List of National Founders
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List of National Founders

The following list of national founding figures is a record, by country, of people who were credited with establishing their nation. National founders are typically those who played an influential role in setting up the systems of governance, (i.e., political system form of government, and constitution), of the country. They can also be military leaders of a war of independence that led to the existence of the country.

Africa

Amílcar Cabral was a revolutionary and nationalist leader of Cape Verde and Guinea-Bissau.
Saad Zaghloul was the founder of independent Egypt. "Zaeem al Ummah (Leader of the Nation)"

 Cape Verde

Amílcar Cabral (var. Amílcar Lopes da Costa Cabral) (1924-1973) was an agricultural engineer, writer, and a nationalist thinker and political leader. He was also one of Africa's foremost anti-colonial leaders. Amílcar Cabral led the nationalist movement of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde Islands and the ensuing war of independence in Guinea-Bissau. He was assassinated on 20 January 1973, several months before Guinea-Bissau's unilateral declaration of independence. He is considered a founder of Cape Verde.

 Democratic Republic of the Congo

Patrice Lumumba, Joseph Kasa-Vubu, Albert Kalonji, Jean Bolikango, Cléophas Kamitatu, and Paul Bolya are all considered "Fathers of Independence" in the Congo.[1]

 Guinea

Ahmed Sékou Touré (var. Ahmed Seku Turay) (1922-1984) was a Guinean political leader and President of Guinea from 1958 to his death in 1984. Touré was one of the primary Guinean nationalists involved in the independence of the country from France.

He is with Kwame Nkrumah one of the founders of the African Union, and the Guinean Diallo Telly was the first general secretary of the African Union.

 Ghana

Kwame Nkrumah (1909-1972) led the nation to its independence from the United Kingdom in 1957.

 Kenya

Jomo Kenyatta served as the first Prime Minister (1963-1964) and President (1964-1978) of the Republic. Oginga Odinga served as the first vice-president.

 Liberia

Joseph Jenkins Roberts (1809-1876) was born a free man of black American descent. In 1829 his family moved to Liberia. In 1839, Roberts became Liberia's lieutenant governor and afterwards, its governor (1841-1848). He is known as the father of Liberia and officially declared Liberia's independence in 1847.[2]

 Libya

King Idris Al-sanusi, also known as Idris I of Libya, (1889-1983) was the first and only king of Libya, reigning from 1951 to 1969, and the Chief of the Senussi Muslim order. Idris as-Senussi proclaimed an independent Emirate of Cyrenaica in 1949. He was also invited to become Emir of Tripolitania, another of the three traditional regions that now constitute modern Libya (the third being Fezzan).[3] By accepting he began the process of uniting Libya under a single monarchy. A constitution was enacted in 1949 and adopted in October 1951. A National Congress elected Idris as King of Libya, and as Idris I he proclaimed the independence of the United Kingdom of Libya as a sovereign state on 24 December 1951.

 Madagascar

 Namibia

 Nigeria

All are considered founders of Nigeria. The troika of Obafemi Awolowo, Nnamdi Azikiwe, and Ahmadu Bello negotiated Nigeria's independence from Britain, aided by such figures as Chief Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti.

 Sierra Leone

Freetown, Sierra Leone was founded in part by an African American slave called Thomas Peters in 1792 who convinced British abolitionists to help settle 1,192 Black Americans who fought for the British in return for freedom. Peters alongside other Black Americans David George and Moses Wilkinson were influential in the establishment of Freetown, but it was Peters who is remembered today as the true influential leader and founder of Sierra Leone. A street was named for Thomas Peters in Freetown by the Krio Mayor Winstanley Bankole Johnson.[4]

 South Africa

Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) was the former President of South Africa, in office from 1994 to 1999. He led the negotiations, together with F. W. de Klerk, to racially integrate and unite the country.

 South Sudan

 Tanzania

Julius Nyerere Key figure in the independence of the country and first President. On the part of Zanzibar the other side of the union there is Sheikh Abeid Aman Karume

 Tunisia

The founder of the modern Tunisia is Habib Bourguiba.

 Zambia

The first republican president of Zambia, Dr. Kenneth Kaunda. Governed from 1964-1991.
  • Kenneth Kaunda Kenneth Kaunda (1924- ) is the prominent icon in the independence and unification of Zambia. However, there are important personalities like Simon Kapwepwe and Harry Nkumbula (1916-18) that fairly deserve recognition. Together, in their different capacities, they led the nation to freedom.
  • Simon Kapwepwe
  • Harry Nkumbula

 Zimbabwe

Amílcar Cabral was a revolutionary and nationalist leader of Cape Verde and Guinea-Bissau.
Saad Zaghloul was the founder of independent Egypt. "Zaeem al Ummah (Leader of the Nation)"

 Cape Verde

Amílcar Cabral (var. Amílcar Lopes da Costa Cabral) (1924-1973) was an agricultural engineer, writer, and a nationalist thinker and political leader. He was also one of Africa's foremost anti-colonial leaders. Amílcar Cabral led the nationalist movement of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde Islands and the ensuing war of independence in Guinea-Bissau. He was assassinated on 20 January 1973, several months before Guinea-Bissau's unilateral declaration of independence. He is considered a founder of Cape Verde.

 Democratic Republic of the Congo

Patrice Lumumba, Joseph Kasa-Vubu, Albert Kalonji, Jean Bolikango, Cléophas Kamitatu, and Paul Bolya are all considered "Fathers of Independence" in the Congo.[5]

 Egypt

There is no agreed founder of Egypt across Academia nor historians. It is difficult to know where to start as Egypt was unified around 3000 BC and endured multiple changes in terms of government and policies.

 Guinea

Ahmed Sékou Touré (var. Ahmed Seku Turay) (1922-1984) was a Guinean political leader and President of Guinea from 1958 to his death in 1984. Touré was one of the primary Guinean nationalists involved in the independence of the country from France.

He is with Kwame Nkrumah one of the founders of the African Union, and the Guinean Diallo Telly was the first general secretary of the African Union.

 Ghana

Kwame Nkrumah (1909-1972) led the nation to its independence from the United Kingdom in 1957.

