The usefulness of radiocarbon dating is limited
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.
Archaeology is a discipline that is especially helpful in dealing with buried sites and objects, which, once unearthed, contribute to the study of history. It uses narrative sources to complement its discoveries.
However, archaeology is constituted by a range of methodologies and approaches which are independent from history; that is to say, archaeology does not "fill the gaps" within textual sources.
In the words of Benedetto Croce, "All history is contemporary history".
History is facilitated by the formation of a "true discourse of past" through the production of narrative and analysis of past events relating to the human race.
From the beginning, historians have also used such sources as monuments, inscriptions, and pictures.
The restriction to the meaning "the branch of knowledge that deals with past events; the formal record or study of past events, esp. With the Renaissance, older senses of the word were revived, and it was in the Greek sense that Francis Bacon used the term in the late sixteenth century, when he wrote about "Natural History".
For him, historia was "the knowledge of objects determined by space and time", that sort of knowledge provided by memory (while science was provided by reason, and poetry was provided by fantasy). analytic/isolating dichotomy, English like Chinese (史 vs.
The adjective historical is attested from 1661, and historic from 1669.
Historian in the sense of a "researcher of history" is attested from 1531.
Search for the usefulness of radiocarbon dating is limited:
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.