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The latest news from the team behind BBC History Magazine - a popular History magazine. To find out more, visit www.historyextra.com
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The Tommies’ final acts

23:16 | Jul 30th, 2018

Jonathan Ruffle, creator of the BBC Radio 4 historical drama Tommies, explores the situation on the front line in August 1918 as the First World War approached its end
Hamilton: the man behind the musical

46:38 | Jan 4th, 2018

We explore the amazing life story of Alexander Hamilton, with Ron Chernow, whose biography of the American Founding Father inspired the hip-hop musical sensation.
The Great Fire of London

39:34 | Aug 25th, 2016

As we approach the 350th anniversary of the 1666 blaze, historical author Alexander Larman describes how the inferno devastated London. Meanwhile, we speak to Nicholas Kenyon, director of the Barbican Centre, about the rebuilding of the city that too...Show More
Victorian murder scandal

23:58 | Mar 11th

Author and biographer Claire Harman talks to us about a 19th-century killing that drew in the literary world, including Dickens and Thackeray.
Rutger Bregman: historian in the news

23:25 | Mar 7th

We speak to Dutch historian Rutger Bregman, who recently hit the headlines with his appearance at the World Economic Forum and an unaired interview on Fox News. He discusses some of the ideas that caused a global sensation and the role of a historian...Show More
The Nazi on the run

31:45 | Oct 5th, 2018

The author and barrister Philippe Sands discusses the incredible story of Otto von Wächter, which forms the basis of his new BBC podcast and Radio 4 series, Intrigue: The Ratline
America’s changing dream

40:31 | May 31st, 2018

Professor Sarah Churchwell and fellow historian Adam IP Smith explore some of the ideas in her new book Behold, America, which traces the history of America First and the American Dream
Challenging British heroes

28:21 | May 29th, 2018

Ahead of her new Channel 4 series, the author and broadcaster Afua Hirsch argues that we need to seriously revise our understanding of the likes of Nelson and Churchill
Opposing the Nazis

47:13 | Mar 26th, 2018

Robert Scott Kellner talks about the extraordinary diary of his German grandfather, Friedrich, who recorded his observations of many of the Third Reich’s crimes. He also tells us about his role in getting the diary published more than 70 years later
Science and suffrage

29:26 | Feb 26th, 2018

Historian of science Patricia Fara discusses her new book A Lab of One’s Own, which explores the challenges facing women scientists in the First World War era
Alfred the Great and science at Christmas

45:07 | Dec 21st, 2017

Historian and author Max Adams discusses the famed Anglo-Saxon king and considers whether he deserves his stellar reputation. Meanwhile, we team up with our friends from the Science Focus podcast to explore the history of the Royal Institution Christ...Show More
The origins of civilisation

36:53 | Dec 18th, 2017

Yale political scientist James C Scott talks to us about his new book, Against the Grain, which explores some of the key questions around early agriculture and state-building.
Cornwell on Shakespeare

19:31 | Dec 14th, 2017

We are joined by the world-renowned historical novelist Bernard Cornwell who shares the story behind his latest book Fools and Mortals, which explores the world of Elizabethan theatre and the man at the centre of it
Germany’s World War Two

50:28 | Jul 18th, 2017

In a talk that he delivered at our recent World War Two event in Bristol, Professor Nicholas Stargardt reflects on how the Second World War was experienced by ordinary Germans, both on the front line and back home
Hans Sloane and the British Museum

43:08 | Jul 6th, 2017

Author and historian James Delbourgo discusses his new book Collecting the World, which explores the life of the 18th-century natural historian Hans Sloane whose collections went on to form the basis of the British Museum in London
Medieval manuscripts and the First World War

59:30 | Jun 8th, 2017

Christopher de Hamel discusses his recent book Meetings with Remarkable Manuscripts, which has just won the Wolfson History Prize. Meanwhile, we speak to Jonathan Ruffle, creator of the BBC Radio 4 drama series Tommies, about some of the fascinating ...Show More
Christmas quiz

23:58 | Dec 19th, 2013

Test your history knowledge with our annual Christmas podcast quiz
Nelson Mandela special

46:32 | Dec 12th, 2013

Following the death of Mandela, Saul Dubow and Aron Mazel consider his remarkable political career and his role in ending Apartheid
The legacy of the First World War and Gandhi's early years

53:52 | Dec 5th, 2013

David Reynolds explains how the First World War shaped the 20th century, while Ramachandra Guha considers Mahatma Gandhi's formative years
Victorian vigour and a remarkable family

53:52 | Nov 28th, 2013

Simon Heffer discusses the triumphs of Victorian Britain, while Adrian Tinniswood talks about the 17th-century Rainborowes who were involved in the Civil War
JFK and a neglected Tudor

57:12 | Nov 21st, 2013

Mark White reappraises JFK on the 50th anniversary of his assassination, while Alison Weir describes the life of Elizabeth of York, mother of Henry VIII
Global history and the rise of the factories

38:56 | Nov 14th, 2013

Michael Scott chats about his new Radio 4 series Spin the Globe, while Simon Thurley guides us around an important site in Britain's Industrial Revolution
Cold War culture and the path to the First World War

44:33 | Nov 7th, 2013

Dominic Sandbrook explores how the Cold War impacted on many aspects of British life, while Margaret MacMillan tells us why she believes the First World War broke out when it did
Women in the 1960s

35:24 | May 23rd

Virginia Nicholson talks about her new book How Was It For You?, which explores how some of the radical changes of the decade shaped the lives of women from different backgrounds. historyextra.com/podcasts
Gentleman Jack

22:14 | May 20th

Biographer Angela Steidele explores the life of 19th-century gay pioneer Anne Lister, whose story is the inspiration behind the major BBC/HBO drama Gentleman Jack. historyextra.com/podcasts
Jared Diamond on countries in crisis

47:58 | May 16th

Historian, author and geographer Jared Diamond discusses how ideas from psychology can help us understand how countries have coped with traumas through history. historyextra.com/podcasts
Secrets of Britains castles

37:36 | May 13th

Medieval historian Marc Morris reveals the fascinating history of Britain’s castles, exploring why they were built, what they were used for, and the challenges of defending and attacking them.
The Rise and Fall of the Boleyns

