Last Watched

"Prehistory"  Sort by

The Day Pictures Were Born

   2006    Art
Dr Nigel Spivey explores how art influences life by tracing the development of the image from cave paintings to our modern obsession with images. Dr. Spivey begins his investigation by travelling to the Cave of Altamira near the town of Santillana del Mar in Cantabria, Spain, where in 1879 a young girls exclamation of 'Papa, look, oxen!' to her father, local amateur archaeologist Marcelino Sanz de Sautuola, is explained to have meant that Maria had just become the first modern human to set eyes on the first gallery of prehistoric paintings ever to be discovered.
Series: How Art Made the World

The Lost Tribes of Humanity

   2017    History
Alice Roberts explores the latest discoveries in the study of human origins, revealing the transformation that has been brought about in this field by genetics. Traditional Palaeoanthropology, based on fossils, is being transformed by advanced genome sequencing techniques. We now know that there were at least four other distinct species of human on the planet at the same time as us - some of them identified from astonishingly well-preserved DNA extracted from 50,000-year-old bones, others hinted at by archaic sections of DNA hidden in our modern genome. What's more, we now know that our ancestors met and interacted with these other humans, in ways that still have ramifications today. Alice uses these revelations to update our picture of the human family tree.

Mammoth Journey

       Science
Travelling forward in time to 30,000 years ago, it's the middle of an ice age. The landscape is dominated by mighty mammoths, living side-by-side with woolly rhinos, giant deer and two separate species of human. The programme follows the fate of a herd of mammoths in their annual struggle against the harsh ice-age conditions. Every summer they spend on the grassy plains of what will one day become the bottom of the North Sea, but every winter they are forced to head for the less exposed valleys further south. It is a journey fraught with danger: mammoths can get trapped in frozen bogs, and the herd must run the gauntlet of hunters like cave lions and the deadly Neanderthals.
Series: Walking with Prehistoric Beast

Operation Stonehenge

   2017    History
Stonehenge is an icon of prehistoric British culture, an enigma that has seduced archaeologists and tourists for centuries. Why is it here? What is its significance? And which forces inspired its creators? Now a group of international archaeologists led by the University of Birmingham and the Ludwig Boltzman Institute in Vienna believe that a new state-of-the-art approach is the key to unlocking Stonehenge's secrets. For four years the team have surveyed and mapped every monument, both visible and invisible, across ten square kilometres of the sacred landscape to create the most complete digital picture of Stonehenge and the surrounding area over millennia. Known monuments have yielded more data than ever before, revealing hidden structures within, and new finds are revolutionising the very timeline of Stonehenge. The film takes the viewer on a prehistoric journey from 8000 BC to 2500 BC as the scientists uncover the very origins of Stonehenge, learning why this landscape is sacred, preserved and has been revered by following generations. Evidence of war and conflict, as well as the cultivation of ideas and industry, is explored to reveal complex communities with international trade links as far-reaching as Spain and central Europe.

Sabre Tooth

       Science
Back one million years ago, South America was a continent of exotic oversized creatures found nowhere else on Earth - huge terror birds, giant ground sloths and spiky-tailed relatives of the armadillo as big as cars. The deadliest animal of them all was smilodon, the largest of the sabre-tooth cats, with canines like carving knives. The programme follows the fortunes of an individual male, Half Tooth. Ousted from his clan by a pair of rival males, his life suddenly becomes a struggle to survive in this alien world.
Series: Walking with Prehistoric Beast
The Brain with David Eagleman
The Brain with David Eagleman

   2015    Medicine
The Story of India
The Story of India

   2007    History
The Cell
The Cell

   2009    Science
Planet Earth
Planet Earth

   2007    Nature
The Incredible Human Journey
The Incredible Human Journey

   2009    History
Through the Wormhole
Through the Wormhole

   2011    Science
The Wehrmacht
The Wehrmacht

   2007    History
The Art of Germany
The Art of Germany

   2010    Art