How Well Do You Know History's Conquerors?


By: Isadora Teich

6 Min Quiz

Image: YouTube

About This Quiz

From Alexander the Great to Napolean and even the Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, man has sought to dominate the world as conquerors. Some to unify, others for personal interest, and of course others to control. How well do you think you know the great conquerors of history? From ancient times to the modern world, this quiz isn't for the faint of heart. 

Alexander the Great is arguably considered the greatest conqueror the world has ever known, yet by the age of 30 and with a massive empire he suddenly stopped and went home upon his men's request. Do you know why? Despite Alexander's massive land grab, do you know who actually had the largest contiguous land empire in the history of the world? Hint: he and his men were the most dominant horsemen in the world - and still may be. 

Do you know who one of Ancient Rome's greatest adversaries was? Oh, you need a clue? Well, he loved elephants. Or, do you remember the conqueror who, by the time of his death had an empire that transcended three different continents? Do you know which country or countries Hitler's army occupied before World War II? The answer may give you more perspective on the devastation of the war. 

These are the greatest conquerors the world has ever seen, but do you have the strength to conquer this quiz? 

Who is known for having the largest contiguous land empire in history?

Ghengis Khan's Mongol Empire stretched from Eastern Europe to the seas of Japan. It was the largest contiguous land empire in history.


Which territory did Napoleon conquer most of?

Napoleon's French Empire stretched across most of continental Europe. One of the largest empires in history, at its peak Napoleon ruled over more than 700,000 miles of land.


Alexander the Great stopped conquering the ancient world because his men:

By age 30, Alexander the Great had created one of the largest empires of all time, which stretched from Greece to Northwestern India. Undefeated, he and his men most likely could have gone even farther - if they'd wanted to.


Who united the Mongols?

Rising from poverty and slavery to the ruler of a massive empire, Genghis Khan showed no mercy to any who opposed him. For a man born in the mid-12th century, he was unusually progressive in some ways. All religions were protected throughout his empire.


Which historic conqueror is remembered for marching elephants across the Alps?

Hannibal Barka was a master tactician and major adversary of Rome. He is remembered for defeating Roman armies in battle despite having fewer soldiers and less equipment than Rome.


Which of these men played a large role in Spain conquering South America?

Francisco Pizarro led several expeditions across the Atlantic, and on one defeated most of the Incan Empire with only about 150 men on horseback. He changed history forever when he conquered Peru.


Which of these men was one of the Muslim world's most brutal conquerors?

The 14th-century Turkish conqueror Timur, also known as Tamerlane, had one of the most brutal reputations of his day. A Turco-Mongol conqueror, he founded the Timurid Empire in Asia and it is estimated his military campaigns killed 17 million people.


Which of these men is considered to be one of the largest adversaries of the Roman Empire?

Hannibal Barka led Carthaginian forces against Rome during the Second Punic War. He is known as one of history's greatest military leaders.


Which of these men was Emperor of France?

Napoleon Bonaparte began as a soldier, and at his peak ruled over more than 70 million people. Among his titles were Emperor of France and King of Italy.


Which of these men caused the fall of the Aztec Empire?

Hernan Cortes is one of the most famous conquerors of all time. A Spanish Conquistador who began the first phase of the Spanish colonization of the Americas, his expedition caused the fall of the Aztecs.


Who had an empire that spanned 3 continents at the time of his death?

Cyrus the Great of Persia had an empire which stretched from Europe to the Indus River, which flows through India and Pakistan. At his time of death, in 530 BC, he had the largest empire the world had ever seen.


Which of these men conquered from Central Asia to Eastern Europe?

Attila the Hun's empire stretched from modern-day Uzbekistan to Germany. His massive empire survived him by less than two decades.


Which king was the father of Alexander the Great?

Philip II of Macedon was a Greek king who was eventually assassinated. He created and led the League of Corinth and was the father of Alexander the Great.


Is the common knowledge fact of Napoleon's shortness true or false?

Napoleon was actually about 5'6'', which was an average height for a man of his era. He may be remembered as being short because one of his battle strategies was to surround himself with taller soldiers, which made him look tiny in comparison.


Which of these men was the first to unify India?

Chandragupta Maurya founded the Mauryan Empire. He unified India only to fast to death trying to save it from famine.


Is it true that most people in the world are related to Genghis Khan?

