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Here we have some of the better stuff to watch on Rome, the Romans and some Romano-Britain stuff. Give it a look and maybe you'll find something you don't have. All good stuff. Oh yeah, Caligula... sorry, but guess what, they were kinda like that back then... not all prim and proper like now. Just a thought, as some folks get all twisted at the notion of ancient sex and violence.

A Thought on Our Bookstore...

The Consul speakethWe're going to eventually have a new bookstore system — I already have it on reenactor.Net, but it's not mobile, so when I have time, it will come here. Anyway, what that means is that I am not going to add a lot more of these books manually. And alas, IF you have the ad-blocker program installed, you won't see many of them, as amazon's code for books and widgets (which we are going away from and using straight links), uses "iframes" and as such, ad-blocker just strips them out.

Sorry to be so rude, but we try to make this site and information as great as we can for our visitors. We have a few ads and we try to make them unobtrusive, but when you use ad-blocker, it hurts the site. We don't make the crazy money you'd expect, so this pittance is needed to keep the site going. Anyway, it detracts from the site... We post a lot of books and things that we think our visitors will find interesting and it not only strips out the ads, it strips out the books. Not cool. If you have ad-blocker, please hit the little "stop sign" button and tell it to allow ads on RomanoBritain.org... We don't want to have to add code to block browsers with this software :-o

Rome: The Complete Series (DVD)

Four hundred years after the founding of the Republic, Rome is the wealthiest city in the world, a cosmopolitan metropolis of one million people, epicenter of a sprawling empire. But now, the city's foundations are crumbling, eaten away by corruption and excess...And two soldiers unwittingly become entwined in historical events, their fates inexorably tied to the fate of Rome itself. The entire award-winning, critically-acclaimed series will be available as a gift set, just in time for the holiday season.

And you can't beat this... It's also in BluRay! Oh yeah... ya know ya wanna. >>>

When Rome Ruled — Season 1

National Geographic's groundbreaking 6-part series reveals ancient Rome's hidden treasures and untold stories as never before. From iconic figures including Caligula, Caesar and Constantine, to epic events such as the eruption of Vesuvius, the invasion of Britain, and fall of Rome, When Rome Ruled reveals a startling up-to-date vision of the ancient empire and challenges our perception of what we know about the Romans and their lives. New discoveries about the Roman gladiators, Pompeii doomsday, and Caesar's assassination provide fresh insights into the empire that not only influenced Western civilization, but created it.

Episodes include Secrets of the Gladiators, The Real Caligula, Doomsday Pompeii, Killing Ceasar, Birth of Rome, and Ancient Superpower.

The Eagle

Epic filmmaking has fallen out of favor, but The Eagle fights hard to bring it back. In 2nd-Century Britain, celebrated Roman soldier Marcus Aquila (Channing Tatum)embarks on a dangerous quest to restore the tarnished reputation of his father and find the golden emblem that disappeared with him and thousands of troops twenty years earlier. Marcus, a decorated hero, had chose to lead a Roman garrison in occupied Britain, because that's where his father had been lost along with his Legion's "Eagle," the standard of the Legion — a metal eagle, that represented the glory of Imperial Rome. To reclaim his family honor, Aquila sets off on an expedition into the northern wilds — but the highlands of Caledonia are a savage wilderness and Marcus must rely on his embittered slave, Esca (Jamie Bell), to navigate the perilous region. Their journey pushes them beyond the boundaries of loyalty and betrayal, friendship and hatred, deceit and heroism.

The Eagle starts with engaging momentum; this is a work of fiction, but there's an impressive commitment to the details of life, evoking the sights, sounds, and smells of a raw and brutal time. Donald Sutherland co-stars in this gripping, gritty, action-packed adventure from acclaimed director Kevin Macdonald. (Director Kevin Macdonald began as a documentarian, which no doubt contributes to his appreciation for grit and sweat.) Tatum is not the most versatile actor, but he has enough solid charisma to anchor the movie; Bell's fluid emotional presence keeps their relationship dynamic. The movie loses steam in the last third, as the outcome is never really in doubt and the plot mechanics start to feel a bit rote. But for anyone with an interest in the era, or who simply enjoys a taste of blood and thunder, The Eagle has pleasures aplenty.


