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What does an historian do?

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What does an historian do? Definition What is history? History is Herodotus Histories and historie Tools: Primary sources texts and archaeological remains ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: What does an historian do?


1
What does an historian do?
2
Definition
  • What is history?
  • History is
  • Herodotus Histories and historie

3
(No Transcript)
4
Tools Primary sources texts and archaeological
remains
  • The written word Alphabets (abecedarium) and
    dialects
  • The stuff of philologists texts
  • Historical
  • Poetic
  • Epic
  • Lyric odes and hymns
  • Epinician victory poems
  • Dramatic tragedies and comedies
  • Private curses, epitaphs, contracts
  • Public laws (codes), treaties, decrees,
    dedications, inventories, voting tickets
  • Archaeological remains non-written materials

5
Tools Primary sources media
  • Papyrus
  • Parchment and the manuscript tradition
  • Stone
  • Metal
  • Perishable materials

6
Methodology ancient
  • Ancients and moderns do not use the same approach
  • Cause and effect was not applied systematically
  • Great deeds by great men the norm
  • Ancient historians focused on values and morals,
    politics and the affairs of the citizen

7
Methodology modern
  • Dont reinvent the wheel secondary sources, or
    scholarship
  • Ask questions
  • Interrogate evidence
  • Analyze evidence
  • Postulate solutions
  • Test solutions
  • Share with intellectual community and receive
    feedback and critiques
  • Use comparative data and studies

8
Epigraphy inscriptions
  • Definition and locales (ubiquitous!)
  • Ancient use curses, epitaphs, contracts, laws,
    treaties, decrees, dedications, inventories,
    manumissions
  • Modern purpose read and interpret
  • Challenges not all extant capital letters,
    almost no punctuation or word breaks
  • Analogy unfinished crossword puzzle
  • White spaces missing letters
  • Clues knowledge

9
The epigraphers skill set
  • Linguistics
  • Cultural content
  • Stylistic formulae
  • Dialectal differences
  • Alphabetical variations
  • Difference between error and new knowledge
  • Understanding of the stonemasons craft
  • Patience!

10
The epigraphers toolbox
  • Photographs, photographic equipment
  • Raking light
  • Magnifying glass
  • Rulers, measuring tapes, calipers
  • Eyes and fingers
  • Recording equipment notebook, computer, PDA
  • Squeeze paper, water and brush

11
A modern example
  • Restore this text!
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