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Who Are the Members of the Illuminati?

The Illuminati, often shrouded in mystery and speculation, is said to be a group of influential individuals with a shared goal of global governance. Historically, it included intellectuals and freethinkers. Today, alleged members range from political leaders to entertainment moguls. But how much truth lies behind the rumors? Uncover the enigmatic figures that fuel these clandestine narratives. Who might they be?
Angela Farrer
Angela Farrer

The reported members of the Illuminati include the royal families of several nations as well as a large handful of prominent leaders in finance, technology, and the upper levels of various national governments. This secret organization has long been a subject of speculation and conspiracy theory among researchers who attempt to draw connections between the Illuminati and major world events throughout history. Although membership in this group is often thought to be conditional on royal bloodlines, several famous non-royal names are included in available membership lists. The main purpose of this secret society is reportedly to create a single global government known as the New World Order.

Some well-publicized theories about Illuminati membership claim that it is only open to people born into one of 13 powerful families, some of which have famous names such as Kennedy, Rothschild, and Rockefeller. Various theorists report that no outsider can join the upper ranks of the Illuminati, which is a factor that sets the organization apart from other known secret societies. Since the highest-ranking members exert such extensive control behind the scenes of governments and economies, membership is strictly limited to new members who are born into the right family with the right bloodline.

Some conspiracy theorists claim that the Kennedy family is one of the 13 powerful families that make up the Illuminati.
Some conspiracy theorists claim that the Kennedy family is one of the 13 powerful families that make up the Illuminati.

Common threads among the Illuminati members are notable wealth, power, and success. Several Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of multinational corporations such as Bill Gates of Microsoft are counted among its mid-level members. While they may not belong to royal bloodlines, these members are said to be recruited and trained from early ages in order to ensure their loyalty and dedication to the Illuminati's purpose of eventual world control. In exchange for unwavering loyalty, the organization gives its recruited members access to secrets that facilitate their vast accumulation of wealth and domination of certain industries.

The royal families of several nations are thought to be members of the Illuminati.
The royal families of several nations are thought to be members of the Illuminati.

Founders of the United States such as Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson are also counted among members of this secret and powerful organization. Many theorists connect the establishment of the US as a new nation to calculated strategies for a new world government. Some researchers claim that every US president has belonged to the Illuminati and only rises to power thanks to the organization's various maneuverings. A frequently-documented conspiracy theory claims that high-ranking members actually control presidential elections as well as both major political parties. Even though the word literally means "People of Light", several theorists attribute the Illuminati's power and influence to the practice of black magic and other occult rituals.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Illuminati and what are its origins?

Benjamin Franklin was a reported member of the Illuminati.
Benjamin Franklin was a reported member of the Illuminati.

The Illuminati refers to various organizations, both historical and fictional, that are purported to control world events through masterful secrecy. The original Illuminati was an Enlightenment-era secret society founded on May 1, 1776, by Adam Weishaupt, a professor of law at the University of Ingolstadt. Its members were intellectuals and freethinkers who sought to promote rationalism and critique the influence of the church and the state. The group was disbanded by the Bavarian government in 1785.

Are there any known members of the historical Illuminati?

Eye above the pyramid on the US one dollar bill, which is thought to represent the Illuminati.
Eye above the pyramid on the US one dollar bill, which is thought to represent the Illuminati.

Yes, the historical Bavarian Illuminati included several known figures of the time. Notable members were Adolph Freiherr Knigge, who played a significant role in the organization's development, and Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the famed German writer, is often rumored to have been associated with the group. However, due to the secretive nature of the society, complete membership lists are not available, and many associations are speculative.

How does one become a member of the Illuminati?

Thomas Jefferson, who may have been a member of the Illuminati.
Thomas Jefferson, who may have been a member of the Illuminati.

In the context of the historical Bavarian Illuminati, membership was by invitation only. Prospective members were carefully vetted and required to share the Enlightenment ideals of the founders. Today, the concept of the Illuminati has evolved into a mix of conspiracy theories that suggest a shadowy elite controls world affairs. There is no credible evidence of such an organization's existence, and thus, no known way to become a member of this mythical modern version.

