A History of Britain Episode 1 Beginnings

From the dawn of civilization to the 20th century, A History of Britain re-animates familiar tales and illuminates overlooked aspects of England’s past. Hosted by Simon Schama, this series discards timelines and tiresome lineages for a lively look at the personalities and cultures that infuse British history. Epic themes and towering figures that transformed an island “at the edge of the world” into the greatest empire on earth. Episode 1 Beginnings – Covering the period 3100 BC – 1000 AD starts in the stone age village of Skara Brae, Orkney. Over the next four thousand years Romans, Anglo-Saxons, Vikings, Danes, and Christian missionaries arrive, fight, settle and leave their mark on what will become the nations of Britain.

In Search of Myths and Heroes King Arthur The Once And Future King

Michael Wood goes in search of four of the world’s most famous myths. These gripping adventures take the viewer to some of the most extraordinary places on earth, exploring stories that have captivated the world for thousands of years. Arthur the Once and Future King In this episode of the series, Wood explores the greatest British myth the tale of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Traveling round the Celtic world from Cornwall to Wales, Brittany, Ireland and Scotland, Wood uncovers the extraordinary story of how a shadowy Welsh freedom fighter

The Most Evil Men and Women in History King John

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. Bad King John – He murdered his nephew, inspired the legend of Robin Hood and caused the creation of Magna Carta.

Barbarians Series 1 and 2 The Vikings

They were the dreaded forces on the fringes of civilization, the bloodthirsty warriors who defied the Roman legions and terrorized the people of Europe. They were the Barbarians, and their names still evoke images of cruelty and chaos. But what do we really know of these legendary warriors? From the frigid North Sea to the Russian steppes, this ambitious series tells the fascinating stories of the most fabled groups of fighters in history, tracing 1,000 years of conquest and adventure through inspired scholarship and some of the most extensive reenactments ever filmed. Episode Vikings – Sails with the Norsemen from Arabia to the New World, stopping off for a bit of pillaging along the way. This is the U.K. narrator, not U.S.A. version.

Medieval Season Christina A Medieval Life

Historian Michael Wood delves through medieval court records to follow the fortunes of a village in Hertfordshire and, more particularly, the family of peasant Christina Cok. The 14th century was a perilous time in British history, shot through with famine, plague and war. It was a time of climate change, virulent cattle diseases and, above all, the Black Death. But it was also the time when modern mentalities were shaped, not just by the rulers but increasingly by the common people.

Weapons That Made Britain The Lance

Presenter Mike Loades, an expert who trains people how to use medieval weapons, takes the viewer on a tour of medieval arms and armour, and demonstrates their central role in key events in British history. Learn about much more than the weapons themselves as the series draws in themes of technology, religion, geography and even music. Episode 3 The lance – Originally probably nothing more complex than a sharpened stick, and yet incredibly versatile as a weapon, the spear in time evolved into the lance favored by knights. In medieval times men learned how to use the lance through many years of intensive training at the “quintain”, a rotating wooden target. Man, horse and lance had to become a single projectile unit in order to produce enough impact during combat. The Battle of Lewes in 1264 was the first ever full-scale cavalry fight with lances on British soil. The Battle of Bannockburn illustrates how brilliant military tactics can be a greater force than weapons. Robert the Bruce defeated Edward II against all the odds due to the ingenious use of circles of spear men working as tight mobile units, which even cavalry could not breach.

Cathedral Flood at Winchester

The history of Britain and the aspirations of her Christian communities can be traced in the glorious excesses of the cathedrals. From Norman grandeur to the modern interpretations found in Liverpool and Coventry, explore the changing styles of the cathedrals in our midst. A 5 part series that takes a looks at the ingenuity behind the construction of Britain’s most famous cathedrals, using CGI and reconstructions to describe the dramatic stories of riot, fire, war, murder, and flood that shaped the history of these impressive masterpieces. Flood at Winchester – Home of England’s first Kings, Winchester cathedral stood for a thousand years as a proud symbol of national identity. But in the early 1900s it faced total destruction when it was discovered that the building was literally sinking into the swamp on which it had been constructed. This ancient architectural gem owes its survival to the bravery, ingenuity and endurance of one man, working diver William Robert Walker, who put his life on the line to save a piece of England’s history. This is the extraordinary story of the cathedral that began to sink and of the incredible underwater adventure that was launched to save it.

