponent of the Western allies. Although he isn't as great as Manstein, his character is more interesting due to repudiating war crime orders from Hitler.

Rommel should be #1 because the tactics he enforced in battle are what America wins with today. The allies did not break out of Normandy until he was wounded!

Erich Von Manstein

He was not only the most brilliant strategist of all our generals, but he had a good political sense. A man of that quality was too difficult for Hitler to swallow for long. At conferences Manstein often differed from Hitler, in front of others, and would go so far as to declare that some of the ideas which Hitler put forward were nonsense.

The man who defeated the Allies in France deserves to be on this list

A pure military genius, he could have won the Second World War for the Nazi Germany had he been given the freedom of actions that he asked Hitler so many times. His idea for an attack trough Ardennes has led to an almost complete victory over France and her allies in 1940. In East he starting distinguishing himself by conquering the most fortified port in the world at that time (Sevastopol) in a bloody fight. Then he saved the Southern part of the German Eastern front by conducting a masterful retreat in the winter of 1942-43, only for stopping the Soviet offensive in whan it is called the Third Battle of Kharkov. His defeat at Kursk was mostly caused by the inability of Army Group Center to put enough pressure on the Northern part of the Soviet bulge, although he was nearly to achieve a breakthrough into the enemy's rear, being stopped by the stiff Soviet resistance and Hitler's decision to halt the operation "Citadel". In 1943-44 he showed good skills by inflicting huge ...more

He is no doubt the most outstanding commander of not Germany but the entire war. I don't get why Rommel had more fame and popularity than him. He's 10 times more of a general than Rommel would ever be.

King David of Israel

A patriarch of three western religions, killed giants, conquered his enemies, wrote songs, and the father of some of the greatest minds in the area at the time.

King David the great grand father of the Arab Jews, Jordan and Palestine, not Ashkenazi Russian Jews, had the greatest kingdom that ever existed. God gave him rule over all beings, including Humans, Animals, Plants, the Wind and Demons.

He was a ancestor to Messiah (Jesus Christ) and he foresaw and wrote prophetic about the messiah in the psalms (in Bible) as God's millennial king who will bring peace and prosperity to the world!

If god is with him who can be against him

Ulysses S. Grant Ulysses S. Grant was an American soldier and statesman who served as Commanding General of the Army and the 18th President of the United States, the highest positions in the military and the government of the United States.

Most definitely the greatest general from the Americas. For all the talk of him being a ‘Butcher’, people always forget that the battle which gave him that reputation (Cold Harbor) was the only proper battle (not counting small skirmishes and the like) he lost he EVER lost in his entire career.

According to statistical analysis done by Ethan Arsht, he was the 7th greatest general of all time. By percentage, he was a better general than his rival, General Lee. He is often called a butcher due to the number of men he lost, but its percentages that win wars, just ask Pyrrhus of Epirus. Grant was an American hero and snatched victory from his treasonous rivals, and all while probably drunk!

Perhaps one of the most underrated generals in American history. He was brilliant in seeing the large goals of the campaign. Although he may not have inflicted casualties in the Overland and Petersburg campaigns. His victories always served a great strategic purpose. He destroyed 3 armies, fostered great leadership under him, and in many ways won the war for the union.

Before confronting Lee's army, Grant was not known as a butcher. Statistics show that Lee lost a far higher percentage of his troops. The moniker of butcher arrived only as Grant was required to throw his troops against entrenched forces who were hoping that, in time, public opinion in the North would give way, that is, before Grant's army was successful.

Georgy Zhukov

Could stand up to Stalin, a merciless paranoid dictator, and walk away alive on every occasion, commanded the defences of Leningrad, Moscow and Stalingrad (the most important battle in modern history) and drove the Germans all the way back to Berlin to see them sign an unconditional surrender to the Soviet Union and the Allies.

A general beloved by the Soviets, respected and even admired by the West, he is the greatest general of modern history and quite possibly the reason the USSR won the Eastern Front, and with it, the Second World War as a whole.

