History Quotes

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Phrases

-History is an account, mostly false, of events, mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers, mostly knaves, and soldiers, mostly fools.
Ambrose Bierce

-The history of mankind is the instant between two strides taken by a traveler.
Franz Kafka

-What is history? An echo of the past in the future; a reflex from the future on the past.
Victor Hugo

-History is mostly guessing; the rest is prejudice.
Will Durant

History Quotes

-History is a gallery of pictures in which there are few originals and many copies.
Alexis de Tocqueville

-History is a race between education and catastrophe.
H.G. Wells

-History is a vast early warning system.
Norman Cousins

-Human history in essence is the history of ideas.
H.G. Wells

-The pull, the attraction of history, is in our human nature. What makes us tick? Why do we do what we do? How much is luck the deciding factor?
David McCullough

-A myth is far truer than a history, for a history only gives a story of the shadows, whereas a myth gives a story of the substances that cast the shadows.
Annie Besant

-History reports that the men who can manage men manage the men who can manage only things, and the men who can manage money manage all.
Will Durant

-Isn’t history ultimately the result of our fear of boredom?
Emile Cioran

-History is nothing but assisted and recorded memory.
George Santayana

-History provides no precise guidelines.
Douglas Hurd

-History has been the history of warfare.
Godfrey Reggio

-History is a resource.
Laura Linney

-History develops, art stands still.
E.M. Forster

-History is more or less bunk.
Henry Ford

-History, a distillation of rumour.
Thomas Carlyle

-Indeed, history is nothing more than a tableau of crimes and misfortunes.
Voltaire

History Quotes

-History is not a burden on the memory but an illumination of the soul.
Lord Acton

-Without words, without writing and without books there would be no history, there could be no concept of humanity.
Hermann Hesse

-History shows that there are no invincible armies.
Joseph Stalin

-History is merely gossip.
Oscar Wilde

-History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce.
Karl Marx

-There is properly no history; only biography.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

-History is a pack of lies we play on the dead.
Voltaire

-To study history means submitting to chaos and nevertheless retaining faith in order and meaning.
Hermann Hesse

-History is a relay of revolutions.
Saul Alinsky

-I do not speak Hebrew, but I understand that it has no word for ‘history’. The closest word for it is memory.
David Miliband

-Blood alone moves the wheels of history.
Martin Luther

-Revolutions are the locomotives of history.
Karl Marx

-Black history is American history.
Morgan Freeman

-People who make history know nothing about history. You can see that in the sort of history they make.
G.K. Chesterton

-The only history is a mere question of one’s struggle inside oneself. But that is the joy of it. One need neither discover Americas nor conquer nations, and yet one has as great a work as Columbus or Alexander, to do.
D.H. Lawrence

-History is formed by the people, those who have power and those without power. Each one of us makes history.
Anselm Kiefer

-History is a tool used by politicians to justify their intentions.
Ted Coppell

History Quotes

-Certain periods in history suddenly lift humanity to an observation point where a clear light falls upon a world previously dark.
Anne Sullivan

-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

-Anyone who believes you can’t change history has never tried to write his memoirs.
David Ben Gurion

-We are all tourists in history, and irony is what we win in wars.
Anatole Broyard

-It is not history which uses men as a means of achieving – as if it were an individual person – its own ends. History is nothing but the activity of men in pursuit of their ends.
Karl Marx

-I’ve been completely fascinated with history because it tells everything about what’s going to happen next because it’s cyclical, everything repeats in general.
Emile Autumn

-On the day when man told the story of his life to man, history was born.
Alfred de Vigny

-Today is either the beginning of the end, or the end of the beginning. Today we are making history.
Eckhard Pfeiffer

-The public history of modern art is the story of conventional people not knowing what they are dealing with.
Golda Meir

-People say history is boring, and that is true because people are boring. We haven’t changed since time began. We’re still the same. We’ve obviously made some changes.
Colin Hay