25:06 | May 9th

Lauren Mackay, author of Among the Wolves of Court: The Untold Story of Thomas and George Boleyn, charts the tumultuous lives of the father and brother of one of the Tudor era’s most famous figures – Anne Boleyn.
Women who made modern Britain

28:38 | May 6th

Journalist and news presenter Cathy Newman discusses her new book Bloody Brilliant Women, which tells the stories of trailblazing women who changed the course of modern British history.
How population has shaped world history

29:44 | May 2nd

Demography expert Dr Paul Morland discusses his new book The Human Tide, which explores how population has been a crucial factor in global events over the past two hundred years, and has shaped the world we live in today.
The landscape of England

31:36 | Apr 29th

Professor Stephen Rippon of the University of Exeter explores the changing nature of England’s landscape, from the Iron Age until the Anglo-Saxon period.
The Amritsar assassin

35:23 | Apr 25th

Anita Anand tells the story of one man’s quest for revenge following the 1919 Amritsar massacre
Letters from World War Two leaders

40:35 | Apr 22nd

Professor David Reynolds discusses the relationship between World War Two leaders Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt, as revealed by the messages exchanged between them

24:41 | Apr 18th

Following Monday’s blaze that devastated Paris’s Notre-Dame cathedral, we speak to historian Emma J Wells about the medieval building’s remarkable history and what its future might hold
Melvyn Bragg on Heloise and Abelard

30:20 | Apr 15th

Renowned author and broadcaster Melvyn Bragg discusses the 12th-century French thinkers Peter Abelard and Heloise, and the enduring love story at the centre of his new novel
Exploring Britain’s cathedrals

37:04 | Apr 11th

Travel writer Christopher Somerville discusses his experiences of visiting some of Britain’s historic cathedrals and explains what they can tell us about the country’s religious past
The Scottish Clearances

35:26 | Apr 8th

Professor Tom Devine explores one of the most traumatic moments in Scottish history and explains how a number of misconceptions still exist around the Clearances.
King John: medieval monster

31:46 | Apr 4th

Professor Nicholas Vincent discusses the life and reign of the infamous 13th-century monarch, whose reign saw military disasters abroad and the sealing of Magna Carta in 1215.
World War Two's 'ordinary' soldiers

46:20 | Apr 1st

Military historian Jonathan Fennell discusses his new book, which explores the experiences of citizen soldiers from Britain, its empire and commonwealth in the global battle against the Axis.
Rethinking the crusades

29:29 | Mar 28th

Historian Nicholas Paul explores some little known aspects of the crusades and also considers why this aspect of medieval history has inspired the far-right. Find out more about his research at: https://medievaldigital.ace.fordham.edu/mapping-project...Show More
The women killed by Jack the Ripper

27:04 | Mar 25th

Hallie Rubenhold discusses her new book The Five, which uses the untold stories of Jack the Ripper’s victims to reveal what life was like for working-class women in Victorian London.
The global Vikings

46:33 | Mar 21st

Medieval historian Levi Roach describes how the Norse people travelled, raided and settled far beyond their Scandinavian homeland, even journeying across the Atlantic to America.
Henry VI: terrible king

32:36 | Mar 18th

Historian and author Lauren Johnson discusses the life and reign of Henry VI, whose decades on the throne coincided with defeat in the Hundred Years’ War and the disaster of the Wars of the Roses.
Churchill's navy

46:20 | Mar 14th

Professor Matthew Seligmann describes the changes made by Winston Churchill to the Royal Navy in the years leading up to the First World War – ranging from pay and conditions to discipline and the treatment of homosexuals.
King George V at war

36:43 | Mar 4th

Alexandra Churchill considers the impact of the British monarch on the First World War, and explores the question of whether he could have done more to save his cousin Tsar Nicholas II.
Schools through time

20:52 | Feb 28th

Former education secretary Alan Johnson discusses the history of schooling since the Victorian era, which is the subject of his new series on BBC Radio 4
Bart van Es on The Cut Out Girl

36:29 | Feb 25th

Professor Bart van Es talks to us about The Cut Out Girl, which was recently announced as the Costa Book of the Year. He explains how his family took in a young Jewish girl in the Netherlands during the Second World War, and the complex legacy of the...Show More
Medieval warrior queen

30:06 | Feb 21st

Historian Catherine Hanley tells the story of Empress Matilda, the daughter of Henry I whose battle with Stephen for the English throne in the 12th century became known as ‘the anarchy’.
A global history of philosophy

35:03 | Feb 18th

Philosopher and author Julian Baggini speaks about his new book, How the World Thinks, in conversation with the historian Justin Champion.
Love in Georgian times

31:42 | Feb 14th

For our Valentine’s Day episode, historian Sally Holloway explores the nature of courtship, love and marriage in 18th-century Britain, highlighting the similarities and differences to the modern day
Eric Hobsbawm: history and politics

45:55 | Feb 11th

Professor Richard J Evans discusses his new biography of Eric Hobsbawm, the influential 20th-century historian who was famously – and sometimes controversially – a committed Marxist throughout his career
The story of modern Japan

37:26 | Feb 7th

Dr Christopher Harding explores Japan’s dramatic history over the past 150 years, considering its relationship with the west and the cultural impact of its rapid modernisation
War and music

24:10 | Feb 4th

BBC broadcaster John Simpson discusses the connections between classical music and some of the most notable events of the mid-20th century, from World War Two to the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.
Bonus Episode: How technology is changing politics

35:54 | Feb 2nd

In this special edition, produced by our friends from the Science Focus podcast, Jamie Susskind explains how the politics of the future will be shaped by the technology influencing our lives today.
A Roman woman of great power

42:09 | Jan 31st

Historian Emma Southon explores the extraordinary life of Agrippina the Younger, who was the wife of Claudius, the mother of Nero and the sister of Caligula, as well as being a remarkable woman in her own right.
World-changing women

33:14 | Jan 28th

Jenni Murray, longstanding presenter of BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour, discusses her new book, which tells the stories of some of the most fascinating women in global history, from Joan of Arc to Marie Curie and Madonna.
Legacies of the Holocaust

47:38 | Jan 24th

Historians Mary Fulbrook and Richard J Evans explore the aftermath of the Nazi genocide, looking at how thousands of perpetrators escaped justice and considering how subsequent generations have sought to understand the greatest atrocity of the 20th c...Show More
Diversity in history

