What is history? An echo of the past in the future; a reflex from the future on the past.[Qu’est l’histoire? Un écho du passé dans l’avenir. Un reflet de l’avenir sur le passé.]
When we think of the past it’s the beautiful things we pick out. We want to believe it was all like that.
There was this superstitious fear on the part of the pygmies of the present for the relics of the giants of the past.
It’s wrong what they say about the past, I’ve learned, about how you can bury it. Because the past claws its way out.
As all historians know, the past is a great darkness, and filled with echoes. Voices may reach us from it; but what they say to us is imbued with the obscurity of the matrix out of which they come; and, try as we may, we cannot always decipher them precisely in the clearer light of our own day.