Inspirational Historian Quotes On Life History

These historian quotes will inspire you. A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is considered an authority in it. Historians are concerned with the ongoing systematic narrative and search for past events in relation to the human race; as well as studying the whole history in time.

A collection of motivating, happy, and encouraging historian quotes, historian sayings, and historian proverbs.

Best Historian Quotes

  1. “History is always written wrong, and so always needs to be rewritten.” ~ George Santayana
  2. “History must speak for itself. A historian is content if he has been able to shed more light.” ~ William L. Shirer
  3. “Historian: an unsuccessful novelist.” ~ H. L. Mencken
  4. “The historian amputates reality.” ~ Gaetano Salvemini
  5. “Historian – a broad-gauge gossip.” ~ Ambrose Bierce

  6. “The good historian is like the giant of the fairy tale. He knows that wherever he catches the scent of human flesh, there his quarry lies.” ~ Marc Bloch
  7. “When a historian enters into metaphysics he has gone to a far country from whose bourne he will never return a historian.” ~ Shailer Mathews
  8. “Since history has no properly scientific value, its only purpose is educative. And if historians neglect to educate the public, if they fail to interest it intelligently in the past, then all their historical learning is valueless except in so far as it educates themselves.” ~ G. M. Trevelyan
  9. “History was a series of decisions about what to tell and a series of accidents about what survived after telling. Not truth, but a historian could search for truth, and the search was as worthy as any other human activity.” ~ David Drake
  10. “Historians exercise great power and some of them know it. They recreate the past, changing it to fit their own interpretations. Thus, they change the future as well.” ~ Frank Herbert

  11. “There is that great proverb — that until the lions have their own historians, the history of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.” ~ Chinua Achebe
  12. “The function of the historian is neither to love the past nor to emancipate himself from the past, but to master and understand it as the key to the understanding of the present.” ~ Edward Hallett Carr
  13. “Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.” ~ H. G. Wells
  14. “Each time history repeats itself, the price goes up.” ~ Ronald Wright
  15. “The poet may say or sing, not as things were, but as they ought to have been; but the historian must pen them, not as they ought to have been, but as they really were.” ~ Miguel de Cervantes

  16. “History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.” ~ Winston Churchill
  17. “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” ~ George Santayana
  18. “Every good historian is almost by definition a revisionist. He looks at the accepted view of a particular historic episode or period with a very critical eye.” ~ Paul Johnson
  19. “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it without a sense of ironic futility.” ~ Errol Morris
  20. “No great man lives in vain. The history of the world is but the biography of great men.” ~ Thomas Carlyle

  21. “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat.” ~ Winston Churchill
  22. “Those who don’t remember the past are condemned to repeat the eleventh grade.” ~ James W. Loewen
  23. “Very few things happen at the right time, and the rest do not happen at all. The conscientious historian will correct these defects.” ~ Herodotus
  24. “Out of the fictitious book, I get the expression of the life, of the times, of the manners, of the merriment, of the dress, the pleasure, the laughter, the ridicules of society. The old times live again. Can the heaviest historian do more for me?” ~ William Makepeace Thackeray
  25. “Futurism today is led by science-fiction writers, by sociologists, by historians. Now, I have nothing against them. I’m sure they do great work. But they’re not scientists. They’re clueless.” ~ Michio Kaku

  26. “Historians are like deaf people who go on answering questions that no one has asked them.” ~ Leo Tolstoy
  27. “Let us, therefore, brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that, if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, ‘This was their finest hour.'” ~ Winston Churchill
  28. “I am fond of pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals.” ~ Winston Churchill
  29. “We must be very careful not to assign this deliverance the attributes of a victory. Wars are not won by evacuations” ~ Winston Churchill
  30. “Governments have never learned anything from history, or acted on principles deducted from it.” ~ Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

  31. “From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the Continent.” ~ Winston Churchill
  32. “For my part, I consider that it will be found much better by all parties to leave the past to history, especially as I propose to write that history myself.” ~ Winston Churchill
  33. “Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” ~ Winston Churchill
  34. “A generation which ignores history has no past — and no future.” ~ Robert A. Heinlein
  35. “History is indeed little more than the register of the crimes, follies, and misfortunes of mankind.” ~ Edward Gibbon