 Kenya

Jomo Kenyatta served as the first Prime Minister (1963-1964) and President (1964-1978) of the Republic. Oginga Odinga served as the first vice-president.

 Liberia

Joseph Jenkins Roberts (1809-1876) was born a free man of black American descent. In 1829 his family moved to Liberia. In 1839, Roberts became Liberia's lieutenant governor and afterwards, its governor (1841-1848). He is known as the father of Liberia and officially declared Liberia's independence in 1847.[6]

 Libya

King Idris Al-sanusi, also known as Idris I of Libya, (1889-1983) was the first and only king of Libya, reigning from 1951 to 1969, and the Chief of the Senussi Muslim order. Idris as-Senussi proclaimed an independent Emirate of Cyrenaica in 1949. He was also invited to become Emir of Tripolitania, another of the three traditional regions that now constitute modern Libya (the third being Fezzan).[7] By accepting he began the process of uniting Libya under a single monarchy. A constitution was enacted in 1949 and adopted in October 1951. A National Congress elected Idris as King of Libya, and as Idris I he proclaimed the independence of the United Kingdom of Libya as a sovereign state on 24 December 1951.

 Madagascar

 Namibia

 Nigeria

All are considered founders of Nigeria. The troika of Obafemi Awolowo, Nnamdi Azikiwe, and Ahmadu Bello negotiated Nigeria's independence from Britain, aided by such figures as Chief Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti.

 Sierra Leone

Freetown, Sierra Leone was founded in part by an African American slave called Thomas Peters in 1792 who convinced British abolitionists to help settle 1,192 Black Americans who fought for the British in return for freedom. Peters alongside other Black Americans David George and Moses Wilkinson were influential in the establishment of Freetown, but it was Peters who is remembered today as the true influential leader and founder of Sierra Leone. A street was named for Thomas Peters in Freetown by the Krio Mayor Winstanley Bankole Johnson.[8]

 South Africa

Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) was the former President of South Africa, in office from 1994 to 1999. He led the negotiations, together with F. W. de Klerk, to racially integrate and unite the country.

 South Sudan

 Tanzania

Julius Nyerere Key figure in the independence of the country and first President. On the part of Zanzibar the other side of the union there is Sheikh Abeid Aman Karume

 Tunisia

The founder of the modern Tunisia is Habib Bourguiba.

 Zambia

The first republican president of Zambia, Dr. Kenneth Kaunda. Governed from 1964-1991.
  • Kenneth Kaunda Kenneth Kaunda (1924- ) is the prominent icon in the independence and unification of Zambia. However, there are important personalities like Simon Kapwepwe and Harry Nkumbula (1916-18) that fairly deserve recognition. Together, in their different capacities, they led the nation to freedom.
  • Simon Kapwepwe
  • Harry Nkumbula

 Zimbabwe

Eurasia

 Afghanistan

Ahmad Shah Durrani (1723-1773) unified the Afghan tribes and founded Afghanistan in 1747.[9] His mausoleum is next to the Shrine of the Cloak in Kandahar, Afghanistan, where he is fondly known as Ahmad Shah Baba (Ahmad Shah the Father).

 Armenia

 Azerbaijan

Mammad Amin Rasulzade (Azerbaijani: M?h?mm?d ?min Axund Hac? Molla ?l?kb?r o?lu R?sulzad?, Turkish: Mehmed Emin Resulzâde; (1884-1955) was an Azerbaijani statesman, scholar, public figure and one of the founding political leaders of Azerbaijan Republic (1918-1920). His expression "Bir k?r? yüks?l?n bayraq, bir daha enm?z!" ("The flag once raised will never fall!") became the motto of the independence movement in Azerbaijan in the 20th century.

 Bangladesh

Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is the founding father of Bangladesh

Apart from the founding leaders, the four key members of the Liberation Wartime government vice-president Syed Nazrul Islam, prime minister Tajuddin Ahmad, finance minister Muhammad Mansur Ali and home minister Abul Hasnat Muhammad Qamaruzzaman (altogether known as 'Four National Leaders') and the Liberation Wartime armed forces chief Muhammad Ataul Gani Osmani are hailed as vital figures in Bangladesh's independence.

 Bhutan

Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal (1594-1651) fled Tibet and unified the fiefdoms of Bhutan. He established the dual system of shared power between secular and Buddhist leadership that continues as a tradition to the present.

 People's Republic of China

Huangdi is revered as the legendary founder and initiator of Chinese civilization. Yu the Great was a legendary ruler in ancient China famed for inaugurating dynastic rule in China by establishing the legendary Xia Dynasty. In 221 BC, after the then-king of Qin completed the conquest of the various Chinese kingdoms of the Warring States period, he adopted a new title to reflect his prestige as a ruler greater than the rulers before him. He called himself Shi Huangdi, the First Emperor of China.

Sun Yat-sen is seen as the first president of a Republican China and is highly regarded as the "Forerunner of the Democratic Revolution" () in the People's Republic of China.[15]Mao Zedong is reverred as the founder of the people's republic in 1949.

 Republic of China

Sun Yat-sen, founding father of the Republic of China.

Sun Yat-sen is revered as the founding father ("Father of the Nation"-) of the Republic of China.

 India

considered the father of India and prominent Indian independence activist. He has featured on Indian currency.

Other prominent Indian independence activists involved with the foundation of India include Jawaharlal Nehru who served as the 1st Prime Minister of India (1947-64) and Vallabhbhai Patel who served as the first Deputy Prime Minister of India.

