History is a very enigmatic and controversial subject- at least this is what quotes by some of the famous personalities depict. Few say that history is merely an amalgamation of facts and fiction while there are those who urge to learn from the mistakes as history repeats itself. So, what exactly phenomenon is all about and how the mankind of present time should interpret it. Let’s dig deep into the literal meaning of word history to solve this riddle.
Origin of the Word History
The word history traces its origin to Greek word historia which literally means to know or to inquire. Hence, history refers to the knowledge about past through available documents, records and archeological footprints to know what happened to under consideration entity in a bygone era.
Someone who is interested in knowing what caused the fall of Roman empire should necessarily take a sneak peek into history- or in other words must conduct an in-depth analysis of available documents and records.
Does History Always Offers Truth About Past?
There is a famous African proverb, “until lions write their own history, the tale of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.”
The quote is enough to remind us how much we should really believe in history. It is the fact that conqueror nations tend to record the events of their era with a pen of prejudice. So, available documents that tell what happened in past, may fail to offer the truth. Very often, governments and authorities want to make people believe in what they think is necessary to keep themselves in power and make the masses sing eulogize them for no reason.
Hence, a reader or a true knowledge seeker always needs to close the eye of prejudice and biasedness in order to embrace the truth with an open mind.
Knowing History According to Its Literal Meaning
A better way to learn about the events of the past is initiating a research according to literal meaning of word history- it doesn’t ask to believe in what records and documents have to offer. But, it asks to inquire and investigate even the truth behind those documents.
Like, in the United States of America, there is a black history month. Teachers must pass all truth to the students about the racial discrimination without any biasedness. Or if a person is to investigate some written historic record, then he/she must look for the answers of who, how, why, when and where in order to get a true picture.
Briefly, the word history asks to investigate and inquire about matters of past and not to blindly follow what the historic records want people to believe.