27:46 | Jan 21st

Olivette Otele, who recently became Britain’s first black female professor of history, joins Dr Sadiah Qureshi of the University of Birmingham to discuss race and equality in the British historical profession
The story of the Hurricane

25:31 | Jan 17th

Joel Hammer, producer of the new BBC World Service podcast The Hurricane Tapes, revisits the life of Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter, the American boxer whose imprisonment for a 1966 triple murder inspired a Bob Dylan song and a Hollywood film.
Mary, Queen of Scots’ tragic life

33:28 | Jan 14th

Historian, author and broadcaster Kate Williams tells the dramatic story of the 16th-century Scottish queen and reflects on her doomed relationship with Elizabeth I of England. As part of the conversation, Williams also discusses the upcoming film of...Show More
The true history of The Favourite

53:36 | Jan 10th

Historians Amanda Vickery, Hallie Rubenhold and Hannah Greig discuss the acclaimed new historical drama The Favourite and consider how accurately it reflects the reality of Queen Anne’s court in the early 18th century
Remarkable women through history

41:39 | Jan 7th

Max Adams, author of Unquiet Women, explores the lives of some remarkable women from history whose stories have been largely forgotten. He also overturns the idea that women of this period were either queens, nuns or invisible – and explains why wome...Show More
Egypt’s lost tombs

38:08 | Jan 3rd

Egyptologist, author and broadcaster Chris Naunton talks about the search for the resting places of famous Egyptians such as Nefertiti and Cleopatra
Medieval civil war

43:26 | Dec 31st, 2018

Historian, author and broadcaster Nick Barratt explores the dynastic clashes between Henry II and his ambitious sons for control of the Plantagenet crown in the 12th century
Indians in World War One

38:25 | Dec 27th, 2018

Professor Santanu Das explores the experiences of Indians who fought in and were affected by the First World War and explains how he has utilised a wide range of sources to uncover their forgotten stories
2018 Christmas history quiz

24:44 | Dec 24th, 2018

Join the BBC History Magazine team for the return of our annual Christmas history quiz with questions set by QI writer Justin Pollard. Read the text version at: www.historyextra.com/christmasquiz2018
Bess of Hardwick: a Tudor success story

32:32 | Dec 20th, 2018

Kate Hubbard, biographer of Bess of Hardwick, explores the fascinating life of a Tudor woman who rose from relative obscurity to become one of the richest and most influential people of her age
Wonders of the Middle Ages

35:19 | Dec 17th, 2018

Kathleen Doyle and Tuija Ainonen discuss a major Anglo-French project that has made hundreds of medieval manuscripts available for the public to view online
Letters that changed the world

28:36 | Dec 13th, 2018

Bestselling historian and author Simon Sebag Montefiore describes some of history’s most fascinating and important letters, from Mark Antony’s thoughts on Cleopatra to a message Gandhi sent to Hitler
Black radicalism with Kehinde Andrews

48:44 | Dec 10th, 2018

Kehinde Andrews, professor of Black Studies at Birmingham City University, discusses his new book, Back to Black: Retelling Black Radicalism for the 21st Century, and offers his opinions on a range of issues including Black History Month, reparations...Show More
Napoleon: the insecure emperor

31:29 | Dec 6th, 2018

Historian Adam Zamoyski, author of a new biography of Napoleon, offers his views on the iconic French leader, exploring how his stellar career was driven by insecurities
History in colour

29:26 | Dec 3rd, 2018

Popular historian Dan Jones and digital artist Marina Amaral discuss their groundbreaking book The Colour of Time, which uses colourised photographs to chart the history of the world from the mid-19th to mid 20th century.
Walter Ralegh: enemy of the state

39:23 | Nov 29th, 2018

Anna Beer, biographer of Walter Ralegh, explores the extraordinary life and incendiary legacy of the Tudor polymath. She reveals how he became a favourite of Elizabeth I, only to fall foul of her successor, James VI & I, with deadly consequences
The Germans who fought Hitler

43:50 | Nov 26th, 2018

Paddy Ashdown tells the stories of German opponents of Nazism who plotted to bring down Hitler’s regime.
Hunting Britain’s Nazis

24:31 | Nov 22nd, 2018

Journalist and author Robert Hutton talks about his new book Agent Jack, which describes the activities of Nazi sympathisers in Britain during World War Two and reveals the brilliant methods MI5 used to subvert them.
Tales from D-Day

33:17 | Nov 19th, 2018

Author and historian Giles Milton describes some dramatic but lesser-known stories of soldiers and civilians who were involved in the Normandy landings of June 1944
Bernard Cornwell on the Last Kingdom

34:02 | Nov 15th, 2018

As the third series of the Anglo-Saxon drama is about to air, we speak to the renowned historical novelist Bernard Cornwell about his books that inspired the programmes, and about his writing career more broadly.
Nietzsche’s dangerous ideas

45:28 | Nov 12th, 2018

The award-winning biographer Sue Prideaux discusses the life and work of the influential 19th-century philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche and explains how his ideas came to be associated with Nazi Germany
Dan Snow on shell shock

25:06 | Nov 8th, 2018

The popular historian discusses war trauma over the past century, the subject of his upcoming BBC Two documentary
The end of the First World War

43:19 | Nov 5th, 2018

As we approach the centenary of the Armistice, Gary Sheffield explores the final moments of the conflict that devastated the world for four and a half years
Mike Leigh on Peterloo

15:55 | Nov 1st, 2018

The acclaimed writer and director talks about the creation of his major new historical epic
The Peterloo Massacre

35:24 | Oct 29th, 2018

Historian and author Jacqueline Riding discusses the tragic events of August 1819
Anglo-Saxon treasures

35:00 | Oct 25th, 2018

Claire Breay, lead curator of a major new Anglo-Saxons exhibition at the British Library, explores the cultural highlights of 600 years of English history
Thomas Cromwell reconsidered

49:57 | Oct 22nd, 2018

Diarmaid MacCulloch discusses his new book on the Tudor statesman
A new life of Churchill

34:07 | Oct 18th, 2018

The historian and author Andrew Roberts discusses his new biography of Winston Churchill, revealing some of the insights arising from his research and tackling some of the biggest debates around Britain’s wartime prime minister.
Peter Jackson on the First World War

