Spin The Globe

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01160520131112

Michael Scott launches his new series which takes familiar historical dates and finds out what was happening away from the geographical centre that makes them so familiar to us. It's an attempt to see the globe as an historic whole and so break out of the modular way in which historic dates are traditionally drummed into children. At the same time he connects previously diverse events in cultural, political and economic history all over the globe.

In programme one, with the ashes of Bonfire Night scarcely cold, he looks at 1605. The gunpowder plot and its impact on the status of Catholics within Britain is kept alive to this day, but it was also in that year that the world's first Newspaper was published, in Strasbourg.

Headline news might well have been that Tsar Boris Godunov died, the catalyst for events known to this day in Russia as 'The Time of Troubles'. Godunov is more familiar now as the subject of Mussorgsky's 19th century Opera but Professors Robert Frost and Krzysztof Lazarski outline the background and importance of Godunov's reign in the story and development of Eastern Europe.

Meanwhile in Persia Shah Abbas I was presiding over a period of supreme regional stability and self-confidence, crowned by the defeat of Turkey in battle.

Spin the Globe to the West and we find reports of the capture of an American Indian who was later to be a vital figure in the protection of the Pilgrim Fathers during their first winter in the New World. But as Michael finds out the story of Squanto is shrouded in historical half-truth. However, the impact of the Gunpowder plot did have a direct baring on the development of British Colonies in America.

And this was also the year that Don Quixote was first published.

It's a programme full of surprises, connections and a sense that events across the world move at different rates and through different phases only occasionally brushing against each other.

Producer: Tom Alban.

01160520131112

Michael Scott launches his new series which takes familiar historical dates and finds out what was happening away from the geographical centre that makes them so familiar to us. It's an attempt to see the globe as an historic whole and so break out of the modular way in which historic dates are traditionally drummed into children. At the same time he connects previously diverse events in cultural, political and economic history all over the globe.

In programme one, with the ashes of Bonfire Night scarcely cold, he looks at 1605. The gunpowder plot and its impact on the status of Catholics within Britain is kept alive to this day, but it was also in that year that the world's first Newspaper was published, in Strasbourg.

Headline news might well have been that Tsar Boris Godunov died, the catalyst for events known to this day in Russia as 'The Time of Troubles'. Godunov is more familiar now as the subject of Mussorgsky's 19th century Opera but Professors Robert Frost and Krzysztof Lazarski outline the background and importance of Godunov's reign in the story and development of Eastern Europe.

Meanwhile in Persia Shah Abbas I was presiding over a period of supreme regional stability and self-confidence, crowned by the defeat of Turkey in battle.

Spin the Globe to the West and we find reports of the capture of an American Indian who was later to be a vital figure in the protection of the Pilgrim Fathers during their first winter in the New World. But as Michael finds out the story of Squanto is shrouded in historical half-truth. However, the impact of the Gunpowder plot did have a direct baring on the development of British Colonies in America.

And this was also the year that Don Quixote was first published.

It's a programme full of surprises, connections and a sense that events across the world move at different rates and through different phases only occasionally brushing against each other.

Producer: Tom Alban.

01160520131112

Michael Scott launches his new series which takes familiar historical dates and finds out what was happening away from the geographical centre that makes them so familiar to us. It's an attempt to see the globe as an historic whole and so break out of the modular way in which historic dates are traditionally drummed into children. At the same time he connects previously diverse events in cultural, political and economic history all over the globe.

In programme one, with the ashes of Bonfire Night scarcely cold, he looks at 1605. The gunpowder plot and its impact on the status of Catholics within Britain is kept alive to this day, but it was also in that year that the world's first Newspaper was published, in Strasbourg.

Headline news might well have been that Tsar Boris Godunov died, the catalyst for events known to this day in Russia as 'The Time of Troubles'. Godunov is more familiar now as the subject of Mussorgsky's 19th century Opera but Professors Robert Frost and Krzysztof Lazarski outline the background and importance of Godunov's reign in the story and development of Eastern Europe.

Meanwhile in Persia Shah Abbas I was presiding over a period of supreme regional stability and self-confidence, crowned by the defeat of Turkey in battle.