-The human race tends to remember the abuses to which it has been subjected rather than the endearments. What’s left of kisses? Wounds, however, leave scars.
Bertolt Brecht

-I am what time, circumstance, history, have made of me, certainly, but I am also, much more than that. So are we all.
James Baldwin

-Anybody can make history. Only a great man can write it.
Oscar Wilde

-I believe that we must maintain pride in the knowledge that the actions we take, based on our own decisions and choices as individuals, link directly to the magnificent challenge of transforming human history.
Daisaku Ikeda

-History is who we are and why we are the way we are.
David McCullough

-The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.
George Orwell

-The historic ascent of humanity, taken as a whole, may be summarized as a succession of victories of consciousness over blind forces – in nature, in society, in man himself.
Leon Trotsky

-People have an annoying habit of remembering things they shouldn’t.
Christopher Paolini

-History of the world is the biography of the great man. And I said: The great man always act like a thunder. He storms the skies, while others are waiting to be stormed.
Thomas Carlyle

-History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.
Martin Luther King Jr.

-After making a mistake or suffering a misfortune, the man of genius always gets back on his feet.
Napoleon Bonaparte

History Quotes

-History is a people’s memory, and without a memory, man is demoted to the lower animals.
Malcolm X

-The past changes a little every time we retell it.
Hilary Mantel

-Neither the life of an individual nor the history of a society can be understood without understanding both.
C. Wright Mills

-Fear not for the future, weep not for the past.
Percy Bysshe Shelley

-History has demonstrated that the most notable winners usually encountered heartbreaking obstacles before they triumphed. They won because they refused to become discouraged by their defeats.
B.C. Forbes

-We don’t want tradition. We want to live in the present and the only history that is worth a tinker’s damn is the history we make today.
Henry Ford

-The main thing is to make history, not to write it.
Otto von Bismarck

-Never doubt that you can change history. You already have.
Marge Piercy

-The best prophet of the future is the past.
Lord Byron

-History does nothing; it does not possess immense riches, it does not fight battles. It is men, real, living, who do all this.
Karl Marx

-Life moves fast. As much as you can, learn from your history, you have to move forward.
Eddie Vedder

-The man who has no sense of history, is like a man who has no ears or eyes.
Adolf Hitler

-History laughs at both the victim and the aggressor.
Mahmoud Darwish

-Patriotism ruins history.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

-Poetry is nearer to vital truth than history.
Plato

-Difficulty is the excuse history never accepts.
Edward Murrow

-History is written by the victors.
Winston Churchill

-What experience and history teach is this – that people and governments never have learned anything from history, or acted on principles.
George Wilhelm Hegel

-The charm of history and its enigmatic lesson consist in the fact that, from age to age, nothing changes and yet everything is completely different.
Aldous Huxley

-A generation which ignores history has no past – and no future.
Robert A. Heinlein

-We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsibility for our future.
George Bernard Shaw

-History shows you don’t know what the future brings.
Rick Wagoner

History Quotes

-I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know no way of judging of the future but by the past.
Edward Gibbon

-I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past.
Bar Rafaeli

-If you think you have it tough, read history books.
Bill Maher

-If history repeats itself, and the unexpected always happens, how incapable must Man be of learning from experience.
George Bernard Shaw

-One of the lessons of history is that nothing is often a good thing to do and always a clever thing to say.
Will Durant

-If history and science have taught us anything, it is that passion and desire are not the same as truth.
E.O. Wilson

-The history of the past interests us only in so far as it illuminates the history of the present.
Ernest Dimnet

-All our experience with history should teach us, when we look back, how badly human wisdom is betrayed when it relies on itself.
Martin Luther

-The so-called lessons of history are for the most part the rationalizations of the victors. History is written by the survivors.
Max Lerner

-There runs a strange law through the length of human history – that men are continually tending to undervalue their environment, to undervalue their happiness, to undervalue themselves.
G.K. Chesterton