 Indonesia

Sukarno, Founder of Indonesia

Sukarno and Mohammad Hatta are the founders of Indonesia. They both signed the Proclamation of Independence which then read by Sukarno, proclaiming the independence of Indonesia from the Netherlands on 17 August 1945. A day later, they were elected respectively as the first President and Vice President of Indonesia. As the Netherlands did not recognize the independence, both of them were prominent figures and were seen as symbol of unity among Indonesian people to fight against Dutch during the National Revolution from 1945 to 1949. In August 1949, Hatta headed a delegation to the Hague for a Round Table Conference which then led to the recognition of Indonesian independence by the Netherlands on 23 December 1949.[16]

 Iran (Persia)

Cyrus the Great (600-530 BC) was the founder of the First Persian Empire under the Achaemenid dynasty an empire without precedent - a first world-empire of historical importance. Many Iranians gather at his tomb in Pasargadae annually on the Cyrus the Great Day and Nowruz, the Persian New Year. Prior to the 1979 Revolution the 2,500th year of Foundation of Imperial State of Iran took place. It consisted of an elaborate set of festivities that took place on 12-16 October 1971 on the occasion of the 2,500th anniversary of the founding of the Imperial State of Iran and First Persian Empire by Cyrus the Great.[17][18] The intent of the celebration was to demonstrate Iran's old civilization and history to showcase its contemporary advancements under Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran.[19][20]

 Israel

Abraham is the founding father of the Jewish nation, Jacob and Judah are the founding fathers of the Jewish tribe, and of the ancient Kingdom of Israel and the Kingdom of Judah. Theodor Herzl is considered the founder of the modern Jewish state. David Ben-Gurion was the first Prime Minister of Israel, and considered an important figure in the rebuilding of the Jewish state.

 Japan

Emperor Jimmu (?, Jinmu-tenn?) (traditional reign 660-585 BC) was the first Emperor of Japan,[21] according to the traditional order of succession.[22] The Japanese national holiday National Foundation Day (, Kenkoku Kinen no Hi) is celebrated annually on 11 February in commemoration of the founding of the nation of Japan and the ascension of Emperor Jimmu to the imperial throne.[23]

 Kazakhstan

Alikhan Bokeikhanov, leader and founder of the Alash Orda national liberation movement.

There is no law in the country which officially recognizes a single individual as the "Father of the Nation". Either title may be associated with any of the following prominent historical persons, owing to their impact on the country during their respective times:

Alikhan Bukeikhanov (1866-1937) was a Kazakh statesman, politician, publicist, teacher, writer and environmental scientist. He was leader and founder of the Alash Orda national liberation movement. He sided with the westernizers in the Kazakh political scene who were promoting the idea of the Western culture into the Kazakh steppe. In 1920, after the establishment of Soviet hegemony, Bukeikhanov joined the Bolshevik party and returned to scientific life. His earlier political activities caused the authorities to view him with suspicion, leading to arrests in 1926 and 1928. In 1926, Bukeikhanov was arrested on the charge of counter-revolutionary activity and put into Butyrka prison in Moscow. But due to the lack of evidence in the criminal case against him, he was released from prison. In 1930, the authorities banished him to Moscow, where he was arrested a final time in 1937 and executed.

Dinmukhamed Kunayev (1912-1993) was a Kazakh Soviet communist politician. He became first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Kazakhstan again in 1964 when Khrushchev was ousted and replaced by Brezhnev. He kept his position for twenty-two more years. He was an alternate member of the Politburo from 1967, and a full member from 1971 to 1987. During Kunayev's long rule, Kazakhs occupied prominent positions in the bureaucracy, economy and educational institutions. A Brezhnev loyalist, he was removed from office under pressure from Mikhail Gorbachev, who accused him of corruption. On 16 December 1986 the Politburo replaced him with Gennady Kolbin, who had never lived in the Kazakh SSR before. This provoked street riots in Almaty, which were the first signs of ethnic strife during Gorbachev's tenure. In modern Kazakhstan, this revolt is called Jeltoqsan, meaning December in Kazakh.

Nursultan Nazarbayev was elected the nation's first president following its independence from the Soviet Union in December 1991. In 2010 Parliament of Kazakhstan named him (Elbasy) which means "Leader of the Nation".

 Malaysia

Tunku Abdul Rahman (1903-1990) usually known as "the Tunku" (a princely title in Malaysia), and also called Bapa Kemerdekaan (Father of Independence) or Bapa Malaysia (Father of Malaysia), was Chief Minister of the Federation of Malaya from 1955, and the country's first Prime Minister from independence in 1957. He remained Prime Minister after Sabah, Sarawak, and Singapore joined in 1963 to form Malaysia.

 Mongolia

Genghis Khan posthumous portrait

Modu Chanyu, (c. 234-174 BC), founded the first Mongolian Xiongnu state.

Genghis Khan (c. 1162-1227), who by uniting the nomadic tribes founded the Mongol Empire, is generally regarded as the father of modern-day Mongolia. Although downcast during the communist-era, Genghis Khan's reputation surged after the democratic revolution in 1990. Modern Mongolia is often called "Genghis's Mongolia".

 Myanmar

Anawrahta is considered to be founder of ancient Burmese Kingdom of Pagan. General Aung San is the founder of modern Burma (also known as Myanmar). Although he did not live to see the country's independence, he is credited in forming the basic structure of the independence movement and government. Aung San started his political career in 1930 as the editor of Rangoon University's Newspaper - where he accused one of the British administrators of misconduct. In late 1940 he went to Japanese controlled Taiwan and Xiamen to receive military training, and he led the Burmese National Army, spearheading the Japanese invasion of Burma. Later, he switched sides to the Allies, and helped in the Burma Campaign. After the war, he was appointed to the government of a returning British Administration, and was able to negotiate Burma's independence. He helped organized the Panglong Agreement in February 1947, achieving independence for all Burmese territories. However, on Saturday, 19 July 1947, Aung San, along with his cabinet ministers, was assassinated at the secretariat building in Rangoon.

   Nepal

Prithvi Narayan Shah was largely responsible for the unification of Nepal, and is considered to be the founder of Nepal. His vision of ruling over a unified Nepal is said to have started when atop a hill near Nepa Valley (Present day Kathmandu), he decided he would like to rule over it. His strategic plan was very successful and his successors continued to build on his progress. Prithvi Narayan Shah's descendants continued to rule over Nepal for a total of 240 years before the 2006 democracy movement in Nepal toppled the constitutional power exercised by King Gyanendra, before abolishing the monarchy in 2008.

 North Korea

Kim Il-sung was the first leader and founding father of North Korea at the time of the establishment of the country in 1948.

