Prague, Czech Republic

Ancient History

Language: English Studies in English
Subject area: humanities
University website:
Years of study: 4
History (from Greek ἱστορία, 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.
Man is a history-making creature who can neither repeat his past nor leave it behind.
W. H. Auden, The Dyers Hand, "D.H. Lawrence" (1962)
What really happens is that the author discards the human persona but replaces it by an ‘objective’ one; the authorial subject is as evident as ever, but it has become an objective subject … At the level of discourse objectivity, or the absence of any clues to the narrator, turns out to be particular form of fiction, where the historian tries to give the impression that the referent is speaking for itself.
Roland Barthes, ‘Le discours de l’histoire’ trans. as ‘Historical Discourse’ in M. Lane (ed.) Structuralism: A reader, London, Jonathan Cape, 1970, pp. 149–154.
The reign of Antoninus is marked by the rare advantage of furnishing very few materials for history, which is indeed little more than the register of the crimes, follies, and misfortunes of mankind.
Edward Gibbon, The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Ch. III (1776), Vol. 1, Ch. 3 "Of the Constitution of the Roman Empire, in the Age of the Antonines"
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