Need for Speed • 2013 • episode "12/12" Mankind Decoded

Category: History
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No prizes for second place! In this episode we learn how being the fastest enabled empires to be born and capitalism to thrive.

Mankind Decoded • 2013 • 12 episodes •

Arms Race

About 10,000 years ago we discover farming. But when crops fail, early farming communities face a new threat. War. It's the birth of the arms race.

2013 • History

Lust for Luxury

When ordinary people desire the luxuries of the rich, ingenuity and innovation come together to take history in a new direction. From the obsession with silk to the fall of Constantinople, our desire for luxury has shaped our history and evolution.

2013 • History

Violent Planet

Over millions of years, mankind has evolved from a puny, vulnerable creature to become a dominant force on the planet. Occasionally the planet bites back--with terrifying consequences that have shaped our evolution.

2013 • History

Connecting the World

The world is linked like never before. Modern transport and communications have resulted in a world that is wealthier, healthier, more mobile and better informed than ever before.

2013 • History

Rise of the Machines

Tools and machines have allowed us to overcome our physical limitations, and become the most successful species on Earth. But tools are also transforming what it means to be human.

2013 • History

Eat It, Drink It, Smoke It

Man uses plants to feed, heal and clothe himself, to build his world and even to alter how he feels. The use of plants like corn, tobacco and cotton become such an important part of our lives that they play a central role in our evolution.

2013 • History

Fire, Coal and Oil

Early man rubbed two sticks together and created fire. We learn to cook our food, saving vital energy. As a result, our brains expand--making us the most intelligent species on the planet.

2013 • History

Man and Metals

Five thousand years ago man first throws a handful of rocks into a campfire and stumbles upon a discovery that changes the world: Metal. Copper, Tin and Bronze empower the ancient world and allow empires to expand, armed with sharp, hard-wearing weapons.

2013 • History

Man and Beast

15,000 years ago man and the wolf form a partnership that shapes the future of Mankind. With the help of man's new best friend we domesticate more animals, sowing the first seeds of farming and civilization.

2013 • History

Information is Power

Communication is the vital ingredient in the building of civilization. The ability to share complicated ideas allowed early man to hunt, farm and build communities.

2013 • History

Building Earth

Mankind is a building species. Inspired by the divine we create monuments to its power (Stonehenge, the Great Pyramid). New challenges create new sciences and when the Romans mixed volcanic ash with water they created a new super-material: concrete.

2013 • History

Need for Speed

No prizes for second place! In this episode we learn how being the fastest enabled empires to be born and capitalism to thrive.

2013 • History

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Warts 'n' All

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10-1 Events 20th Century

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The Last Battle of the Vikings

Nowhere in the British Isles was the Viking connection longer-lasting or deeper than in Scotland. Hundreds of years after their first hit-and-run raids, the Norsemen still dominated huge swathes of the country. But storm clouds were gathering. In 1263 the Norwegian king Haakon IV assembled a fleet of 120 longships to counter Scottish raids on the Norse Hebrides. It was a force comparable in size to the Spanish Armada over three centuries later. But like the Armada, the Norse fleet was eventually defeated by a powerful storm. Driven ashore near present-day Largs, the beleaguered Norsemen were attacked by a Scottish army. The outcome of this vicious encounter would mark the beginning of the end of Norse power in Scotland. Marine archeologist Dr Jon Henderson tells the incredible story of the Norsemen in Scotland. Visiting fascinating archeological sites across Scotland and Norway, he reveals that, although the battle at Largs marked the end of an era for the Norsemen, their presence continued to shape the identity and culture of the Scottish nation to the present day.

2012 • History

The Real Ramses

There is one Egyptian pharaoh who towers above the rest: Ramesses II. A formidable warrior, builder, lover and statesman, he declared himself a living god. Archeologists look again at Ramesses, in the hope of finding out more and explores his claim to be called the "Great". This instalment charts the life of Rameses II, the longest-lived pharaoh, who is widely regarded as Egypt's greatest ruler. New discoveries have shed more light on the king's successful reign, while Egyptologists continue to debate the nature of his character and the political, military and religious achievements of Rameses II.

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