If you think history isn’t that interesting, it’s likely you just had a boring teacher. Humans have evolved to crave stories. It’s how we learn and how we survive. And history is basically just a bunch of stories from humanities past. That’s kind of important.
Maybe you were interested in learning about history in school but lost it after you passed out. That’s pretty normal. There’s no shame in it. After all, life tends to keep us busy focusing on the present enough, there’s no time left for the matters of the past.
Some people do manage to keep that interest alive, a few even get obsessed. There’s a place in the world for those people, and there are gifts that are meant for them. This gift guide will tell you about the best gift idea for your recipient. Following is a collection of the coolest gifts for history buffs that they’ll love. Some of these will work for history teachers and students. Pick one that suits your recipient’s style.
History - The O.G. Teacher T-shirt
You look at the past so that you can reflect on it and do things better in the future. Just as without memory we wouldn’t have any knowledge to base our decisions on, without insights from history we wouldn’t know how to move forward.
This t-shirt says history is the O.G. teacher, which is true in a deep way. Your recipient will likely relate and agree with the message. A cool looking t-shirt for your wise, history loving recipient.
Muse of History Themed Clock
Clio, daughter of Zeus, is the Greek muse of history. According to Greek Mythology she is the goddess of memory and is tasked with preserving the memory of historical figures and events. The painting used to create this was made by Charles Meynier, a French artist in the 19th Century.
Anyone who considers themselves a student of history will understand the significance of this art and will be impressed by the reference. The clock will make a fine gift–it looks beautiful, like a piece of art, which is apt as it was inspired by one.
Viking Themed Mug
The nordic civilization has had a significant impact on the course of history. Vikings were more than just looters and ruthless warriors. They were traders, artists, sculptures, engineers and thinkers. They have a rich cultural history that is fascinating to those to study it.
This historically accurate nordic viking mug will make an excellent gift for any history buff who admires the nordic culture. The beautiful design and superb craftsmanship is enough to impress your recipient.
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Lies My Teacher Told Me
In case you’re already thinking about reconsidering your feelings about how good and deceptive your teachers were, wait a second. This book is not about a big conspiracy of lying history teachers. This book is the author’s perspective on the validity of the syllabus they’re teaching in the schools nowadays.
This doesn’t mean your teacher outright lied to you (Or maybe they did. I don’t know your teacher. Maybe they told you that Abraham Lincoln was a big fan of dubstep. That’s a lie. He liked punk rock.) This author of this book has an interesting take on history. You can read it and make up your own mind. And you can gift it to anyone who likes reading about alternative facts in history.
History Buff Definition Funny Mug
“People who’d find you more interesting if you were dead.” is the definition of history buff according to this mug. I think they should consider adding this into the oxford dictionary.
Gift them something in good humor that pokes fun of their obsession with history. It’s charming and relatable. They’ll have a good laugh about it.
Senet: Ancient Egyptian Board Game
Senet is an ancient Egyptian board game that dates back to 2620 BCE. It was a popular game among Egyptians at the time, with boards found in ancient burials and depicted in old paintings . It fell out of fashion following the Roman period and the original rules were forgotten and replaced by the modern ones derived from different interpretations by scholars.
This board game set will make a impressive gift for any history buff who’s into board games. The set itself is designed to look dated and historic, which will likely appeal to your history obsessed recipient.
Don't Repeat History T-shirt
You may have heard the quote “Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it”. It’s often mindlessly regurgitated by people trying to make a point about past mistakes. And while most people who bring it up don’t really understand what it means, it is not without its merits. History shows us a pattern of events so that we recognize it the next time it begins to form. The idea is to not repeat the mistakes that lead to the bad outcomes.
When picking clothes as gifts, make sure you know your recipient’s size. Getting it wrong might offend them. Your recipient, especially if they’re female, will interpret a clothing item that is one size too large to mean: “You look fat”.
If your recipient is a true student of history, they’ll likely know the significance of this message and relate to it. This t-shirt with a cool spinoff of the quote will appeal to them.