What impact did the Illuminati have on society?

Some conspiracy theorists have considered Bill Gates a member of the Illuminati.
Some conspiracy theorists have considered Bill Gates a member of the Illuminati.

The historical Illuminati had a limited direct impact on society due to its short existence and relatively small membership. However, the ideas promoted by the Illuminati, such as secularism, liberalism, and republicanism, were influential in the intellectual currents of the Enlightenment and may have indirectly influenced the revolutionary movements of the late 18th century. The mythos surrounding the Illuminati has had a lasting cultural impact, inspiring numerous books, films, and conspiracy theories.

Is there any truth to modern claims of an Illuminati conspiracy?

Modern claims of an Illuminati conspiracy controlling world events lack credible evidence and are generally considered to be unfounded conspiracy theories. Scholars and skeptics argue that these theories are a way to provide simplistic explanations for complex world events. The Illuminati is often invoked as a scapegoat for various societal and political ills, without substantiated proof of its existence or influence in contemporary times.

Discussion Comments


There is good and evil, God and Satan. This is a spiritual war already won by Christ. He will return until then this is Satan’s world. Read the Bible. All of this is explained.


The person who posted that "globalism" has replaced "Illuminati" is correct, I think. At the center of it all are the big global banks and financial institutions.

The music industry, yes, particularly rappers and many others have sold their souls to satan. Look at Lil Nas X with his new video; he's just the latest "musician" to corrupt kids as he started out with great appeal to children with his song, Old Town Road. Then, out of the blue, he dropped his new song , "Montero," which features him giving the devil a lap dance, presumably with no thought as to the many kids who would click on this perverted video.


All the questions asked in this article can be answered very easily just by reading books about the Illuminati and related conspiracies.


For those who do not think there is still a secret society of illuminati, you are fools! They have for decades kept this very low key. The information is out there.




The actual Illuminati died as a sect in 1785, with the last vestiges smashed by 1787. And they would have been consigned to history as a 'conspiracy theory' if Augustin Barruel hadn't made up a load of stuff in his book in 1798 e.g. they were responsible for the French Revolution.

The modern day concept of the Illuminati is just incredulous. Firstly, if it so secret and manipulative, how do people seem to know who the 'alleged members' are? And what do people base that on? Beyond speculation, where is the proof? If its membership is known - and its objectives are known - it is hardly secret?

Secondly, the people spoken of e.g. presidents, world leaders etc, already convene and have the means to connect? They already lead the world and have ample opportunity to shape our countries, cultures etc - why would they need such an organization to achieve their goals?

Thirdly, even a secret society would need literally millions of associates across the world to achieve the level of impact they are accused of achieving / seeking to achieve? They would also leave a massive communications footprint trail that would be obvious to all, especially in a world of big data and digital forensics. That level of conspiracy would be impossible to hide from plain sight. Even the most basic of government lies and incompetence gets regularly exposed, 'secret' criminal groups e.g. the Mafia or Yakuza, are exposed and understood. Yet this group is supposed to have achieved supreme competence to hide and mask their activities for 200+ years without anyone intercepting them? Again, if that is the belief of illuminati conspiracy theorists then 1) that isn't coherent with the view that 'people know they are' (they can't be both highly competent in their secrecy and known), and 2) the original illuminati were thoroughly penetrated and destroyed by the Governments of the day (their secrecy failed them).

It makes a nice story. But sorry, any scratching of the surface of plausibility suggests this is just another fantasy that a) makes people feel they have some 'secret knowledge' about how the world is run, and b) lets manipulative people make money off the back of people's fears / real world insecurities.


People don't be blind please. This is the 21st century and the Illuminati are everywhere, unfortunately. It's in the music you play, in the TV you watch, in our children's cartoons, in clothes you wear. They have their part in each thing you do. The whole industry of entertainment is full of sexual symbols, rituals and devil worshiper signs. Don't be blind, please! Open your eyes and go online. There is a bunch of evidence that they are undeniable. Please, just take little of your time and search and see billions of proofs that people took their own time just to show you what we couldn't find see or hear. Then you will realize how the end is really close because we're practically worshiping the devil already without knowing it. So wake up, people, and at least learn for your children's sake what is good and what is evil and wrong.


