History Quotes

writingquillAs I am getting ready to wrap up the first draft of the final book of the Éire’s Viking Trilogy, I want to add a little note about history to the front of the book.

Not a long note. Just one to prepare a reader that history is not perhaps what they’ve always heard it was.

For this, I have chosen some quotes, but I’d like some input as to which one I might include.


The very ink with which history is written is merely fluid prejudice.

Mark Twain 

History is the version of past events that people have decided to agree upon.

Napoleon Bonaparte 

God cannot alter the past, though historians can.

Samuel Butler

History is written by the victors.

 Winston Churchill

Any thoughts about these? They all suit, one way or another, so that’s not a factor, really. Do you know of any quotes that might serve? Please leave a comment with quotes or discussion.

Thank you!Kells Bird


  1. Warren C. Bennett · May 21, 2014

    History is written by the survivors.
    – Max Lerner (1902-1992)

    • Sandi · May 21, 2014

      That sounds so BLEAK. I don’t know why.

      • Warren C. Bennett · May 21, 2014

        It is pretty bleak 🙂

        That’s how it feels sometimes though.

        I Like History is written by the Victors. I can’t find who really said it though. I’ve seen an abundance of Churchill, one or two William Wallace (“History is written by the victors who have hung all the heroes.” Which may or may not be a fabrication of the movie.)

        Another one I’ve come across that I like is “History is written by the literate, be they victors or losers.” No clue who said that one either.

  2. Angelyn · May 22, 2014

    The Viking background of this series is so compelling. It almost begs a quote on history and storytelling from the Dark Ages:

    “Who ancient traditions treasured in memory…
    Wisely to tell of, and words that were clever.” — Beowulf

    good luck with this new book!

    • Sandi · May 22, 2014

      Oooh, I like this, Angelyn. 🙂 Thank you!

      Oh! the Tolkien translation of Beowulf is out this week. I am hoping to get it soon! 🙂

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