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When did people actually start getting curious about history? Well, it’s kind of tricky to pinpoint an exact time, but we think it all started during what we call “Proto-history.” This period falls between pre-history, when there were no written records, and what we consider proper history.

Some clues suggest that folks began delving into the past as early as the 2nd millennium BCE. Even way back then, people were already interested in knowing about the lives and stories of those who came before them.

The earliest solid records we have date back to around 3500 BCE. That’s when civilizations like Egypt, Mesopotamia, and the Sumerians got things rolling. The history books from this time talk a lot about the Pharaohs in Egypt and the rulers of Mesopotamia and Sumer. It’s like these ancient folks were keeping tabs on who was in charge and what they were up to, laying the groundwork for the history buffs of today.

The Scope of History

The scale of history is mind-boggling when you stop to think about it. Historians believe that modern humans like us have been wandering around this planet for somewhere between 200,000 to 300,000 years. That might sound like a drop in the ocean compared to the Earth’s 4.5 billion-year-old lifespan, but let’s put it in perspective.

Imagine that each generation in your family represents about 30 years. If you go back 200,000 years, that’s like tracing your family tree through a whopping 6,000 generations! That’s a lot of grandmas and grandpas.

To give you some context, 200,000 years is way longer than the entire history of the United States. It’s like comparing a tiny ant to a giant elephant! And get this: it’s a hundred times back in time than when Jesus and the Roman Empire were strutting their stuff. That’s like looking back through a powerful telescope into the ancient past.

And here’s another mind-blower: 200,000 years ago is 40 times further back than the oldest written records we’ve managed to dig up. It’s like reaching back into the depths of time and pulling out some ancient secrets. So yeah, even though 200,000 years might seem like just a blip in the grand scheme of things, it’s actually a staggeringly long stretch of time when you really think about it.

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