Through much of history there was no written word, and anecdotes were used in order to pass stories, tales, and advice down through generation after generation. Many of these treasured words are not captured in any other forms and if anecdotes were to suddenly disappear a rich trove of historical lore and facts would also be gone. Some anecdotes are meant to be taken more literally than others but they all are intended to convey powerful emotions and tell of lessons that need to be learned. Without anecdotes many important lessons and words of advice would not have survived from the past, and the human race would be much worse off than we are right now. They can be found in a wide range of types, from innocent to sinister, and each type covers a vital area of life where lessons may be extremely useful. Often anecdotes also serve a an inspiration to those who hear them as well as telling a tale or providing beneficial advice.