He turned the tide of the ever-losing War in Eastern Europe. He is the greatest Soviet (and Russian, for that matter) to come out of the country.

In a Red Army rigidly controlled and even micromanaged by Stalin he was able to tactfully and deftly maneuver Russian troops in ways never before done and win battles where he was doomed from the start. I don't believe he ever lost a single battle as a commander and was easily the greatest military leader in a war that included many of our histories best.

Defeated Nazis. IF you are russian or used to live on USSR or land which was one part of USSr vote him :V - Minhluxuan

Alexander Suvorov

National hero of Russia, generalissimo, field marshal general, field marshal general of the Holy Roman Empire, great marshal of the Piedmontese troops, cavalier of all the Russian orders of his time, Count Suvorov-Rymniksky and Prince of Italy the count Count Suvorov-Rymniksky, Alexander Vasilievich Suvorov is a Russian general, founder of Russian military theory. In total, he gave more than 60 battles and did not lose a single one; he repeatedly defeated significantly superior in numbers enemy forces. Known for his great caring for soldiers.

Soldiers are the lifeblood of the army. Suvorov promoted hygiene and self reliance among his troops. That lead to high moral amongst his men who were healthy and able. He spent much time personally training and teaching his men how to think, without relying on corporal punishment. Hygiene in an 18th century army he died of old age at 70 having lead a successful campaign against revolutionary France the year before.

Since He is not the first one in the list I know that people voting for others don't know history.

Suvorov is one of the few generals in history who never lost a battle, being undefeated in 67 large battles while frequently having numerical disadvantage. He drove Napoleon's French forces out of Italy. Therefore Suvorov is the best general of all time.

Horatio Nelson Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson, 1st Duke of Bronté KB was a British flag officer in the Royal Navy.

Greatest British admiral of all time hence the best naval tactician ever! Nile, trafalgar, when face by two different navy's both with superior numbers. Britain didn't the biggest empire in the world, for no reason. Navy was key for expansion and Nelson was at the fore front of Britain's navy.

The victor at the Nile, Copenhagen, and Trafalgar cemented his great role in world history. The wooden walls of England were often held together by Nelson.

Should be top 15. Doing battle at sea if far greater a task

The best british navy commander in british history. From spain to nile until denmark. He travelled far and win many major victories including the sea battle against napoleon fleet in nile 9napoleon not present though)

Stonewall Jackson

His nickname says it all. He only died because his own man shot him in the arm. Who knows had he not died maybe we would be looking at there being a Confederate States of America.

The true genius behind the greatness many attribute wrongly to Robert E. Lee. Read Jackson's letters, and biography written after the war, he had a concise plan to eliminate the threat of federal invasion and was constantly turned down by the short sighted Aristocrats, Lee and Jefferson, because he wasn't "one of them."

The Shannendowa Valley Campaign is a strategic masterpiece, and is studied thoroughly by modern military schools. Jackson is certainly the greatest American General of all time.

This man led an army of mainly farmers and at best semi-professional soldiers and inspired, lead, and trained them into the most courageous, disciplined, and effective army in the war. They were known as "Foot Calvary" they covered 130 miles in 3 and 1/2 days.

Probably the best battlefield commander in US History. Lee was the best strategist. Marshall the best at operations.

Joshua (Bible)

Joshua is to military science as Santa Claus is to toy making.

Great as it can be, men's strength comes from this world. Joshua's strength comes from domain above. For anyone fancy the real power, this man is whom you should look into.

Although he was awesome, Joshua won because God was with him. Example: the walls of Jericho. So, I suppose that this is more of a vote for God.

The bible is fake this should not be on here - Vsauce

Mehmed II

His name is Sultan Muhammad Al-Fateh. Ruler of Ottoman Empire and conqueror of Byzantine Empire. He siege Constantinople, the most impregnable city in the world, for months. At the end, he ordered a European military engineer to develop a very large cannon, bring it across Bosphorus Straits, and bombard the city wall. He is a very pious muslim ruler.