45:02 | Oct 15th, 2018

We speak to the Lord of the Rings director about They Shall Not Grow Old, his ambitious new film that recreates the First World War in colour
Adventures in Iceland

33:08 | Oct 11th, 2018

With the aid of his recently discovered diaries, Katherine Findlay tells the unusual story of Pike Ward – a Devon fish merchant who became an Icelandic knight in the early 20th century.
Brexit and American independence

28:08 | Oct 8th, 2018

Historian Tom Cutterham compares the ongoing negotiations to take Britain out of the EU with those of the 1780s when the United States departed from the British empire.
Bonus Episode: Identifying Jack the Ripper

26:17 | Oct 7th, 2018

In this special edition, produced by our friends from the Science Focus podcast, criminologist David Wilson applies the latest scientific techniques in the case of the notorious Whitechapel murderer of 1888.
The spy who changed the cold war

40:56 | Oct 1st, 2018

Bestselling historical author Ben Macintyre talks to us about his new book, The Spy and the Traitor, which tells the remarkable story of a KGB double agent who risked his life to help the west during the Cold War
Queen Victoria by Lucy Worsley

44:19 | Sep 27th, 2018

We head to Kensington Palace, once home to the young Victoria, to discuss the queen’s life with the author, historian and broadcaster Lucy Worsley
Neil Oliver’s history of the British Isles

51:31 | Sep 24th, 2018

The archaeologist and broadcaster Neil Oliver talks about some of the highlights of his new book, which charts the history of the British Isles through 100 key locations
The good war?

30:52 | Sep 20th, 2018

Journalist and author Peter Hitchens discusses his new book, The Phoney Victory, which challenges a number of popular beliefs about the Second World War
The extraordinary history of ordinary things

31:57 | Sep 17th, 2018

Historians Sam Willis and James Daybell explore some of the fascinating stories that appear in their Histories of the Unexpected book and podcast, from signatures to lions
A half-hour history of Europe

36:07 | Sep 13th, 2018

Author and journalist Simon Jenkins is joined by Professor Kathleen Burk to discuss his forthcoming Short History of Europe, which explores some of the key themes and milestones in the continent’s past
Dissent through the centuries

32:04 | Sep 10th, 2018

The Private Eye editor and broadcaster Ian Hislop is joined by curator Tom Hockhenhull to discuss some of the themes and objects that appear in their new British Museum exhibition, I Object
Who should we commemorate?

28:52 | Sep 6th, 2018

Professor Lawrence Goldman explores the issues surrounding monuments to controversial historical figures in light of the Rhodes Must Fall campaign and other recent debates
Scots and Catalans

44:01 | Sep 3rd, 2018

Historian Sir John Elliott explores the long histories of Scottish and Catalan nationalism and considers some of the key similarities and differences between the two.
100 women who changed the world

42:08 | Aug 30th, 2018

Historians Joanne Paul, Olivette Otele and June Purvis dissect the results of our recent poll into history’s most important women, which saw Marie Curie come top, followed by Rosa Parks and Emmeline Pankhurst
Charles de Gaulle reconsidered

1:01:05 | Aug 28th, 2018

Historian Julian Jackson, author of a major new biography of Charles de Gaulle, offers a fresh take on the iconic French leader, exploring his role in World War Two and decolonisation, among other things.
Female spies of the Civil War era

26:37 | Aug 23rd, 2018

Historian Nadine Akkerman introduces a number of remarkable women who acted as secret agents in the 17th century
Captain Cook’s Endeavour

26:06 | Aug 20th, 2018

Journalist and author Peter Moore talks about HMS Endeavour, the ship that carried Cook on his landmark voyage to the Pacific 250 years ago
Dan Jones on the secrets of popular history

1:03:06 | Aug 17th, 2018

Historian, author and broadcaster Dan Jones talks to us about his career, his latest projects and how he combines swimming with his love of the past
Mary Beard’s life in Classics

45:17 | Aug 16th, 2018

We pay a visit to the renowned Cambridge classicist to discuss her career, her passion for the ancient world and her desire to share her expertise with the masses
Historical fact and fiction

29:16 | Aug 15th, 2018

Historian and author Tracy Borman describes the process of writing her first historical novel, set in the era of King James VI & I and the European witch craze
Ian Kershaw on postwar Europe

1:02:29 | Aug 14th, 2018

For the 500th episode of the History Extra podcast we are joined by Professor Sir Ian Kershaw, who appeared in our very first programme. This time the topic for discussion is his new history of modern Europe
Inside the mind of Elizabeth I

36:59 | Aug 13th, 2018

In the first of five special programmes to mark our upcoming 500th episode, historian, author and broadcaster Helen Castor explores the psychology of the Virgin Queen and discusses the challenges of writing a new biography of one of England’s best-kn...Show More
Britons under Nazi rule

49:38 | Aug 9th, 2018

Historical author Duncan Barrett tells the stories of Channel Islanders who spent several years living under German occupation during World War Two
Islam’s struggle with modernity

44:46 | Aug 6th, 2018

Ed Husain, author of The House of Islam, meets with the historian Tom Holland to explore the roots of some of the challenges Muslims face in the 21st century
Britain’s foreign policy secrets

33:14 | Aug 2nd, 2018

Historian Rory Cormac discusses his new book Disrupt and Deny, which investigates Britain’s use of spies and special forces for covert operations in the postwar period.
Catholics in Elizabethan England

31:20 | Jul 26th, 2018

Historian Jessie Childs tells the story of Thomas Tresham, a Tudor gentleman who built a remarkable monument to his Catholic faith and risked the anger of the Virgin Queen
Rethinking 20th-century Britain

30:48 | Jul 23rd, 2018

Professor David Edgerton explains why we need to revise our understanding of recent British history, from the world wars to the welfare state
Nelson Mandela’s extraordinary life

57:23 | Jul 19th, 2018

On the centenary of Mandela’s birth, we speak to the politician and author Peter Hain about the South African leader’s remarkable achievements in the face of tremendous adversity
The murder of the Romanovs

32:50 | Jul 16th, 2018

Historical author Helen Rappaport explains why the last Russian tsar and his family met a violent end in 1918 and considers whether Britain could have saved the Romanovs from their fate
Britain’s refugee camps