Another BluRay! Oh yeah... ya know ya wanna. And... it's un-rated >>>>

History Classics: Ancient Rome

Experience the intrigue, scandal, excitement and chaos of the most dominant empire in the history of western civilization as HISTORY journeys back to the age of Caesar in this intriguing collection of documentaries.

A comprehensive selection of programs offers a detailed look at the Roman Empire, from the remarkable highways that helped forge an empire, to the ruined seaport city of Ostia, the decadent palaces of Nero and Tiberius to the deadly eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Filled with visits to some of the most stunning ruins on earth, and interviews with leading scholars, Ancient Rome exposes the heart and heartache of an epic civilization, with topics including the legendary monuments where gods were honored with shocking ritualistic sacrifices and the pleasure palaces where wanton sexual depravity was not only accepted but encouraged; the ancient techniques and technology used by both the criminals and law enforcement of the times; the conversion of Constantine the Great and the triumph of Christianity; and the final flickering of Roman glory under Justinian.

History Channel offers its viewers a broad overview of the Ancient Roman society during the Roman Empire. To its credit, History introduces its audience not only to the deeds and words of great men such as Augustus, Nero, and Constantine I, who went to posterity, but also to the whereabouts of ordinary Ancient Romans who sank into oblivion under the relentless pressure of time. Superb photography, well-done reenactments, judicious use of drawings and movie clips, interviews with leading Ancient Roman historians, and a well-paced narration prove once more that History can live up to the legitimate expectations that it creates. In summary, this DVD set will fall in the good graces of any history buff who wants to know more about a civilization that still permeates the Western world.

ANCIENT ROME includes 9 documentaries on 5 DVDs:

  • Disc 1: Roman Vice
  • Disc 2: In Search of History: Roman Roads: Paths to Empire / In Search of History: Rome's Lost Harbor
  • Disc 3: In Search of History: Rome's Eternal Wonders / In Search of History: Rome's Glorious Cities
  • Disc 4: Sex in the Ancient World: Pompeii / Ancient Mysteries: Pompeii: Buried Alive
  • Disc 5: Criminal History: Ancient Rome / Rome: The Enduring Legacy

Rome - Power & Glory

Rome: Power & Glory is a six-volume comprehensive introduction to the rise, rule, and fall of the Roman Empire. The series covers the political, military, and social history of the empire from its miraculous engineering feats to the exorbitant taxation that contributed to its downfall. Learn about ancient sporting events and Roman opinions on sex, fashions, slavery, and taxes. The series also covers many of Rome's most famous, and in many cases infamous, figures, including Julius Caesar, Augustus, Nero, and Caligula. One of the series' main strengths is its coverage of all levels of Roman society, depicting the diverse strata of Roman civilization in all respects: economic, religious, geographic, and such. For over a thousand years, Rome was the center of the known world. One of the most glorious empires in history, she brought to her subjects a common language, shared culture, and — for some-wealth beyond imagination. But, nothing lasts forever. War, barbarian attacks, and moral decay eventually took their toll and the empire slowly began to crumble. This six-part series presents the complete history of Rome, from its primitive beginnings, to the height of its glory and its eventual decline, as well as its legacies today. Filmed in ten countries, Rome: Power & Glory combines location footage of ancient monuments, detailed-re-enactments, period art writings, and insights from scholars and public figures to bring the ancient world to life.

Includes extra bonus featurettes.

DVD 1:

    • Part 1 - The Rise - This program sorts fact from fiction in the legends surrounding the birth of the mighty Empire. Famous stories and myths come to life including the story of Romulus and Remus. Romes influence spreads throughout the Mediterranean as it grows from a primitive village into a republic based on democracy.
    • Part 2 - Legions of Conquest - The Romans were the most successful warriors in history, rising from an amateur citizens army to develop into the formidable legions that conquered the Western world and beyond.
    • Part 3 - Seduction of Power — From the first peaceful elections to the corruption surrounding bids for total imperial rule, this story about the lust for power is filled with memorable characters, such as Julius Caesar, Augustus and Caligula.

