The History Portal
History is the discovery, collection, organization, analysis, and presentation of information about past events. History can also mean a continuous, typically chronological record of important or public events or of a particular trend or institution. Scholars who write about history are called historians. It is a field of knowledge which uses a narrative to examine and analyse the sequence of events, and it sometimes attempts to objectively investigate 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 as the "disinterested investigation" needed by the discipline of history. Events of the past prior to written record are considered prehistory.
Amongst scholars, fifth century BC Greek historian Herodotus is considered to be the "father of history"; the methods of Herodotus along with his contemporary Thucydides form the foundations for the modern study of history. Their influence (along with other historical traditions in other parts of their world) has spawned many different interpretations of the nature of history which has developed 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 that focus on certain topical or thematic 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 formal unification of Germany
into a politically and administratively integrated nation state
officially occurred on 18 January 1871 at the Versailles Palace
's Hall of Mirrors
. Princes of the German states gathered there to proclaim Wilhelm
as Emperor Wilhelm of the German Empire
after the French capitulation in the Franco-Prussian War
. Unofficially, the transition of most of the German-speaking populations into a federated organization of states occurred over nearly a century of experimentation. Unification exposed several glaring religious, linguistic, social, and cultural differences between and among the inhabitants of the new nation, suggesting that 1871 only represents one moment in a continuum of the larger unification processes.
The model of diplomatic spheres of influence resulting from the Congress of Vienna in 1814–15 after the Napoleonic Wars endorsed Austrian dominance in Central Europe. However, the negotiators at Vienna took no account of Prussia's growing strength within and among the German states, failing to foresee that Prussia would challenge Austria for leadership within the German states. This German dualism presented two solutions to the problem of unification: Kleindeutsche Lösung, the small Germany solution (Germany without Austria), or Großdeutsche Lösung, greater Germany solution (Germany with Austria). Reaction to Danish and French nationalism provided foci for expressions of German unity. Military successes—especially Prussian ones—in three regional wars generated enthusiasm and pride that politicians could harness to promote unification. This experience echoed the memory of mutual accomplishment in the Napoleonic Wars, particularly in the War of Liberation of 1813–14. By establishing a Germany without Austria, the political and administrative unification in 1871 at least temporarily solved the problem of dualism.
Wail Mohammed al-Shehri
: وائل الشهري
, Wāīl ash-Shehrī
; also transliterated
) (July 31, 1973 – September 11, 2001) was one of five hijackers
of American Airlines Flight 11
, which was hijacked and flown into the North Tower of the World Trade Center
as part of the September 11 attacks
Shehri was an elementary school teacher from Khamis Mushait in the Asir region of Saudi Arabia. In early 2000 he traveled to Medina to seek treatment for mental problems. He and his younger brother Waleed traveled to Afghanistan in March 2000 and joined an Al-Qaeda training camp. The brothers were chosen, along with others from the same region of Saudi Arabia, to participate in the September 11 attacks. Once selected, Shehri returned to Saudi Arabia in October 2000 to obtain a clean passport, then returned to Afghanistan. In March 2001, he recorded his last will and testament on video.
Shehri arrived in the United States in early June 2001, staying in budget motels in the Boynton Beach area of south Florida. On September 5, 2001, Shehri traveled to Boston and checked into a motel with his brother. Six days later, Shehri arrived early in the morning at Boston's Logan International Airport and boarded American Airlines Flight 11. Fifteen minutes after take off, the flight was hijacked and deliberately crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 a.m.
Did you know...
On this day
March 23: Pakistan Day (1956)
Mir space station
- 1848 – Scottish settlers on the John Wickliffe, captained by William Cargill, arrived at what is now Port Chalmers in the Otago Region of New Zealand.
- 1888 – Led by William McGregor, ten football clubs met in London for the purpose of founding the Football League, the oldest league competition in world football.
- 1908 – American diplomat Durham Stevens, an employee of Japan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was assassinated in San Francisco by two Korean American immigrants unhappy with his recent support of the increasing Japanese presence in Korea.
- 1994 – Aeroflot Flight 593 crashed into a hillside in Kemerovo Oblast, Russia, after the pilot's 16-year-old son, while seated at the controls, had unknowingly disabled the autopilot, killing all 75 people on board.
- 2001 – The Russian Federal Space Agency deorbited the 15-year-old space station Mir (pictured), causing it to reenter the Earth's atmosphere and break up over the Pacific Ocean.
Pierre-Simon Laplace (b. 1749) · Said Nursî (d. 1960) · Kangana Ranaut (b. 1986)
What is the use of living, if it be not to strive for noble causes and to make this muddled world a better place for those who will live in it after we are gone?
"If you ask me what is my native country, I answer: I was born in Fiume, grew up in Belgrade, Budapest, Pressburg, Vienna and Munich, and I have a Hungarian passport; but I have no fatherland. I am a very typical mix of old Austria-Hungary: at once Magyar, Croatian, German and Czech; my country is Hungary, my mother tongue is German."
— Ödön von Horváth
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