The History Portal
History (from Greek ?, historia, meaning "inquiry, knowledge acquired by investigation") is the study of the past as it is described in written documents. Events occurring before written record are considered prehistory. It 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 write about history are called historians.
History can also refer to the academic discipline which uses a narrative to examine and analyse a sequence of past events, and objectively determine the patterns of cause and effect that determine them. Historians sometimes 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, because they do not show the "disinterested investigation" required of the discipline of history. Herodotus, a 5th-century BC Greek historian is considered within the Western tradition to be the "father of history", and, along with his contemporary Thucydides, 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 survived.
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 thematical elements of historical investigation. Often history is taught as part of primary and secondary education, and the academic study of history is a major discipline in university studies.
The 1689 Boston revolt
was a popular uprising on April 18, 1689 against the rule of Sir Edmund Andros
, the governor of the Dominion of New England
. A well-organized "mob" of provincial militia and citizens formed in the city and arrested dominion officials. Members of the Church of England
, believed by Puritans to sympathize with the administration of the dominion, were also taken into custody by the rebels. Neither faction sustained casualties during the revolt. Leaders of the former Massachusetts Bay Colony
then reclaimed control of the government. In other colonies, members of governments displaced by the dominion were returned to power.
Andros, commissioned governor of New England in 1686, had earned the enmity of the local populace by enforcing the restrictive Navigation Acts, denying the validity of existing land titles, restricting town meetings, and appointing unpopular regular officers to lead colonial militia, among other actions. Furthermore, he had infuriated Puritans in Boston by promoting the Church of England, which was disliked by many Nonconformist New England colonists.
Joan of Arc
: Jeanne d'Arc
; [?an da?k]
; 6 January c. 1412
- 30 May 1431), nicknamed "The Maid of Orléans
" (French: La Pucelle d'Orléans
), is considered a heroine of France for her role during the Lancastrian phase
of the Hundred Years' War
, and was canonized as a Roman Catholic saint
. She was born to Jacques d'Arc
and Isabelle Romée
, a peasant
family, at Domrémy
in north-east France. Joan claimed to have received visions of the Archangel Michael
, Saint Margaret
, and Saint Catherine of Alexandria
instructing her to support Charles VII
and recover France from English domination late in the Hundred Years' War. The uncrowned King Charles VII sent Joan to the siege of Orléans
as part of a relief mission. She gained prominence after the siege was lifted only nine days later. Several additional swift victories led to Charles VII's coronation at Reims
. This long-awaited event boosted French morale and paved the way for the final French victory.
On 23 May 1430, she was captured at Compiègne by the Burgundian faction, a group of French nobles allied with the English. She was later handed over to the English and put on trial by the pro-English bishop Pierre Cauchon on a variety of charges. After Cauchon declared her guilty she was burned at the stake on 30 May 1431, dying at about nineteen years of age.
Did you know...
On this day
October 17: Dessalines Day in Haiti (1806)
Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra, Australia
- 1346 - King David II of Scotland, under the terms of the Auld Alliance with France, led an invasion of England during the Hundred Years' War, but was captured in the Battle of Neville's Cross.
- 1604 - German astronomer Johannes Kepler observed an exceptionally bright star, now known as Kepler's Supernova, which had suddenly appeared in the constellation Ophiuchus earlier in October.
- 1964 - Prime Minister of Australia Robert Menzies opened the artificial Lake Burley Griffin in the middle of the capital Canberra.
- 1992 - Having gone to the wrong house for a Halloween party, Japanese exchange student Yoshihiro Hattori was shot and killed by the homeowner in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S.
- 2001 - Rehavam Ze'evi, the Israeli Minister of Tourism, was assassinated in revenge for the targeted killing of the PFLP leader Abu Ali Mustafa.
Edward Hawke, 1st Baron Hawke (d. 1781) · Childe Hassam (b. 1859) · Chuka Umunna (b. 1978)
Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.
"If you ask me what is my native country, I answer: I was born in Fiume, grew up in Belgrade, Budapest, Pressburg, Vienna and Munich, and I have a Hungarian passport; but I have no fatherland. I am a very typical mix of old Austria-Hungary: at once Magyar, Croatian, German and Czech; my country is Hungary, my mother tongue is German."
— Ödön von Horváth
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