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The only difference between the narrator of contemporary affairs and the ordinary historian is that moral judgments about the present provoke fiercer reactions and have more immediately practical implications than moral judgments about the past.
      - Geoffrey Barraclough,
        in an address at Chatham House, found in "International Affairs," January, 1958

The true historian, therefore, seeking to compose a true picture of the thing acted, must collect facts and combine facts. Methods will differ, styles will differ. Nobody ever does anything like anybody else; but the end in view is generally the same, and the historian's end is truthful narration. Maxims he will have, if he is wise, never a one; and as for a moral, if he tell his story well, it will need none; if he tell it ill, it will deserve none.
      - Augustine Birrell

Historians ought to be precise, faithful, and unprejudiced; and neither interest nor fear, hatred nor affection, should make them swerve from the way of truth.
      - Cervantes (Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra)

Historians, only things of weight,
  Results of persons, or affairs of State,
    Briefly, with truth and clearness should relate;
      Laconic shortness memory feeds.
      - James Heath

Every great writer is a writer of history, let him treat on almost any subject he may.
      - Walter Savage Landor

It is no longer possible today for a historian to be national in any strict sense. His patriotism is simply love of the truth. He is not a man of any particular race or of any particular country. He is a citizen of all countries and he speaks in the name of all civilization.
      - Pierre Lanfrey, History of Napoleon
         (vol. 3, p. 2)

The true historical genius, to our thinking, is that which can see the nobler meaning of events that are near him, as the true poet is he who detects the divine in the casual; and we somewhat suspect the depth of his insight into the past who cannot recognize the godlike of to-day under that disguise in which it always visits us.
      - James Russell Lowell

A perfect historian must possess an imagination sufficiently powerful to make his narrative affecting and picturesque; yet he must control it so absolutely as to content himself with the materials which he finds, and to refrain from supplying deficiencies by additions of his own. He must be a profound and ingenious reasoner; yet he must possess sufficient self-command to abstain from casting his facts in the mould of his hypothesis.
      - Thomas Babington Macaulay

To be a really good historian is perhaps the rarest of intellectual distinctions.
      - Thomas Babington Macaulay

It is to me a peculiarly noble work rescuing from oblivion those who deserve immortality, and extending their renown at the same time that we advance our own.
      - Pliny the Younger (Caius Caecilius Secundus)

The historian must be a poet; not to find, but to find again; not to breathe life into beings, into imaginary deeds, but in order to re-animate and revive that which has been; to represent what time and space have placed at a distance from us.
      - Joseph Roux

Instructed by the antiquary times,
  He must, he is, he cannot but be wise.
      - William Shakespeare

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