The History Portal
(c. 484 BC – c. 425 BC), often considered the "father of history"
History (from Greek ἱστορία, historia, meaning 'inquiry; knowledge acquired by investigation') is the study of the past. Events occurring before the invention of writing systems are considered prehistory. "History" is an umbrella term that relates to past events as well as the memory, discovery, collection, organization, presentation, and interpretation of information about these events. Scholars who focus on history are called historians. The historian's role is to place the past in context, using sources from moments and events, and filling in the gaps to the best of their ability. Written documents are not the only sources historians use to develop their understanding of the past. They also use material objects, oral accounts, ecological markers, art, and artifacts as historical sources.
History also includes the academic discipline which uses narrative to describe, examine, question, and analyze a sequence of past events, investigate the patterns of cause and effect that are related to them. Historians seek to understand and represent the past through narratives. They often debate which narrative best explains an event, as well as the significance of different causes and effects. Historians also debate the nature of history and its usefulness by discussing the study of the discipline as an end in itself and as a way of providing "perspective" on the problems of the present.
Stories common to a particular culture, but not supported by external sources (such as the tales surrounding King Arthur), are usually classified as cultural heritage or legends. History differs from myth in that it is supported by evidence. However, ancient influences have helped spawn variant interpretations of the nature of history which have evolved over the centuries and continue to change today. The modern study of history is wide-ranging, and includes the study of specific regions and the study of certain topical or thematic elements of historical investigation. History is often taught as part of primary and secondary education, and the academic study of history is a major discipline in university studies.
Herodotus, a 5th-century BC Greek historian is often considered (within the Western tradition) to be the "father of history," or, by some, the "father of lies." Along with his contemporary Thucydides, he helped form the foundations for the modern study of human history. Their works continue to be read today, and the gap between the culture-focused Herodotus and the military-focused Thucydides remains a point of contention or approach in modern historical writing. In East Asia, a state chronicle, the Spring and Autumn Annals, was known to be compiled from as early as 722 BC although only 2nd-century BC texts have survived.
Topical excerpt section
A South American dreadnought race
, and Chile
began when the Brazilian government announced its intention to purchase three dreadnoughts
whose capabilities far outstripped older vessels in the world's navies—in 1907. Two ships of the Minas Geraes class
were laid down immediately with a third to follow. The Argentine and Chilean governments immediately canceled a naval-limiting pact between them, and both ordered two dreadnoughts (the Rivadavia
and Almirante Latorre classes
, respectively). Meanwhile, Brazil's third dreadnought was canceled in favor of an even larger ship, but the ship was laid down and ripped up several times after repeated major alterations to the design. When the Brazilian government finally settled on a design, they realized it would be outclassed by the Chilean dreadnoughts' larger armament, so they sold the partly-completed ship to the Ottoman Empire
and attempted to acquire a more powerful vessel. By this time the First World War
had broken out in Europe, and many shipbuilders suspended work on dreadnoughts for foreign countries, halting the Brazilian plans. Argentina's two dreadnoughts were delivered, as the United States remained neutral in the opening years of the war, but Chile's two dreadnoughts were purchased by the United Kingdom. In the years between the First and Second World War
, many naval expansion plans, some involving dreadnought purchases, were proposed. While most never came to fruition, in April 1920 the Chilean government reacquired one of the dreadnoughts taken over by the United Kingdom. No other dreadnoughts were purchased by a South American nation, and all were sold for scrap
in the 1950s.
George Wilcken Romney
(July 8, 1907 – July 26, 1995) was an American businessman
and Republican Party politician
. He was chairman and president of American Motors Corporation
from 1954 to 1962, the 43rd Governor of Michigan
from 1963 to 1969, and the United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
from 1969 to 1973. He was the father of former Governor of Massachusetts
and 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney
and the husband of former Michigan U.S. Senate candidate Lenore Romney
. Romney was born to American parents living in the Mormon colonies in Mexico
; events during the Mexican Revolution
forced his family to flee back to the United States when he was a child. The family lived in several states and ended up in Salt Lake City, Utah
, where they struggled during the Great Depression
. Romney worked in a number of jobs, served as a Mormon missionary
in the United Kingdom
, and attended several colleges in the U.S. but did not graduate from any. In 1939 he moved to Detroit
and joined the American Automobile Manufacturers Association
, where he served as the chief spokesman for the automobile industry during World War II
and headed a cooperative arrangement in which companies could share production improvements. He joined Nash-Kelvinator
in 1948, and became the chief executive of its successor, American Motors Corporation
, in 1954. There he turned around the struggling firm by focusing all efforts on the compact Rambler
car. Romney mocked the products of the "Big Three
" automakers as "gas-guzzling dinosaurs" and became one of the first high-profile, media-savvy business executives. Devoutly religious, he presided over the Detroit Stake
of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Did you know...
On this day
May 28: Republic Day in Azerbaijan (1918)
Bust of Louis Delgrès
- 1802 – In an attempt to resist the reintroduction of slavery in Guadeloupe, Louis Delgrès (bust pictured) and hundreds of his followers blew themselves up, killing many French troops in the process.
- 1892 – Scottish-American preservationist John Muir founded the environmental organization Sierra Club in San Francisco, California.
- 1901 – Mozaffar ad-Din, the shah of Persia, granted exclusive rights to prospect for oil in the country to William Knox D'Arcy.
- 1987 – Mathias Rust, a West German aviator, flew his Cessna 172 from Helsinki, Finland, through Soviet air defences, landing illegally near Red Square in Moscow.
- 2010 – A train derailment and collision in the West Midnapore district of West Bengal, India, caused the deaths of at least 148 passengers.
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