George Macaulay Trevelyan, (February 16, 1876 – July 21,1962), as a
British historian. Trevelyan was the third son of Sir George Otto
Trevelyan, 2nd Baronet, and great-nephew of Thomas Babington Macaulay,
whose staunch liberal Whig principles he espoused in accessible works of
literate narrative avoiding a consciously dispassionate analysis, that
became old-fashioned during his long and productive career. The noted
historian E.H. Carr considered Trevelyan to be one of the last
historians of the Whig tradition. (Click
here for full Wikipedia article)
Education... has produced a vast population able to read but unable to
distinguish what is worth reading.
Action springs not from thought, but from a readiness for responsibility.
Socrates gave no diplomas or degrees, and would have subjected any
disciple who demanded one to a disconcerting catechism on the nature of
An historical event cannot be isolated from its circumstances, any more
than the onion from its skins, because an event is itself nothing but a
set of circumstances, none of which will ever recur.
Social history might be defined negatively as the history of a people
with the politics left out.
Disinterested intellectual curiosity is the life blood of real
We are the children of the earth and removed from her our spirit withers.
Anger is a momentary madness, so control your passion or it will control
Every true history must force us to remember that the past was once as
real as the present and as uncertain as the future.
History repeats itself and history never repeats itself are about
equally true. We never know enough about the infinitely complex
circumstances of any past event to prophesy the future by analogy.
I have two doctors, my left leg and my right. After a day's walking,
everything has twice its usual value.
The poetry of history lies in the quasi-miraculous fact that once, on
this earth, once, on this familiar spot of ground, walked other men and
women, as actual as we are today, thinking their own thoughts, swayed by
their own passions, but now all gone, one generation vanishing into
another, gone as utterly as we ourselves shall shortly be gone, like
ghosts at cockcrow.
You cannot so completely isolate any historical event from its
circumstances as to be able to deduce from it a law of general
application. Only politicians adorning their speeches with historical
arguments have this power; and even they never agree.
One half who graduate from college never read another book.
Never tell a young person that anything cannot be done. God may have
been waiting centuries for someone ignorant enough of the impossible to
do that very thing.
A little man often casts a long shadow.
The best job goes to the person who can get it done without passing the
buck or coming back with excuses.
If one could make alive again for other people some cobwebbed skein of
old dead intrigues and breathe breath and character into dead names and
stiff portraits. That is history to me!
Quotes of the day
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