The extinction crisis is 'unprecedented in human history'

A recent landmark United Nations report delivered an alarming assessment of the fate of animal life and biodiversity on Earth. According to the authors—145 experts from fifty countries—up to 1 million species are threatened ...

A massive collision in the Milky Way's past

Our Milky Way galaxy has probably collided or otherwise interacted with other galaxies during its lifetime; such interactions are common cosmic occurrences. Astronomers can deduce the history of mass accretion onto the Milky ...

Archaeological discovery upends a piece of Barbados history

Which came first, the pigs or the pioneers? In Barbados, that has been a historical mystery ever since the first English colonists arrived on the island in 1627 to encounter what they thought was a herd of wild European pigs.

A new synthetic nanofactory inspired by nature

Bacteria across our planet contain nanometer-sized factories that do many different things. Some make nutrients, others isolate toxic materials that could harm the bacteria. We have barely scratched the surface of their functional ...

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History

History (from Greek ἱστορία - historia, meaning "inquiry, knowledge acquired by investigation") is the discovery, collection, organization, and presentation of information about past events. History can also mean the period of time after writing was invented. Scholars who write about history are called historians. It is a field of research which uses a narrative to examine and analyse the sequence of events, and it sometimes attempts to investigate objectively the patterns of cause and effect that determine events. Historians debate the nature of history and its usefulness. This includes discussing the study of the discipline as an end in itself and as a way of providing "perspective" on the problems of the present. The stories common to a particular culture, but not supported by external sources (such as the legends surrounding King Arthur) are usually classified as cultural heritage rather than the "disinterested investigation" needed by the discipline of history. Events of the past prior to written record are considered prehistory.

Amongst scholars, the fifth century BC Greek historian Herodotus is considered to be the "father of history", and, along with his contemporary Thucydides, forms the foundations for the modern study of history. Their influence, along with other historical traditions in other parts of their world, have spawned many different interpretations of the nature of history which has evolved over the centuries and are continuing to change. The modern study of history has many different fields including those that focus on certain regions and those which focus on 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.

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