Spin the Globe to the West and we find reports of the capture of an American Indian who was later to be a vital figure in the protection of the Pilgrim Fathers during their first winter in the New World. But as Michael finds out the story of Squanto is shrouded in historical half-truth. However, the impact of the Gunpowder plot did have a direct baring on the development of British Colonies in America.

And this was also the year that Don Quixote was first published.

It's a programme full of surprises, connections and a sense that events across the world move at different rates and through different phases only occasionally brushing against each other.

Producer: Tom Alban.

02106620131119

Michael Scott continues his new series which takes famous dates in British History and finds out what was happening at the same time in other corners of the world. It's an attempt to break out of the modular way in which historic dates are traditionally drummed into children as well as connecting previously diverse events in cultural, political and economic history all over the globe.

In programme two, we look at 1066. Complicated family succession politics result in the eventual battle of Hastings - the death of Harold in October and William's coronation in Westminster Abbey on Christmas Day 1066. Meanwhile, five days later in Spain, a brutual massacre takes place with a clash of Muslim and Jewish politics.

Headline news in China is scholar, Sima Guang's eight volume Tongzhi a groundbreaking history of China. Spin the Globe again and we visit the Seljuk empire which is in its ascendancy.

It's a programme full of surprises, connections and a sense that events across the world move at different rates and through different phases only occasionally brushing against each other.

Producer: Sarah Taylor.

Succession politics in Britain, while in Spain, Muslims and Jews clash.

03191420131126

The year of the outbreak of WWI also saw the birth of a new dance in New York, the foxtrot

Historian Michael Scott continues his series offering a global perspective on familiar historic dates. Today it's 1914 which saw the outbreak of the First World War, making Europe the centre of a world conflict.

But European influence had spread all over the globe and, amongst many colonial ventures, Michael learns of the triumphant completion of a railway that linked the East coast of Africa with the shores of Lake Tanganyika. The railway was driven through German East Africa and soon after completion would play an important, if less than familiar, part in the conflict between the great powers.

The trains running from Dar Es Salaam to Kigoma were driven by steam, but 1914 saw the discovery and development of a massive new resource of the 20th century's fuel of choice - Oil. That was the year that serious pumping began on Venezuela's Lake Maracaibo. It wouldn't be long before the country was one of the biggest Oil producers in the world, although the local population had little to shout about in the early days.

And, far away from the bloodbath going on in the trenches of Northern France in 1914, New Yorkers witnessed the birth of a dance craze that's remembered every week in the Autumn TV schedules of today. Strictly Come Dancing judge Len Goodman gives Michael chapter and verse on the 1914 origins of the Foxtrot.

Producer: Tom Alban.

04 LAST0bc20131203

Historian Michael Scott ends his new series offering a global perspective on familiar historic dates with a seasonal focus - the Year 0 BC in Judea and the birth of Jesus in the south east corner of the Roman Empire between Egypt and Syria when Romans controlled the entire Mediterranean basin.

Jesus was born into a region which was one of the great fault lines of the ancient world. Emperor Caesar Augustus annexed Egypt and opened up a trade route to the east via the Red Sea. Rome was wealthy, and had a great demand from Asia. Roman traders learned from the Arabs to sail with the monsoon winds from the Red Sea to the west coast of India. This encouraged demand for goods from Asia.

Augustus was the first emperor of Rome. He transformed Rome from a republic, led by competing nobles, to an empire, ruled by one man. When he died in 14 AD he was declared a god by the Roman Senate.

So as Christianity was beginning, so too the concept of the divine Roman emperor forming in Roman pagan religion. This would lead to a big problem later down the line as Christians could not accept the one thing Romans insisted upon: ultimate worship of the emperor.

In the Maya region, the first true city ,El Mirador (located in Guatemala), was entering its greatest century of growth. The largest structures, including massive pyramids with multiple temples on top, ever built by the Maya were constructed during the first century. By the year 0 we are also looking at the rise of the great Mayan cities like Tikal and Calakmul. Writing flourished; kingdoms appropriated power and were later to expand exponentially.

Glass blowing was invented around this period and it revolutionised the production of glass vessels. It is believed to have originated in Roman Syria and rapidly spread to Italy and the western provinces. The use of moulds helped speed up production and meet the demand for utilitarian household storage or transport vessels, as well as decorative pieces.