National Geographic - Visual History of The World
Learning doesn’t have to be as boring as years in the school system has lead you to believe. National Geographic’s Visual History of The World is an excellent way to learn about history. It comes with beautiful pictures, explanatory maps, interesting sidebar stories and more.
It’s an encyclopedia of world events. A sort-of a visual treat for people who are fascinated by history stuff. This will be an ideal gift for young recipients, especially teenagers who are interested in history.
Mexican Calendar Themed Clock
Scientists are beginning to figure out that some ancient cultures, previously to have been considered primitive, were likely much more civilized and advanced than they get credit for. The Indus Valley Civilization from Northern India is one such example. Also, the Mayans were pretty innovative and methodical in their ways.
This beautiful bamboo framed clock with a Mexican calendar print is a reminder of that forgotten history. The clock looks exotic and interesting. Your recipient will appreciate this history themed gift.
Greatest History Stories Never Told
A primary characteristic of a history enthusiast is morbid curiosity. And this curiosity is never more stroked than when learning about revealed secrets and previously untold stories from the past. It has something to do with the thrill of finding out about stuff that we were not supposed to know about.
This book is full of such stories. Once example is of a top secret group of world war II GIs who staged traveling roadshows of deception on the battlefields of Europe. Fascinating stuff.
Civil War Box Set
For those of you who saw this and thought this is a new Marvel film, you need to get some history lessons.
This is a set of books about the history of the civil war. Very vivid and detailed accounts of an event that shaped history and would forever change a country. Only a true history buff will appreciate this.
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111 History Lessons You Should Have Learned in School
There are lots of important things you don’t learn in school. Some would argue that you don’t learn anything practical in school anyway. I don’t think that’s necessarily true. School gets you started on a learning path and it’s up to you to keep learning more about the world.
And I don’t blame you for not wanting to read a boring history textbook. Life is too short to be reading dull, lifeless writing. This book though is very well written. It’s funny and full of historical takes you didn’t know. A great gift any history buff would love to own.
Historical USA Map Tumbler
Maps change over time. Countries fight each other for territories and the winner gets to grow their influence and extend the line on the map. If you track the alterations with time in historic maps you begin to see a story that tells you what may have happened.
The map of USA hasn’t changed much for the past few centuries. The united states continue to be untied. This tumbler design inspired by a historic map of the country is something that’ll appeal to a American history buff.
Royal Game of Knossos
The Knossos Board Game was discovered by Arthur Evans in one his archaeological excavations. It’s a unique game from the Minoan civilization and dates back to somewhere between 1700 and 1500 BC. Not many people know this game’s existence let alone how to play it, which is why this is a spectacular gift idea for a history buff.
The game comes with a manual on how to play it. If your recipient is someone who you know enjoys playing board games for fun, they’ll appreciate getting something new to try.
In Search of with Leonard Nimoy
In Search of is a TV series that used to broadcast weekly in the late seventies and early eighties. The subject was exploring mysterious phenomena–the unexplained strange historical findings that merited some curiosity. It was somewhat popular and gathered a significant fanbase at the time.
If your recipient is a curious, open minded history buff, who perhaps was a fan of the show when it aired, they’ll enjoy the throwback. If they’re new to the series, they’ll have fun exploring the favorite show of history and mystery buffs of few decades ago.
World War II Poster Inspired Journal
There are a few requirements that you need to keep in mind when picking a gift for someone. It has to be relevant to their interests, it has to be aesthetically pleasing, and it has to be somewhat useful to them.
This World War II era poster themed journal fits all these categories. Being a history buff, your recipient is likely familiar with vintage posters and even fond of them. The journal looks cool and they can use it to write whatever they wish on it. If your recipient is a scribbler who enjoys writing stuff down, they’ll like this gift.
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Historic American Pottery Bowl
As time goes on and consumers get bored with existing designs in the market, new trends emerge and the old ones are lost to history. This blue and white pottery is what you used to see in every American household a few decades ago. Now, they’re old relics and collection pieces.
If your recipient is known to collect vintage stuff like this, they’ll be pleased to get this as a gift. It makes for a nice showpiece if matched with a proper background.
