For more than 1,000 years, the Byzantine Empire was the eye of the entire world – the origin of great literature, fine art and modern government. Heir to Greece and Rome, it was the first Christian empire, spanning 11 centuries and three continents. In the end, plundered and sacked by invaders, Byzantium nearly became extinct. Episode 1 Building the Dream – The procession was led by the great Roman Emperor, Constantine. And he brought with him a bunch of priests, pagan and Christian ones, and they were all holding an incredible collection of relics. At the exact moment prescribed by astrologers and Constantine renamed the city Constantinople and claimed it as the capital of his grand new empire.
Kingdom of David The Saga of the Israelites tells the epic story of the Jews and the creation of the world’s first and most profoundly influential monotheistic religion. The stories of the patriarch Abraham, the liberator Moses, the poet-king David and his son Solomon all come to life in the dramatic tale of loss and triumph that shaped humanity’s basic moral struggle for more than three millennia Episode 3 The End of Days – In 63 B.C., the Roman General Pompeii leads his legions into the land of Judea. It is the beginning of a clash of cultures between Rome and the Jews that would grow into one of the most brutal conflicts in history. It also pits Jew against Jew, as many of the different factions of Judaism, such as the Zealots and the Essenes, clash over the interpretation of the true will of God as revealed in the Bible. Terrorism, political assassination, starvation, and crucifixion dominate the landscape. The period ends with the Roman sack of Jerusalem and the destruction of the Temple in 70 A.D. Out of the ashes will rise two new religions rabbinical Judaism and Christianity.
After thousands of years of debate and question this series explores many of the greatest tales of Scripture. Filmed on location throughout the Holy Land and utilizing modern scientific techniques and newly found archaeological discoveries Mysteries of the Bible reveals surprising facts and theories behind the legendary figures and fabled stories of the Bible. The acclaimed A&E series Mysteries of the Bible provide a wealth of astonishing discoveries and unforgettable revelations. Episode Samson and Delilah – In ancient Palestine, a rebel of super human strength disrupted the peace of the land during a time of uneasy truce between Israelites and Philistines. Discover the story of Samson and his betrayal at the hands of Delilah.
This series of programs consists of 16 episodes which profile 16 evil men and women throughout history who have used their power to torture, kill, maim and eradicate millions of people. Attila The Hun – Attila was Khan of the Huns. He is remembered as the epitome of cruelty and rapacity. He passed unhindered through Austria and Germany, across the Rhine into Gaul, plundering and devastating all in his path with a ferocity unparalleled in the records of barbarian invasions and compelling those he overcame to augment his mighty army.
To mark the Papal visit to the UK, a camera crew have spent a year filming a world that few have ever seen. With unprecedented access to the Vatican and the people who live and work there, this is a unique profile of the heart of the Catholic Church and the world’s smallest Sovereign State. Archivists reveal the Vatican’s secrets, including the signed testimony of Galileo recorded by the Inquisition. A Cardinal journeys deep below St Peter’s Basilica to inspect the site claimed to be tomb of the Saint himself, and curators share a private viewing of Michelangelo’s extraordinary decoration of the Sistine Chapel.
Certain landmarks have captured the imagination and awe of modern architects and engineers around the world as they work to solve the mystery of how their ancient forebears were able to construct such beautiful, timeless and revolutionary structures with none of the machines and materials available to modern engineers. Episode Chartres Cathedral – is a masterpiece of Gothic architecture but behind its towering walls lies the tale of an intense power struggle between French aristocrats and the Catholic Church.
Decoding the Past is a series that “decodes” the past by looking for unusual, paranormal, and mysterious things written about throughout history that may give clues as to what will happen in the future. Episode Bible Code 2 Apocalypse and Beyond – continues discussion of Bible codes began in previous episode.
