Eight Days That Made Rome

February 2018

Season 1 Episode 3 - Crossing The Rubicon

4.0 7 x
Historian Bettany Hughes looks at the day in 49BC that Julius Caesar led his army across the River Rubicon. By doing so he ignored the orders of the Roman Senate, and effectively declared war on his rivals in Rome. In time, it would prove a fatal blow to the Republic - the system of elected officials that had governed for nearly half a millennium. Hughes analyses Caesar's character and reveals how new theories about his health shed light on his decision-making, while archeological finds recentl...

Season 1 Episode 2 - The Spartacus Revolt

4.0 5 x
Historian Bettany Hughes looks at the day in 73BC that Spartacus, a Thracian gladiator fighting for the entertainment of the Romans, broke out of gladiator school and started a slave revolt. The Republic's rulers were so panicked by the protest that they offered unprecedented power to a single, ambitious individual - Crassus - who promised victory in what would prove a dark foreshadowing of Rome's slide into dictatorship.

Season 1 Episode 1 - Hannibal's Last Stand

3.0 7 x
Historian Bettany Hughes recalls eight pivotal days that defined the Roman Empire and its establishment as the world's first superpower. She begins by exploring the day in 202BC when the Roman army, led by Scipio, defeated the might of Carthage under Hannibal at the Battle of Zama in modern-day Tunisia. This was a decisive moment, setting Rome on the path to greatness and exemplifying the military muscle and supreme ambition on which its empire would be built.