History in The Age of Vikings
Western media and the history books haven’t always been fair in portraying the Vikings. Because of this most people unfamiliar with the history think of them as brutal conquerors and loots that pillaged villages and killed everyone in their paths. Some of it has merit but the facts are mostly exaggerated.
It’s better to give hardcover copies than paperbacks. They come off as cheap and seem less valuable than a gift should be.
History in The Age of Vikings is a book based on a rare, nearly destroyed works of a 19th century archaeologist. This book sheds some light on the culture as it was. It’s full of illustrations and images so is fun to explore for even those who don’t enjoy reading much. Your recipient will have a great time learning about this fascinating cultural and history. It’ll make a fine gift for any history buff.
Custom Historical Royal Portrait
Royalty has it perks. The nobles, thanks to the enormous amounts of inherited wealth, had a lot of time and money to spend on filling their narcissistic desires. They used to get their portraits made by artists. These days, any consumer with a few bucks to spare can get a custom portrait such as this made with a few clicks.
No one wants to get a portrait of themselves as royalty made, or at least not those with any shame. These things make sense as gifts though. They’re flattering and recipients can always tell people that it was a gift to avoid humiliation. Your history obsessed recipient must have seen many of these in history books and museums. Having one of their own will make them very pleased.
Bad Days in History (Book)
There is no time machine and no matter how much you want to go back in time and fix your silly and something seriously dumb mistakes you can’t.
This book is about such mistakes. Like how an Apple investor who pulled out right before a $30 Billion dollar windfall missing out on making a fortune. Tough luck.
Roman Dice Tower
The Roman dice tower was used by ancient Romans to play dice games. The original tower that was discovered in the eighties was dated back to fourth century AD and was apparently presented as a good-luck gift.
This replica of the original dice tower makes for a nice showpiece. Your recipient will be delighted to own it and can even use it as an accessory in other games that require a dice. Tell them this is how the Romans used to roll–their dice.
True Facts Book
A collection of over 500 amazing and mind blowing facts from history that make up great conversation starters. Most of which sound too bizarre to be true but fascinating non the less.
It has some intriguing facts such as: how a chicken once survived for two years after having its head cut off and even has some borderline disturbing ones such as: when a worker bee mates with the queen bee, its pee-pee explodes.* This is an interesting gift for any curious person who doesn’t mind extra fun facts in his brain.
Historic Native American Flask
You don’t have to be drunk to appreciate a nice, historic flask received as a gift. Even an occasional drinker would be thrilled to own one that looks so cool. Any history lover with a preference of vintage things will want this Old Indian Fire Water flask.
Although, some virtue signaling types might take offense in this act of “cultural appropriation”. If your recipient isn’t one of those, give it to them. It’ll make a fine gift.
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American Trivia Cards
Youtube is full of videos of street interviews in which you see Americans failing to answer basic trivia questions about their own country. You can tell your education system is not very effective when people can name more avengers than past presidents.
If your target recipient is a kid or a teenager this will help them with learning about American trivia and if they’re adults they can brush up the knowledge of American trivia.
Military History Calendar
America has had a proud military history (There have been some bad chapters.) Movies are made about the good, brave soldiers defeating the bad guys all over the world. From the world wars to eliminating the mastermind behind 9/11. It’s something to be remembered
The military history calendar is full of important events in the military history that shaped the world. A perfect gift for history buffs and veterans.
Magicians of The Gods
I watched Graham Hancock, a British writer and journalist, for the first time on Joe Rogan’s Podcast. I had read one of his books before which was fictional but on that podcast I found out about his non-fiction work.
Magician of the Gods is one of his books. It’s an absolutely fascinating read that discusses the discovery of an extinction level event that almost wiped out life on Earth about 12,000 years ago. A must read for everyone and a good choice for a gift who is into ancient history stuff.
The Ascent of Man DVD Set
Who are we? Where did we come from? Where are we headed? Philosophers have wondered about these questions for centuries.
No one knows all the answers but together as humanity we try to shed light on some of them. The video is about the history of mankind and our progress in history. Remastered lost footage that won several awards and must watch for anyone interested in history.