DVD 2:

    • Part 4 - Grasp of Empire — Rome built efficient cities and paved roads between them. But such progress came at a price. While Romans initially welcomed their conquered peoples into the Empire, they eventually began enslaving them.
    • Part 5 -The Cult of Order — Rome was once one of historys most tolerant religious societies. But with unrest amongst rulers, the Roman people took solace in what was until then a marginal religious cult-Christianity. When the Emperor Diocletian perceived his subjects beliefs as a threat, he unleashed waves of persecution that left thousands dead.
    • Part 6 - The Fall — The Roman Empire is crumbling. As Romans distract themselves with endless games, their enemies draw nearer and social unrest threatens to reach a boiling point. Emperor Constantine moves the capital east to Constantinople, abandoning the Western Empire. Rome limps along for several more decades, her glory faded, but the civilizations spirit lives on.

While providing a good general overview, Rome does not have time to make a detailed study of any one topic. The other disadvantage is a reliance on old gladiator movie footage that detracts from the seriousness of the topic. All in all, this is an excellent visual introduction to the history of the Roman Empire.

Hannibal v. Rome

Go on an action-packed adventure through the high Alps, to the battlefields outside of Rome, and uncover the story of the great warrior and brilliant military strategist, Hannibal Barca. As one of the greatest military commanders ever known, he would challenge the impossible and lead one of the most daring and ingenious invasions of all time.

I, Caesar - The Rise & Fall of the Roman Empire

This award-winning series takes a fascinating look at the public and private lives of six key men who ruled the Roman Empire. Starting with Julius Caesar, the series charts the rise and fall of Roman power over 600 years through the lives of six of the most charismatic leaders in world history; Julius Caesar, Augustus, Nero, Hadrian, Constantine and Justinian.

Their careers were made up of bloody battles and tactical bribery, stunning innovation and profound corruption, dazzling rhetoric and vicious back-stabbing. Together they form a picture of the most sophisticated highs and most brutal lows of the Roman Empire's inception, heyday and decline. The Roman Empire included within its boundaries myriad peoples, cultures and climates. The task of ruling it seems an impossible one, even with today's communication technology. So how was it achieved two thousand years ago? And why has ancient Rome had such a profound influence on western civilization ever since?

Using unequalled location footage, previously unseen images and careful re-enactments, this informative and entertaining series brings to life the world of ancient Rome.

Writer & Director: Phil Grabsky. Co-Director: Peter Nicholson.

Series originally made for the BBC and A&E.

Empires - The Roman Empire in the First Century

This award-winning series takes a fascinating look at the public and private lives of six key men who ruled the Roman Empire. Starting with Julius Caesar, the series charts the rise and fall of Roman power over 600 years through the lives of six of the most charismatic leaders in world history; Julius Caesar, Augustus, Nero, Hadrian, Constantine and Justinian.

Two thousand years ago, at the dawn of the first century, the ancient world was ruled by Rome. Through the experiences, memories and writings of the people who lived it, this series tells the story of that time -- the emperors and slaves, poets and plebeians, who wrested order from chaos, built the most cosmopolitan society the world had ever seen and shaped the Roman empire in the first century A.D. Despite its shortcomings, this PBS entry into the subject of Roman Imperial history is worth a look — there are so few documentaries devoted to this subject and many of them are not very good. This one is above average although certainly not excellent by any means.

The focus is on the imperial biographies of the emperors, in the First Century of the Roman Empire with emphasis on the first five Julio-Claudian emperors (Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius and Nero). The narrative is interspersed with interesting sidebars discussing various aspects of Roman culture (e.g, the baths, changing society as seen through personal letters, etc.). Mention is made of Christianity, although unlike most documentaries of this type, this subject does not dominate the narrative — nor should it. Although there are some interesting sound bites given regarding Jesus and his career, the documentary offers without questioning it, the old census narrative that supposedly caused Joseph and Mary to 'go to the place of their births.' It has long been determined that the idea that the Roman government would compel their subjects to travel back to the places of their births, leaving their taxable property behind for the purpose of a tax review (census) is ludicrous. The Romans were interested in where their subjects were living at the time of the tax census — not where they originally came from. This is one of many oversimplifications that the documentary is guilty of. If the purpose of the program was to present Roman history, then a more accurate discussion of how the Empire conducted a census should probably have been attempted.

