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Charles Coffin
American historian

The history of a nation is like the flowing of a river; there are many rivulets starting wide apart, which unite to swell the ever-deepening stream ... The tracing of the relationship of one event to another and showing their effect upon the human race is the philosophy of history, and by studying the philosophy we are able to arrive at some conclusion as to its meaning.

1881 - from Old Times in the Colonies