10 Famous Public Speakers Who Changed the World

Public speaking is the act of speaking to a live audience. It is an art that takes practice, elegance, and confidence.

Throughout history, there have been many figures who have moved audiences with their powerful and memorable speeches.

Today I am going to show you the 10 most famous public speakers of all time:

Let’s get started…

Top 10 Famous Public Speakers:

1. Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr. was a civil rights activist known for his incredible oratory skills.

His most famous speech is the “I Have a Dream” speech delivered at the March on Washington in 1963, in which he called for an end to racism in the United States.

The speech contained the iconic line, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

2. Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill

As Prime Minister of the United Kingdom during World War II, Winston Churchill was known for his rousing and motivational speeches that inspired the British people.

He was an expert at using rhetoric to stir emotions.

His defiant speeches, such as “We Shall Fight on the Beaches,” helped strengthen British resolve against Nazi Germany.

3. Barack Obama

Barack Obama was known as an eloquent orator. His speeches were confident, passionate and inspirational.

As the first African-American president of the United States, his speeches on race, inclusivity, and national identity, such as his keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, were historic and timely.

4. Adolf Hitler

As dictator of Nazi Germany, Adolf Hitler was a ruthless and manipulative public speaker.

Adolf Hitler

He used his aggressive and dramatic speaking style to galvanize the German public, tapping into their anger and resentment after World War I.

Unfortunately, his ability to whip crowds into a frenzy contributed to the rise of fascism and the horrors of the Holocaust.

5. Susan B. Anthony

A leader of the women’s suffrage movement in the late 19th century, Susan B. Anthony was known for her powerful and defiant speeches demanding that women be given the right to vote.

Susan B. Anthony

She traveled extensively, giving public lectures advocating for women’s rights.

She was instrumental in building support for the 19th amendment.

6. Mark Antony

Mark Antony was a Roman politician best known for his oratory skills demonstrated in the “Friends, Romans, countrymen” speech from Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar.

Mark Antony

The dramatic speech called out the conspirators who assassinated Caesar while whipping the crowd into an angry mob.

Antony used rhetoric and emotion to manipulate the public.

7. Mahatma Gandhi

The leader of the nonviolent Indian independence movement, Mahatma

Gandhi gave inspirational speeches about passive resistance that motivated the Indian people.

Mahatma Gandhi

His speeches on love, unity and freedom helped end British rule in India.

He is remembered for his spiritual wisdom and moral courage.

8. Malala Yousafzai

The Pakistani activist for female education rose to fame through her powerful speeches demanding equal rights for girls.

Malala Yousafzai

After being shot by the Taliban at 15, she recovered and continued speaking out globally against oppression.

In 2014, she became the youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner for her advocacy.

9. Jawaharlal Nehru

Jawaharlal Nehru was the first prime minister of independent India.

A masterful speaker, he addressed the Indian people in speeches aimed at uniting the newly freed nation.

Jawaharlal Nehru

He spoke passionately about democratic socialism, anti-imperialism and Non-Alignment.

His stirring speeches still inspire Indians today.

10. Sojourner Truth

Born into slavery, Sojourner Truth became an outspoken advocate for abolition and women’s rights in the 19th century.

Sojourner Truth

Her most famous speech was “Ain’t I a Woman?” delivered at a women’s rights convention in 1851.

The powerful and emotional speech called for racial and gender equality.


Public speaking has clearly played an important role throughout history.

The speakers on this list used their rhetorical skills to inform, motivate, and even manipulate audiences.

They remind us that words have the power to move people to action – for better or worse.

From civil rights activists to politicians, these famous orators knew how to deliver a potent message.

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