Some of the shortcomings of this documentary, are due to the apparent time constraints that the producers were under (so much information and only so much time in which to present it). At other times, the attempt at scholarship fails and incomplete and/or erroneous information is provided. The discussion of Caligula's reign could have been better. He is dismissed as insane (mention of his legions gathering seashells on the northern coast of France is offered as evidence) despite the fact that his reign and his personality, while distinctly unpleasant, were nuanced. The seashell episode, for example, could very well be attributed to Caligula's attempt to humiliate the legions involved. They apparently had played a part in an abortive coup against him in 39 AD (that of Gaetulicus) and Caligula was notorious for his vindictive nature. However, as a plus, the documentary did discuss Philo's embassy to the emperor which most previous documentaries of this type never mention. The civil war following the death of Nero omits all mention of Galba, Otho or Vitellius— the three emperors who fought over the throne from 68 to 69 — "the Year of Four Emporers". Since the emphasis of the documentary seems to be a discussion of the personalities and the rule of the emperors of the first century, omission of a discussion of these three eccentrics was a poor judgment choice on the part of the producers. The reign of Titus is omitted altogether and the discussion of Domitian is severely limited although he ruled for fifteen years?!

Despite the criticisms made, this DVD is generally enjoyable. Some of the discussions presented were informative and provided details not readily available in other programs of this type on this subject. It is unfortunate that the producers were not inclined to present further programs on the second, third and fourth centuries of the empire.

The Roman Invasion of Britain

Rome’s daring conquest and occupation of the British Isles. Motivated by an emperor’s greed and political ambition, Rome added Britain to its empire in the first century CE, changing the land and its people forever. Join historian Bettany Hughes (When the Moors Ruled in Europe) as she examines new research and the latest archaeological evidence to reveal the brutal realities of the Roman conquest. Meet scheming politicians, beleaguered generals, and fiery revolutionaries — including Queen Boudicca, the wronged woman who mobilized her people for a bloody and tragic revolt. Interviews with noted military experts and meticulous reenactments illuminate a little-known but pivotal period in British and Roman history.

Packed with drama and detail, this absorbing series reveals how a nation sprang from 400 years of subjugation. Oxford-educated author and historian Bettany Hughes has presented historical documentaries for the BBC, PBS, and the Discovery Channel. She serves on the Innovation Programs Committee of the U.K.’s National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts.

  • Comes with a 12-page viewer’s guide with timeline, questions to consider, history of Rome’s failed British invasions, background on Roman and Celtic weaponry, biography of Roman historian Tacitus, and an essay on daily life in ancient Britain
  • Extended interviews with historians and bonus footage (14 min.)
  • Biographies of major figures in the Roman conquest of Britain
  • SDH subtitles

One of the pet peeves with almost all films these day is the background music or noise drowning out the audio but this copy did not have that problem as some others experienced even though we did still run the subtitles.

This presentation was well done, standard Hughes work. However this documentary is very heavy on re-enactments far exceeding that in her other offerings likely because, as a few others have mentioned, there's really not a lot of stuff to show in the way of structures and major artifacts. And some of these re-enactments are shown more than once as if their re-enactment budget was limited. For those who are not big fans of re-enactments, and I'm one, take note.

Virtually every historical point or aspect of this history is passed through rather quickly, never dwelling on much detail, due to trying to cover 400+ years in a comparatively short documentary tweet. But the producers and Hughes make the best use of their time, hit all the key highlights and move right along making good periodic use of commentary by guest historians and archeologists which really adds to the understanding of the topic. Hughes herself does her usual wonderful muted-dramatic voice inflections and visual tics to make points and emphasize key moments.