A fascinating snapshot of medieval society, this documentary narrated by Rob Brydon uses dramatic reconstructions and original animation to reveal the clash between reason and the supernatural at the heart of the medieval mind. In 1307, the full weight of medieval justice descended on the sleepy town of Hereford. But this court wasn’t summoned to prove innocence or guilt. The man on trial wasn’t a murderer or a criminal. In fact, he wasn’t even alive. This was a holy inquiry, called by the Church to prove whether a dead English bishop was actually a miracle worker and should be made into a saint. His case was based on several alleged miracles, the most notorious being the spectacular resurrection of a hanged man.
It is 114 B.C. and the Republic of Rome is a small empire clinging to the rim of the Mediterranean. Suddenly, terror grips the Romans as the first barbarian attack smashes through the imperial boarder, paving the way for what would become one of the most tumultuous eras in the history of mankind. Filled with dramatic re-enactments and action packed battle scenes, Rome Rise and Fall of an Empire chronicles the dramatic story of one of history’s greatest empires from its first major battle to its remarkable military feats and through its eventual fall. This is the History Channel series, not BBC. Episode 10 Constantine The Great – As emperor of Spain, Gaul, and Britain, Constantine proves his strength against his barbarian enemies. But when the other Roman emperors begin to turn on each other again, Constantine determines to put an end to such rivalries once and for all. Fighting under the cross of the Christian God, Constantine not only legitimizes the young religion, but seeks to use it as a unifying force in the empire.
The spear that pierced Jesus’ side as he hung on the cross has become the Spear of Destiny in the imagination of Mankind, and like the Holy Grail, has been the subject of countless works of literature, music, theatre and film. From its first mention by Tubal-Cain, seventh generation grandson of Adam, to its role in the Crucifixion, the same spear has found its way into key moments in history. Not surprisingly, Adolf Hitler coveted its power. Did Hitler posses the Spear of Destiny? Does it contain the power of God, or does it carry a more sinister magic? Where is it, who will pick it up, and what will he do with it this time?
This series explores famous battles. Each program takes an important battle telling its story and posing a puzzling central question about the battle that recent scientific research is helping to illuminate a contemporary journey of discovery and a compelling story from the past. Battlefield Detectives redefines the military documentary by utilizing every possible technique demonstrations, reenactments, advanced forensic and historical analysis, and more to clarify battles from the legendary to the obscure. Episode 4 Siege of Masada – The Roman siege of Masada in 70 A.D is recreated to separate fact from myth. The length and difficulty of the siege, which group of Jews were involved and whether they committed mass suicide are especially questioned.
Luxury isn’t always a question of the expensive and beautiful for the rich and powerful, it’s always been much more and more important than that. The story of luxury is about an idea that touches on democracy and patriotism on social harmony and epic courage and even on the divine. Because it is so important there has always been more than one definition of what luxury actually is. One thing all can agree on is that luxury is a rare thing, it divides society into the haves and have nots. Host Cambridge University academic Dr Michael Scott asks the question “Do we love luxury or hate it or both?” He presents the view that the best way to understand today’s anxious response toward luxury is to think about how it operated in the past and to understand how that past continues to impact society today. Episode Luxury in the Middle Ages – follows the clash between luxury and Christianity which convulsed medieval Europe. Luxury was a roadblock on the road to heaven, so the church was quick to condemn the jewellery and gorgeous weapons of the early medieval world. Yet the church also had its own form of luxury, in the form of manuscripts designed to do the work of God through astonishment and display. And to some extent it worked, as by 1200 medieval boys’ toys like warhorses and tournaments were suffused with Christian ideas of chivalry and gentility. But trade growth brought new luxuries to Europe, condemned in turn by the church, like exotic spices from the East, spicy food led to spicy conduct and to the sin of lechery, said the preachers. But soon the Black Death paradoxically liberated luxury from the church by initiating a new world of relative luxury and consumerism, the luxury world we inhabit today.
