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Words on a Page

   2020    History
Writing itself is 5,000 years old, and for most of that time words were written by hand using a variety of tools. The Romans were able to run an empire thanks to documents written on papyrus. Scroll books could be made quite cheaply and, as a result, ancient Rome had a thriving written culture. With the fall of the Roman Empire, papyrus became more difficult to obtain. Europeans were forced to turn to a much more expensive surface on which to write: Parchment. Medieval handwritten books could cost as much as a house, they also represent a limitation on literacy and scholarship.
No such limitations were felt in China, where paper had been invented in the second century. Paper was the foundation of Chinese culture and power, and for centuries how to make it was kept secret. When the secret was out, paper mills soon sprang up across central Asia. The result was an intellectual flourishing known as the Islamic Golden Age. Muslim scholars made discoveries in biology, geology, astronomy and mathematics. By contrast, Europe was an intellectual backwater.
That changed with Gutenberg’s development of movable type printing. The letters of the Latin alphabet have very simple block-like shapes, which made it relatively simple to turn them into type pieces. When printers tried to use movable type to print Arabic texts, they found themselves hampered by the cursive nature of Arabic writing. The success of movable type printing in Europe led to a thousand-fold increase in the availability of information, which produced an explosion of ideas that led directly to the European Scientific Revolution and the Industrial Revolution that followed.
Series: The Secret History of Writing

Out of the Darkness

       History
The third assault on the tattered remains of Roman civilization came from even further North, where the melting glacial ice had created immense sheltered fjords, leaving its inhabitants little choice but the sea. These fearless navigators understood that dominion over the oceans was the key to their ambitions.
Where the Romans expanded incrementally, the Vikings adopted a bolder, more aggressive approach. So was it the Dark Age which failed Europe, or the stifling uniformity of the great Roman experiment? Were the lost tribes more victim than failure? Richard Rudgley will hope to shed new light on the real secrets of the so-called Dark Age.
Series: Barbarians: Secrets of the Dark Ages

Mystery of the Black Mirror

   2021    History
The Obsidian Mirror is a mysterious artefact crafted from volcanic rock, and it's said to be a device used to communicate with supernatural beings; experts use cutting-edge tech to discover who made this strange relic and why.
A golden disc can answer the biggest mystery of all: Are we alone in the universe? The Voynich manuscript is one enormous puzzle. What secrets are hidden in this bizarre 600 year old book that nobody can read?
Series: Strangest Things

Troubled Waters

   2022    History
When he killed Mehmed’s messengers, it was a message from Vlad Dracula that he would not pay his yearly dues anymore and it was clear that Vlad wanted a war against the Otoman Empire. Mehmed II sends Mara to coax Hungarian King Matthias Corvinus into an alliance. Vlad Dracula’s army was less than 30,000 men, but he invaded Bulgaria and started killing Mehmed’s men in 1462. He stole the Ottomans’ uniforms for his further attacks on the empire. Vlad also destroyed many ports that were under Sultan Mehmed II on the Danube.
Mehmed had to cross the Danube in order to reach the capital city of Târgoviște and defeat Vlad. The sultan faced the challenge of transporting 100,000 men across the river. Along with men, he had to transport cannons and horses too. The first unit to cross the river Danube included Mahmud Pasha, who was the most trusted man of Mehmed II. An epic battle along the Danube River looms, and Vlad has the upper hand.
Series: Rise of Empires 2: Mehmed vs Vlad

Land Of Dracula

   2022    History
When Mahmud Pasha and his men were crossing the river at night, Vlad Dracula started his first attack on the Ottomans. However, Mehmed II was smart enough to know that Vlad would be waiting for them. Mehmed II counterattacks Vlad’s army, and we see the first great battle here.
After his victory, Mehmed's troops advance into Wallachia, and Vlad employs guerrilla tactics to weaken his rival. At one point, Vlad Dracula released some criminals with tuberculosis and bubonic plague in order to infect the Ottomans. He sent these infected criminals to the Ottoman camp at night, and it is considered a great tactic by the experts because we see Vlad Dracula practicing biological warfare. Meanwhile, a threat lurks in the imperial palace.
Series: Rise of Empires 2: Mehmed vs Vlad

Brothers No More

   2022    History
Vlad Dracula presses an increasingly desperate guerrilla campaign from the shadows, hoping to demoralize the Ottomans and slow their march north. After chasing Vlad for two weeks, sultan Mehmed II and his invading army find themselves caught in a nightmare come to life deep within the Wallachian forest. Many legends have arisen out of the invasion of Wallachia in 1462. One speaks of Vlad Dracula launching a biological attack against the Ottomans to slow their march to his capital city, Târgovişte. Vlad opened his prisons and released hardened criminals to go amongst the Ottomans with tuberculosis and bubonic plague so that they could infect the enemies.
Vlad Dracula also had carried out a scorched-earth policy against Mehmed II. Along with his hit-and-run campaign from the shadows has left the sultan's troops on edge. As Mehmed's army closes on Târgovişte, tensions flare in the Ottoman camp, where food and water are in increasingly short supply. But Vlad had nowhere to rely on food for himself either and there was nowhere to go anymore. He became a prisoner of his own scorched-earth policy. Radu Dracula closes in to take Princess Anastasia hostage. Anastasia commits suicide when he reach her at Poenari castle.
Series: Rise of Empires 2: Mehmed vs Vlad
Secrets of the Universe

Secrets of the Universe

2022  Technology
Unknown

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2023  Science
The Story of China

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2016  History
Triumph of Life

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2006  Nature
Clarkson Farm Season 2

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The Jinx

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Wonders Of The Universe

Wonders Of The Universe

2011  Science