prehistory

[pree-his-tuh-ree, -his-tree]
noun, plural prehistories.
1.
human history in the period before recorded events, known mainly through archaeological discoveries, study, research, etc.; history of prehistoric humans.
2.
a history of the events or incidents leading to a crisis, situation, or the like.

Origin:
1870–75; pre- + history

prehistorian [pree-hi-stawr-ee-uhn, -stohr-] , noun
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
prehistory (priːˈhɪstərɪ)
 
n , pl -ries
1.  the prehistoric period
2.  the study of this period, relying entirely on archaeological evidence
 
prehistorian
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Example sentences
In this lesson, students create mock fossil records based on current scientific
  theories about prehistory.
Made of wood and rawhide, these traditional snowshoes go back to prehistory.
Until recently, there was little to be said about the prehistory of pandas.
But what the skull means to prehistory is still unknown.
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