Civilisation - BBC Series Box Set
Civilisation: A Personal View by Lord Clark was an ambitious documentary series by BBC at the time of its creation. It was considered a masterpiece of documentary cinema at the time of its release. BBC commissioned art historian Lord Clark to write and present the series. It examines the history of Western European culture, from the fall of the Roman Empire to the impact of Industrial Revolution and more. It was filmed in over 100 locations across 13 countries.
This box set of a classic documentary series may be something that will interest your recipient. It’s an old series but history buffs tend to like old things.
Timelines of Everything Book
Who said picture books are meant for kids? No one reads anymore. After all who will read a 200 page book by Stephen Hawking if you can just be an expert on black holes by watching a 7 minute video on Youtube. Anyway, if your recipient doesn’t read much but is still interested in learning about history this will make a great gift.
Even if they do read they’ll still love to own this one. Trust me. It’s a neatly put together book of events with historic pictures and graphics.
Chronology: History Board Game
If you’re always messing up your dates and can’t remember the timeline of all the Marvel films, this game is for you. Just kidding, nothing can help you with that mess.
This is a board game based on the timeline of historical events. It’s a fun (For those who find board games fun) way to remember dates in history.
Fingerprints of the Gods by Graham Hancock
Not so long ago everyone used to believe that the world was flat and ships would fall off the edge somewhere if they wandered too far. Then we figured out that it was actually round and we know it as the truth (Except the flat earthers).
This book by Graham Hankcock is the story of mankind’s hidden past that makes us question the origin of the civilization. An interesting read and good writing. A history buff would appreciate this.
Presidential Slogan Coffee Mug
We are all familiar with Donald Trump’s “Make American Great Again” (MAGA) slogan that was the hallmark line of his campaign. It’s very similar to Ronald Reagan’s presidency, you may remember his slogan that inspired the former–“Let’s Make America Great Again.” The similarities don’t end there. They are both outsiders, came from celebrity backgrounds who paved their way into American politics and became presidents.
The campaign slogans in the american election history are important because they represented the philosophies that shaped the world. They’re in a nutshell a representation of hopes and dreams of American people. A history buff would appreciate this idea and what the mug represents. It’ll make an interesting gift.
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Written in History: Letters That Changed The World
They say the pen is mightier than the sword (I imagine James Bond has such a deadly pen). Great writing has the power to change the power to change hearts and even shape the world.
This book is a collection of the most influential letters in our history. They help unveil and enlighten the past. An interesting and fresh gift idea.
Art of War by Sun Tzu
Sun Tzu was a war strategist in ancient china. Perhaps the smartest there was. You may have come across his quotes that are shared around on the internet. Lessons like “The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting,” and other such stuff which sounds vaguely wise and true but you have no clue how it applies in real life.
Art of War was Sun Tzu’s masterpiece. You don’t have to be a general in the army to put this to use. The principles in this book can be used to resolve conflicts in real life. It is a universal guide that way. This will make a fine present for someone who’s into war history strategy.
World History Timeline Wallchart
This wallchart is a 6,000 years of world history mashed into a poster. Over 60 centuries visible in a glance.
Ideal for kids and teenagers interested in history. I don’t recommend it for adults though. Unless they’re full on history nerds.
Gulag - A History
The cold war between the U.S and the soviets almost led us to the nuclear armageddon. Dark times. Soviets history is full of tragedies.. This book is about gulag, the soviet concentration camps.
This gives you a deep understanding of the side of the world. A fine gift for people who like to read about world history and the dark side of it.
The Laws of Human Nature by Robert Greene
Robert Greene is a master of collecting and reflecting stories from history to make sense out of it. He’ll show you what the past tells you about human nature and the laws of how the world works.
A book full of interesting anecdotes about the most fascinating people from our past.
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33 Strategies of War by Robert Greene
Another good book by Robery Greene. Anecdotes and incidents from the history of war and conflict that gives you an understanding of how it works.
It also reflects on how these principles are applicable in real life situations. A study of history combined with an apprenticeship of psychology.
The Unemployed Philosophers Guild Mug
I can tell you that even though this mug costs a thousand times less than a philosophy major degree and still has the same effect on your employability. Philosophers have helped shape history in significant ways. Their ideas shape politics and how we think.