One of the greatest Generals in the history who conquered Constantinople from the Byzantine Empire which neither any other empire or person could.

Conquered Constantinople at the age of 21 bringing an end to the Byzantine empire.

Yup, but because the Byzantines were already on their last legs after centuries of conflict. The Ottomans were just the last group to attack them, and Mehmed the last Ottoman to. The Byzantines were ready for the plucking. Mehmed just mopped them up.

He should be in at least top 5.

Attila the Hun Attila, frequently called Attila the Hun, was the ruler of the Huns from 434 until his death in March 453.

Brought the Roman empire to it's knees. It took the full force of the Romans, the Visigoths, and the Alans to fight the Huns and DRAW. Not defeat him, they pulled a stalemate. 3 armies against him and they weren't victorious and yet people put this guy below George S Paton?

33? Really? The dude who broke the Roman Empire?

At a time ruled by what some say was the greatest empire ever, Attila was the man who put fear into everyone. Can this be said about anyone else? No, why is he not top 3...

Attila the Hun should be in the top three. This placement is not correct.

Ngô Quyền

Wow! I just learned about him a few days ago. I heard that he defeated nearly 900 Chinese ships.

A great military leader. The Chinese navy feared him so much that they never returned until 500 years later

Great and brilliant General of Vietnam with his famous attack in 938 on the Bach Dang river


Scipio Africanus

51, really? He is probably the best military commander of all time. He didn't JUST defeat Hannibal, who is arguably the 2nd best general in History. He defeated EVERYTHING and EVERYONE sent against him. Conqueror of Spain, and one of the few undefeated generals in history.

Hannibal was five miles outside the city of Rome; intense political pressure existed for Scipio to fight Hannibal in Italy. Instead, Scipio demonstrated military and political genius, going to Africa to attack Carthage, causing Hannibal to leave Italy. Brilliant. Scipio beat Hannibal, launching Rome's preeminence. He's second only to Alexander.

Might he have not win Hannibal Rome would have never existed, without the roman culture Europe, as we know it, would have never been born, without Europe this world would be totally different.

Without him our pilar stone of this world culture would be Carthage.

Because, Hannibal is listed in this website as number seven and Scipio defeated Hannibal. And he is a better general then Stalin who is ranked higher in this list.

The Duke of Wellington

While Napoleon conquered most of Europe, Wellington conquered all of Napoleon's generals!He should have been a bit higher.

I prefer him better than Napoleon. Sure Napoleon may be more militarily experienced and had better tactics but I like Wellington's aspects better. He was smarter, studies his opponents well, better strategist and out-thought most of Napoleon's generals which lead him to many victories over the French. Compared to Napoleon he never made any serious blunders or terrible mistakes. He infact learns from his mistakes carefully and thought better from his losses.

He had a tactical mind that was wider thinking than just the battle at hand. The Lines of Torres Vedras for example, he knew that he could not defeat the French Peninsular army in open battle, so under state secrecy had 3 defensive fortification lines constructed to protect Lisbon and following a scorched earth policy, forced the French into full retreat with them suffering numerous casualties through starvation and disease. Despite his many victories in Portugal and Spain, Wellington stated that his greatest victory was that at Assaye in India, 1803, where he had roughly 10, 000 men and 17 cannon against 50, 000 men with 100 cannon. A hard fought victory from one of Britain's greatest generals.

As far as I can tell, Wellington is the only General on this list to have defeated any of the others, and yet he is further down the list than his vanquished opponent. 60 battles undefeated over a period of fifteen years, where mostly he was hopelessly outnumbered, is an undeniably impressive record. This fourth son of a wealthy Irish land owner joined the military as it was believed he would never amount to anything - and yet he is the only one of the Wellesley family who has any level of fame. Simply phenomenal general and should definitely be in the top ten.