Secrets Of The Dead Catastrophe Episode 2 How the World Changed

The idea that an event of cataclysmic proportions shrouded the Earth’s atmosphere, darkening the sky and plunging its inhabitants into a massive crisis, is familiar to anyone who’s read about the dinosaurs. But what if a similar event happened to humans? And what if recorded history around the world indicates a precise time when this disaster struck? This fascinating documentary tackles the premise that scribes in civilizations as far apart as Ireland and China all recorded a darkening of the sky and a drop in temperatures about the year A.D. 535. Episode 2 How The World Changed – 535 A.D. has come and gone the world has been hit by a catastrophe. Now comes bizarre weather, the sun is darkened, skies are turbulent, rain is red and snow falls yellow. There is frost and famine. Seasons are blurred. In some places great drought destroys the land. In others floods bring chaos. The world will never be the same. The theory belongs to David Keys. With dogged detective work he has pieced together the story of an ancient catastrophe.

Michael Wood On Beowulf

Historian Michael Wood returns to his first great love, the Anglo-Saxon world, to reveal the origins of our literary heritage. Focusing on Beowulf and drawing on other Anglo-Saxon classics, he traces the birth of English poetry back to the Dark Ages. traveling across the British Isles from East Anglia to Scotland and with the help of Nobel prize winning poet Seamus Heaney, actor Julian Glover, local historians and enthusiasts, he brings the story and language of this iconic poem to life.

A History of Britain Episode 2 Conquest

From the dawn of civilization to the 20th century, A History of Britain re-animates familiar tales and illuminates overlooked aspects of England’s past. Hosted by Simon Schama it spotlights the epic themes and towering figures that transformed an island “at the edge of the world” into the greatest empire on earth, examining the impact of this extraordinary heritage on the modern nation. Episode 2 Conquest – The Battle of Hastings in 1066, which saw King Harold beaten after leading an army worn out from fighting his brother Tostig and a horde of Vikings, to confront William the Conqueror. The Saxon defeat led to 300 years of Norman rule and a country plagued by massacre and famine, but the rulers managed to keep an inventory of all land and possessions, better known as the Domesday Book.

Inside the Medieval Mind Episode 1 Knowledge

One of the world’s greatest authorities on the Middle Ages, Professor Robert Bartlett of St Andrew’s University, investigates the intellectual landscape of the medieval world. Knowledge – explores the way medieval man understood the world as a place of mystery, even enchantment. The world was a book written by God. But as the Middle Ages grew to a close, it became a place to be mastered, even exploited.

The Normans Episode 1 Men From The North

Professor Robert Bartlett embarks on an ambitious journey deep into the hearts and minds of a band of warriors who transformed medieval Europe. He draws on Anglo-Saxon chronicles, medieval manuscripts and some of the most powerful examples of Norman architecture in an epic sweep of the period of Norman supremacy. And he reveals how the Norman legacy lives on in our culture and politics to this day. Episode 1 Men from the North – Explores how the Normans developed from a band of marauding Vikings into formidable warriors. Normans established their new province of Normandy, land of the northmen, in northern France. They went on to build some of the finest churches in Europe and turned into an unstoppable force of Christian knights and warriors, whose legacy is all around us to this day. William’s greatest achievement was the conquest of England in 1066.

Battlefield Britain Episode 2 Medieval Warfare At The Battle of Hastings

Battlefield Britain is about famous battles in the history of Great Britain. From Boudicca’s destructive rebellion against the Romans to the incredible feats of The Few who saw off the Luftwaffe, these battles all had wide reaching consequences and implications for the future of the British isles. Presented by father and son team Peter and Dan Snow. Peter explains the battleplans, Dan the perspective of the common soldier, sailors and airmen. The episodes also featured interviews with soldiers from both sides, re-enactments of the battles and computer generated scenes with bird eye views and blocks to show troop movement. Episode 2 The Battle of Hastings – Heralding the beginning of the Norman Conquest, the Battle of Hastings in 1066, when William the Conqueror faced King Harold on the south coast, was one of the bloodiest and most important battles ever fought on British soil.

