history

play
noun his·to·ry \ˈhi-st(ə-)rē\

Definition of history

plural

histories

  1. 1 :  tale, story

  2. 2a :  a chronological record of significant events (as affecting a nation or institution) often including an explanation of their causes <a history of Japan>b :  a treatise presenting systematically related natural phenomena (as of geography, animals, or plants) <an illustrated history of North American birds>c :  an account of a patient's medical background <reviewing her medical history>d :  an established record <a prisoner with a history of violence>

  3. 3 :  a branch of knowledge that records and explains past events <medieval history>

  4. 4a :  events that form the subject matter of a history <the history of space exploration>b :  events of the past <History has shown that such efforts rarely succeed.>c :  one that is finished or done for <the winning streak was history> <you're history>d :  previous treatment, handling, or experience (as of a metal) <a history of repeated exposure to freezing temperatures>

Examples of history in a sentence

  1. I studied history in college.

  2. a professor of medieval history

  3. They were one of the greatest teams in history.

  4. It was one of the most destructive storms in modern history.

  5. It was a period in American history when most people lived and worked on farms.

  6. The history of space exploration is a fascinating topic.

  7. He wrote a well-known history of the British empire.

  8. The book begins with a brief history of the Internet.

Origin and Etymology of history

Middle English histoire, historie, from Anglo-French estoire, histoire, from Latin historia, from Greek, inquiry, history, from histōr, istōr knowing, learned; akin to Greek eidenai to know — more at wit


First Known Use: 14th century



HISTORY Defined for English Language Learners

history

play
noun his·to·ry \ˈhi-st(ə-)rē\

Definition of history for English Language Learners

  • : the study of past events

  • : events of the past

  • : past events that relate to a particular subject, place, organization, etc.


HISTORY Defined for Kids

history

play
noun his·to·ry \ˈhi-stə-rē\

Definition of history for Students

plural

histories

  1. 1 :  events of the past and especially those relating to a particular place or subject <European history>

  2. 2 :  a branch of knowledge that records and explains past events

  3. 3 :  a written report of past events <She wrote a history of the Internet.>

  4. 4 :  an established record of past events <His criminal history is well-known.>


Medical Dictionary

history

play
noun his·to·ry \ˈhis-t(ə-)rē\

Medical Definition of history

plural

histories

  1. :  an account of a patient's family and personal background and past and present health



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up history? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

sparing in use of food or drink

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

  • fox-in-front-of-cabin-in-winter
  • The month of December comes from a Latin word that referred to which month of the year?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