Definition of history
2a : a chronological record of significant events (such as those affecting a nation or institution) often including an explanation of their causes a history of Japanb : a treatise presenting systematically related natural phenomena (as of geography, animals, or plants) an illustrated history of North American birdsc : an account of a patient's medical background reviewing her medical historyd : an established record a prisoner with a history of violence
3 : a branch of knowledge that records and explains past events medieval history
4a : events that form the subject matter of a history the history of space explorationb : 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 historyd : previous treatment, handling, or experience (as of a metal) a history of repeated exposure to freezing temperatures
Examples of history in a Sentence
I studied history in college.
a professor of medieval history
They were one of the greatest teams in history.
It was one of the most destructive storms in modern history.
It was a period in American history when most people lived and worked on farms.
The history of space exploration is a fascinating topic.
He wrote a well-known history of the British empire.
The book begins with a brief history of the Internet.
Recent Examples of history from the Web
Employers in San Francisco soon won't be allowed to ask job applicants about their salary history.
With a $5 million U.S. bounty on his capture and a history of drone strikes killing his associates, he is said to be permanently on the move.
Throughout American history, Rubenstein says, these three groups have been engaged in a philosophical—and sometimes physical—brawl.
On Wednesday, Maguire, 83, and his wife, Frances, 82, of Wyndmoor, gave $50 million to the Catholic university — the largest gift in the 166-year history of the school, which straddles City Avenue in Philadelphia and Lower Merion.
Even before her sequencing results came in, Ciccarella had decided on a bilateral mastectomy based on her family history.
Those files included voting history, political leanings and information from Reddit, but do not appear to include Social Security or credit card information.
The bank has made a profit of nearly $27 billion for the last 12 month—more money made in one year than any American bank in history.
And Jacques Ysaye, the composer of the greatest, quirkiest celebration song in sports history, undoubtedly would have been pleased that after all these years, Mike Rogers still loves his infectious melody.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'history.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of history
HISTORY Defined for English Language Learners
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
Definition of history for Students
1 : events of the past and especially those relating to a particular place or subject European history
2 : a branch of knowledge that records and explains past events
3 : a written report of past events She wrote a history of the Internet.
4 : an established record of past events His criminal history is well-known.
Medical Definition of history
: 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).