This documentary is divided into three episodes with multiple chapters within each. It's probable each episode could have been a separate documentary as in Invasion, Rule and Departure in the form of a series by offering more detail and showing more actual artifacts. One thing I did learn as a historian is how brutal the local Roman big cheeses were but I also felt less strongly than this program portrayed about exactly how dominating the Roman's actually were. I always felt the real extent of any Roman control in Britain usually didn't exceed much further than about 200 yards away from any Roman military fort or settlement, such was the difficulty they had trying to rule those rascal Celts for 400 years.

Boudicca: Warrior Queen

When Boudicca, a Celtic princess, rose up against Britain's Roman invaders, she became a symbol in later British consciousness of many things. This documentary examines the history and myth of this queen of an obscure Celtic tribe who levied the greatest force ever put together in Britain. Extras include readings of event accounts and more.

There have a been few Boudica specials and one film in the past few years. This one, Boudicca - Warrior Queen has the distinction of being the only pro-Roman one of the lot. While most are subtle in their pro-Celt, pro-woman stance, this one is open and clear about the positive effect of the Roman eradication of the Druids on Ynis Mon and the Romanization of the native British. At one point it calls Catus Decianus "far from a coward", when every other account (even Tactius, the Roman historian agrees that his fleeing to Gaul was out of fear) call him just that, and dismisses Catus' role in the beating of Boudica and the rape of her daughters. A final point of its pro-Roman appeal is that it suggests that the beatings and rape of Boudica and her family was a story used by a Druid conspirsicy to stage a revolt against the Romans. The narrater then states simply that whatever the reason, the British were better off after the decimation of the druids because the Roman brutality couldn't compare with the bloody nature of their own native religons and traditions.

Warrior Queen

It is the first century A.D. and the Romans have invaded ancient Britain, but the Iceni, a Celtic tribe, are unwilling to live as a subject race in their own land. For a while, they are allowed to continue their lives as usual, without Rome's interference, but when Emperor Claudius dies, the Romans and the new Emperor Nero no longer tolerate the Iceni way of life and endeavor to crush the upstart Queen Boudicca (Alex Kingston - ER, Moll Flanders) and her tribe. However, they have underestimated the Celtic spirit and, seeking revenge, Boudicca leads her people against the mighty Romans with devastating effect.

This presentation is a mixed-bag of history and fantasy elements posing as a Masterpiece Theatre incarnation. By utilizing the time elements of ancient Rome, when Claudius was in power and the paganistic practices of the Celts in Brittany, the legend of Queen Boudicca is brought to life in an excellent interpretation by actress Alex Kingston. Unfortunately, this productgion is bound by a constricting 99 minute running time (unless the British cut was much longer). It is a UK/Romania co-production and is very impressive. 'Last of the Mohicans' star Steven Waddington plays the Iceni Ruler, Prasutagus and actor Jack Shepherd makes a stammering Claudius — both are poisoned by their inner political cabinets, since both men want a peaceful negotiation and the Young Nero and pagan priest wish bloodshed.

When Boudicca is brutally whipped and forced to watch her two daughters being raped by an entire Roman garrison, she vows vengeance and in the 'Spartacus' vein, helps to bring Rome almost to her knees by forming an incredible army utilizing Guerilla warfare unheard of by the Romans. However, the fantasy elements are interwoven brilliantly into the storyline, showing how their paganistic beliefs can transcend the gods of Rome in some truly haunting scenes.

The acting is flawless — besides our key players, we have a very early role by Emily Blunt who plays one of Boudicca's daughters Isolde in an incredibly haunting delirium which the viewer can never shake every time she's on the screen; Andrew Lee Potts give his Emperor Nero the right touch of evil and decadence but the real scene stealer is Michael Feast as Suetonius, the head of the armies of Rome who tries to tell Nero to back off and leave Brittany to its own existence. The sequence where Nero circles him like a cobra waiting to strike and Suetonius not even blinking an eyelash and glaring back at him in true disdain is bravura acting at its best.