After thousands of years of debate and question this series explores many of the greatest tales of Scripture. Filmed on location throughout the Holy Land and utilizing modern scientific techniques and newly found archaeological discoveries Mysteries of the Bible reveals surprising facts and theories behind the legendary figures and fabled stories of the Bible. Episode Jesus Holy Child – In this episode, the controversy over the actual date and place of the birth of Jesus is explored. An inspiring portrait of the life and times of Jesus Christ.
Buckle on your armor and pick up your lute. Legendary Monty Python star and medieval scholar Terry Jones opens your eyes to the truths behind nine medieval characters you thought you knew. Through a lively mix of humor and research, you’ll see beyond Renaissance myths and time worn stereotypes. The Monk – A life of prayer in peaceful service to God? Not for many medieval monks, who devoted their lives to making lots and lots of money. Religion was big business in those days and the merchandising opportunities endless when you had a constant stream of devoted, unquestioning worshippers.
Tony Robinson visits the United States, the Middle East, the Mediterranean and Africa to uncover the realities behind the terrifying vision of the end of the world in the Book of Revelation. It’s author wrote it sheltered in a cave on the Greek island of Patmos, probably a refugee from Roman occupied Palestine. He is also likely to have consumed the local hallucinogenic magic mushrooms. So rather than taking these bizarre visions literally, it might make more sense to try to understand them in their historical context. There are some 40 apocalyptic books from this era but this was the only one that made it into the Bible. As is usual with Tony Robinson’s programs Doomsday Code focuses on Tony’s opinions of the people he is observing, in this case Christians and Jews who support the state of Israel’s continued existance. Be prepared for an info-tainment program not a balanced documentary and you won’t be offended.
For more than 1,000 years, the Byzantine Empire was the eye of the entire world – the origin of great literature, fine art and modern government. Heir to Greece and Rome, it was the first Christian empire, spanning 11 centuries and three continents. In the end, plundered and sacked by invaders, Byzantium nearly became extinct. Episode 2 Heaven on Earth – You can’t have Jesus king of the world unless he looks like a king. Christians zre getting their iconography from – straight from the pagan faith. But When Christianity took over the Roman Empire, it attacked and swept away all these signs. Now these signs were as old as man himself, and Christianity was pretty poorly supplied with alternatives. After all, it was a language of books and words. But unless it was to fail, it had to develop and develop quickly a whole new set of images for the world.
Kingdom of David The Saga of the Israelites tells the epic story of the Jews and the creation of the world’s first and most profoundly influential monotheistic religion. The stories of the patriarch Abraham, the liberator Moses, the poet-king David and his son Solomon all come to life in the dramatic tale of loss and triumph that shaped humanity’s basic moral struggle for more than three millennia Episode 4 The Gifts of the Jews – With the destruction of the Temple, the Romans have destroyed the only place on earth, according to Biblical Law, where Jews can worship God. The Judaism of priests and sacrifices is lost forever, and rabbis struggle to reinvent the religion of Moses and David. They are forced to work during a period of incredible bloodshed and turmoil. In 132 A.D. Jewish zealots rise against Rome’s legions in the Bar Kochba rebellion, forcing them to withdraw from the region. The Romans return with a vast army and slaughter nearly 600,000 Jews. They change the name of the region from Judea to Palestine and ban all Jews from Jerusalem. Desperate to start new lives, many Jews flee to distant lands, only to face another challenge a breakaway form of Judaism called Christianity. As it rises to political power, Christianity becomes deeply anti-Semitic. But Judaism survives and in doing so, preserves for all its unique gifts, including the rights of the individual and the rule of law, gifts that will change the Western world forever.
