Historic vs Historical


Although historic and historical are similar words, they have slightly different meanings – so be very careful when you use them!

The difference between historic and historical is:

Historic– the important things that happened in history or something happening now that is likely to be important in history

  • A historic occasion (a very important occasion in history)

Historical– anything that happened in history or that is old

  • Historical evidence (evidence about something in history)

Historic example sentences

  • The coronation of a new king is always a historic occasion.
  • The city’s historic centre is being restored at the moment
  • How many historic buildings are burned down every year?
  • Tonight’s historic football match could change everything for the home team

Parthenon on the Acropolis in Athens

Historic synonyms

Since ‘historic’ means ‘important in history’, synonyms for important can be used for historic. However, by using ‘important’ or a synonym for ‘important’, you lose part of the meaning of ‘historic’ – the importance of the event / monument in history.

  • Important
  • Significant
  • Consequential
  • Famous
  • Celebrated
  • Well-known

Historical example sentences

  • The historical society has lots of ornaments that depict scenes from local history.
  • The building was registered as a historical monument.
  • The Mayor opened the historical museum on Wednesday.
  • The University set up a historical research project.

Historical Synonyms

  • Old
  • Ancient
  • Factual
  • Real
  • Authentic
  • Documented
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