  36. “History – an account, mostly false, of events, mostly unimportant” ~ John Barth
  37. “Few will have the greatness to bend history itself; but each of us can work to change a small portion of events, and in the total; of all those acts will be written the history of this generation.” ~ Robert Kennedy
  38. “History is an account, mostly false, of events, mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers, mostly knaves, and soldiers, mostly fools.” ~ Ambrose Bierce
  39. “The historian must have some conception of how men who are not historians behave.” ~ Edward Gibbon
  40. “The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.” ~ L.P. Hartley

  41. “Anybody can make history; only a great man can write it.” ~ Oscar Wilde
  42. “People will not look forward to posterity, who never look backward to their ancestors.” ~ Edmund Burke
  43. “There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power.” ~ Washington Irving
  44. “Battles are sometimes won by generals; wars are nearly always won by sergeants and privates.” ~ F. E. Adcock
  45. “Woman is a miracle of divine contradictions.” ~ Jules Michelet

  46. “Men cannot be made good by the state, but they can easily be made bad. Morality depends on liberty.” ~ Lord Acton
  47. “The Marine Corps … took a boy and made him a man.” ~ Ed Bearss
  48. “The corporations plainly want academic scholarship to create a web of mystification that will avoid any public awareness of the way in which power actually functions in the society, and the faculty has caught the message and they do it magnificently.” ~ Noam Chomsky
  49. “I mean, it’s true, nobody talks about them, but when you bring it up, the idea that you have to rent yourself to somebody and follow their orders, and that they own and you work there, and you built it but you don’t own it, that’s a highly unnatural notion. You don’t have to study any complicated theories to see that this is an attack on human dignity.” ~ Noam Chomsky
  50. “Limitation is essential to authority. A government is legitimate only if it is effectively limited.” ~ Lord Acton

  51. “With a novelist’s sense of drama and a historian’s understanding of the social forces that shape our lives, Tom Gjelten has captured vividly — through the chronicle of a powerful family’s fortunes — one of the great political dramas of our time.” ~ Ronald Steel
  52. “When the nuclear weapons were sent to the racist South African government, where a few million white people subjugated more than 13 million black people, it was so they could use them against the Cuban forces that were defending Angola. These things have not been written down but they need to be told as part of the reality of history which should not be distorted the way the historians connected to the power elite tend to do.” ~ Alejandro Castro Espin
  53. “Farber had a huge effect on me as a writer. I don’t mean I write like him. Farber is, first of all, a great stylist, a great writer. Anyone can read Manny Farber’s film criticism, whether that person is a novelist, a poet, another critic, a historian, and learn a lot about writing by reading him.” ~ Greil Marcus
  54. “The first law of history is to dread uttering a falsehood; the next is not to fear stating the truth; lastly, the historian’s writings should be open to no suspicion of partiality or animosity.” ~ Pope Leo XIII
  55. “In a certain sense, all men are historians.” ~ Thomas Carlyle

  56. “At some time in their careers, most good historians itch to write a history of the world, endeavor to discover what makes humanity the most destructive and creative of species.” ~ Paul Johnson
  57. “All revolutionary advances in science may consist less of sudden and dramatic revelations than a series of transformations, of which the revolutionary significance may not be seen (except afterwards, by historians) until the last great step. In many cases, the full potentiality and force of a most radical step in such a sequence of transformations may not even be manifest to its author.” ~ I. Bernard Cohen
  58. “Ultimately a historian has to put together a cohesive work. That doesn’t mean that your curiosity is ever totally satisfied.” ~ Adele Logan Alexander
  59. “Now, there are some who would like to rewrite history – revisionist historians is what I like to call them.” ~ George W. Bush
  60. “I’m not especially interested in the job of the historian or journalist of trying to figure out what was true and what was not.” ~ Jonathon Keats

  61. “An historian without political passions is as rare as a wasp without a sting.” ~ Agnes Repplier
  62. “[T]he historian and the detective have much in common.” ~ Ralph Davis
  63. “History viewed from the inside is always a dark, digestive mess, far different from the easily recognizable cow viewed from afar by historians.” ~ Dan Simmons

  64. “How something important happens is the business of historians and newspapers, the effect it has is the business of philosophers and writers and especially poets.” ~ Karl Shapiro
  65. “Too many so-called historians are really ‘hysterians’; their thinking is more visceral than cerebral. When their duties as citizens clash with their responsibilities as scholars, Clio frequently takes a back seat.” ~ Thomas A. Bailey

Historian, if the individual is concerned with events preceding written history, the individual is a historian of prehistory.

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