 Pakistan

Pakistan's founder is Muhammad Ali Jinnah, who is hailed as Quaid-e-Azam or "Great Leader" and Baba-e-Qaum or Father of Nation. Other prominent founders include the poet Allama Iqbal or spiritual Father, believed to be the first person to propagate the idea of a state for India's Muslims, Fatima Jinnah (Mother of nation) and members of Pakistan's first Cabinet such as Liaquat Ali Khan, A. K. Fazlul Huq, Abdul Rab Nishtar, Malik Feroze Khan Noon, Khwaja Nazimuddin and I. I. Chundrigar. Some historians credit the Muslim reformist Sir Syed Ahmad Khan as a founder of Pakistan

 Philippines

There is no law in the country which officially recognizes a single individual as the "Father of the Nation". Either title may be associated with any of the following prominent historical persons, owing to their impact on the country during their respective times: José Rizal (1861-1896) was a Filipino nationalist during the tail end of the Spanish colonial period of the Philippines. An ophthalmologist by profession, Rizal became a writer and a key member of the Filipino Propaganda Movement which advocated political reforms for the colony under Spain. He was executed by the Spanish colonial government for the crime of rebellion after an anti-colonial revolution, inspired in part by his writings, broke out. Though he was not actively involved in its planning or conduct, he ultimately approved of its goals which eventually led to Philippine independence. He is widely considered one of the greatest heroes of the Philippines, and is implied by Philippine law to be one of the national heroes. He was the author of the novels Noli Me Tángere, and El Filibusterismo, and a number of poems and essays. Andrés Bonifacio (1863-1897) De facto President and a leader during the Philippine Revolution in 1896, which saw armed resistance against the Spanish Empire. Emilio Aguinaldo (1869-1964) Leader of the latter part of the Philippine Revolution and first president of the Philippines through the 1899 Malolos Congress, which oversaw the promulgation of the Malolos Constitution.

 Saudi Arabia

King Abdulaziz Al Saud, also known as Ibn Saud, is the founding father of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

 Singapore

Lee Kuan Yew (1923-2015) often referred to as the "Father of Singapore" or by the initials "LKY", he was the first Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, governing for three decades. He is also widely recognised as the founder of modern Singapore.

 South Korea

Syngman Rhee was the first president and founding father of South Korea at the time of the establishment of the country in 1948.

 Sri Lanka

Official Photographic Portrait of Don Stephen Senanayaka (1884-1952)

Prince Vijaya is considered to be the first King of Sri Lanka with King Dutugemunu honored as the first king to unify Sri Lanka. D. S. Senanayake (1883-1952) is widely known as the modern (post independence) father of the nation. Sirimavo Bandaranaike (1916-2000) was the first female Prime Minister of Sri Lanka and the modern world's first female head of government. William Gopallawa (1896-1981) was the first Constitutional President while J. R. Jayewardene (1906-1996) was the first Executive President. Chandrika Kumaratunga (1945- ) was the first female Executive President of the country.

 Vietnam

Kinh Dng Vng and descendants of the H?ng Bàng dynasty (reigned between 2879-258 BC) are revered as the founders of the first Vietnamese state and civilization. Its commemoration, also known as Gi? T? Hùng Vng, is an official public holiday in Vietnam, which is celebrated on the 10th day of the 3rd lunar month.

Ho Chi Minh is the first President of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam and the founder of the Communist Party of Vietnam. He proclaimed the independence of Vietnam from Japanese and French on 2 September 1945. He later led Vietnam through wars against France and the United States.

 United Arab Emirates

Initially independent emirates part of the Trucial states, Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan established the United Arab Emirates by joining the seven independent emirates into a federation.

 Albania

  • Skanderbeg was a prominent historical figure in the history of Albania and of the Albanian people. He successfully fought against the Ottoman Empire during its apex (the time of Sultans Murad II and Mehmed II) and maintained independence for 25 years (1443-1468) until his death. He is the national hero of the Albanians.
  • Ismail Qemali was a distinguished leader of the Albanian national movement at the beginning of the 20th century, founder of the modern Albanian state in 1912, and its first head of state and government.

 Bosnia and Herzegovina

Alija Izetbegovi?, the war-time president of Bosnia, is deemed the national founder of modern Bosnia and Herzegovina.[24]

 Bulgaria

Kubrat was the ruler of Old Great Bulgaria in 632. His son Asparukh migrated to the Balkans and established the First Bulgarian Empire in 681. Modern day Bulgaria is a direct successor of this state. Asparukh's brother Kotrag migrated north and founded Volga Bulgaria. Mythical rulers of Bulgaria exist before them, dating back as far as 3rd millennium BC.

 Croatia

 Czech Republic

Václav Klaus is a Czech prominent politician, later President, which agreed on dissolution of Czechoslovakia with the Slovaks. Václav Havel was the First President of the Czech Republic (1993-2003). Founder of modern Czech statehood is considered the First President of Czechoslovakia Tomá? Garrigue Masaryk (1918-1935). The Kingdom of Bohemia was formally established in 1198 by P?emysl Ottokar I, patron Saint is Saint Wenceslaus, which murder is celebrated as Statehood Day.

 Cyprus

Makarios III was the first President of Cyprus and is often called the Father of the Nation.[28]

 France

 Georgia

King Pharnavaz I of Iberia (302-237 BC) was the first king of the united Georgian kingdom of Iberia. Bagrat III is considered as the first king of united Georgian Kingdom. Zviad Gamsakhurdia is the first president and founder of modern republic of Georgia.

 Germany

Before the national unification of Germany in 1871, German nationalists sought out multiple legendary founders of the German nation, such as Arminius, Charlemagne and - as championed by Friedrich Ludwig Jahn and Richard Wagner - Henry the Fowler. Otto von Bismarck (1815-1898), the "Iron Chancellor", engineered the unification of the numerous states of Germany in 1871. Modern, democratic Germany was decisively shaped by the "Fathers of the Basic Law" in the 1948 Constitutional Convention at Herrenchiemsee, and by the first German Chancellor, Konrad Adenauer. For reunified Germany, the slogan "Wir sind das Volk!" ("We are the people!") became symbolic, thus making all Germans founders of modern Germany.