A lot of people are afraid of things they can't understand. I heard there are benefits to being a member of this society. There is nothing wrong with wanting to belong to a great society.


I've visited most of the illuminati sites and have seen their their visions and goals. It's quite impressive, but these things are fake faces dressed like devils.

Never lose hope in our creator. He is the one who created us.

I am a Hindu believer from India, but I read many other holy books like the Quran and the Bible.

At the end of the world there will be large increase in the field of the music industry. That's happening. Most of the illuminati members are musicians and politicians, like Jay Z, Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber and Rihanna. They will destroy this world.

The illuminati group offers many things, like fame, money and luxury. Never ever fall into these things.

God tests us and there is a world behind this universe. It's heaven. Never put a shutter on heaven. Most of the modern bibles are edited and many phrases about god are missing.

So never be a member of the illuminati.


Although I know this article to be wrong in numerous ways, the fact that Kennedy is on the first picture of members of Illuminati made me laugh. Even thought you should suspect any, if not all presidents to be members, naming Kennedy first would be a mistake. He was actually one of the few presidents that wanted to ban secret societies in general in the United States and not so long after his famous speech where he suggested this, he got shot! I would put George Washington and Benjamin Franklin up there for sure.


@anon945047-- Actually, I read an interview of Saif Ali Khan where he talked about the name of his production company. He said that he's a huge fan of Dan Brown, and "illuminati" was mentioned in Dan Brown's novel "Angels and Demons." He also liked the meaning of the word: "darkness to light." So maybe he doesn't have anything to do with this organization after all.


@Discographer: I'm from India too, and it wouldn't be surprising if Saif Ali Khan is a member of the Illuminati, mainly because he is after all a member of a royal family, Nawab of Pataudi. I lost all my doubts as soon as I saw the name of his film production company. In fact, in an interview, he was asked what was the meaning of the name and he replied with some vague references. I do not know about any other celebrities, but I do know that there are plenty of Masonic lodges operating all over India.


Really, I think the Illuminati is there among us and I am happy to know there are people like this between us. I would like to know them and be part of them.

It's not bad if someone has a secret and they do not want to share it with anyone. So people, just sit behind and see how the world will change and what the world will become.


I have recently come across these four types of Illuminati replacements: clones, synthetic people, robotoids and even doubles. This makes me wonder, if a woman got pregnant and had twins (or more), would that mean her genetics were tampered with or even the possibility it's in her bloodline? This is freaky and we all do live in a simulation, called the Matrix!

I've been a fan of many celebs growing up, but by the 2000s, I found many celebs to be boring, repetitive and of high stupidity, but couldn't find out why. This was way before I even heard the term Illuminati. After lots of research last year and some this year, I wouldn't put it past anyone that most, if not all, celebs are replaced by one of these four.

I'm a big White Stripes fan and I find it odd that since Jack White had done side projects, his image became quite dramatically different (from straight to curly hair and from clean shaven to a mustache and goatee)- same for his personality. He seemed more genuine, happy, laid back, nice, calmer, and was humorous- to becoming loud, quite moody, self indulgent, intense, sometimes bad-mouthed, more easily angered and developed a sarcastic humor by giving others a harder time, as if he had more patience then, than he does now.

I love the guy, don't get me wrong, but is it really Jack himself? And why would he go many years saying Meg's his sis, then all of a sudden, the truth comes out, then bam! They're divorced, than bam! The White Stripes split?

On top of that, his TMR logo has those 'lightening bolt' symbols surrounding a tower, and his videos have become darker and more grim or even very symbolic, and his lyrics have become more violent/graphic, especially towards the idea of love.

This is very scary. I remember being a huge fan of Jon Davis from Korn back at age 16. Now, he goes by J-Devil? Since Head left, I didn't like korn as much, but never understood why until recently.

I also liked Jay-Z when I was in middle school, but grew off his music growing up. I know why now. I favored Beyonce out of Destiny's Child, but as she went solo, I found her boring. I now know why!!