Sultan l-Ẓāhir Rukn al-Din Baibars al-Bunduqdari

Probably one of the best Turkic commanders of all time after Tamerlane, I mean he stopped the mongols, come on..

Sultan Baibars of Egypt, a red head mighty khazak Nomad, who defeated the biggest Mangolian army lead by holako on the soil of the Holy land, and stopped what would have been the invasion of the mangos to the western world. With a few nomad warriors, he used the mangol style of combat to defeat them. Defeated the Crusaders of Europe in many occusions protecting the holy land from all invaders. Mighty warrior and a great general!

Robert The Bruce

Deserves to be much higher on this list if victory against all the odds and adapting his strategy to beat a far larger and better equipped opponent are any kind of measure. At one stage he was reduced to a small band of followers whilst still wearing the crown of Scotland, a King in name only, his family were imprisoned or murdered, and yet by cunning, guile and a tremendous self belief he fought a bitter and relentless campaign against a ruthless oppressor, united Scotland and won back her independence. An incredible story.

"A natural born leader disgustingly overshadowed by William Wallace, Bruce curbed his fiery and hot temper to become the leader and King his country so desperately needed and over time freed his country from occupation from the then mightiest nation and army on the planet. From losing the battle of Methven where he was attacked by night he realised the futility of taking on the English Army head on and became one of the greatest guerrilla leaders of all time, whilst recognising the advantages that terrain can bring he won a succession of medium sized battles, Glen Trool, Loudoun Hill, Pass of Brandner, Barra, and was the only Scottish King to advance successfully deep into England smashing the English at the Battle of Byland and forcing Edward to flee for his life. He successfully melded the wild Islemen and Highlanders with Scottish Chivalry that created a magnificent fighting force whose crowning glory came at Bannockburn, and to remember his opponents pretty much ALWAYS outnumbered ...more


Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden

If not one of the greatest generals of all time truly he was one of the greatest military minds ever. Called the "Father of Modern Warfare" as he evolved and revolutionized warfare from a very static thing with big blocks of slow to maneuver infantry supported by firearms and cannons, to one that utilized smaller, more flexible units with a much greater percentage of formations comprising firearms. He utilized concentrated fire to stop cavalry charges cold, "cross-trained" the soldiers to be able to fill any role/gap ( in particular with the early "hand-guns" that he placed particular value upon), standardized cannon sizes and incorporated the smaller cannons directly into the infantry units to allow maximum mobility.

He recognized the excellence of the training and equipment of his men while not being blind to its greatest weakness, an overall small amount of manpower to call upon. This meant casualties were magnified in cost within his regiments and they were ill-suited to ...more

While his successes in the Thirty Years' War ended up being fairly short-term, and ended up lengthening a particularly bloody war, rather than decisively ending it, his innovation in the organization of his country and its military proved to advance the military thinking of all of Europe. On top of that, he managed to turned the tide against Tilly, the general at the head of the Habsburg-led faction in the Holy Roman Empire, who at this point in the war, had proved to be more than capable, overpowering more than a few generals in the early to middle stages. Unfortunately for Sweden and its Protestant allies, the "Lion of the North" would die within two years of landing in the Holy Roman Empire, and as such, the Protestant League turned to France to lead them.

Gustav II Adolf, the King of Sweden from 1611 to 1632, credited as the founder of Sweden as a Great Power. He led Sweden to military supremacy during the Thirty Years War, helping to determine the political as well as the religious balance of power in Europe.

The Lion Of The North. He has the name for a reason, he raised the swedish empires economy and expanded the borders at such a young age, if he would have lived longer who knows what things he might have done.

Dwight D. Eisenhower Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower was an American politician and general who served as the 34th President of the United States from 1953 until 1961. He was a five-star general in the United States Army during World War II and served as Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe.

