Covers the period 1649-1689. Political and religious revolutions racked Britain after Charles I was executed in 1649. Britain was a joyless, kingless republic led by Oliver Cromwell, who saw Britain as a new Jerusalem and sought to discover God's destiny for it. His rule became so unpopular that for many it was a relief when the monarchy was restored after his death, but Cromwell was also a man of vision who brought about significant reforms.
They first saw active service in Libya with the British, when they forced an Italian army to surrender. The real test came when Rommel and his Afrika Korps entered the desert arena. At Tobruk, the largely Australian garrison, known as the Rats of Tobruk, held out against overwhelming odds to repel the Axis forces. Initial defeats in the Mediterranean in Greece and Crete against the German Blitzkrieg might have disillusioned lesser troops, but not the indomitable Anzacs. The war took on new meaning for them after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, when the Japanese invaded Malaya, and Australians and New Zealanders suddenly found their own territory under direct threat. A typical Anzac victory occurred in the jungle of Papua New Guinea. Half-trained Australian troops fought a desperate battle against superior Japanese forces on the 150-mile-long Kokoda Trail. Both sides suffered from disease and supply line problems, but against all the odds, the Australians emerged triumphant. The contribution made by the Anzacs to ultimate victory in World War II was out of all proportion to the size of the populations of Australia and New Zealand, but the cost had been high.
Martin Luther's attack on the all powerful Catholic Church was a knife to the heart of an empire that had endured for over a thousand years. Nailing his treatise to the doors of the Wittenberg Cathedral, this previously obscure German monk changed the world forever, unleashing forces that plunged Europe into war and chaos. But Luther would do more than revolutionise the Church, he offered the Christian world a new vision of man's relationship with God and, in turn, redefined man's relationship with authority in general.
Covering the years 1603-1649, this episode looks at Britain during The Reign of Charles I. Charles was the son of James I of England, and like his father, he believed that kings had a God-given right to rule. His treatment of and eventual war with parliament gave rise to the Puritan movement.
During six years of war across the world, 55 million people had been killed. After the end of the war people were forced to move country, as borders were redrawn and new occupying governments installed.
Tofi and Leofric set off to rescue the snatched women of Crowhurst, including Tofi's young wife Judith. En route they encounter the Normans, the ruthless Ozouf, the gentler Coutances and the mute Drogo. But Tofi and Leofric outwit their pursuers and reach safety.
Tonight, the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, who ascended to the throne in 1558. Her image was that of a paragon of virtue but she was full of manly authority.
The journey from the mundane to the sublime is exquisitely captured in this intimate portrait of celebrated pianist Anton Kuerti.
The English arrive at Stamford Bridge, catching the Viking army off guard. An early attack could be the only chance of an English victory. But the Norsemen have a secret weapon, Gyrd the Giant, who must hold the bridge until Viking reinforcements arrive. But he can't hold it forever. And after an epic battle through the rivers and trees our English heroes triumph over the Vikings. Tragically, this spells the end of the Viking age. But before Ordgar, Leofric and Tofi have time to recover, news reaches them that a new predator has landed in Sussex.
The final chapter in Churchill's career begins with the end of World War II. A financially depleted Britain was left struggling to keep up with two new superpowers, America and Russia. Opinion polls conducted through and after the war showed a gap between the esteem in which Churchill as a war leader was held and the way Churchill as a potential peacetime Prime Minister was viewed. An election was called and Churchill lost; now he had to get on with the humdrum task of leading a shadow cabinet. This did not interest Churchill and much of the ordinary business was left to his Deputy Anthony Eden.
Once the War in Europe had been won the fate of the big three powers changed radically. By July a new world order began to emerge dominated by two superpowers.
British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain made Winston Churchill First Lord of the Admiralty on the very first day of World War Two. But was this appointment all it appeared to be? In this programme we examine Churchill and his performance during World War II and ask the question: how did a man responsible for some of history's greatest military disasters become the hero of the British people and the only man who could lead them through war?
A look at two famous female pharaohs, Queen Hatshepsut and Nerfertiti.
Focussing on the years 1485-1558, Simon Schama takes us through how Catholic England was slowly changed into Protestant England - an historic inevitability he claims. Henry VIII a devout pilgrim like the rest of his Tudor family brought about the change through his association with Secretary of State Thomas Cromwell and his quest for a male heir.
The true horror of the Nazi regime is exposed as the Allies fight the Germans in their homeland and liberate survivors of the concentration camps.
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