We are all stuck in a giant labyrinth here, and the Goblin King (that owl- or should I say, Bohemian Grove Owl?) is the devil!


The illuminati don't call themselves that anymore. They are tricking you by calling themselves globalists.

We are in pre-apocalyptic times and Jesus is coming way sooner than you think. The antichrist is America and the two horns described in the Bible are the Democratic and Republican parties. The beast out of the sea is the roman Vatican, a.k.a. Catholics. It's all symbolic.

The image of the beast is falsehood, idolatry, worshipping the wrong spirits. The Pope recently was performing miraculous signs, like exorcism.

Obama isn't the antichrist, but he is paving the way for the human representative for America when Satan takes possession of the destined son of his. The mark on the right hand, for example. If you decide to use a knife to murder someone and you know it's bad, so do you not do it, or do you continually break God's commandments? Your hands physically are your actions and that is the mark. It's not literal. And again, the symbolic mark on the forehead. The front of your brain is where you make decisions, so it's the same as above: you choose to be evil and unrepentant. You made the choice to deny God and his son Jesus Christ and that is the mark on the forehead. Again, it is symbolic.

I can't explain it all in full detail, but many websites explain what I am saying in full detail and with better spelling. Please believe me. It's not some crap. I have visions in my dreams and have dealt with demons. This stuff is real and has proved to me what I know is truth. An angel told me in my dream for the longest time. I thought I had lost my mind, but now I know better. He ended up being right!

Accept Jesus sincerely and truthfully in your hearts. Inner spiritual truth and actions speak louder than any physical lie. I hate the Devil. These are my own words and I seek to put an end to the lies from politicians, etc., but that is not important right now. What is important is me telling you the truth: Jesus is coming like a thief in the night and the moon will turn blood red. Blessed is he who keeps his clothes on and does not slumber to see the second coming of our Lord.


If you place your faith in God, not even secret societies that govern the world will matter much to you.

I came across this site looking into the Beyonce / JayZ rumors of them being associated with the Illuminati. I didn't know what Illuminati stood for. Quite frankly, it doesn't matter if a select few control parts of this world. Satan is running free and this is his world to control anyway. None of that helps anyone in any way.

But you can help yourself in preparing yourself for the trying times that are to come by building a closer relationship with God and his Son, Jesus Christ.


Here is the truth about mind control:

The world is run by the Illuminati. Chances are most people are simple by their bloodlines. For example, you can't be a policeman or a doctor if you are not one of them.

They invented the mental hospitals, psychiatry and mind control. They developed the technology and I know for sure that they had this technology already 60 years ago and even before.

The first ones who had the right to put someone into a mental hospital were blue blood families, then they recruited others. They are now performing mind montrol on unrestrained subjects, as they call them (look up Jose Delgado physically controlling the mind).

In the past, they had some silly rules that only they can have a tattoo, for example or were allowed to change their names.

I think that they've loosened up a little bit by know, but if you are by some chance nor one of them (go check with your parents), there is a very big chance that if you tried to pull something like Marilyn Manson does (one of the biggest ones in their pyramid), you'd get so messed up via mind control gadgets that you would not know what hit you.

"They say only the fittest of the fittest will survive, stay alive" - Bob Marley (one of the biggest in their pyramid).

Chances are, most of the people posting here and the author belong. Just a warning for those who already don't belong (go check with your parents).

@fify-- The Vatican Illuminati is very secretive and very intriguing.

I'm from India and I've heard on TV here that some of our politicians as well as celebrities are members of the Illuminati. I'm not sure how they became members or what this means though.

In fact, I've heard that one of my favorite actors-- Saif Ali Khan-- is an Illuminati member. He even named his production company "Illuminati films," not that really means anything.

If this is true, I guess Illuminati members are all over the world, in every country.


So does Illuminati only accept members form America? Or do they have members in other countries too?

Can someone who has wealth and power apply to be entered into the Illuminati?

What benefits does Illuminati provide to its members?


I don't know much about the Illuminati but I hear people talking about it a lot on forums. I have the feeling that the Illuminati is not as strict about having members who are not relatives of previous Illuminati members anymore. Because people mention all sorts of famous names from around the world who cannot be associated with the organization through Illuminati bloodlines.

