We’ve all heard the stories of how some people have become incredibly wealthy, often as a result of their hard work and ambition. But who are the wealthiest people in the world? Here, we’re taking a look at the top 20 wealthiest people in the world. From tech billionaires to self-made entrepreneurs, these are the stories of real life powerhouses who have made their fortunes through their own sheer determination and courage. Read on to find out more about each individual’s success story and what makes them one of the most affluent people on Earth.
20. Stephen Girard
French-born American banker Stephen Girard was one of the wealthiest people in the world during his lifetime. Born in Bordeaux, France, Girard moved to the United States as a young man and started working as a merchant in Philadelphia. He soon became a successful businessman, and by the time of his death in 1831, his net worth was estimated at $7.5 million.
Girard was a generous philanthropist, and bequeathed much of his fortune to charitable causes. He is perhaps best known for his donation of $1 million to New York City to help it recover from the devastating financial Panic of 1837.
19. John of Gaunt
John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster, KG was an English nobleman, military leader, and politician. He was the third surviving son of King Edward III of England and Philippa of Hainault. John was extremely wealthy due to his position as the Duke of Lancaster, which brought him large incomes from the lands he owned in Lancashire.
He was also one of the wealthiest men in Europe due to his ownership of the duchy of Aquitaine in southwestern France. In addition to his wealth, John was a skilled military commander and played a major role in the Hundred Years’ War between England and France. He was also a key figure in the Wars of the Roses, fighting on behalf of his nephew King Henry VI against the Yorkist faction led by Edward IV and Richard III. John died in 1419, leaving behind a large fortune.
18. Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great was one of the most successful military commanders in history. He was born in 356 BC in Pella, the ancient capital of Macedon. In 334 BC, he became King of Macedon and led his army to victory against the Persian Empire. After his death, his empire was divided among his generals.
Alexander’s legacy has been both praised and criticized. He has been credited with transforming the Greek world by spreading Greek culture and language throughout his empire. However, he has also been criticized for his brutality, as he was known for massacring entire cities that resisted him.
17. Cornelius Vanderbilt
Cornelius Vanderbilt was an American business magnate and philanthropist who built his wealth in the shipping and railroad industries. He is one of the richest people in history, with a net worth of over $100 billion in today’s dollars.
Vanderbilt began his career working on his father’s ferry boat in New York Harbor. He later started his own ferry boat business and made a fortune transporting goods and people between New York and Staten Island. In the early 1830s, Vanderbilt expanded his business into the steamboat industry and soon became one of the most successful entrepreneurs in America.
In the 1850s, Vanderbilt turned his attention to the railroad industry. He acquired several small railroads and consolidated them into what would become the New York Central Railroad, one of the largest railroads in the country. Vanderbilt’s shrewd business acumen made him one of the wealthiest men in America, and he became known as “The Commodore.”
In addition to his business successes, Vanderbilt was also a generous philanthropist. He donated millions of dollars to charities, educational institutions, and medical research. He even gave away his entire fortune to charitable causes upon his death in 1877.
16. Henry Ford
Henry Ford, the founder of Ford Motor Company, was the wealthiest person in the world in 1919. His net worth was an estimated $1.3 billion. Ford’s wealth came from his ownership of shares in his company, which was America’s largest automaker at the time.
In second place was John D. Rockefeller, the oil tycoon and founder of Standard Oil. Rockefeller’s net worth was an estimated $900 million. He was followed by steel magnate Andrew Carnegie, whose net worth was an estimated $600 million.
The fourth and fifth wealthiest people in the world were Cornelius Vanderbilt and J.P. Morgan, respectively. Vanderbilt’s net worth was an estimated $500 million, while Morgan’s was an estimated $400 million.
15. Don Simón Iturri Patiño
Born in Sucre, Bolivia in 1853, Don Simón Iturri Patiño was one of the world’s wealthiest men in his day. His fortune was made in tin mining; he is said to have owned one third of all the tin mines in Bolivia. He also had interests in other industries, including railroads and agriculture. At his peak, he was said to be worth $600 million.
Don Simón lived a life of luxury, with homes in Bolivia, Argentina, Paris, and New York. He was known for his lavish parties and expensive tastes. He owned a yacht, a private plane, and a fleet of cars. He even had a pet cheetah!
Sadly, Don Simón’s wealth could not protect him from tragedy. In 1943, his only son and heir died in a plane crash. Four years later, his wife passed away. Grief-stricken, Don Simón retreated from public life and sold off his businesses. He died in 1947 at the age of 94.
