November 20, 2023

What's in a Fame?


What's in a Fame?
Russia, kind of. A.Savin, WikiCommons.

There aren't many surprises on Pantheon.world's ranking of the most famous people from Russia. Save the #1 spot.

In the top ten are names like Peter the Great, Boris Yeltsin, and Yuri Gagarin. In the top five are Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, Putin, and Lenin.

And at the top spot?

Immanuel Kant. German (not Russian) philosopher, mathematician, and thinker of the Enlightenment, best known for his categorical imperative.

This phenomenon is due to a quirk in Pantheon's data methodology. Pantheon groups nationalities based on birth location. Kant was born in Königsberg, Prussia, in 1724. Since 1945, "Königsberg" has been part of the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad, a chunk of Baltic shoreline bordered by Lithuania and Poland.

So was Kant born in Russia?

Sort of.

Is he the most famous person from Russia?

Apparently.

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