History is teaching philosophy by example. The study of this subject is very important for national progress. It is the record of the past achievements of mankind, and by studying it, we can understand why and how nations rise and fall. The progress of a nation is continuous: the present is the fruit of the past, and the future will be what we make it. Knowledge of the past will help us in understanding the present. It will tell us about the particular inclinations of a nation, its character, its chief merits and demerits, and the circumstances. under which they have been developed.
History tells us that Greece and Rome were once great nations. We know that the British people, who were uncivilized in those days, have now risen to eminence, and those nations of antiquity have decayed. The Mughals conquered India and founded a great empire here, but their power and glory have long faded away, and we know the causes of their rise and fall. They were virile people, full of religious zeal, were sturdy and strong when they came here, but they had become weak and luxurious when they were overpowered by other people.
We know that when people are oppressed, revolutions break out. Practical experience has shown that absolute monarchy is not a good form of government, and those nations given to debauchery are soon destroyed.
The progress made by England and America, and the stages through which they have passed, are an object lesson to the rest of the world. The Reformation, the French Revolution, the numerous wars, and other great movements in history teach us great lessons which are of great practical use to us in directing the affairs of our nation at the present time. History makes us patriotic.
History is not properly taught in our schools. Too much stress is laid on names, dates, and figures, but no attempt is made to connect the various events as cause and effect. Besides, some history books which are taught are written by biased authors. History should be based on truth, and neither policy nor expediency should influence a true writer of history. History is very useful, but it should be written and studied properly.