“Historical” and “historic” are obviously related. Both pertain to history or the potential to be remembered in history. However, they rarely overlap in usage. 


“Historical” is the most straightforward term. It simply refers to a connection with history.  


“Historic” in its most common senses has more to do with importance or significance.  A “historical” museum presents things about history, such as a modern building recently erected that features exhibits relating to Napoleon Bonaparte.  A “historic” museum is one that has played a part in history itself or has some significance as an old and important structure. A ”historic” museum could also be an art museum and have nothing to do with describing events occurring in history.

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