14. Jacob Fugger
Jacob Fugger, often referred to as Jakob Fugger the Rich or sometimes Jakob II. Fugger, was a German merchant, bankers, and entrepreneur who was born in 1459 in Augsburg, Bavaria. He is considered to be one of the wealthiest people of all time.
Fugger’s wealth began with his family’s textile business. He eventually took over the business from his father and expanded it into a large enterprise. His success in business led him to become one of the richest men in Europe. In addition to his textile business, Fugger also invested in mining and other enterprises. He became one of the leading financiers of his day and lent money to both Emperor Maximilian I and Pope Leo X.
At the time of his death in 1525, Fugger’s net worth was estimated at around 2 billion dollars (in today’s money). This made him possibly the wealthiest person in history up to that point.
Heshen was a courtier of the Qing Dynasty in China who amassed a large fortune through corruption and embezzlement. He is believed to have been the wealthiest person in the world at the time of his death in 1799, with a personal fortune estimated at over $100 billion in today’s dollars.
12. Mir Osman Ali Khan
Mir Osman Ali Khan was the last Nizam of Hyderabad and the richest man in the world at the time of his death in 1967. He was born into a noble family in Hyderabad and was educated privately. He ascended to the throne in 1911 at the age of 19, after the death of his father. During his reign, he modernized Hyderabad and developed its infrastructure. He also established several schools and hospitals.
He was a generous ruler and is said to have given away millions of dollars to charities. He was also a great patron of the arts, commissioning many artists and architects to build landmark buildings in Hyderabad. After India’s independence in 1947, Hyderabad became a princely state and he continued to rule until 1950 when it was annexed by India.
He died in 1967, leaving an estimated fortune of $2 billion.
11. Nikolai Alexandrovich Romanov
Nikolai Alexandrovich Romanov was born in Russia in 1868 and died in 1918. He was the last Tsar of Russia and his reign saw the Russian Empire at its largest extent, covering over 20 million square miles. Romanov was assassinated by revolutionaries in 1918 and his body was never found. It is estimated that he had a personal fortune of $300 million at the time of his death, making him one of the wealthiest people in the world.
Top 10 wealthiest people in the world
Ever wonder who the wealthiest people on the planet are? It’s an age-old question, which is often asked without any definitive answer. But now, with the help of Forbes’ annual list of Billionaires, we finally have an answer – these are the top 10 wealthiest people in the world! From tech titans to business moguls, this list covers a wide variety of industries and backgrounds. Read on to learn more about each individual and their respective net worths. Let’s dive in!
10. John D. Rockefeller (1839-1937)
John D. Rockefeller was an American businessman and philanthropist who was the founder of the Standard Oil Company. He is widely considered to be one of the most influential businessmen of his time, and his fortune was estimated to be worth $340 billion in today’s dollars. Rockefeller was a major force in the development of the oil industry, and his wealth helped him to become one of the world’s first billionaires. In his later years, Rockefeller became a prominent philanthropist, donating large sums of money to various charitable causes. He died in 1937 at the age of 97.
9. Andrew Carnegie (1835-1919)
Andrew Carnegie was one of the wealthiest people in the world during his lifetime. He made his fortune in the steel industry and was one of the principal founders of the United States Steel Corporation. Carnegie also invested heavily in other industries such as railroads and banking. He was a generous philanthropist, donating millions of dollars to charities and educational institutions.
Andrew Carnegie was born in Dunfermline, Scotland in 1835. His family immigrated to the United States in 1848, settling in Allegheny, Pennsylvania. Carnegie began working at age 13 in a textile factory and then moved on to work as a telegraph operator and eventually an executive for the Pennsylvania Railroad. In 1865, he invested his savings in a small iron company which he transformed into the Carnegie Steel Company.
Under Carnegie’s leadership, the company became one of the largest and most profitable steel businesses in the world. He sold the company to J.P. Morgan in 1901 for $480 million and used his fortune to fund various philanthropic causes. Carnegie died in 1919 at the age of 83.
8. Catherine the Great (1729-1796)
Catherine the Great is one of the most famous and renowned monarchs in history. She reigned over Russia for more than three decades and was known for her grandiose lifestyle and wealth. Catherine the Great’s reign was a period of great prosperity for Russia, and her court was renowned for its extravagance.
In today’s dollars, it is estimated that Catherine the Great was worth approximately $300 billion. She was truly one of the wealthiest people to have ever lived.