29:22 | Jul 12th, 2018

Historian Jordanna Bailkin discusses her new book, Unsettled, which explores the experiences of people of several different nationalities who fled to Britain in the 20th century
Spies through the ages

33:33 | Jul 9th, 2018

Professor Christopher Andrew discusses his new book The Secret World, which explores the history of intelligence and espionage from ancient times until the present day
Making the modern world

33:26 | Jul 5th, 2018

We are joined by bestselling historical author Simon Winchester, who reveals how some of history’s greatest engineers helped create the industrial age
Ireland’s past and present

34:48 | Jul 2nd, 2018

Professor Jane Ohlmeyer discusses a new multi-volume history of Ireland and explains how the past continues to affect Anglo-Irish relations today
Sherwood Forest through the ages

31:26 | Jun 28th, 2018

Eleanor Rosamund Barraclough, presenter of a BBC Radio 3 series on forests, takes a trip to the home of Robin Hood to explore how forests have shaped our history and mythology
The national debt dilemma

40:08 | Jun 25th, 2018

Economist Martin Slater charts 350 years of British government borrowing – from the Glorious Revolution to the 2008 financial crisis – and considers what lessons this history might have for policy makers today
Restoring women’s voices

29:47 | Jun 21st, 2018

Sarah Jackson, joint founder of East End Women’s Museum, explores how historical women are currently commemorated and how this might be done better in future
The history of manners

37:15 | Jun 18th, 2018

Distinguished historian Sir Keith Thomas reflects on how concepts of civility and civilisation shaped society in the early modern period
World War One at home

25:22 | Jun 14th, 2018

Professor Maggie Andrews, historical consultant on the BBC Radio 4 drama series Home Front, joins us to reveal how the First World War was affecting British civilian life as the conflict entered its closing stages
Grenfell Tower: from hope to tragedy

27:02 | Jun 11th, 2018

Ahead of the BBC Two documentary Before Grenfell: A Hidden History, architect Peter Deakins discusses his involvement in the creation of the tower block and considers its place in the history of social housing in Britain
Britain’s Catholic emancipation

32:38 | Jun 7th, 2018

Acclaimed historian and author Antonia Fraser joins us to discuss her new book The King and the Catholics: The Fight for Rights 1829
The mystery of Donald Maclean

40:45 | Jun 4th, 2018

Author and editor Roland Philipps discusses A Spy Named Orphan, his new biography of the enigmatic Cambridge spy Donald Maclean
Jane Seymour: Henry VIII’s favourite queen

26:19 | May 24th, 2018

Bestselling author and historian Alison Weir discusses the life and tragic death of the Tudor king’s third wife, who bore him his long-awaited male heir. Alison also reveals the challenges of recreating Jane for her new historical novel
The remarkable history of the Netherlands

22:51 | May 21st, 2018

In advance of his new BBC Radio 4 series, the journalist and broadcaster Misha Glenny reflects on some of the key moments in the Netherlands’ story: from the Dutch Golden Age to World War Two
Beevor on Arnhem

59:14 | May 17th, 2018

Bestselling military historian Antony Beevor discusses his new book, which outlines why 1944’s Operation Market Garden was one of the biggest disasters of the Allied war effort
The Women Behind Lord Byron

31:13 | May 14th, 2018

Miranda Seymour discusses the extraordinary lives of Annabella Milbanke and Ada Lovelace, the wife and daughter of Lord Byron
The Entebbe raid

44:50 | May 10th, 2018

As the film Entebbe is about to arrive in UK cinemas, historian and author Saul David reveals the extraordinary story of the Israeli operation to rescue dozens of hostages from an airport in Uganda in 1976
The failings of the French Revolution

27:14 | May 7th, 2018

Stephen Clarke, author of a new history of the French Revolution, argues that we need to look afresh at the events of 1789 and beyond
500 years of medicine

21:05 | May 3rd, 2018

We speak to Simon Bowman of the Royal College of Physicians, which is celebrating its 500th anniversary, about how the work of doctors has changed since the time of Henry VIII
Were the suffragettes terrorists?

28:37 | Apr 30th, 2018

Historian Fern Riddell talks about her new biography of suffrage campaigner Kitty Marion, which explores some of the darker aspects of the campaign for votes for women
1983: the Cold War almost goes nuclear

41:50 | Apr 26th, 2018

Historian and author Taylor Downing describes the events of the Able Archer scare, which nearly witnessed global Armageddon when the Soviets misread the intentions behind a NATO war exercise
Economists who changed the world

28:28 | Apr 23rd, 2018

Author and economist Linda Yueh discusses the work and legacy of some of history’s greatest economic thinkers, revealing some of the lessons they might offer for us today
Medieval bodies

34:23 | Apr 19th, 2018

Art historian Jack Hartnell talks about his new book Medieval Bodies, which offers some fascinating perspectives on the ways people in the middle ages viewed their physical selves
Africa’s contested past

40:30 | Apr 16th, 2018

Historians Tom Young and Emma Dabiri explore how Africa’s past has affected its present in a discussion prompted by the themes of Tom’s new book, Neither Devil Nor Child: How Western Attitudes Are Harming Africa
Shakespeare’s greatest actor

23:23 | Apr 12th, 2018

Ahead of his BBC Radio 3 documentary Exit Burbage, the journalist and author Andrew Dickson explores the remarkable career of Richard Burbage, a Jacobean actor who played many of Shakespeare’s best-known roles for the first time.
The Vietnam War on film

28:19 | Apr 9th, 2018

Acclaimed filmmaker Lynn Novick describes the making of an epic documentary series on the conflict in Vietnam, which she has co-directed with Ken Burns. She also reveals the secrets to making high quality history television programmes
Medieval mystics

27:10 | Apr 5th, 2018

Medieval historian Hetta Howes reveals the extreme lengths to which women in the Middle Ages went to get closer to God and discusses how mystics were perceived by their contemporaries
A quick history of France

31:07 | Apr 3rd, 2018

Historian and author John Julius Norwich reflects on some of the key moments in France’s history and relates a few of the more unusual and scandalous stories he uncovered while researching his latest book.
Creating the SAS

47:53 | Mar 29th, 2018

We are joined by John Lewes, nephew and biographer of Jock Lewes, to talk about how his uncle helped found one of the world’s most famous special forces during World War Two
The history of today

