10. Stephen Hawking (160)
Professor, author, and world-renowned theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking is without a doubt, one of the most notable characters in the world of science. He is the author of award-winning book ‘A Brief History of Time’, a book that explains the ‘Big Bang Theory’ in layman’s terms, and a book that is to this day one of the best selling books of all times with more than 10 million copies sold worldwide. Needless to say, professor Hawking is viewed as a symbol of knowledge and intelligence in pop culture and rightfully so.
9. Albert Einstein (160-190)
Albert Einstein was a German-born theoretical physicist. He developed the general theory of relativity, one of the two pillars of modern physics. Einstein's work is also known for its influence on the philosophy of science. Interestingly enough, Albert Einstein never took an IQ test, which is why the 160-190 is mostly presumed by experts and scholars across the world. Known for his essential work in the field of theoretical physics, professor Einstein is viewed as not only one of the most influential physicists in history, but also as one of the smartest people who have ever lived.
8. Judit Polgar (170)
Judith Polgar is a Hungarian chess grandmaster. She is generally considered the strongest female chess player of all-time. In 1991, Polgár achieved the title of Grandmaster at the age of 15 years and 4 months, at the time the youngest to have done so, breaking the record previously held by former World Champion Bobby Fischer.Judit was just 15 years and 4 months old when she achieved the rank of grandmaster chess player, the youngest person in history to do so. It is accustomed for chess players to measure their IQ at some point, which is exactly what the woman who once beat the great Kasparov did and got as high as 170.
7. Leonardo da Vinci (180-190)
Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci, more commonly Leonardo da Vinci was an Italian polymath whose areas of interest included invention, painting, sculpting, architecture, science, music, mathematics, engineering, literature, anatomy, geology, astronomy, botany, writing, history, poetry, and cartography. He has been variously called the father of paleontology, ichnology, and architecture, and is widely considered one of the greatest painters of all time. Sometimes credited with the inventions of the parachute, helicopter and tank, his genius epitomized the Renaissance humanist ideal. since there was nothing like an IQ test in his time we have to leave this to the experts and they believe that Da Vinci’s IQ was within the 180-190 range, making him one of the smartest people in history.
6. Marilyn Vos Savant (190)
Marilyn vos Savant is an American who is known for scoring 190 on her IQ test, she became the ‘Highest IQ’ in the 1980s according to the Guiness Book of World Records. Savant is a magazine columnist, author, lecturer, and playwright. Since 1986, she has written "Ask Marilyn," a Parade magazine Sunday column where she solves puzzles and answers questions on various subjects.
5. Garry Kasparov (194)
Garry Kimovich Kasparov is a Russian chess Grandmaster, former World Chess Champion, writer, and political activist, considered by many to be the greatest chess player of all time. From 1986 until his retirement in 2005, Kasparov was ranked world No. 1 for 225 out of 228 months. His peak rating of 2851, achieved in 1999, was the highest recorded until being surpassed by Magnus Carlsen in 2013. Kasparov also holds records for consecutive professional tournament victories and Chess Oscars. Kasparov has been viewed as quite a prodigy over the years, having his fair share of international acclaim not only for his competitive form, but also for playing competitive matches and winning against advanced chess machines like IBM’s Deep Blue computer.
4. Kim Ung-Yong (210)
Kim Ung-Yong started speaking around the time he was just 6 months old. By his 3rd birthday, Kim Ung-Yong could already read English, Korean, Japanese, and German. He was a Korean civil engineer and former child prodigy. Kim was listed in the Guinness Book of World Recordsunder "Highest IQ", the book gave the boy's score as about 210. Guinness retired the "Highest IQ" category in 1990 after concluding IQ tests were too unreliable to designate a single record holder. Later on, he move to the United States to further his studies, subsequently getting a job at NASA where he worked for almost 10 years. At some point, however, Kim Ung-Yong decided to abandon his NASA career and return to his home country of South Korea to become a teacher.
3. Christopher Hirata(225)
Youngest American (at 13) to win a gold medal in the International Physics Olympiad (1996). Entered Caltech at the age of 14, earned PhD in Physics from Princeton at age 22. Christopher Hirata obtained his PhD from Princeton, before returning to California. He remained in California to this day, teaching astrophysics at the California Institute of Technology.
2. Terence Tao (225-230)
Terence "Terry" is an Australian-American mathematician who has worked in various areas of mathematics. He currently focuses on harmonic analysis, partial differential equations, algebraic combinatorics, arithmetic combinatorics, geometric combinatorics, compressed sensing and analytic number theory. As of 2015, he holds the James and Carol Collins chair in mathematics at the University of California, Los Angeles. Tao was a co-recipient of the 2006 Fields Medal and the 2014 Breakthrough Prize in Mathematics. He currently works as a professor at the University of California in Los Angeles.
1. William James Sidis (250-300)
William James Sidis was an American child prodigy with exceptional mathematical abilities and a claimed mastery of many languages. After his death, his sister made the unverifiable claim that his IQ was "the very highest that had ever been obtained," but any records of any IQ testing that Sidis actually took have been lost to history. He entered Harvard at age eleven. He was still a young man when he started teaching, but because the small age-gap, he had serious issues reaching his students who didn’t always took kindly to him and, as an adult, was claimed to be conversant in over forty languages and dialects. It was later acknowledged, however, that some of the claims made were exaggerations, with a researcher stating "I have been researching the veracity of primary sources of various subjects for about twenty-eight years, and never before have I found a topic so satiated with lies, myths, half-truths, exaggerations, and other forms of misinformation as is in the history behind William Sidis". Sidis became famous first for his precocity and later for his eccentricity and withdrawal from public life. Eventually, he avoided mathematics altogether, writing on other subjects under a number of pseudonyms. At the time of his enrollment, he was the youngest student to ever enter Harvard.