 Greece

Ancient

Modern

 Hungary

According to Anonymus the fejedelem who made the Magyars settle into the Carpathian Basin in 896 A.D. was Árpád. His dynasty reigned over the Hungarian Kingdom from the ninth century until 1301. In Hungary Stephen I of Hungary is commonly regarded as the founder of the nation. He was Hungary's first king and united the Magyar people into the Kingdom of Hungary. Amongst others, Lajos Kossuth is supposed to be the Pater Patriae. He is known as the leader of the Hungarian Revolution of 1848 against the Habsburgs, and therefore founder of the modern Hungarian Republic.

 Ireland

The Irish Free State was established after the Irish War of Independence (1919-21), in which Éamon de Valera, Cathal Brugha and Michael Collins were key leaders. However, they became antagonists in the Irish Civil War (1922-23), in which Collins and Brugha were killed and de Valera defeated. For decades, the inheritors of the opposing factions bypassed these sensitivities to honour the earlier leaders of the Easter Rising of 1916, in particular the seven signatories of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic: Patrick Pearse, James Connolly, Éamonn Ceannt, Tom Clarke, Seán Mac Diarmada, Thomas MacDonagh, and Joseph Plunkett.

 Italy

Before 1861

Modern Italy

 Latvia

Most Latvians regard K?rlis Ulmanis, a key figure in the Latvian war of independence and four-times Prime Minister of Latvia, as being the founding father of modern Latvia.

 Lithuania

The first and the only one king (1251-1263) of Lithuania, Mindaugas, is seen as the founder of the Lithuanian state, as is commemorated on Statehood Day on 6 July. Dr. Jonas Basanavi?ius, activist and proponent of the Lithuanian National Revival in the turn of the 19th century into the 20th, who participated in every major event leading to the independence of Lithuania, member of the Council of Lithuania which on 16 February 1918 declared Lithuania an independent state, is universally considered the "Patriarch of the Nation".

 Montenegro

 Netherlands

Prince William I of Orange (1533-1584) or William the Silent, is known as the father of the Netherlands. He led the Dutch in their Revolt against Spain for their independence. Today he is often called Vader des Vaderlands which in English means, Father of the Fatherland.[33]

 North Macedonia

As well respected statesmen in Macedonia are considered Metodija Andonov-?ento (first president of SR Macedonia), Nikola Karev (president of Kru?evo Republic) and Kiro Gligorov (first president of independent Macedonia). However, often, as "fathers" of the nation are considered Gotse Delchev, Krste Misirkov, Georgi Pulevski and Dimitrija ?upovski and other prominent authors and revolutionaries.[]

 Norway

King Harald Fairhair, who unified Norway and ruled c. 872-930, is often considered the founder of the nation.

Usually the Norwegian Constituent Assembly at Eidsvoll in 1814, consisting of 112 men from most of the country, in Norway often referred to as Eidsvoll Men or the Fathers of the Constitution.[34]

  • Einar Henry Gerhardsen (1897-1987) was a Norwegian politician who represented the Labor Party. He was Norway's prime minister from 1945 to 1951, from 1955 to 1963 and from 1963 to 1965. In Norway, Gerhardsen is known as "landsfaderen" - "the father of the country", and he is referred to as one of the main architects behind the Norwegian welfare state that emerged after World War II.

 Poland

Legendary:

Kingdom of Poland and Rzeczpospolita Obojga Narodów:

  • Mieszko I (c. 920/45-992), the first historical ruler of Poland, Mieszko I is considered the de facto creator of the Polish state. He was a Duke of the Polans from about 960 until his death. Mieszko I's marriage in 965 to the P?emyslid princess Dobrawa and his baptism in 966 put him and his country in the cultural sphere of Western Christianity. According to existing sources, Mieszko I was a wise politician, a talented military leader and charismatic ruler. He successfully used diplomacy, concluding an alliance with Bohemia first, and then with Sweden and the Holy Roman Empire. In foreign policy, he placed the interests of his country foremost, even entering into agreements with former enemies. On his death, he left to his sons a country of greatly expanded territory, with a well-established position in Europe. Mieszko I also appeared as "Dagome" in a papal document from about 1085, called "Dagome iudex", which mentions a gift or dedication of Mieszko's land to the Pope (the act took place almost a hundred years earlier).
  • Boles?aw I Chrobry (967-1025), was Duke of Poland from 992 to 1025, and the first King of Poland in 1025. He was the son of Mieszko I of Poland by his wife, Dobrawa of Bohemia. He supported the missionary views of Adalbert, Bishop of Prague, and Bruno of Querfurt. The martyrdom of Adalbert in 997 and his imminent canonization were used to consolidate Poland's autonomy from the Holy Roman Empire. This perhaps happened most clearly during the Congress of Gniezno (11 March 1000), which resulted in the establishment of a Polish church structure with a Metropolitan See at Gniezno. This See was independent of the German Archbishopric of Magdeburg, which had tried to claim jurisdiction over the Polish church. Following the Congress of Gniezno, bishoprics were also established in Kraków, Wroc?aw and Ko?obrzeg, and Boles?aw formally repudiated paying tribute to the Holy Roman Empire.In the summer of 1018, in one of his expeditions, Boles?aw I captured Kiev, where he installed his son-in-law Sviatopolk I as ruler. According to legend, Boles?aw chipped his sword when striking Kiev's Golden Gate. Later, in honor of this legend, a sword called Szczerbiec ("Jagged Sword") would become the coronation sword of Poland's kings. Boles?aw I was a remarkable politician, strategist, and statesman. He not only turned Poland into a country comparable to older western monarchies, but he raised it to the front rank of European states. Boles?aw conducted successful military campaigns in the west, south and east. He consolidated Polish lands and conquered territories outside the borders of modern-day Poland, including Slovakia, Moravia, Red Ruthenia, Meissen, Lusatia, and Bohemia. He was a powerful mediator in Central European affairs. Finally, as the culmination of his reign, in 1025 he had himself crowned King of Poland. He was the first Polish ruler to receive the title of rex (Latin: "king").
Gen. Józef Pi?sudski (first on the left) Ignacy Jan Paderewski (next to Pi?sudski in the a civil coat) and Stanis?aw Wojciechowski (behind Paderewski), future second President of Poland, during the opening ceremony of the Legislative Sejm, 9.02.1919.