Medieval Season How To Build A Cathedral

The great cathedrals were the wonders of the medieval world. Many were the tallest structures on earth, the highest buildings created since the pyramids and until the Eiffel Tower, yet they were built without any of the technological aids of the modern world and with little more than set-squares and dividers, ropes and pulleys, hammers and chisels. The vision was to create a sense of heaven on earth and the medieval cathedral aspired to be nothing less than “the new Jerusalem”. Spectacular effects were achieved as this ambition was realised, leading to a revolution in design and a golden age for cathedral architecture in England. Who were the people who built them? What drove them? And just how were they able to build with such stupendous skill, vision and ambition? Architectural historian Jon Cannon, author of the recent, acclaimed Cathedral, goes in search of the clues that shed light on how our medieval forebears were able to realise such bold ambition. From the fan vaulting at Gloucester to the stained glass at York, from the solid mass of Norwich to the soaring elegance of the Octagon at Ely, Jon climbs up above the stone vaulted ceilings, along the parapets, through the roof voids and down into the crypts of the greatest cathedrals to find out how, and why, it was done.

Weapons That Made Britain The Sword

Presenter Mike Loades, an expert who trains people how to use medieval weapons, takes the viewer on a tour of medieval arms and armour, and demonstrates their central role in key events in British history. Learn about much more than the weapons themselves as the series draws in themes of technology, religion, geography and even music. Episode 1 The sword – A deadly weapon that was used throughout the Middle Ages and was standard army issue until the late 19th century. In the 1471 Battle of Barnet (during the War of the Roses), fighting eventually came down to the sword despite the availability of gunpowder by that time. Mike teaches 10 students how to wield a sword using the same techniques that would have been employed in medieval sword schools. Mike visits the site of the Battle of Barnet to retrace the battle step-by-step and to explore the crucial role of the sword in deciding the outcome.

Cathedral Murder at Canterbury

The history of Britain and the aspirations of her Christian communities can be traced in the glorious excesses of the cathedrals. From Norman grandeur to the modern interpretations found in Liverpool and Coventry, explore the changing styles of the cathedrals in our midst. A 5 part series that takes a looks at the ingenuity behind the construction of Britain’s most famous cathedrals, using CGI and reconstructions to describe the dramatic stories of riot, fire, war, murder, and flood that shaped the history of these impressive masterpieces. Murder at Cantebury – Canterbury was at the forefront of an architectural revolution the first Gothic cathedral to be built in Britain. But the building we know today has its origins in the most infamous murder of the medieval age – Thomas Becket in 1170. After his death a devastating fire meant that Canterbury could be rebuilt as a shrine to the martyred archbishop. This is the cathedral as theatre with the story of the murder etched in stone, marble and glass. It takes the pilgrim on a journey from darkness into light – from the horrors of the slaying in the North transept to the new Trinity Chapel where Becket was reburied in a magnificent tomb sparkling with gold and precious stones.

Terry Jones' Medieval Lives Episode 1 The Peasant

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 Peasant – The stereotype of the medieval peasant is a toothless, filthy, ignorant wretch, a slave to his feudal lord and master. Terry Jones discovers a very different reality. They had more holidays than us, very often their houses were bigger, they frequently ate better and arguably had more influence in the corridors of power. The average peasant was, in fact, pretty intelligent.

Secrets of the Great Plague

As scientists and leaders around the world brace for the next global health disaster, some experts are looking for help in the most unlikely of places the past. From London’s Great Plague of 1665 to the AIDS crisis of today, Secrets of the Great Plague follows medical detective Stephen O’Brien as he unravels the mysteries surrounding the most deadly epidemics. The horrors of the Great Plague or “Black Death” could provide lessons that help save lives in the event of an infectious disease disaster. Scientists probe the mystery of why some people survived the infection that killed millions over the centuries when it struck again and again. They have discovered a trick of nature that outsmarted the vicious killer.

A History of Britain Episode 3 Dynasty

From the dawn of civilization to the 20th century, A History of Britain re-animates familiar tales and illuminates overlooked aspects of England’s past. Hosted by Simon Schama, this series discards timelines and tiresome lineages for a lively look at the personalities and cultures that infuse British history. Epic themes and towering figures that transformed an island “at the edge of the world” into the greatest empire on earth. Episode 3 Dynasty – The story of Henry II, who built one of the greatest empires in the medieval world, only to see it torn down by members of his own family. Infamous for inciting the murder of Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Becket, Henry has rarely been recognised for his achievements, which included the laying of the foundations for today’s legal system.

