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People / Places


For all the theoretical tools at the historian's disposal, it is perhaps simply stories of people which capture the popular imagination most, and modern countries into which history is most commonly divided.
  1. European Leaders
  2. European Dictators
  3. Arts and Science
  4. European Criminals
  1. Religious Figures
  2. Peoples of Europe
  3. Country Histories
  4. Leading Nazis

European Leaders

Library of Congress

Information and resources on Europe’s leaders, be they elected prime minister or hereditary monarch.

European Dictators

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"Dictator" was once a term of office: in the Roman Republic a dictator was an official granted temporary and total power to deal with a crisis; Julius Caesar expanded this role to become dictator for life. In modern history, in countries like Germany, dictator took on a new meaning, someone holding authoritarian power with no input from a large electorate and no hereditary succession. Dictators dominate the history of twentieth century Europe.

Arts and Science

James McArdell / Library of Congress

In amongst all the politics and wars, the culture and science can often be missed out. This is a shame, as European arts and science has flourished for centuries and produced many great works of art and discoveries.

European Criminals

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While the definition of "criminal" has varied greatly across Europe's history, some people are remembered chiefly for deeds which would be considered wrong in almost any era.

Religious Figures

Franco Origlia / Getty Images

Faith has played a huge role in the lives of Europeans for many centuries, although the last two millennia have been dominated by the Christian religion. This isn’t to say that Judaism, Islam and "pagan" religions haven’t played an important role.

Peoples of Europe

Resources on the peoples - some might say "races" - of Europe, including those lost to the past (e.g. Normans) and those frequently in the news (e.g. Basques).

Country Histories

It may not be perfect, but dividing the history of Europe down into the history of our modern countries is both popular and handy for students of the central middle ages and later.

Leading Nazis

These figures had a huge impact on the history of twentieth century Europe, and merit attention, but it can often seem bizarre they got near power at all despite their naked hunger for it.

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