-When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall – think of it, always.
Mahatma Gandhi

-History, we can confidently assert, is useful in the sense that art and music, poetry and flowers, religion and philosophy are useful. Without it — as with these — life would be poorer and meaner; without it we should be denied some of those intellectual and moral experiences which give meaning and richness to life. Surely it is no accident that the study of history has been the solace of many of the noblest minds of every generation.
Henry Steele Commager

-The game of history is usually played by the best and the worst over the heads of the majority in the middle.
Eric Hoffer

-Sometimes history takes things into its own hands.
Thurgood Marshall

-If you want the present to be different from the past, study the past.
Baruch Spinoza

-History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, however, if faced with courage, need not be lived again.
Maya Angelou

-Our history is not our destiny.
Alan Cohen

-Every renaissance comes to the world with a cry, the cry of the human spirit to be free.
Anne Sullivan

-History is the present. That’s why every generation writes it anew. But what most people think of as history is its end product, myth.
E.L. Doctorow

-Whatever we do or fail to do will influence the course of history.
Arthur Henderson

-Human blunders usually do more to shape history than human wickedness.
A.J.P. Taylor

-If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree.
Michael Crichton

-History never looks like history when you are living through it.
John W. Gardner

-On human stupidity: It is one of the most powerful forces that shape history.
Yuval Noah Harari

-Ideas shape the course of history.
John Maynard Keynes

-Sometimes – history needs a push.
Vladimir Lenin

-The main thing history can teach us is that human actions have consequences and that certain choices, once made, cannot be undone. They foreclose the possibility of making other choices and thus they determine future events.
Gerda Lerner

-Who has fully realized that history is not contained in thick books but lives in our very blood?
Carl Jung

-Condemn me, it does not matter, history will absolve me.
Fidel Castro

-People live in the present. They plan for, and worry about, the future. Given all the demands that press in from living in the present and anticipating what is yet to come, why bother with what has been?
Peter Stearns

-Hindsight is the historian’s necessary vice.
Hilary Mantel

-Study the past if you would define the future.
Confucius

-Historian: an unsuccessful novelist.
H.L. Mencken

-No harm’s done to history by making it something someone would want to read.
David McCullough

-Skepticism is a virtue in history as well as in philosophy.
Napoleon Bonaparte

-People take the longest possible paths, digress to numerous dead ends, and make all kinds of mistakes. Then historians come along and write summaries of this messy, nonlinear process and make it appear like a simple, straight line.
Dean Kamen

-The very ink with which all history is written is merely fluid prejudice.
Mark Twain

-The historian will tell you what happened. The novelist will tell you what it felt like.
E.L. Doctorow

-Memoirs are the backstairs of history.
George Meredith

-Yeah, I read history. But it doesn’t make you nice. Hitler read history, too.
Joan Rivers

-To a historian libraries are food, shelter, and even muse.
Barbara Tuchman

-I go into my library and all history unrolls before me.
Alexander Smith

-Like a historian, I interpret, select, discard, shape, simplify. Unlike a historian, I make up people’s thoughts.
Hilary Mantel

-You don’t hate history, you hate the way it was taught to you in high school.
Stephen Ambrose

-A library is the delivery room for the birth of ideas, a place where history comes to life.
Norman Cousins

-Each one writes history according to his convenience.
Jose Rizal

-It takes a great deal of history to produce a little literature.
Henry James

-Study history, study history. In history lies all the secrets of statecraft.
Winston Churchill

-There is an ancient Indian saying that something lives only as long as the last person who remembers it. My people have come to trust memory over history. Memory, like fire, is radiant and immutable while history serves only those who seek to control it, those who douse the flame of memory in order to put out the dangerous fire of truth. Beware these men for they are dangerous themselves and unwise. Their false history is written in the blood of those who might remember and of those who seek the truth.
Floyd Red Crow Westerman, X-Files: The Blessing Way

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