Ever wondered how, over thousands of years, the simple cup of tea came to be the world’s most consumed beverage after water? Or how coffee made its way from Ethiopia into Europe and across the world to become the everyday drink we love to consume? And why is it that people the world over have turned to chocolate for rituals, medicine, romance and sheer pleasure for 4,000 million years?
From its origins as a nomadic Turkoman tribe from central Asia, the Ottoman Empire became one of the world’s most impressive super powers, dominating swathes of the Middle East, Northern Africa and South Eastern Europe for some 500 years.
As a leader of the Islamic world, it’s incursions into Europe were often seen as a religious offensive, sparking a titanic power struggle between the forces of Christianity and Islam. The reality, we discover, was much more complex.
In Ottomans Vs. Christians: Battle for the Mediterranean, Presenter Julian Davison leads us on a swashbuckling adventure to some of the most extraordinary destinations in the Mediterranean.
We travel back in time to a world of magnificent galleys laden with riches and merciless pirates who prowl the seas, of spectacular battles and bloodied acts of treachery and revenge. With the help of esteemed historians, re-enactment groups and actors portraying some of the periods most remarkable figures, we relive the most dramatic and pivotal moments of this legendary clash of civilizations and uncover its rich and potent legacy.
The story of the collapse of the Mayan Empire is dramatic and chilling. Stranger than fiction, it is a story of power, religion, climate change, war and murder that can now be told through new science, new technology, and for the first time – by the Mayans themselves.
Dr. Arthur Demarest is no stranger to hacking his way through the jungle. Arthur has been called “the real Indiana Jones” – he digs up ancient cities and opens tombs in the jungle, has dealt with snakes and even been shot at on his quest. Arthur is after a truth that has been lost for a millennium and might tell us something that can save us from our own catastrophe. His target: What ended the Mayan Empire?
This 3x I hr documentary tells the story of the famous WW2 battle and the four year German occupation of the Greek island of Crete that followed.
With the help of documentary footage from the day, CGI, expert contributors, and survivors re visit the island of Crete and it’s battlefields to tell the story of this unique and bloody battle and its aftermath.
Produced by London indie, Pilot Productions, this one off documentary will explore the impact on our planet of viral diseases across the ages. Covid 19, which struck with such devastating impact in the early months of 2020 ,is just the latest in a long line of pandemics that have devastated, and in some cases ,destroyed societies throughout time. Like all pandemics, Covid-19 was sparked by human interaction with the animal world.
We explore the symptoms of these diseases and their impact – whether it was the Black Death/Bubonic Plague -which cost 100 million lives in 14th century Europe, or the Smallpox pandemic transmitted by Europeans which wiped out indigenous communities in the Americas, Pacific and Australia between the 15th and 18th centuries. The Great Plague of the 17th century and the Spanish Flu outbreak at the end of World War 1, were equally devastating in Europe.
Nautical Antiquities looks at the life and times of Bill Boeing Sr., an early lumber baron and airline frontiersman creating Boeing Airlines after seeing the Wright Brothers initial flight. We follow the family right up to his retirement and leaving the aviation world behind to sail the Inside Passage on his beloved yacht Taconite. The story continues with the history of the yacht almost to present day. It’s an intriguing story from the waters of the Pacific Northwest. Nautical Antiquities takes you far beyond the yachting world and into the heart of a fantastic early businessperson Bill Boeing Sr.
The extraordinary story of how a mysterious gem in one of Tutankhamun’s necklaces led to the discovery of a dramatic new cosmic threat. Italian archaeologist and geologist Vincenzo de Michele was walking through the Egyptian Museum in Cairo when he spotted a strange, unidentified, yellow-green stone in a piece of jewellery recovered from Tutankhamun’s tomb. When he applied for permission to test the gem, he discovered that it was in fact a type of glass. What’s more he was able to show that the glass was of natural origin, and came from a remote location in the middle of the Great Sand Sea in the Egyptian Sahara. But how and why is this mysterious and beautiful glass scattered about in this area of the desert?
The discovery in Jerusalem in 2007 of a tomb said to belong to the family of Jesus of Nazareth is just the latest in a long line of extraordinary finds which have recently come to light in the Holy Land. But not all these finds are quite what they seem. Both a stone tablet said to come from the Temple of Solomon, and an ossuary apparently belonging to the brother of Jesus, have been declared fakes. The official investigation then uncovered dozens of other fakes, and attention eventually focussed on one of the most revered objects in Israel: the ivory pomegranate. This artefact has been in the Israel Museum for nearly twenty years. Like the stone tablet, it too was linked to the Temple of Solomon – and astonishingly it too, investigators concluded, was fake. As forensic scientists now turn their attention to the ossuaries from the ‘Jesus family tomb’, Israeli archaeologists are left fearing that history and science is being repeatedly distorted, and they face a challenge to separate fact from fiction.