23:41 | Mar 22nd, 2018

Historical novelist and broadcaster Sarah Dunant expands on her new BBC Radio 4 series When Greeks Flew Kites, which uses the past to illuminate modern concerns around medicine, old age, debt and sexual harassment
The postwar world

23:50 | Mar 19th, 2018

Historian and author Keith Lowe joins us to talk about his book The Fear and the Freedom, which explores the legacy of the Second World War on the decades that followed
The Marshall Plan and the Cold War

29:51 | Mar 15th, 2018

Economist and author Benn Steil explains the background to the 1947 US aid initiative to Europe and describes how it helped shape relations between the USA and USSR. He also considers what impact it had on European recovery after the Second World War
Ruth Ellis: the last woman to be hanged in Britain

32:25 | Mar 12th, 2018

Ahead of her new BBC Four series The Ruth Ellis Files, Gillian Pachter explores the controversial case of a British woman who was hanged for murder in 1955
Vikings on screen

29:19 | Mar 8th, 2018

We speak to the acclaimed screenwriter and producer Michael Hirst about his work on the smash hit series Vikings and the secrets of creating blockbuster history dramas
Music and revolution

28:27 | Mar 5th, 2018

Music expert Graham Griffiths discusses the 20th-century pianist and composer Leokadiya Kashperova, whose career was blighted by the events of the Russian revolution and whose work is now being celebrated with a special BBC Radio 3 concert
Schama on Civilisations

19:41 | Mar 1st, 2018

As the major new BBC arts history series Civilisations is due to air, we speak to Simon Schama, one of its three presenters, to discuss the making of the series and how he was inspired by Kenneth Clark’s original
The Terracotta Warriors

40:07 | Feb 22nd, 2018

With a new exhibition open in Liverpool featuring a group of Terracotta Warriors, Edward Burman explores the fascinating history of these ancient Chinese sculptures
BBC Arabic at 80

17:57 | Feb 19th, 2018

In the year that BBC Arabic celebrates its 80th anniversary, we speak to the network’s Communication Advisor, Wissam El Sayegh, about the BBC’s history of broadcasting to the Arab world
The World Cup story

26:37 | Feb 15th, 2018

With this year’s tournament in Russia only a few months away, we speak to veteran football writer Brian Glanville about the 88-year history of this global sporting extravaganza
The Spanish Flu pandemic

30:39 | Feb 12th, 2018

Catharine Arnold joins us to discuss her new book Pandemic: 1918, which explores the story of the influenza outbreak that caused devastation across the globe a century ago
The Pankhursts

33:02 | Feb 8th, 2018

In the second of our two episodes marking the centenary of (some) women being granted the vote in Britain, historian June Purvis considers the role of the Pankhurst family in the long battle for female suffrage
The Suffragettes

30:05 | Feb 5th, 2018

As we approach the centenary of (some) British women being granted the vote, historian and author Diane Atkinson explores the stories of the suffrage campaigners who believed in ‘deeds not words’
Elizabeth’s love rival

38:17 | Feb 1st, 2018

Historian and author Nicola Tallis explores the life of Lettice Knollys, who was a leading figure at the Tudor court until she enraged the Virgin Queen by marrying her favourite, Robert Dudley
Britain’s secret wartime prison

26:29 | Jan 29th, 2018

Historian Helen Fry shares her discoveries about the Cage, a clandestine British interrogation centre, where extreme methods were used to extract information from enemy prisoners during the Second World War
Living with the oceans

44:47 | Jan 25th, 2018

Archaeologist Barry Cunliffe meets with historian David Abulafia to discuss humanity’s relationship with the Mediterranean and the Atlantic since ancient times
The story of the Bayeux Tapestry

19:27 | Jan 22nd, 2018

Following the announcement that the Noman embroidery may soon be heading to Britain, historian Kathryn Hurlock tackles some of the big questions relating to the iconic medieval artefact
East End Crime

23:46 | Jan 18th, 2018

John Bennett delves into the dark history of disorder and lawlessness in London’s East End From Jack the Ripper to the Kray twins, historian and tour guide John Bennett explores four centuries of crime and disorder in the London neighbourhood.
Prisoners of war

34:10 | Jan 15th, 2018

Historian Clare Makepeace joins us to discuss her new book Captives of War, which draws on first-hand testimonies to examine the experiences of British soldiers who were confined in POW camps in World War Two
Mary Shelley and her monster

29:58 | Jan 11th, 2018

Fiona Sampson, author of a new biography of Mary Shelley, discusses the remarkable life of the Frankenstein author and considers what her story can tell us about Georgian society
The tragedy of Lady Jane Grey

43:36 | Jan 8th, 2018

Historian, author and broadcaster Helen Castor describes the short, but dramatic, life and reign of England’s ‘Nine Days Queen’, who is the subject of her new BBC Four series.
Churchill’s darkest hour

38:21 | Jan 2nd, 2018

Antony McCarten, writer of the new historical blockbuster Darkest Hour, considers whether the British leader came close to seeking peace with Hitler in 1940
1917: The world at war

34:55 | Dec 28th, 2017

Renowned First World War historian Professor David Stevenson explores the Russian Revolution, the Balfour Declaration, Passchendaele, and American entry into the First World War, as part of his survey of one of the 20th century’s most pivotal years
Christmas history quiz

23:34 | Dec 25th, 2017

The History Extra team present our annual festive quiz, testing your history knowledge with a Christmas twist. The questions have been set, as always, by QI writer Justin Pollard
Eating with Dickens

29:06 | Dec 11th, 2017

Food historian and author Pen Vogler explores the Victorian diet and recipes through the life and works of 19th-century Britain’s best-known writer
Animals that changed us

30:05 | Dec 7th, 2017

The academic, author and broadcaster Alice Roberts talks to us about her new book Tamed, which explores some of the most important relationships people have forged with different species over our history
Britain on the edge

44:21 | Dec 4th, 2017

The historian and journalist Simon Heffer ranges over class, empire, politics. scandals and suffrage in an exploration of Britain in the years leading up to the First World War
Black Tudors

34:26 | Nov 30th, 2017

Historian Miranda Kaufmann, author of Black Tudors: The Unknown Story, explores the lives of several Africans who resided in 16th-century England
Victorian medicine

