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Atlas Maps

   2010    History
The Dutch Golden Age saw map-making reach a fever pitch of creative and commercial ambition. This was the era of the first ever Atlases - elaborate, lavish and beautiful. This was the great age of discovery and marked an unprecedented opportunity for mapmakers who sought to record and categorise the newly acquired knowledge of the world. Rising above the many mapmakers in this period was Gerard Mercator, inventor of the Mercator projection, who changed mapmaking forever when he published his collection of world maps in 1598 and coined the term 'Atlas'. The programme looks at some of the largest and most elaborate maps ever produced, from the vast maps on the floor of the Royal Palace in Amsterdam, to the 24 volume atlas covering just the Netherlands, to the largest Atlas in the world, The Klencke Atlas. It was made for Charles II to mark his restoration in 1660. But whilst being one of the British Libraries most important items, it is also one of its most fragile so hardly ever opened. This is a unique opportunity to see inside this enormous and lavish work, and see the world through the eyes of a King.
Series: The Beauty of Maps

One Life on the Limit

   2013    Culture
One Life on the Limit is an action documentary showcasing the glamour, speed, danger and excitement of Formula One Grand Prix racing. Narrated by Michael Fassbender, the film tells the story of the golden age of Formula 1, when the sport became terrifyingly dangerous. In the late 1960s, Formula 1 cars doubled their engine size and sprouted wings, making them incredibly quick, but even more hazardous. With money pouring in from sponsorship and a new worldwide television audience, superstar drivers were born, thrown like gladiators into the ring. The drivers were legendary with charisma and raw talent, but many of them paid the ultimate price. Follow the story of the drivers who raced on the edge and those who stood up to change the sport forever. It is about the greatest show on earth, Formula 1.

Viva Vercingetorix

   2015    History
In episode two, we discover the golden age of the La Tene Celtic warrior and reveal how their world extended as far as central Turkey. But by the middle of the first century BC, the Celts were under threat from an expanding Roman Empire, and the Gallic warrior Vercingetorix would challenge Julius Caesar in an epic battle that would shape the future of Europe.
Series: The Celts: Blood, Iron, and Sacrifice

The Golden Age

   2016    History
This episode tells the tale of what's broadly considered China's most creative dynasty - the Song (960-1279). Michael Wood heads to the city of Kaifeng, the greatest city in the world before the 19th century. Here in Twin Dragon Alley, locals tell him the legend of the baby boys who became emperors.
He explores the ideas and inventions that made the Song one of greatest eras in world culture, helped by China's most famous work of art, the Kaifeng scroll, which shows the life of the city in around 1120. A chef makes Michael a recipe from a Song cookbook, while a guide to 'how to live happy, healthy lives for old people', published in 1085 and still in print, is discussed with local women doing their morning exercises. The Song was also a great era for scientific advance in China. Michael steers a huge working replica of an astronomical clock, made by China's Leonardo da Vinci.
Then at a crunch Chinese Premier League match, Michael tells us the Chinese invented football! The golden age of the northern Song ended in 1127, when invaders sacked Kaifeng, but they survived in the south. At their new capital, Hangzhou, Wood joins locals dancing by the West Lake, while in the countryside he meets Mr Xie with his records of 40 generations of ancestors. The final defeat of the Song took place in a naval battle in the estuary of the Pearl River in 1279. When all was lost, rather than surrender to the Mongols, a loyal minister jumped into the sea with the young boy emperor in his arms. 'So ended the glory of the Song', Wood concludes, 'but a new age would arise... as in China, it always has!'.
Series: The Story of China

Secrets of the Seven Earths

   2018    Science    HD
We are living in a new golden age of exploration. Planet hunters are searching far beyond our solar system and they are actually finding new worlds orbiting other suns. Thousands of these alien worlds have already been found, but this is the story of perhaps the greatest discovery yet, a star 40 light-years away with seven Earth-sized planets: Trappist-1.
This new discovery of seven alien Earth-like planets in a faraway solar system is a major milestone in our hunt for extraterrestrial life, and experts investigate the secrets of Trappist -1's mysterious worlds to reveal if we're truly alone in the universe.
Series: Space Deepest Secrets
Reel Rock
Reel Rock

   2014    Culture
History of the Eagles
History of the Eagles

   2013    History
Racism: A History
Racism: A History

   2007    Culture
Hiroshima
Hiroshima

   2005    History
The Secret History of Writing
The Secret History of Writing

   2020    History
Through the Wormhole
Through the Wormhole

   2011    Science
Wild South America
Wild South America

   2005    Nature