He was both a great general and U.S. President. His creative strategy made the allies win WWII. - JoeBoi

He was a great leader and merciless and the things that made him a great leader in turn made him a good president

Had to plan strategy and deal with silly subordinates at the same time

Unmatched at organization and supply chains.

Churchill and Eisenhower are close seconds to Patton, if you ask me. - BonJovi17

Yi Sun-sin

This man was one of few Koreans who wasn't corrupt at the time. He started the war with everything, many ships, resources, etc. But after almost every one of his major victories, Korea would demote him to a foot soldier and destroy all of their boats. At a time late into the war, when things were at their darkest for Korea, which at this point had been reduced to their northern boarder, he scraped together 13 ships and lured the Japanese navy, 330 strong, to a small channel where the current shifted at a certain time. At exactly the time the current changed, he slammed onto the Japanese ships and utterly demolished all of them. During his last fight, in which he had actual boats, he was hit by a stray projectile, died, and his navy didn't know that he had died until after winning the battle. Without this one man, all of Asia would be ready for the taking of Japan. If anyone denies that this man, who never lost a battle, even against the greatest of odds, isn't one of if not the best ...more

This dude never lost a ship in battle, destroying a Japanese navy that outnumbered him on every occasion, put simply the man came as close to perfection is as possible, and he did all of this whilst being demoted by jealous superiors multiple times throughout his life, always rising again when the time came, if the aim of war is to kill your opponents and not be killed, this is the man.

This should be number 1, he has gone from the lowest rank to the highest, to the lowest to the highest to the lowest and finally back to the highest! I believe *don't quote me here* that in the number of battles won puts him in the top 25 for highest amount of battles won

From a purely statistical standpoint, this man should be in the number 1 spot. He never lost a battle in his career, and in many of these battle he was at a sore disadvantage. In one battle, he was outnumbered 333 to 13, and he won losing only 10 men and destroying 31 Japanese ships.
On top of all that, he was a self-taught tactician, created a new kind of warship, and was constantly being demoted and politically attacked by corrupt officials. Without a doubt, Yi Sun Shin is one of the greatest commanders of all time.

Heinz Guderian

With Rommel and Patton one of the greatest tank generals of WWII.

The father of mechanized warfare. Responsible for countless victories on the Eastern front in WWII and one of the main architect of operation Fall Rot.

Heinz Guderian, Was the Grand Father of all modern combat

He invented the tactic that took down Poland, France, Norway, Denmark, almost russia, etc.

Arthur Wellesley

He and the duke of wellington were the same person

Constantly beat larger armies through sheer determination and tactics

Is Arthur Wellesley any relation to tthat other great general on your list; the Duke of Wellington?

A superb General, he was able to beat a force under Napoleon Bonaparte. He is very underrated, due to the victory being gained by the aid of Prussian cavalry. However, He is a brillian tactician, who more or less saved Spain and Portugal from the mighty French Empire.

Germanicus Germanicus was a member of the Julio-Claudian dynasty and a prominent general of the Roman Empire, who was known for his campaigns in Germania. The son of Nero Claudius Drusus and Antonia Minor, Germanicus was born into an influential branch of the patrician gens Claudia.

Good general, very popular. He was the successor of August everybody wanted.

He got the name Germanicus

Zhuge Liang

A very intelligent and brilliant military adviser for Shu Kingdom during three kingdom era in China. He develop a strategy and plan to defeat the mighty Wei Kingdom in several campaign. Even though he failed to conquer the enemy, his tactics and strategy really change the tide of battle.

We was the most brilliant military strategist of the Three Kingdoms era.

like the smartest person in his millennial

He is greatest strategist in history

Isoroku Yamamoto

Planning Pearl Harbour.
Where are all the other famous Japanese commanders? Takeda Shingen, Oda Nobunaga, Toyotomi Hideyoshi etc.?