32:02 | Nov 27th, 2017

Dr Lindsey Fitzharris, author of The Butchering Art, delves into the terrifying world of 19th-century hospitals and shows how scientific advances eventually led to dramatic improvements
The history of sleep

26:46 | Nov 23rd, 2017

Historian Sasha Handley explores the bedtime routines of the early modern period and considers what lessons today’s sleepers can draw from past centuries
Charles II on the run

56:28 | Nov 20th, 2017

We join historian and author Charles Spencer on location at Boscobel House to discuss Charles II’s desperate flight from parliamentarian forces at the end of the Civil War. Boscobel was famously a hiding place for the king as he sought to escape his ...Show More
Demons and shipwrecks

44:33 | Nov 16th, 2017

To accompany their upcoming events in the UK-wide Being Human festival, Kasia Szpakowska discusses her research into Ancient Egyptian demonology, while Dan Pascoe reveals some of the insights that have been gained from excavating a sunken 17th-centur...Show More
Drinking history

25:21 | Nov 13th, 2017

Mark Forsyth, author of A Short History of Drunkenness, draws on fascinating examples from across the globe to explore humanity’s longstanding relationship with alcohol
Britain’s Chinese army

44:16 | Nov 9th, 2017

Historians Frances Wood and Spencer Jones, who are both contributors to the upcoming Channel 4 documentary Britain’s Forgotten Army, reflect on the little-known contribution of more than 100,000 Chinese labourers to the Allied effort in the First Wor...Show More
The Last Kamikazes

31:58 | Nov 6th, 2017

BBC journalist Mariko Oi discusses her experiences of interviewing some of the last survivors of the notorious Japanese raids in World War Two, in advance of her new documentary on BBC World Service
How networks shape history

38:53 | Nov 2nd, 2017

The renowned historian, author and broadcaster Niall Ferguson reveals the ways networks have transformed our world, from the medieval era to the social media age
The search for King Arthur

37:53 | Oct 30th, 2017

Archaeologist Dr Miles Russell talks to us about his bold new theory on the legendary British ruler, which is based on a reinterpretation of Geoffrey of Monmounth’s History of the Kings of Britain
The Medici

29:02 | Oct 26th, 2017

Historian and author Mary Hollingsworth reflects on the powerful dynasty who dominated the Italian Renaissance but whose tale also includes tyranny, crime and murder
The death of Stalin

32:47 | Oct 23rd, 2017

Historian Joshua Rubenstein discusses the dramatic events surrounding the death of Soviet leader Josef Stalin in 1953, now the subject of a major new historical comedy film.
The Gunpowder Plot

38:19 | Oct 19th, 2017

Historians Hannah Greig and John Cooper, who are consultants on the new BBC drama Gunpowder, explore the story of the 1605 attempt to blow up the king and parliament. Plus they reveal the challenges involved in recreating the events for the small scr...Show More
Living with the Gods

37:17 | Oct 16th, 2017

Former British Museum director Neil MacGregor talks about his new BBC Radio 4 series Living with the Gods, and the accompanying exhibition, which together explore humanity’s longstanding relationship with faith
Richard III reconsidered

56:34 | Oct 12th, 2017

Historian and politician Chris Skidmore discusses his major new biography of the Yorkist king, offering his take on pivotal moments such as Richard’s seizing of the throne, his death at Bosworth and the disappearance of the princes in the tower
The Munich Conference

45:12 | Oct 9th, 2017

The acclaimed historical novelist Robert Harris talks to us about his new book Munich, which explores the events of September 1938 where Neville Chamberlain, Hitler and other European leaders met in Germany in an attempt to avert European war.
The world of the Scythians

24:16 | Oct 5th, 2017

We explore some of the most fascinating objects in the British Museum’s new exhibition about this nomadic warrior people who flourished 2,500 years ago. Curators St John Simpson and Chloë Leighton join us to share their thoughts on the Scythians
Starkey on the Reformation

39:47 | Oct 2nd, 2017

Ahead of his BBC Two documentary to mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, the historian and broadcaster David Starkey offers his views on Martin Luther, Henry VIII and the religious upheavals of the 16th century, revealing some fascinating p...Show More
Tales of war

46:57 | Sep 28th, 2017

The distinguished authors and broadcasters Peter Snow and Ann MacMillan discuss their new book War Stories, which explores some remarkable incidents of ordinary people caught up in conflicts through history
Victoria the matchmaker

30:08 | Sep 25th, 2017

Author and TV producer Deborah Cadbury discusses her new book Queen Victoria’s Matchmaking, which reveals how the 19th-century British monarch sought to influence the future of Europe through the marriages of her descendants
Christianity and the classical world

50:09 | Sep 21st, 2017

Classicist and journalist Catherine Nixey talks about her new book The Darkening Age with Professor Edith Hall. Their discussion explores the momentous changes that occurred when Christianity became the dominant faith of the Roman empire
The Ukrainian famine

41:24 | Sep 18th, 2017

Historian and author Anne Applebaum discusses her new book Red Famine: Stalin's War on Ukraine, which charts the events of the devastating 1932–33 famine in Soviet Ukraine. Almost 4 million people lost their lives in this man-made catastrophe
The Knights Templar

1:38:48 | Sep 14th, 2017

In a special extended-length episode popular historian Dan Jones is joined by Dr Suzannah Lipscomb to discuss his new book The Templars, which explores the rise and fall of the medieval military order who became the stuff of legend
William Marshal: the greatest knight

42:37 | Sep 11th, 2017

In a talk from our 2015 History Weekend event, medieval historian Thomas Asbridge reflects on the remarkable career of William Marshal who served five English kings in the 12th and 13th centuries
The History Hot 100

54:19 | Sep 7th, 2017

Historians Greg Jenner and Joanne Paul join us to talk about the results of our 2017 History Hot 100 survey. We asked you to tell us which historical figures are interesting you most and the final list has provided plenty of food for thought...
Viking Britain

27:15 | Sep 4th, 2017

We speak to Thomas Williams of the British Museum about his new book Viking Britain: An Exploration, which offers a fresh take on several centuries of Viking invasions and rule in Britain
A deadly royal favourite?

