The History Portal
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.
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 Byzantine Empire
) was the Eastern Roman Empire
during the periods of Late Antiquity
and the Middle Ages
, centred on the capital of Constantinople
. Known simply as the "Roman Empire" (Greek
: Βασιλεία Ῥωμαίων
, Basileia Rhōmaiōn
) or Romania
) to its inhabitants and neighbours, it was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State
and maintained Roman state traditions. Byzantium is today distinguished from ancient Rome
proper insofar as it was oriented towards Greek culture
, characterised by Christianity rather than Roman paganism
and was predominantly Greek
-speaking rather than Latin
The Byzantine Empire existed for more than a thousand years, from its genesis in the 4th century to 1453. During most of its existence, it remained one of the most powerful economic, cultural, and military forces in Europe, despite setbacks and territorial losses, especially during the Arab–Byzantine wars. The Empire recovered during the Macedonian dynasty, rising again to become a preeminent power in the Eastern Mediterranean by the late 10th century, rivalling the Fatimid Caliphate.
After 1071, however, much of Asia Minor, the Empire's heartland, was lost to the Seljuq Turks. The Komnenian restoration regained some ground and briefly reestablished dominance in the 12th century, but following the death of Emperor Andronikos I Komnenos (r. 1183–85) and the end of the Komnenos dynasty in the late 12th century the Empire declined again. The Empire received a mortal blow in 1204 from the Fourth Crusade, when it was dissolved and divided into competing Byzantine Greek and Latin realms.
Successive civil wars in the 14th century further sapped the Empire's strength, and most of its remaining territories were lost in the Byzantine–Ottoman Wars, which culminated in the Fall of Constantinople and the conquest of remaining territories by the Ottoman Empire in the 15th century.
Ramón Emeterio Betances y Alacán
(April 8, 1827 – September 16, 1898) was a Puerto Rican nationalist
. He was the primary instigator of the Grito de Lares
revolution and is considered to be the father of the Puerto Rican independence movement
. Since the Grito
galvanized a burgeoning nationalist movement among Puerto Ricans, Betances is also considered "El Padre de la Patria"
(Father of the Puerto Rican Nation). Because of his charitable deeds for people in need, he also became known as "The Father of the Poor."
Betances was also a medical doctor and surgeon in Puerto Rico, and one of its first social hygienists. He had established a successful surgery and ophthalmology practice. Betances was also a diplomat, public health administrator, poet and novelist. He served as representative and contact for Cuba and the Dominican Republic in Paris.
An adherent of Freemasonry, his political and social activism was deeply influenced by the group's philosophical beliefs. His personal and professional relationships (as well as the organizational structure behind the Grito de Lares, an event that, in theory, clashes with traditional Freemason beliefs) were based upon his relationships with Freemasons, their hierarchical structure, rites and signs.
Did you know...
Buzz Aldrin's footprint, taken by himself on Apollo 11, the first manned mission to the moon, on July 20, 1969. The print was part of an experiment to test the properties of the lunar regolith, but today it is known for being one of the most iconic things left on the moon by humans.
On this day
July 16: Marine Day in Japan (2018)
Impact site of Comet Shoemaker–Levy 9
- 1232 – A local mosque elected Muhammad ibn Al-Ahmar, who later established the last Muslim state in Spain, as ruler of Arjona.
- 1790 – U.S. President George Washington signed the Residence Act, selecting a new permanent site along the Potomac River for the capital of the United States, which later became Washington, D.C.
- 1994 – Fragments of Comet Shoemaker–Levy 9 began hitting the planet Jupiter (impact site pictured), with the first one causing a fireball which reached a peak temperature of about 24,000 K.
- 2008 – A tainted milk powder scandal broke in China which ultimately involved an estimated 300,000 victims, the vast majority infants, with 54,000 hospitalized with kidney problems and 6 deaths.
An-Nasir Ahmad of Egypt (d. 1344) · Ellen G. White (d. 1915) · Albert Kesselring (d. 1960)
Even death is not to be feared by one who has lived wisely.
"High ideas were besmirched by cruelty and greed, enterprise and endurance by a blind and narrow self righteousness, and the Holy War itself was nothing more than a long act of intolerance in the name of God, which is a sin against the Holy Ghost."
— Steven Runciman
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