Fathers of Polish Independence:

 Portugal

  • Viriathus was the most important leader of the Lusitanian people that resisted Roman expansion into western Hispania or Iberia (as the Greeks called it). Today Viriathus is regarded as a national hero and an enduring symbol of Portuguese nationality and independence, portrayed by artists and celebrated by its people throughout the centuries.
  • Henry of Burgundy (1066-1112), was appointed Count of Portugal as a reward for military services to Kingdom of León, and with the purpose of expanding the territory southwards. And, more importantly, his son, Count Afonso I of Portugal (1109-1185), a Templar Brother who took control of the county after Henry died and was recognized by the Holy See, in 1179, as the first King of Portugal, through the Manifestis Probatum bull.[]

 Romania

  • Burebista is considered the great king who unified all the Dacian tribes.And he is also known for creating a powerful empire that stretched from west to Adriatic Sea and Southern Germany, the east to Black Sea, north to Southern Poland and south to Macedonia(Greece) and Eastern Thrace. He's considered by many Romanians as a national hero. The Dacian Empire under Burebista was the greatest territorial extent in Romania's history.
  • Decebalus and Trajan are considered to be the fathers of the Romanian people, as Roman veterans were settled on the present-day territory of Romania following Trajan's Dacian Wars.[]
  • Michael the Brave was the first Romanian prince to rule over the traditional Romanian provinces (Wallachia, Moldavia and Transylvania) in a personal union, albeit briefly.
  • Alexandru Ioan Cuza was elected as the first leader of the modern Romanian state. He presided over Wallachia and Moldavia in a personal union, which later became permanent even though he was forced to abdicate.

 Russia

 San Marino

Saint Marinus was the founder of the world's oldest surviving republic, San Marino, in 301. Tradition holds that he was a stonemason by trade who came from the island of Rab on the other side of the Adriatic Sea (modern Croatia), fleeing persecution for his Christian beliefs in the Diocletianic Persecution.

 Serbia

The honorific Father of the Fatherland (? ) has been given to Saint Sava,[40] Kara?or?e,[41] and Milo? Obrenovi?, the latter having been given it by the National Assembly during his lifetime.[42]

 Slovakia

Many Slovaks see Great Moravia as their ancestors, which would make Mojmír I a founder.

 Slovenia

France Bu?ar is a Slovenian politician, legal expert and author. Between 1990 and 1992, he served as the first chairman of the freely elected Slovenian Parliament. He was the one to formally declare the independence of Slovenia on 25 June 1991. He is considered one of the founders of Slovenian democracy and independence. He is also considered, together with Peter Jambrek, as the main author of the current Slovenian constitution. Jo?e Pu?nik was president of DEMOS and one of the main persons in the Slovenian fight for independence. The largest Slovenian airport is named Letalie Jo?eta Pu?nika (Jo?e Pu?nik airport). Lojze Peterle was first prime minister of Slovenia and Milan Ku?an was the first president.

 Spain

Catholic Monarchs in the 15th century were responsible for the unification of Spain, both coming from the noble House of Trastámara. Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor (1500-1558) was the first monarch of the Spanish Empire.

 Sweden

While Sweden had existed as a monarchy of sorts long before his time, Birger Jarl, father of and regent for Valdemar, King of Sweden, can be said to have established Sweden as a nation. Birger was Jarl in the years 1248-66.

Gustav I of Sweden, who secured Sweden's independence from Denmark in 1523, is often considered a father of the nation.

Switzerland Switzerland

Both the anonymous Eidgenossen who drew up the Federal Charter of 1291, or the liberal statesmen who helped found the modern Swiss Confederation in 1848 can be considered the founders of Switzerland. Among the latter, those who became the first members of the Swiss Federal Council were perhaps the most notable: Ulrich Ochsenbein, Jakob Stämpfli, Jonas Furrer, Josef Munzinger, Henri Druey, Friedrich Frey-Herosé, Wilhelm Matthias Naeff and Stefano Franscini.[]

 Turkey

By the end of the 14th century, most of Anatolia was controlled by various Anatolian beyliks due to the collapse of the Seljuq dynasty in the area. The Seljuq dynasty had established both the Seljuk Empire, which was founded by Tughril and the Sultanate of Rum, with the first one being responsible for the Turkification of Anatolia. Osman I unified the beyliks under one banner, proclaiming the Ottoman Empire.

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder and first president of the Republic of Turkey. Following the First World War, the huge conglomeration of territories and peoples that formerly comprised the Ottoman Empire was divided into several new states. The Turkish War of Independence (1919-23), initiated by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk and his colleagues in Anatolia, resulted in the establishment of the modern Republic of Turkey (Türkiye Cumhuriyeti) in 1923.[43] He subsequently introduced many radical reforms with the aim of transforming the old Ottoman-Turkish state into a new secular republic.[44]

 Ukraine

Mykhailo Hrushevsky was the President the Central Council of Ukraine People's Republic.

Leonid Kravchuk is the First President of Ukraine elected in 1991.

 United Kingdom

As the UK formed over many years, its founders did not live at the same time as each other. They include: King James VI & I primarily ascent to the English throne whilst sitting as the Scottish monarch. Humphrey Wingfield, Speaker of the English House of Commons in 1535, at the time of England's union with Wales; John Smith and James Ogilvy, 4th Earl of Findlater, Speakers of the English and Scottish Parliaments in 1707, when the Acts of Union united Scotland and England; Henry Addington and John FitzGibbon, leaders of the British and Irish parliaments at the time of the Acts of Union 1801, uniting Great Britain and Ireland; and Prime Minister David Lloyd George and Colonial Secretary Winston Churchill, who both signed the Anglo-Irish Treaty, which allowed most of Ireland to leave the UK and become the Irish Free State.

Northern Ireland had already been established in May 1921, having been created in the Government of Ireland Act in December 1920. This Act was guided through the British House of Commons by Sir Hamar Greenwood, MP, the Chief Secretary for Ireland at the time. Northern Ireland had been created at the insistence of both Captain Sir James Craig and Sir Edward Carson, the Ulster Unionist leaders.

Americas

 Argentina

Manuel Belgrano and José de San Martín were important figures in early Argentina.

