Professor Alice Roberts tells the story of the iconic Irish artefacts that have helped to shape and create modern Ireland, both North and South. The programme reveals the surprising tales behind treasures such as the Tara Broach, the Broighter Hoard, the Waterford Charter Roll and others, revealing new stories behind the artefacts that we thought we knew. It also reveals the most recent astounding finds, that are adding to the list of Ireland's Treasures. Using key access to Ireland's two largest museums, in Belfast and Dublin, the programme brings together archaeologists and curators who have spent their lives working to understand the true context for these emblematic treasures. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
What kind of a place was Britain before the Romans invaded? With no written history, only archaeology can provide the clues. Alice uncovers a world that is complex, sophisticated and pretty strange. She examines the two Hebridean Bronze Age skeletons known as the Cladh Hallan mummies. Not only do they appear to have been mummified, new analysis has revealed they are made up of a jigsaw of different people. What did our ancestors use the mummies for? And are there more British mummies out there? In Norfolk, Alice gets her hands dirty helping to pull up timber from a huge prehistoric monument that has been hidden in mud for at least 2000 years. And she visits the famous Roman town of Silchester, near Reading, where archaeologists are digging below the Roman layers to reveal the Iron Age settlement that lies beneath, uncovering evidence for a sophisticated pre-Roman lifestyle. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
Dr Alice Roberts travels back to the Viking Age and visits excavations that are revealing a different side to these seafaring pirates from Scandinavia. She looks for signs of the earliest Viking settlers in the Outer Hebrides, and in Orkney - where Viking dominance outlasted anywhere else in Britain - she visits the excavation of a Viking chief's citadel and finds evidence of their way of life. There's an extraordinary collection of silver and gold that demonstrates the furthest reaches of the Vikings' trading empire, and excavations in York - famously the capital of Viking England. This episode also includes a fresh look at some of Britain's most celebrated Viking finds, such as the fantastic Lewis Chessmen, which are currently the subject of major new research. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
The first episode concentrates on Roman Britannia, where finds include the thickening mystery of 97 baby skeletons found by the Thames, a newly discovered town in rural Devon that turns history on its head, and a Roman cult figure buried for 1700 years beneath a fort. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
Dr Alice Roberts goes in search of the Tudor age, a time that saw momentous changes across all aspects of British life. She visits excavations at Shakespeare's first theatre in London's Shoreditch and also joins a team sifting through Shakespeare's rubbish at his last home in Stratford-Upon-Avon. In a remote corner of Wales, Alice meets a team of archaeologists uncovering the brutal realities of Henry VIII's dissolution of the monasteries, a conflict that would change the very fabric of Britain. On the muddy banks of the Thames, she discovers the rich history of a forgotten royal palace, which was home to the Tudor kings and queens. And she learns about a mysterious Tudor shipwreck which dates from this age of exploration and trade. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
The Anglo-Saxons - they divided our land and heralded the arrival of the Dark Ages. But were they really just barbarians? Dr Alice Roberts visits the royal seat of power at Bamburgh, Northumbria and sees how the skeletons tell tales of violent death, but also of tenderness. There's a remarkable community project in a shopping centre in Sittingbourne where people are curating the grave goods of their own ancestors. And there are treasures that make her wonder just how dark the Dark Ages really were. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
Professor Alice Roberts explores the year's most exciting archaeological finds in the north of Britain. A team discovers clues to Scotland's first kingdoms, metal detectorists unearth a hoard of Viking treasure, and a new housing development reveals a graveyard of Iron Age warriors. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
In Norfolk, newly unearthed flint tools push the earliest human occupation back by 200,000 years, to around 1 million years ago. In Orkney, an early farm yields glimpses of our ancestors' earliest religious beliefs and customs - cattle skulls buried within building walls, and tiny household goddesses. In Devon, we find one of the oldest known shipwrecks. And a bronze age burial holds a mystery, and touching evidence of grief echoing down over 2000 years. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
This pioneering series unearths the amazing stories and thrilling treasures hidden just below Britain's surface. Everywhere you stand on this small but significant island, there are worlds beneath your feet, and every year hundreds of excavations bring more of them to light. Ambitious, bold and multi-layered, Digging for Britain follows the lead of the experts, cross-referencing one discovery against another, using new information to illuminate existing collections and building a fascinating picture of life in bygone eras. Professor Alice Roberts follows a year of British archaeology, joining up the results of digs and investigations the length of the country. The results of these digs are astonishing, and sometimes disturbing. Roman finds include the mystery of 97 babies murdered by the Thames, a fabulous Roman coin hoard found in Somerset, and a man buried on a layer of dead animals. Alternative title: Digging for Britain's Secrets.
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