Your history loving recipient is probably interested in philosophy. If they are this will make a fine gift.
The Secret History of World War II
The war that significantly altered humanity and the nature of war forever will always intrigue us. After all, the future of mankind was dependent on its outcome.
This book gives us a glimpse of parts of that history that are not mainstream. A must read for any history lover.
Julius Caesar Pencil Holder
When Julius Caesar was conquering great lands and trying to rule the world he was aiming for fame. He dreamt of his name being known all over the world as a great ruler and hoped that his statues would be made. But I don’t think his image serving people as a pencil holder was not exactly what had in mind.
I bet your history loving recipient will love this. It exactly what one would imaging a history professor or scholar would own.
Women Make History T-shirt
When it comes to freedom and the right to be treated equally history hasn’t been kind to women. To an extent, even in developed nations, women still have to struggle for equality. They are expected to be mannered, nice and polite. They are told to smile more and discouraged from disagreeing with men (Meaning not to have your own opinions.)
And as the past teaches us women who rebel against these subversions do make in the history books. Women like Coco Chanel who single handedly transformed women’s fashion by making women’s clothes more masculine. This will make an inspired gift for any woman who values her independence.
The Book of Awesome Women
Speaking of women’s accomplishments, it is a unfortunate truth that history books don’t put much emphasis on teaching students about the contributions of women to our society. The Book of Awesome Women by Becca Anderson discusses female figures such as Dian Fossey, Anita Hill, Eleanor Roosevelt and more.
This book is an ideal gift for any young girl who is interested in history. It’ll introduce them to some amazing idols and role models.
Black Heroes: A Black History Book
We are all individuals but also parts of our identities relate to the groups we share them with. This is why when fellow countrymen achieve something on the world stage we feel some pride. For your average American If they think of Black heroes only a few come to mind. Besides MLK or Rosa Parks and a handful others the achievements of the greats in the African American community has often been overlooked. Black Heroes brings you the biographies of lesser known yet important black personalities such as aviator Bessie Coleman and astronomer Benjamin Bannekar and many more.
This book brings you the stories of the most inspiring personalities in the past and present. It’s a fascinating read for anyone willing to learn about the history of the black heroes–the book covers scientists, musicians, Egyptian rulers, civil rights activists. It is meant for readers between the ages of 8 and 12 and covers over 50 black leaders and role models from history.
The Great Book of Texas
It’s not an exaggeration to say that your average Texan is very proud of their heritage. Go to one’s house and you’ll see all kinds of Texas themed items all over the place. You’ll find some useful information in this book as well as facts that you’ll never need but are amusing nonetheless. Such as the hideout of Bonnie & Clyde. Also you’ll read about a hotel in austin which is considered the most haunted place in Texas.
If your recipient is a Texan cowboy who doesn’t mind reading a book once in a while and is a history buff they’ll enjoy this book about Texas.
19th Amendment Mug
If your history buff recipient is a feminist or believes in the principles of feminism, they likely know the significance of the 19th amendment in the history of women’s rights. Women had to fight for their right to vote and participate in the democratic process. And it wasn’t even that long ago.
This will be an ideal gift for a woman proud of her sisters and their fight for the rights of her.
African American History
I don’t think it’s enough to have a black history month to cover all the history of the African American community. Learning about a historically significant part of a dark American history that has systemic effects on the lives of people even today is essential so that we can have empathy for those who carry the baggage that comes with it.
This book will be a great gift idea for any history buff who is interested in learning about the history of the African American community and how it relates to the modern world. It covers the accounts of the most significant events, individuals, terms, ideas and social movements that defined the black history in the United States.
Ukraine and Russia History
In light of the recent events that have shook the world, I think it’s worth going back to the history books to figure out what caused it.
Written by Paul D’Anieri, Ukraine and Russia: From Civilized Divorce to an Uncivil War gives you insights on the dynamics between the two former soviet states and current neighbors. You can give this to anyone curious about the ongoing war in Ukraine and wishes to learn more about the history of it.