Inside the Medieval Mind Episode 2 Sex

One of the world’s greatest authorities on the Middle Ages, Professor Robert Bartlett of St Andrew’s University, investigates the intellectual landscape of the medieval world. Sex – Unearths remarkable evidence of the complex passions of medieval men and women. The Church preached hatred of the flesh, promoted the cult of virginity and condemned woman as the sinful heir to Eve. Yet this was the era that gave birth to the idea of romantic, or “courtly” love.

The Normans Episode 2 Conquest

Professor Robert Bartlett embarks on an ambitious journey deep into the hearts and minds of a band of warriors who transformed medieval Europe. He draws on Anglo-Saxon chronicles, medieval manuscripts and some of the most powerful examples of Norman architecture in an epic sweep of the period of Norman supremacy. And he reveals how the Norman legacy lives on in our culture and politics to this day. Episode 2 Conquest – Bartlett shows how William the Conqueror imposed a new aristocracy, savagely cut down opposition and built scores of castles and cathedrals to intimidate and control. He also commissioned the Domesday Book, the greatest national survey of England that had ever been attempted.

Battlefield Britain Episode 3 Owain Glyndwr And The Battle For Wales

Battlefield Britain is about famous battles in the history of Great Britain. From Boudicca’s destructive rebellion against the Romans to the incredible feats of The Few who saw off the Luftwaffe, these battles all had wide reaching consequences and implications for the future of the British isles. Presented by father and son team Peter and Dan Snow. Peter explains the battleplans, Dan the perspective of the common soldier, sailors and airmen. The episodes also featured interviews with soldiers from both sides, re-enactments of the battles and computer generated scenes with bird eye views and blocks to show troop movement. Episode 3 Owain Glyn Dwr And The Battle For Wales – A look at the Battle for Wales in 1403 and the leader of the Welsh rebellion, Owain Glyndwr.

Medieval Season Illuminations Treasures Of The Middle Ages

Art critic Andrew Graham-Dixon visits an exhibition at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, which contains a treasure trove of the world’s most important illuminated manuscripts. Germaine Greer joins the modern day illustrator Quentin Blake to consider the religious and political power of these beautiful medieval masterpieces, and to assess their place in the history of art and book production.

What the Tudors Did For Us Episode 1 Seeying the Worlde

What an unruly lot! Beheadings, murder, divorce, rows with the Pope, civil war, fire and plague. The headline stories from the Tudor and Stuart years represent a roller-coaster ride through one of the most important periods of history in the development of modern Britain. Most know the bloody, battle filled history of the Tudor period, not many know the accomplishments of the period. Adam Hart-Davis travels through England in search of Tudor excellence in science, art, printing, exploration and more. Ranging from a shepherd’s discovery of graphite which led to the first pencil, to a fuller understanding of human anatomy once Henry VII legalized human dissection. Episode 1 Seeing the World – Before Tudor times the image people had of their world was, well, rather dark and mysterious, but that was about to change thanks to some incredible adventures and remarkable discoveries. Hart-Davis travels around Britain to introduce the idea and inventions of the Tudor Age in art, optics and exploration. The lens was added to the camera obscura by Giambattista della Porta in Natural Magic leading to fine arts and the first cinema. Mainland North America was discovered by John Cabot and possibly named after his investor Richard Americ. The first atlas (flat map) was drawn by Gerardus Mercator using the Mercator projection demonstrated by Hart-Davis. The first British colony in America was founded by Sir Walter Raleigh at Roanoke opening the New World to the Tudors. The perspective glass invented by Leonard Digges and demonstrated by Hart-Davis may have been the first telescope.

Clash Of The Gods Episode 9 Tolkein’s Monsters

Thousands of years ago, Myths were used to help frame the world of the ancients, and dictate the guidelines of their societies. Today, they are often the first stories we learn as children, iconic tales in which good and evil clash, and humanity and fantasy collide. But what is the reality behind these stories? Each episode connects ancient myths to actual historical events, as well as to events in the Bible and other cultures mythologies, gaining important historical insight from renowned scholars in search of the truth behind the legends. Episode 9 Tolkien’s Monsters – About J. R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy and how both legends and real life influenced it.