Invitation to historians

In this article I consider two related questions: what history is for and what my history is/was for. The answer to the first question, as given mainly by historians, seems to be just about everything, and as given, mainly by philosophers of history (the ones, at least, that I consulted), seems to be the attainment of some kind of practical purpose or objective, forward looking in its perspective. Though, a number of philosophers of history, in particular, Oakeshott and Melon, do suggest an alternative view of history, seen as some kind of abstract and ideal historical understanding of the past, possibly 'for its own sake'. The answer to the second question seems to be a somewhat confusing mixture of practical purpose - mainly the passing of exams and qualification - and a somewhat adulterated version of a 'for its own sake' sort of history - adulterated not by my purposes and objectives but by those of various publishers and editors. In the end, though, the main use and purpose of my history - what my history is/was for - seems to have been the satisfaction of a desire to write, the gratification of a literary impulse.