History buffs are well characterized by their unending curiosity about the past events and are often readers who just prefer to read books about history rather than literature. A kindle is a useful device for anyone who loves reading and even for those who love reading about history.
If your recipient doesn’t own one already and isn’t too averse to modern technology (like one of those weirdos who will denounce all things digital.) This will make a very useful present they’ll appreciate.
History Themed Coasters
I bet a lot of beautiful vintage tables have been ruined because of the unwillingness of the owners to use a coaster. Water hates wood. We all know it yet find ourselves in the company of people who would let laziness get the best of them and the tables.
If your history loving recipient is a spouse or partner who does this then maybe a history themed coaster will encourage them to use it thereby saving the table.
Antique Coin Collection Set
I wonder sometimes what motivates people to collect things. I guess it has something to do with a feeling of achievement that comes with it. Every item you collect, whether it’s coins, cars, knives or even antiques, adds to the growing collection. Coins represent history in an unique way. You’ll find symbols that mark important moments in history–great figures that changed history are celebrated and honored by carved into the face of currency–the very fabric of what made civilization possible.
If your recipient is a history buff who you know is into collection coins or even other things related to history they’ll love this set of coins as a present. Even if they don’t they’ll be fascinated by the unique designs and what they represent.
History of The World Map by Map
The modern education system has many flaws that need to be fixed but one that needs reform is how it deals with the fundamental nature of the learners’ personalities. The one size fits all system seems pretty counterproductive and inept at maximizing the potential of the students with unique abilities. Some people are visual learners, some like reading, others prefer audio or a mixture of all. I think we can all agree that utilizing multiple senses when learning a subject is generally more effective in improving recall.
This guide tells you the history of the world using maps. Readers learn about the biggest events in history, everything from the evolution and migration of our oldest ancestors out of Africa to the significant events in the modern world. It’s a perfect gift for any history lover who enjoys learning yet isn’t that much into reading.
On This Day in History Went Down
Time machines don’t exist (that we know of) as of now and hence noone can with certainty tell us how the present world would be if it weren’t for the significant events in history that shaped it. But they indeed did shape our world, for better or for worse, in a particular way.
This fascinating book by James Well explores those important events and the days in history that they took place. It is full of interesting stories that will engage any curious reader. Stuff like how a group of teens rebelled against the government of Germany when participation in the Hitler Youth became mandatory. An interesting read for anyone interested in learning about historical events. A good gift idea for history buffs who like to read.
Histomap - World History
Some people decorate their walls with art that they like, some put up posters of their favorite artists and movie stars. What you put up reflects who you are. It’s your walls and you decide what you want to look at day in and day out whenever you’re home.
This poster covers around 4000 years of history in a beautifully designed graphic. It’s art for history nerds. A unique gift idea for someone passionate about the topic.
History Teacher Mug
I’m conflicted about funny gift ideas. On one hand everybody likes a good joke, on the other, while amusing, these gifts aren’t really useful to the recipient and hence not very effective. I recommend that if you’re looking for something funny to gift someone try to make it useful for them in some way.
A mug with a funny pun like this, while not the most practical gift in the world, can still be put to use. This mug is designed for history teachers. It’s endearing.
NYTimes Review Literary History
History is documented in diverse ways. Newspaper articles, documentaries, stone carvings, songs and even videos on social media. Another way to look at history and gain a perspective on the reality of people living in a particular time, their ideas, beliefs, the way they communicated and the circumstances they faced is through literature.
NYTimes history of literature is a collection of modern American letters. It’s full of excellent pieces of reporting, photography, reviews and never before heard anecdotes about famous writers. Also, some first takes of novels that are now considered masterpieces. It’s an archive that will appeal to readers, writers and history enthusiasts. A unique gift idea for a history buff who’s also in reading literature.
Life Cover Collection Puzzle
Iconic moments in recent history can be summed up with a montage of life magazine covers. From historic photos of the man on the Moon to our journey to Mars. It all reminds us how humanity has evolved in recent times.
This is a puzzle made up of life magazine cover pictures. It makes you feel like putting together history to see a metaphorical and literal big picture. A fine present.