He was great though Toyotomi Hideyoshi is not that smart. he thought he was alexender the great and listen to fis plans: 1.destroy korea in a month (which will not happen even in 100 years) 2. take chinas lands as his cousins (what? china is literally a dragon) 3. devour india (does he even know where its located? )

Richard I of England

He alone was almost as successful as the first crusade the only good one mind you with a fifth the manpower fighting a united Islam

Not a good king but a superb military commander, especially with his successes against Saladin on the Third Crusade such as the battles of Arsuf and Jaffa.

Gerd von Rundstedt

He was recalled at the beginning of World War II as Commander of Army Group South in the Polish campaign. He commanded Army Group A during the German invasion of France, and was promoted to the rank of Field Marshal during the 1940 Field Marshal Ceremony. In the Russian Campaign, he commanded Army Group South, responsible for the largest encirclement in history, the Battle of Kiev.

Cyrus the Great

I don't know why Cyrus isn't the first. Alexander didn't compare his empire crumbled rapidly. Cyrus united people from tribes and empires across the known globe and managed him well. He is the only non-Jew to be considered a messiah in Jewish scripture. Created the very first declaration on human rights. He handled everything with great diplomacy and spread order across the world. And when the diplomacy didn't work, he managed to destroy and consume everything in his path. He dethroned the world, and still respected the people that he conquered. Even the fearsome Spartans were afraid of him.

The first to be titled "the Great". He also completely destroyed 3 empires against all odds. The Spartans themselves threatened Cyrus that if he were to touch any Greek city state that he would be attacked, after one of Cyrus's satraps conquered some more Greek territory, the Spartans did nothing.

He conquered Medes, Babylon, Lydia, Chaldean, Croesus and many greek nation states of his time. The empire he founded was truly the biggest of its time and many nations accepted him as their sovereign without a single shed of blood. What makes him great is not how many cities, nations, empires he defeated but how he governed them. His subjects were free to govern themselves, pray to their own god and have their own beliefs. The empire was stable, safe and economy and wealth flourished for everyone of his subjects. He was the first emancipator and truly the fist great general-king. If only other generals/kings followed his lead.

If this man was the king of Persia when Alexander attacked Persia, it would be a impossible task for Alexander to conquer Persia. Cyrus as leader with the army of Darius is unbeatable, even Alexander wouldn't make it against Cyrus.


How is this man not higher?! He genuinely cared about his soldiers, and he helped restore the Roman Empire! What more do you need?

Should be higher, but his name doesn't have the luster, which is representative of his character. Belisarius, to me at least, seems to have generally cared about his soldiers, and seems to be the most human out of all generals I've read about. His craftiness in the siege of Rome, and his ability to think outside the box in terms of set-piece battles, saved not only the lives of his troops, but also kept bloodshed among civilians rather low as well. On top of this, he re-conquered with around 10,000 troops what 100,000 couldn't defend. He did this by always trying to beat his opponents before the battle, and forcing them to withdraw or surrender in order to keep the body count (on both sides) low. But, I must admit, his invasion of Italy wouldn't last, and even within his lifetime most of it was reversed and had to be (re)-re-conquered by Narses, who also proved to be a very competent general who doesn't get much love on this list, partly due to their being few documents of his ...more

I came to this website in large part to see where in the top 5 he would be ranked, and to find him at 94 is comically pathetic. The dude reconstructed the western Roman Empire from scratch. I have little doubt that he would have been the equal of Alexander if he would have been born similarly into royalty. You have him ranked below a guy in Custer who is best known for having his command utterly destroyed, and who was probably at no point in his life one of the 10 best generals in his own country in his own time.

A true icon of dedication, loyalty and service; he did what many others ranked above him have failed to do as generals. To set one's selfish ambition aside and serve the realm are the salient traits of a true general. This is what made the Roman Empire the great power that it was and Belisarius is a great example of the values that the Empire stood on. Its not that he won but HOW he won that makes him a great. Definitely expected him to be higher on the list.

