Friday, 8 July 2016

Who Said "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it"

The study of history is necessary to avoid repeating past mistakes and this has been summed up on more than one occasion in the statement 

"Those who don't remember history are doomed to repeat it" 

or words to that effect.

One of the more famous quotes "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" comes 
from the pen of novelist George Santayana in his 1905 work The Life of ReasonThis particular saying has been widely used and often wrongly attributed to others, such as Edmund Burke and Winston Churchill.

Burke's politics were based on his hatred of injustice and the abuse of power.
He is noted for his support of the American Colonies against British oppression, the plight of Catholics in his native Ireland and he was against the ideology of the French Revolution. It is in his political pamphlet Reflections on the Revolution in France, published in 1790, that we may find the first use of this 
terminology for this specific meaning.

You can read what Burke, Churchill and others have to say on this subject on my blog at

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