The weird thing is, members are supposed to be secret right? So how do we know for sure who's in the organization or not? For the most part, its claims but nothing can be proven.

@Emilski - That is actually kind of funny, but I have also heard about Bohemian Grove and how many presidents have been members there.

What people need to understand is that not all secret organizations are kind of scary, like the Illuminati, and most are just trying to keep their agenda private and are not looking to turn the world upside down.

I think that this legend has been sensationalized by the media and in various films. I remember seeing a movie called "Eyes Wide Shut" that is supposedly revealing aspects of an Illuminati meeting and the legend was furthered when the director, I believe 70 years old at the time, died before it was released. Something like this happening is only going to be eaten up by the media and further the legend.

I am wondering if anyone can think of other examples of depictions of the Illuminati in pop culture or movies?


@TreeMan - Although that is a sensible observation, what must not be forgotten is that there are in fact members of a secret, large scale organization that brings up comparisons to the Illuminati and does include very powerful figures.

In northern California there is a not so secret location, well guarded, called Bohemian Grove and it has been reported by people that have broke in, as well as leaks to the media, that powerful American businessmen as well as politicians have been in meetings at this location and have partook in their activities.

Most people speculate that they are there to establish American policy and possibly create a New World Order, but others, many of whom have been ones who broke in, have observed it as a type of retreat for these people and they just throw a big party and drink beer.

Despite these rather humorous observations by people that have went there, people still believe that this is actually an Illuminati meeting place and this only enhances the legend.


@Izzy78 - I agree. I have read a lot of stories about secret societies in medieval and post modern Europe, mostly involving either church leaders, or people looking to create a change in society, such as a possible overthrow of the government, or an ideological movement to start at a grassroots level amongst the masses.

That being said, the Illuminati could in fact be a reality in this context, and it could even be alive today, but the question is whether or not it is a small underground movement or if it even exists.

It is probable that a large scale organization, like how the myth describes, does not exist and it is in fact a very low level group that has continued or even been re-created, following ideals from another small group centuries before.


The Illuminati legend is as popular of an urban legend as one could conjure up, and it usually involves a variation of the people that are associated with the mythological organization.

There have been rumors or Presidents and World leaders being involved in the Illuminati, with the shared idea that they will create a new world order with their policies.

This part of the myth has only grown since advents, like NAFTA, and the push towards globalization, which connects countries through trade and diplomacy more than ever.

As far as any of this myth being substantiated, there is virtually nothing besides skepticism and conjecture on the matter, with some things that people point to, like the all seeing eye on the back of the one dollar bill, that are just never explained.


Nobody mentioned Jay Z or the music industry's involvement in Illuminati.


Pretty short and sweet. No Adam Weishaupt? Is it strange his name means (White House) in German? Well, haupt means "head" or "apex" but is too close to be construed as coincidence.

The question then becomes, who named the White House? These are the questions that a sleuth for truth hunts in this jungle of lies, treachery, and villainy.

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    • Some conspiracy theorists claim that the Kennedy family is one of the 13 powerful families that make up the Illuminati.
      By: Joe Haupt
      Some conspiracy theorists claim that the Kennedy family is one of the 13 powerful families that make up the Illuminati.
    • The royal families of several nations are thought to be members of the Illuminati.
      By: William Richardson
      The royal families of several nations are thought to be members of the Illuminati.
    • Benjamin Franklin was a reported member of the Illuminati.
      By: Georgios Kollidas
      Benjamin Franklin was a reported member of the Illuminati.
    • Eye above the pyramid on the US one dollar bill, which is thought to represent the Illuminati.
      By: isak55
      Eye above the pyramid on the US one dollar bill, which is thought to represent the Illuminati.
    • Thomas Jefferson, who may have been a member of the Illuminati.
      By: Robert Gil
      Thomas Jefferson, who may have been a member of the Illuminati.
    • Some conspiracy theorists have considered Bill Gates a member of the Illuminati.
      By: Maik Meid
      Some conspiracy theorists have considered Bill Gates a member of the Illuminati.