While there may be many men walking around today carrying the conqueror's genetic material, it is not most of the population. It is estimated that about 0.5% of the men on earth, about 16 million people, have his Y chromosome.


Who founded the Mughal Dynasty in India?

Babur was a Muslim conqueror descended from Genghis Khan. He expanded Persian cultural influence throughout the Indian subcontinent.


Which of these men is history's first emperor?

Sargon of Akkad is history's first known emperor. Reigning from 2270 BC to 2215 BC over the Akkadian Empire, his territory stretched from the Mediterranean coast to the Persian Gulf.


Who defeated Napoleon's armies and put his end in motion?

Napoleon made the tactical mistake of attempting to invade Russia in the winter. The Russians used the winter to their advantage, drawing his armies deeper and deeper into the cold and watching them freeze to death.


Alexander the Great was initially the King of:

Alexander the Great was the son of King of Macedonia Philip II. As King of Macedonia, he extended their empire from Greece to India.


Why did Julius Caesar lead Rome to conquer Gaul?

Julius Caesar rose to power through any means necessary and was deeply in debt as dictator of Rome. Declaring war on a few Gallic tribes for resources turned into an 8-year war which ended with the Roman Republic overtaking all of Gaul.


Which of these men is known as "King of the Four Corners of the World"?

Cyrus the Great founded the Achaemenid Empire, which expanded throughout Asia and the Caucuses. For over 29 years, he ruled every nation in Central Asia, crushing numerous empires in the process.


Which of these countries did Hitler's Germany occupy by the end of World War II?

Widely considered to be one of the most evil men who has ever lived, it's thought that if Adolf Hitler and the Nazis had not lost World War II they might have gone on to conquer the world. They had expanded to over a dozen European countries before their fall.


Which of these men was the first Norman King of England?

William I, also known as William the Conqueror, invaded England with a large fleet. He took the throne by force at the Battle of Hastings in 1066.


Which historic queen conquered Egypt?

Queen Zenobia was a 3rd-century ruler of the Palmyrene Empire, who took over after her husband's death. She expanded her empire into Egypt, which she ruled from 269 to 274.


Charlemagne conquered a large portion of:

Charlemagne, also known as Charles the Great, was both King of the Franks and Emperor of the Romans. His rule stretched across Western and Central Europe, helping to define Europe as a whole.


Who was the first leader to ever be called Sultan?

Mahmud of Ghazni ruled the Ghaznavid Empire from 997 until his death in 1030. His empire stretched from the Middle East into Northwestern India.


Which man expanded the Sikh Empire?

Hari Singh Nalwa was chief of the Sikh Kalsa Army. Under his leadership, the army saw many victories and was the only one to take the treacherous Khyber Pass.


Which of these conquerors is a known descendant of Genghis Khan?

Timur, also known as Tamerlane, was a brutal conqueror of more than 2 million square miles of Asia and Russia. A descendant of Genghis Khan, he saw his empire as a restoration of the Mongol Empire.


Which of these men led a successful invasion of Russia?

Over the course of history, many have tried to conquer Russia and failed due to the frigid winters. The Mongols are among a victorious few who managed to successfully invade Russia, due to Genghis Khan's superior military know-how.


Which emperor was behind the fall of the Byzantine Empire?

Mehmed II was the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire when they captured Constantinople, which led to the fall of the Byzantine Empire. Due to his many successes, the Ottoman Empire began being recognized as an empire under his rule.


Which of these men is considered to be the greatest Mughal emperor of all time?

Akbar the Great was only 14 when he ascended the throne in 1542. By his death in 1603, the Mughal Empire spanned over 600,000 square miles.


Which man unified much of Japan in the 16th century?

Toyotomi Hideyoshi reunited a divided Japan as a strong emperor with great military skill. While he ruled nearly all of mainland Japan, his invasions of China failed.


Which Muslim pirate ruled the Mediterranean on the behalf of the Ottoman Empire?

A naval mastermind, Barbarossa was a bloodthirsty pirate whose exploits led to the Ottoman Empire ruling the Mediterranean in the mid-16th century. He was recognized by the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire and feared throughout Europe.


Which man reunited the Mongol Empire?

Dayan Khan not only reunited the Mongol Empire, but by dividing the empire into 6 fiefs for his sons created a century of stability. He lived from 1464-1517.


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