7. Augustus Caesar (63BC-14AD)
Augustus Caesar, who lived from 63BC to 14AD, was the first emperor of Rome and one of the wealthiest people in the world. He was born into a wealthy family and his father was a member of the ruling class. Augustus was a skilled military commander and politician, and he used his power to benefit himself and his family. Augustus built many public works projects, including roads and temples, and he also increased the size of the Roman army. His reign was marked by peace and prosperity, and he is considered one of the greatest rulers in history.
6. Joseph Stalin (1878-1953)
Joseph Stalin was the dictator of the Soviet Union from 1929 to 1953. He rose to power after the death of Vladimir Lenin and consolidated his control over the country through a series of purges. Stalin’s regime was characterized by totalitarianism, a cult of personality, and brutal repression.
Under Stalin, the Soviet Union underwent rapid industrialization and collectivization, which led to massive economic growth. However, this growth was accompanied by widespread human rights abuses, including forced labor, mass deportations, and political repression. Stalin’s rule ended with his death in 1953.
5. Empress Wu (624-705)
Empress Wu (624-705) was one of the wealthiest people in the world during her lifetime. She was the Empress of China and ruled over a vast empire. Her wealth came from the taxes she collected from her subjects, as well as from trade and commerce. She was also a generous patron of the arts, and supported many artists and musicians.
4. Akbar I (1542-1605)
Akbar I was the third Mughal Emperor, who reigned from 1556 to 1605. He was one of the greatest rulers of the Mughal Empire and his reign was marked by a period of great prosperity and progress. Akbar was a great patron of the arts and learning, and his court became a centre of cultural activity. He was also a great military leader and expanded the Mughal Empire considerably. Akbar’s wealth is estimated to have been around $21 billion at his peak.
3. Emperor Shenzong (1048-1085)
Emperor Shenzong was the third emperor of the Song dynasty in China. He reigned for 37 years, from 1048 to 1085. During his reign, Emperor Shenzong oversaw a period of great economic and cultural prosperity in China.
He was a generous ruler and patronized the arts, encouraged scholarship, and made many reforms that improved the lives of his subjects. Under his rule, the Song dynasty reached its peak of power and influence.
Today, Emperor Shenzong is considered one of the wealthiest people in history. His estimated net worth is $90 billion dollars.
2. Genghis Khan (1162-1227)
Genghis Khan was the founder and first Great Khan of the Mongol Empire, which became the largest contiguous empire in world history after his death. He came to power by uniting many of the nomadic tribes of Northeast Asia. After founding the Mongol Empire and being proclaimed Genghis Khan, he started the Mongol invasions that resulted in the conquest of most of Eurasia. These included raids or invasions of Siberia, Eastern Europe, China, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, South Asia and Russia. As a result of these conquests, the Mongol Empire became one of the largest empires in world history. At its height, it extended from SEA to Caspian Sea to Europe & Eastward to Korea & Japan.
1. Mansa Musa (1280-1337)
Mansa Musa was a medieval West African ruler who lived in the 12th and 13th centuries. He is widely considered to be the wealthiest person in history, with an estimated fortune of $400 billion.
Mansa Musa was born in Mali, West Africa. His father, Mansa Keita I, was the king of Mali. Mansa Musa inherited his wealth from his father, who was one of the richest men in the world at the time.
Mansa Musa is best known for his pilgrimage to Mecca in 1324. He is said to have spent so much money on gifts and donations that he caused an inflationary crisis in Egypt and Arabia.
During his reign, Mansa Musa built many mosques and schools in Mali. He also sent scholars to study in other parts of the Muslim world. Thanks to his efforts, Mali became a center of learning during the medieval period.
Mansa Musa died in 1337. His wealth passed on to his son, Mansa Moussa II.
The World’s 10 Richest People As of 2022
With the world in a constant state of flux, it’s always interesting to take a look at who’s currently at the top of their game when it comes to wealth. Get ready to be amazed by how much these 10 people are worth in 2022! Dive in and check out who made it to the list of the world’s richest people.
- Bernard Arnault (Net Worth: $172.9 billion)
- Elon Musk (Net Worth: $168.5 billion)
- Gautam Adani (Net Worth: $125 billion)
- Bill Gates (Net Worth: $115 billion)
- Jeff Bezos (Net Worth: $114 billion)
- Warren Buffett (Net Worth: $108 billion)
- Larry Ellison (Net Worth: $93.7 billion)
- Mukesh Ambani (Net Worth: $89.6 billion)
- Steve Ballmer (Net Worth: $89.3 billion)
- Larry Page (Net Worth: $86.9 billion)