The photography by Tudor Lucaciu gives the production a true elegance and the music by Nina Humphries echoes the chants of Joseph Loduca's music to the "Xena-Warrior Princess" series. This DVD release by BFS seems to be a repackaging of the PBS DVD released back in 2004 and is sans extras with not even new release trailers or featurettes.

The History of Warfare: The Roman Invasions of Britain

This is the story of the dark years of ancient Britain, when the well-disciplined Roman Legions faced the untamed Celtic tribal society and transformed it into a province of the Roman Empire. The DVD combines superb reconstruction and reenactment footage, dramatized "eyewitness" accounts, and state-of-the-art computer graphics. NTSC, Color, Dolby Digital, Menu Language English, Full Screen.

Introduction * The Roman Emperors * The Roman Army * British Warriors * Caractacus * Claudius Sails to Britain * The Guerrilla Campaign * Special Features: Test Your Knowledge * Picture Gallery * Interactive Menus * Excerpts From Other Titles In The Series

This is a very compact and taut little gem. Well narrated by old pro, Brian Blessed (I Claudius, etc),the work will leave the viewer wanting to add other titles in the series.The only downside is the short running time; but better a little too short, than too long for the subject covered. The British do this type of documentary better than almost anyone else in the world. Would make a great gift for amateur or serious scholar. One cannot ask for much more than that summary.

I, Claudius — 35th Anniversary Edition, Box Set

Rated one of the "100 Best TV Shows of All Time" by Time magazine, this epic BBC series spans the history of the Roman Empire from Augustus through Claudius, a stuttering scholar who learns early to play the fool and stay alive. Based on the novels by Robert Graves, it stars Derek Jacobi (The King’s Speech, Cadfael) in a career-defining role. Siân Phillips (The Age of Innocence) is “exquisitely wicked” (Los Angeles Times) as the lethal Livia, wife to Augustus (Brian Blessed), while John Hurt (The Elephant Man) is "decadence personified" (USA Today) as the depraved Caligula, whose reign of terror paves the way for Claudius’s ascension.

Winner of an Emmy® and numerous other awards, this riveting tale of ambition, debauchery, and intrigue remains one of the most popular and acclaimed dramas in Masterpiece Theatre history. Patrick Stewart, George Baker, Margaret Tyzack, and James Faulkner also star.

BONUS"I, Claudius": A Television Epic, a behind-the-scenes look at the series (74 min.); The Epic That Never Was, a documentary recounting the failed 1937 film adaptation (71 min.); Derek Jacobi interview (12 min.); favorite scenes of the cast and director (36 min.); and an 8-page booklet with an article about the series’ historical accuracy amd a Julio-Claudian family tree

SDH subtitles

*Note: Due to the age of these programs and the improved resolution that DVD provides, you may notice occasional flaws in the image and audio on this DVD presentation that were beyond our ability to correct from the original materials.

Warrior Queen Boudica

Wife, mother, queen...and leader of one of the most violent rebellions against Roman domination in British history. This we know about Boudica, Queen of the Iceni. Her story and her tribe's have been recorded by Roman historians, pondered by scholars, and examined by archaeologists who continue to dig for clues about this warrior whose army set fear in the hearts of Romans. When King Prasutagus died, the Iceni tribe, which once lived in peace with Rome, were brutally set upon by Romans--they beat Queen Boudica and raped her daughters. Seething with revenge, Boudica's forces attacked Roman settlements including London, a thriving Roman merchant center, which was destroyed. Here, we uncover the remarkable story of Boudica, who led her tribe in a revolt never seen before or since in British history. Her struggle--to free Briton's tribes from Roman domination; at stake--the freedom and independence of all Briton's tribes and their unique Celtic culture.

Great Queens of England: Boudicca of the Iceni

Her name has passed into legend, her deeds have become part of folklore. How did Queen Boudicca, of the Iceni tribe, unite the warring Celtic people to face the common foe -the mighty legions of the Roman Empire? This fascinating DVD tells the story of the great warrior Queen. This work speaks as much about the Roman Empire as it does of those living in Britain. It's interesting to see that the people who had a huge empire upon which "the sun never set" were once colonized-peoples themselves.