After thousands of years of debate and question this series explores many of the greatest tales of Scripture. Filmed on location throughout the Holy Land and utilizing modern scientific techniques and newly found archaeological discoveries Mysteries of the Bible reveals surprising facts and theories behind the legendary figures and fabled stories of the Bible. Episode The Last Revolt – Since the days of King David, the Jewish people have claimed the rocky hillsides of Judea as their Promised Land. And no structure better symbolized that covenant than the majestic Holy Temple on Jerusalem’s sacred mountain. Six hundred years after its construction, the Temple was the scene of an unlikely battle for freedom, as Jews fought impossible odds to repel legions of Roman soldiers. Of all of the peoples of the Near East, why did the Jews alone dare challenge the greatest imperial power the world had ever known? Why was Rome determined to prevail at any cost? And what happened to the sacred Temple when the siege finally broke through Jerusalem’s walls? Join the world’s leading archeologists and scholars as they unravel the riddles of the Holy Temple, and the great Jewish revolt that destroyed it.
Certain landmarks have captured the imagination and awe of modern architects and engineers around the world as they work to solve the mystery of how their ancient forebears were able to construct such beautiful, timeless and revolutionary structures with none of the machines and materials available to modern engineers. Episode Hagia Sophia – We peel back the layers of this great church of Hagia Sophia to reveal its engineering secrets,and bring to life the story of its construction.
Mega Disasters also released as series Prehistoric Megastorms. Mega Disasters explores potential catastrophic threats to individual cities, countries, and the entire globe. The two “mega-disasters” of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and Hurricane Katrina in 2005 inspired the series and provided a reference point for many of the episodes. Excepting only two shows devoted to man-made disasters, the threats explored can be divided into three general categories: meteorological, geological, and cosmic hazards. Episode 2 Noah’s Great Flood – 8000 years ago the Ice Age ended. Then a superflood bursts in a lush forest known now as the Black Sea.
It is 114 B.C. and the Republic of Rome is a small empire clinging to the rim of the Mediterranean. Suddenly, terror grips the Romans as the first barbarian attack smashes through the imperial boarder, paving the way for what would become one of the most tumultuous eras in the history of mankind. Filled with dramatic re-enactments and action packed battle scenes, Rome Rise and Fall of an Empire chronicles the dramatic story of one of history’s greatest empires from its first major battle to its remarkable military feats and through its eventual fall. This is the History Channel series, not BBC. Episode 11 The Barbarian General – By the end of the fourth century, Romans and barbarians live together uneasily in the empire, a situation that often explodes into violence. When Emperor Theodosius enlists the Goths as mercenaries, he relies on his trusted general, the half Vandal, half Roman Stilicho, to ensure the Goths loyalty. But Theodosius uses the Goth soldiers as canon fodder in a civil war, causing them to rebel under the leadership of Alaric, a man they call king.
Lucy Lawless hosts this series of five films bringing to life history’s most charismatic women warriors. Shot on location in France, Ireland, Britain, China, and New Mexico, the stories are a heady mix of historical sleuthing and provocative reconstruction brought to the screen by television’s most famous women warrior: Lucy Lawless, star of the television series Xena, Warrior Princess. Joan of Arc – Convinced by the voices of saints to step forth and serve her deposed king, Joan of Arc became an unlikely war hero. With 10,000 beaten men and very long odds against the advancing English army, she scored a miraculous string of victories. But it all went horribly wrong when she was finally captured, tried for witchcraft and heresy, and burned at the stake.
Bible Mysteries is a series of programs exploring great figures and events from biblical times. Historical, archaeological and anthropological evidence combined with stylish drama re-enactments, CGI graphics and expert opinion offers a comprehensive exploration into some of the Bible’s most compelling people and stories and gives fresh insights into the historical realities of the times. Episode David and Goliath – The legendary battle between the over grown Philistine warrior Goliath and the humble shepherd boy David is an archetype which has resonance well beyond the Old Testament account. Whenever a lower division football club thwarts a premier squad in a giant slaying encounter it is celebrated as a “David and Goliath” event. The defiant courage of the underdog appeals to our deep seated emotional need to witness the powerless turning the tables, for once, on the powerful.