 Bahamas

Lynden Pindling is considered the "Father of the Nation."

 Belize

George Cadle Price (1919-2011) is considered to be the Father of the Nation of Belize.[45][46]

 Bolivia

Simon Bolivar (1783-1830) and Antonio José de Sucre (1795-1830) are considered to be the founders of Bolivia.

 Brazil

Pedro I, founder and first Emperor of Brazil

Pedro Álvares Cabral (1467/68-1520) commander of the first Portuguese fleet to arrive in South America. José Bonifácio de Andrada (1763-1838), known as "Patriarch of Independence", is considered the maximum leader of the Independence movement because of his intellectual mentorship and political prominence, and Pedro I of Brazil (1798-1834), son of the King João VI of Portugal, the symbol of the "center of force and union", according to the Bonifácio strategy.

 Canada

Canadian Fathers of Confederation

The name "Fathers of Confederation" is given to those who attended the Charlottetown and Quebec Conferences in 1864, and the London Conference of 1866, to establish the Canadian Confederation. There were 36 original Fathers of Confederation.[47]Queen Victoria, who supported and encouraged this process, is known as the Mother of Confederation. She was the first Monarch under the 1867 Constitution and personally chose Ottawa as Canada's capital city. The political leaders who brought the other provinces into Confederation after 1867 are also referred to as "Fathers of Confederation."[48]

Flag of CARICOM.svg Caribbean Community

Errol Barrow (Barbados: 1920-1987); Forbes Burnham (Guyana: 1923-1985); Michael Manley (Jamaica: 1924-1997); and Eric Williams (Trinidad and Tobago: 1911-1981) were the leaders who brought forth regional integration among the Caribbean Community.[49]

 Chile

Bernardo O'Higgins (1778-1842) and José Miguel Carrera (1785-1821) are usually considered the founders of Chile.

 Colombia

Simón Bolívar, was founder of Gran Colombia, which also included Panama, Ecuador, and Venezuela. Francisco de Paula Santander wrote the first constitution of Colombia. Antonio Nariño ("Precursor of the Independence") and Camilo Torres were the most relevant statesmen of the First Republic.

 Costa Rica

Juan Mora Fernández, first Head of State of Costa Rica.[50]José María Castro Madriz, First President of the Republic and proclaimed "Founder of the Republic" by Congress[51]Juan Rafael Mora Porras, President during Costa Rica's campaign against William Walker, proclaimed "Hero and Liberator" by Congress.

 Cuba

José Martí is a Cuban national hero.

 Dominican Republic

Juan Pablo Duarte (1813-1876), Francisco del Rosario Sánchez (1817-1861) and Matías Ramón Mella (1816-1864) are considered the Fathers of the Country. Duarte is featured on the $1 coin and on the now discontinued $1 bill; Sanchez on the $5 coin and on the also discontinued $5 bill; Mella on the $10 coin and on the also discontinued $10 bill.[52]

 Haiti

Toussaint Louverture (1743-1803) and Jean-Jacques Dessalines (1758-1806) were revolutionary and early political leaders of Haiti. Henri Christophe and Alexandre Pétion were also important figures of early Haiti.

 Jamaica

Alexander Bustamante and Norman Manley are considered[by whom?] to be the founders of Jamaica. Alexander Bustamante is credited for his role as an influential union leader and as founder of the Jamaican Labour Party. Bustamante served as the then colony's first Chief Minister from 1953 to 1955 and later went on to lead Jamaica to independence from the United Kingdom in 1962, becoming the country's first Prime Minister. Norman Manley is particularly noted for his role in securing universal suffrage for the country's population in 1944 along with founding the People's National Party. Manley also served as Chief Minister of Jamaica from 1955 to 1962.

 Mexico

According to the decrees of the Congress of the Union of Mexico issued in 1822 and 1823,[53] the Mexican founders are Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla (1753-1811), Ignacio Allende (1769-1811), Juan Aldama (1774-1811), Mariano Abasolo (1783-1816), José María Morelos (1765-1815), Mariano Matamoros (1770-1814), Leonardo Bravo (1764-1812), Miguel Bravo (unknown-1814), Hermenegildo Galeana (1762-1814), Mariano Jiménez (1781-1811), Xavier Mina (1789-1817), Pedro Moreno (1775-1817), and Víctor Rosales (1776-1817).

Nine of the thirteen founders are buried in the Monument to Independence in Mexico City.[54]

 Peru

José de San Martín and Simón Bolívar led Peru to independence and forged the country.[55]

Pachacuti, the 9th Sapa Inca of the Kingdom of Cusco, is the founder of the Inca Empire.

 South America

José de San Martín,[56]Simón Bolívar,[57]Antonio José de Sucre, Francisco de Paula Santander,[58]Francisco de Miranda[59] have been referred to as the founding fathers of the region comprising modern day Venezuela, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Panama.

 Uruguay

José Gervasio Artigas is considered to be the founder of Uruguay.

 United States

George Washington, chief among the founders of the United States, called "the Father of his country" (Pater Patriae).

Within the large group known as "the Founding Fathers", there are two key subsets, the Signers (who signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776) and the Framers (who were delegates to the Federal Convention and took part in framing or drafting the proposed Constitution of the United States). Some historians have suggested a revised definition of the "Founding Fathers", including a significantly broader group of not only the Signers and the Framers but also all those who, whether as politicians or jurists or statesmen or soldiers or diplomats or ordinary citizens, took part in winning US independence and creating the United States of America.[60] Eminent American historian Richard B. Morris, in his 1973 book Seven Who Shaped Our Destiny: The Founding Fathers as Revolutionaries, identified the following seven figures as the key founders: John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and George Washington.

 Venezuela

Simón Bolívar (1783-1830) is considered to be the founder not only of Venezuela, but of many of the region's countries as the Gran Colombia, which also included Panama, Ecuador, and Colombia and Bolivia.[]José Antonio Páez led the separation of Venezuela from the Gran Colombia and formed the modern statehood of the country.