Charles Martel

Simply the greatest and most important battlefield commander in the history of Christianity. His victory over Abdul Rahman in the battle of Tours in 732 AD is the reason Islam failed in its quest to conquer the world. His role in the course of human history, largely forgotten, cannot be overstated. Had he lost, there is no doubt that Rome and Constantinople would have fallen as well and the True Faith would have been extinguished forever. For 15 years before that crucial battle between the Cross and the Crescent, he won over 100 battles against the disparate Germanic warlords of what had been the Western Roman Empire. Charles not only defeated his enemies by fighting them when and where they least expected, he was renowned for leading his vanguard of elite heavily-armoured infantry in every battle. Indeed, on several occasions during his conquests of Germany, he fought and killed the opposing kings in single combat, something that many of the cowardly generals ranked above never ...more

For his time his organizational skills were incredible considering Europe was a rat's nest of local petty nobles. He not only organized a viable standing army, supply lines but then laid a licking on the Islam expansion from N. Africa through Spain and into Europe. He did that with about a 5 to 1 numerical disadvantage plus the dubious loyalty of local nobles.
Europe today would be Muslim and Arab speaking if not for Martel.
He was a genius before any other general considered those tactics including the Chinese.

"The Hammer" stopped the Muslim conquest of Europe. In a time with no nationalist feelings, he pulled together the men and resources needed to stop an enemy that few knew were coming. The lynch pin of Christian Europe, largely forgotten.

This man had a greater impact on world history than far most on this list. Deserves a much higher ranking.

Liu Yu

He defeat all Chinese at this period


Destroyed everything that opposed him, whether they were Mongol, Turkic, Arab or Hindu. Skilled diplomat when it was required. Died on the way to conquer the Yuan dynasty.

He should be in top 20. He did not lose any battle, destroy many kingdoms. He has slowed the rising of the Ottoman empire. He care scientist. (He killed lots of people but didn't kill scientist.)

He worth to be the first in this list. If everybody knows about works done by him they would vote him more actively

He didn't lose any battle he conquered many powerful kingdoms.

Pyotr Bagration

He was great, but he didn't fight for his country.

The great general who fought against Napoleon and was widely respected both by his soldiers and enemy including Napoleon himself. Heroically died in battle of Borodino.

Best general in army of royal Russia

Simply one of the main reasons of Napoleon's defeat on Borodino

Douglas MacArthur Douglas MacArthur (January 26, 1880 – April 5, 1964) was an American Field Marshall and Five-Star General. He was Chief of Staff of the United States Army during the 1930's and played a significant role in the World War II Pacific Theatre. He received the Medal of Honor for his service in the Philippines more.

Have you read his book read it and see what he did

By far the greatest American General of all time. And in the top 5 of all time.

So good he is on this list twice

Best theatre commander in ww2
Strategically and tactically unsurpassed
Kenny Eichelberger Casey and Kincaid all served under him and were all excellent. Hollandia landings were nothing short of amazing..dazzling in conception and brilliantly executed only perhaps Napoleons or maybe Hannibal could have done this

Benito Mussolini Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini was an Italian politician, journalist, and leader of the National Fascist Party, ruling the country as Prime Minister from 1922 until he was ousted in 1943. He ruled constitutionally until 1925, when he dropped all pretense of democracy and set up a legal dictatorship. more.
Peter the Great

Pyotr Alexeyevich (Pyotr I) ruled the Tsardom of Russia and later the Russian Empire from 1682 until 1725. In numerous successful wars he expanded the Tsardom into a huge empire that became a major European power. He led a cultural revolution that replaced some of the traditionalist and medieval social and political system with a modern, scientific, Europe-oriented, and rationalist system.

The most successful Russian Tzar. He revolutionized Russia economy and military. He build St. Petersburg city on the swampy area and became major city in Russia. Under him, Russia became one of the European major power. He led Russia in battle with Sweden and Ottoman Empire even though his miliry tactic not really worth to mention. But he change transform Russia into a respected country.

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