1. What is history and why is it important to study the history of our native land?
Respect for the past is a characteristic feature of our people. About the past in Ukraine it has always been said – holy, kind. And until now, proverbs are used in the Ukrainian language: It has not become with us, it will not cease with us; Do not force it, but with your mind, not your heart, but your custom. In ancient times, the memory of the past was stored in myths, legends, stories, songs. Later, with the advent of writing, the events of the day of yesterday narrated the chronicles. Fixing the events of the past for posterity, the writers of the annals sought at the same time to comprehend them, to find out their causes and consequences. So gradually historical knowledge accumulated.
So, History is the science of the past of mankind. She studies the life and activity of a person, explores all kinds of significant and minor events from the most ancient times, establishes how and why human life changed and improved, becoming as it is now.
2. How do historians learn about past times?
Photographs made by previous generations of people historians call photo documents, because they are important sources of knowledge about the past. In addition to photographs, events of the past are evidenced by all kinds of products, spoken or written words. All this together is called Historical sources. With their help, scientists find out the conditions of life in the past.
The material sources include coins, household implements, household utensils, dishes, clothes, ornaments, etc. Of course, the re-creation of the past by them alone would not be complete. Therefore historians also use verbal sources – written and oral. Thanks to scientists, they begin to “speak” inscriptions on stones, bones, metal, chronicles, letters, diaries become clear, turning into written sources of history.
Monuments – sculptural groups, statues, busts, columns, obelisks, etc., are being built to perpetuate the memory of outstanding people and significant events. Outstanding monuments belong to the cultural heritage of mankind.
In the history of each people there was a pre-literate period, when all knowledge was passed from mouth to mouth. Consequently, ancient myths and legends, legends, fairy tales and ritual songs are not only the creation of folk fantasy, but also a treasury of the experience of previous generations, and therefore an invaluable source for the historian.
3. Thanks to whom did Ukrainian historical science develop?
The father of Ukrainian history is justly considered Mikhail Hrushevsky. He owns about 2000 works on the history of Ukraine, among which is the 10-volume “History of Ukraine-Rus.”
Mikhail Grushevsky was a man of versatile talents. As a scientist he proved himself in history, literary criticism, he studied oral folk art. He also wrote short stories, plays, poems. The teacher’s family, in which Mikhail was born, instilled in him a thirst for knowledge and a taste for the word.
But most importantly, what the future scientist taught his parents – love of his native land. Strictly speaking, growing up away from Ukraine, he was interested in all Ukrainian. Subsequently, Mikhail Grushevsky recalled that under the influence of his father’s stories, he realized early on himself as a Ukrainian. While studying at the Tiflis Gymnasium, he became interested in the past of Ukraine. The desire to understand the history of the native people more deeply led Grushevsky to Kiev University. Since then, he connected his fate with the history of Ukraine professionally, becoming a scientist-historian.