Boudicca of the Iceni is a informative yet somewhat lackluster documentary on the historial Celtic warrior queen Boudicca. The films approach to the topic takes the usual avenues of presentation; staged reenactments, interspersed with illustrations, artwork and artifacts of the period and interviews with recognized scholars. This is not something should approach with the thought of entertainment in mind, it's a presentation first and foremost to educate, covering such matters as societal divisions within Celtic tribes, attire, means of livilhood, weaponry and the historical context of Boudicca's achievements against the impending might of the Roman Empire. If you want to learn more about the life and times of Boudicca this is definitely a good place to start.

Hadrian's Wall: Edge of the Empire

Completed in the year 128 A.D., the remarkable wall built on the orders of the Emperor Hadrian marks the northern border of the Roman Province of Britain. Possibly inspired by travelers tales of the Great Wall Of China, the Wall runs for over 115 miles from the east to the west of England and provides a fascinating glimpse of military life during the Roman occupation of Britain.

This roughly one-hour DVD introduces the viewer to the wall that was built to separate the civilized world from that of the barbarians. The DVD does a fairly good job of looking at the wall as a system with the wall itself, towers, mile castles and the ditches typical of Roman defensive works that were behind the wall. It points out that there were numerous changes to the design as time - and construction - went on. The DVD does address the differing theories on why the wall was built at all without coming down on the side of any one in particular. There's lots of good video of surviving sections of the wall as well as the use of reenactors in Roman gear, giving the viewer a visual of the men who would have manned the wall.

History -- Modern Marvels: Hadrian's Wall

74-miles long and 2,000 years old, Hadrian's Wall winds over the hills and valleys of Northern England, marking the northernmost extent of a long-dead empire. Built of stone and mortar by Roman soldiers, it is the most significant Roman ruin in England. Ordered built by the Emperor Hadrian around the time of his visit in 122 A.D., it was more a permanent demarcation and less a defensive barrier. We'll visit this archaeological treasure, which teaches us much of what the Roman era was like for Britain. Some things modern people don't know or understand are facts like that Hadrian never saw the completion of the wall. Or that there are only two Roman references to the wall in ancient writings — the British of the Dark Ages didn't even know the Romans built it. The best part of the work is when a scholar says, "People are amazed when we pull sandals from the wall, but we have about 2,000 pairs of sandals from our excavations." The work doesn't mention Stonehenge or the Great Wall of China. One scholar made it sound like the Romans consciously decided to no longer expand their empire. Kind of skeptical on that. Rome began regulating itself and citizens more than pursuing outer goals.

Global Treasures Hadrian's Wall England

The famous Roman emperor Hadrian gave his name to what would become an even more famous wall, a powerful fortification in the north of England that served as protection against the 'Barbarians' and extended right up to the Scottish border.Construction of the wall in the 2nd century A.D. signified hope for a lasting and secure defense against the invading Celts. Hadrian's enormous line of defense covered an area between the North Sea coast and the Irish Sea and part of it stretched across Cumbria and Northumberland. The wall was meant to re-establish Roman power and ten thousand soldiers were commanded to protect it. Originally, the wall was 5-6 metres high and approximately 3 metres wide, and its length of around 120 kilometres was a remarkable accomplishment. Even by Roman standards the establishment of the wall along the empire's north-eastern border was an ambitious plan.

Improvements and changes were constantly made during construction work on the seemingly endless fortification. The western section of the mighty wall was originally built with peat that was later replaced by stone. In spite of intensive military efforts by the Romans, Northern tribes such as the Picts managed to break through the defensive line. To ensure comprehensive defence of the wall, the Roman commanders ordered that a small road be built along it to aid the quick dispersal of their soldiers. Although various sections of the wall have been excavated, today it passes across the natural landscape of the English countryside almost as it did during the time of Hadrian. Global Treasures — History's Most Protected Monuments — Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live today, and what we pass on to future generations. our cultural and natural heritage are both irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration. Places as unique and diverse as the wilds of East Africa's Serengeti, the Pyramids of Egypt, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the Baroque cathedrals of Latin America make up our world's heritage. Join us as we explore one of these protected monuments.

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