Braudel on Personal Importance in History

by Christian Parreno

[…] the measure of an event’s or a person’s importance in the hurly-burly of history is the time they take to be forgotten. Only those that endure and are identified with an enduring reality really count in the history of civilization. Thus may be discerned, through the screen of familiar historical events, the emerging outlines of the more continuous reality which now we must now seek to discover.

Braudel, Fernand. A History of Civilizations. Translated by Richard Mayne. London: Penguin, 1993/1963. 27