The story of Saddam Hussein the sadistic tyrant who rules Iraq with an utter contempt for humanity for 23 years - a man whose cruelty knows no limits and who'll stop at nothing to achieve the power of life and death over millions of people.
Presenter Bettany Hughes explores the day in 32BC when Octavian, Julius Caesar's adopted son, stole the secret will of Mark Antony, his most dangerous political rival. The document's release gave Octavian crucial support in the civil war that followed and allowed him to establish himself as Rome's first emperor, Augustus.
Alastair unpicks the reasons behind the dazzling revolution that gave birth to classical Greek art, asking how the Greeks got so good so quickly. He travels to the beautiful Valley of the Temples in Agrigento, and to the island of Mozia to see the astonishing charioteer found there in 1979, and marvels at the athletic bodies of the warriors dragged from the seabed - the Riace Bronzes. It was a creative explosion that covered architecture, sculpting in marble, casting in bronze, even painting on vases. Perhaps the most powerful factor was also its greatest legacy - a fascination with the naked human body.
For the last 35 years, they have been exploring the most mythical wreck in the world, but now 108 years after it sank, the Titanic is under threat. Resting at over 12,500 feet below sea level and 380 nautical miles off the coast of Newfoundland, in pitch darkness, the most famous shipwreck in the world is being consumed by a colony of iron-eating bacteria. This slow and irreversible decay, according to the most concerned experts, will sweep away all the secrets of the mythic liner within a few decades.
2021 • History