Oceania

 Australia

Sir Henry Parkes (1815-1896) is often regarded as the "Father of Federation" in Australia. During the late 19th century, he was the strongest proponent for a federation of Australian territories. However, he died before Australia federated, and was never able to see his plan come to fruition.[61] Various other "founders" of Australia have also been unofficially recognised: Captain Arthur Phillip, the first governor of New South Wales and founder of the first British colony; and Sir Edmund Barton, the first Australian Prime Minister.

Andrew Inglis Clark is another founding father of Australia. He largely wrote the Australian Constitution in addition to developing the Hare-Clark system of voting and pushing for universal adult suffrage and other progressive ideals that would become law early in Australia's history.

Alfred Deakin also stands out as a significant Founding Father as he attended all the Federation Conferences, he gave up 10 years of senior political appointments to travel the country promoting federation and was Australia's first Attorney General. He was instrumental in securing Edmond Barton as the first Prime Minister while Deakin went on to be Australia's 2nd, 5th and 7th Prime Minister. Deakin was responsible for establishing the High Court, Australian Navy, and many other important acts of parliament. Sir Robert Menzies is on record for saying he was Australia's greatest Prime Ministers.[62]

 Federated States of Micronesia

Chief Justice Andon Amaraich is regarded as "one of the founding fathers of the Federated States of Micronesia".[63][64]

 Fiji

Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara is widely viewed as the "Founding Father" of an independent Fiji.[65][66][67][68][69]

 New Zealand

James Busby drafted the Declaration of the Independence of New Zealand and co-authored with William Hobson the Treaty of Waitangi, which is considered by some to be the founding document of the nation of New Zealand. The Treaty of Waitangi was not however the basis for either the British annexation of New Zealand, or the development of representative government in the colony. The indigenous M?ori people of New Zealand consider Kupe, a mythologised figure who led the first migration to New Zealand from Hawaiki in the 10th Century, to be a founding figure and the common ancestor of all M?ori.

 Papua New Guinea

Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare is viewed as the "Founding Father" of Papua New Guinea.[70][71][72][73] The leading figure during the country's transition to independence from Australia, he was Papua New Guinea's first Prime Minister.

 Tonga

George Tupou I founded the modern Kingdom of Tonga

King George Tupou I, who united his country and established the contemporary Kingdom of Tonga, has been described as Tonga's "founding father".[74][75]

Former states and other territories

Arabian Peninsula

Before the Prophet Muhammad completed his migration to Yathrib (present day Medina), the Arabian peninsula was divided by tribalism. Spread out and distant, region to region. After the migration in 622 AD, the Prophet Muhammad began to spread the word of Islam to the other Arab tribes outside of Mecca. Through this preaching and military expeditions, he accumulated a large army of loyal followers and returned to Mecca to conquer it in the name of Islam in 629 AD. At the time of his death in 632 AD, the region was bounded into one polity under the flag of Islam. After his death, the 4 Caliphs of the Rashidun Caliphate expanded the territory which led to victories against the Byzantine and Persian empires.

 Bohemia

Although the first known ruler of Bohemia was Bo?ivoj I, Duke of Bohemia, the real unifier of various Slavic tribes in Bohemia and creator of nation was Duke Boleslaus I, Duke of Bohemia. Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor is regarded as the "Father of the Homeland" in the Czech Republic, because during his time the Kingdom of Bohemia experienced the greatest prosperity. Tomá? Garrigue Masaryk (1850-1937) is widely revered as the Liberator President who played the chief role in the 1918 melding of Bohemia, Moravia, Slovakia and Ruthenia into the Czechoslovak Republic, and who served as President of the Republic from 1918 to 1935.

 Republic of China

  • Sun Yat-sen is revered as the founding father ("Father of the Country"-) of the Republic of China.
  • Huangdi (reigned between 2698 and 2598 BC) is revered as the legendary founder and initiator of Chinese civilization.

 Czechoslovakia

 England

It was King Athelstan (893/895-939) who united the several Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England around the year 927, when he became King of the English as opposed to his previous title, King of the West Saxons. However, his fame is often overshadowed by his predecessor and grandfather Alfred the Great (871-899), who set in motion the unification of the English kingdoms and could also claim to be the nation's founder.

Korea

For ancient Korea, Hwanung (/) and his son Dangun Wanggeom (?/?) are legendary founders of Gojoseon, the first kingdom of Korea. The founding date is usually calculated as 3 October 2333 BC; 3 October is a South Korean national holiday known as Gaecheonjeol (/, "Festival of the Opening of Heaven"). However, in North Korea, Gaecheonjeol is not celebrated and recognized at all, unlike South Korea.

 Russian Empire

 Scotland

The fictionalising medieval poem The Wallace (c. 1477) celebrated William Wallace (died 1305) as one of the founder-heroes of Scotland's struggle to preserve/re-establish independence from Plantagenet England.[79]

 Serbia and Montenegro

 Soviet Union

  • Vladimir Lenin - Officially one among many equal founders of the country, Lenin was, de facto, the paramount leader, founder of the Soviet Union and the CPSU, the party that ruled it via one-party rule as well as the founding father of the modern Russian state. He died soon after the country's founding and retained a special status of secular apotheosis for the rest of the country's history.

 Texas

 Wales

  • Magnus Maximus (c. 335-388). According to Welsh tradition, Magnus Maximus (Welsh: Macsen-Wledig) was a Roman General who was proclaimed Emperor of Rome by his soldiers in Britain in 383. As such, he was the first "Romano-Britain" ruler of Britain and Rome itself. His mytho-heroic founding of Wales is celebrated in the modern Welsh anthem Yma o Hyd by Dafydd Iwan.
  • Hywel Dda (c. 880-950) was responsible for the codification of traditional Welsh Law, which, according to historian John Davies, "was a powerful symbol of [Welsh] unity and identity, as powerful, indeed, as their language".[80]
  • Gruffydd ap Llywelyn (r. 1039-63) was the first Welsh king to rule over the entire territory of Wales, from about 1057 until his death in 1063.[81]

 Kingdom of Yugoslavia

 Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia

 Union of South Africa

  • Louis Botha was the first Prime Minister of the Union of South Africa.
  • Jan van Riebeeck was treated as a South African founding father by the South African government during the apartheid era, being featured on statues and the country's currency (although the likeness was erroneous and was actually that of another man).[82][83]

 Zaire

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