And a king was also said to have been born in the far east. Yuri was the son of Jumong, the founder of Goguryeo, the northernmost of the Three Kingdoms of Korea. He became King upon his father King Jumong's death and is described as a powerful and militarily successful king. He died in 18 AD having ruled for 37 years.

Producer: Mohini Patel.

0201148520141111

Michael Scott in new series which takes particular key dates and finds out what was happening away from the geographical centre that makes them so familiar to us. It's an attempt to see the globe as an historic whole and so break out of the modular way in which historic dates are traditionally drummed into children.

The first of three programmes in this second series, explores events in the year 1485 AD - a famous turning point in British history - with the death of a King and the birth of the all-powerful Tudor dynasty.

On August 22nd the Battle of Bosworth Field was fought between the armies of King Richard III of England and rival claimant to the throne of England Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond. Richard dies in battle and Henry Tudor becomes King Henry VII of England.

Spin the globe to the West and in Mesoamerica, it is said that between 20 and 80,400 prisoners were sacrificed at the behest of Aztec ruler Ahuitzotl to the war god Huitzilopochtli on the Great Pyramid in Tenochtitlan by Mexican priests over four days. But to what extent is this story of mass ritual killing passed on from the Spanish conquistadors, borne out by recent archaeological excavations at the site?

And in Russia, in September 1485, the forces of Ivan the Great seized the city. Ivan III Vasilyevich was a Grand Prince of Moscow and Grand Prince of all Rus. Sometimes referred to as the "gatherer of the Russian lands", he tripled the territory of his state, ended the dominance of the Golden Horde over the Rus, renovated the Moscow Kremlin, laid the foundations of the Russian state. and became one of the longest-reigning Russian rulers in history.

Also at time the Inquisition started in Spain and ultimately surpassed the medieval Inquisition, in both scope and intensity. Conversos (Secret Jews) and New Christians were targeted because of their close relations to the Jewish community, many of whom were Jews in all but name. Fear of Jewish influence led Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand to write a petition to the Pope asking permission to start an Inquisition in Spain. For 350 years under Papal Decree, Jews, then Muslims and Protestants were put through the Inquisitional Court and condemned to torture, imprisonment, exile and death. Its impact on Jewish history was incomparably greater.

Meanwhile, in Italy Leonardo da Vinci, said to be the first European interested in a practical solution to flight, designed a multitude of mechanical devices, including parachutes, and studied the flight of birds as well as their structure. In around 1485 he drew detailed plans for a human-powered ornithopter (a wing-flapping device intended to fly). There is no evidence that he actually attempted to build such a device, although the image he presented was a powerful one. The notion of a human-powered mechanical flight device, patterned after birds or bats, recurred again and again over the next four centuries.

0202192920141118

1929 was a pivotal year in economic history. As the 'roaring twenties' neared its end, American optimism came to a shuddering halt in October with the Wall Street financial crash. Earlier in the year, folks thought the good times would just keep rolling along. 1929 saw the inaugural Academy Awards and the production of the first all black cast in the film Hallelujah.

Historian Michael Scott hears what caused the Wall Street crash and also looks to other parts of the globe to see what was happening there. In Australia, the Rothbury miners strike ended with a police and strikers stand off with the police shooting one miner dead. Elsewhere, China was in inner turmoil in a civil war and in Palestine, there was an outbreak of rioting between the Muslim and Jewish population.

Producer: Sarah Taylor.

0203323bc - The Death Of Alexander The Great20141125

In the last of the current series of Spin the Globe Historian Michael Scott goes back to the Ancient World. In 323 BC China's warring states continue to strive for dominance. The Nanda dynasty of Northern India, still reeling from the shock of Alexander the Great's assault on its northern territories, is close to collapse in the face of the legendary leadership of Chandragupta Maurya. In the distant and uncharted West a mysterious collection of islands is circumnavigated by the extraordinary explorer and Geographer Pytheas of Massalia, providing the first clear idea of the extent and civilisations of the British Isles. And yet in a European world dominated by the civilisations of Ancient Greece it's a year shattered by the death of Alexander the Great. At the height of his powers with plans for further expeditions to the South and West the relatively young commander dies under circumstances that remain a mystery to this day. However, there's no mystery to the impact his death would have from the Iberian peninsula in the West to the Ganga valley in the east.

Producer: Tom Alban.