31:36 | Aug 31st, 2017

Author and broadcaster Benjamin Woolley explores the very close relationship between James VI and I and his favourite the Duke of Buckingham. He also considers what role Buckingham may have played in the king’s demise
Queen Victoria behind closed doors

39:57 | Aug 29th, 2017

Historian and author Professor Jane Ridley reveals some lesser-known aspects of the 19th-century monarch’s life in a talk that she delivered at our Victorians Day earlier this year
Friends or Enemies? Anglo-French relations

33:28 | Aug 24th, 2017

Historians Fabrice Bensimon and Renaud Morieux explore the complex relationship between France and Britain in the 18th and 19th centuries. It was an era dominated by war and revolution but one which also saw more positive interactions between the cou...Show More
Migrating to Britain

34:32 | Aug 21st, 2017

Clair Wills of Princeton University discusses her new book Lovers and Strangers, which explores the lives of people from across the globe who moved to Britain after the Second World War
The Jarrow March

36:21 | Aug 17th, 2017

Author and BBC broadcaster Stuart Maconie reflects on the iconic 1936 protest against poverty and unemployment. He also describes his experiences of retracing the route of the march 80 years later
Witchcraft through the ages

29:03 | Aug 14th, 2017

We speak to Professor Ronald Hutton about his new book The Witch, which reveals how societies throughout the globe have lived in fear of witchcraft for more than 2,000 years
Icelandic murder mystery

26:53 | Aug 10th, 2017

We speak to filmmaker Dylan Howitt, director of a new BBC Four documentary entitled Out of Thin Air, which explores the story of a double disappearance and controversial criminal investigation from 1970s Iceland
China in World War Two

53:02 | Aug 7th, 2017

Expert historians Hans van de Ven and Rana Mitter discuss China’s lengthy war against Japan and consider its impact on the country’s civil war and Chinese participation in the later conflict in Korea
The Koh-i-Noor

31:46 | Aug 3rd, 2017

Historian and author William Dalrymple and BBC journalist Anita Anand join us to discuss their new history of the Koh-i-Noor, the famed Indian diamond, which was controversially brought to Britain in the 19th century
Living through Partition

26:32 | Jul 31st, 2017

We speak to Kavita Puri, presenter of the new BBC Radio 4 series Partition Voices, which tells the story of the turbulent birth of India and Pakistan through interviews with those who lived through it
The lost objects of South Asia

27:27 | Jul 27th, 2017

Kanishk Tharoor talks about the latest series of BBC Radio 4’s Museum of Lost Objects, which explores the heritage of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh
The brilliance of Henry James

22:16 | Jul 24th, 2017

In advance of a major new Henry James season on BBC Radio 4, Professor Sarah Churchwell explores the life and work of the great Anglo-American author, whose books offer insights to changes in the USA and in the role of women in the late 19th and earl...Show More
The English in America

37:30 | Jul 20th, 2017

Historian and author James Evans talks to us about his new book Emigrants, which explains why hundreds of thousands of English people decided to make a new life in the Americas during the 17th century. He also explores the challenges of migrating to ...Show More
Voices of the Cold War

26:56 | Jul 13th, 2017

We are joined by the BBC journalist Bridget Kendall who picks out some of the most fascinating stories that feature in her new book and Radio 4 series on life in the Cold War
A legendary spymaster

25:04 | Jul 10th, 2017

Historical author Henry Hemming discusses the life and career of Maxwell Knight, an eccentric spymaster and nature enthusiast who may have inspired the Bond character M
Female flyers in Nazi Germany

28:03 | Jul 3rd, 2017

Author and biographer Clare Mulley discusses her new book The Women Who Flew for Hitler, which explores the lives of two remarkable women who became leading aviators in the Third Reich
Children at war

28:14 | Jun 29th, 2017

Historian Emma Butcher reflects on the experiences of child soldiers throughout history, ranging from Ancient Sparta to the Hitler Youth and recent conflicts in Africa
The Second World War

38:13 | Jun 22nd, 2017

James Holland discusses the second book in his The War in the West trilogy with John Buckley, focusing on the years 1941-43.
Jane Austen and Tudor London

55:38 | Jun 15th, 2017

Historian and broadcaster Lucy Worsley shares her thoughts on the Georgian novelist who is the subject of her new biography. Meanwhile, Professor Stephen Alford reflects on how the English capital was transformed over the course of the 16th century
The Six-Day War and the Great Fire of London

56:32 | Jun 1st, 2017

Professor Matthew Hughes reflects on a brief, but hugely-important, Arab-Israeli conflict that began 50 years ago this month and continues to have an impact on the region. Meanwhile, historian and broadcaster Dan Jones joins us to highlight some of ...Show More
Civil wars and Restoration England

49:06 | May 25th, 2017

Harvard professor David Armitage explores how internal conflicts have changed through history and considers what lessons can be learned for the wars of today. Meanwhile, bestselling popular historian Ian Mortimer guides us through life in England fol...Show More
England’s bloody Reformation

44:51 | May 18th, 2017

As we near the 500th anniversary of the European Reformation, Professor Peter Marshall explores how the events impacted on England. He explains how Henry VIII’s break with Rome led to many decades of violence
Queen Victoria’s dinners and Henry VIII’s niece

55:36 | May 11th, 2017

Food historian and broadcaster Annie Gray explores the eating habits of Britain’s second-longest reigning monarch and compares them to the typical Victorian diet. Meanwhile, historian and author Morgan Ring tells the story of Margaret, Countess of Le...Show More
Martin Luther and the making of the USA

39:41 | May 4th, 2017

Professor Lyndal Roper explores the life of the father of the Reformation and considers his impact on Protestant history. Meanwhile, we speak to Misha Glenny about his new BBC Radio 4 series, which charts key milestones in the development of the Unit...Show More
The Islamic enlightenment

35:45 | Apr 27th, 2017

Journalist and author Yasmin Alibhai-Brown interviews Christopher de Bellaigue about his new book The Islamic Enlightenment, which considers how the Muslim world has adapted to some of the wider changes of the 19th and 20th centuries
Historical fiction and a US murder scandal

56:18 | Apr 20th, 2017

Philippa Gregory talks to us about her 30-year career as a historical novelist and the history behind bestsellers such as The Other Boleyn Girl and The White Queen. Meanwhile, David Grann, author of The Lost City of Z, discusses his new book, which d...Show More
The ‘Father of History’ and India in the British empire

51:58 | Apr 13th, 2017

Professor Paul Cartledge reflects on the work of the Greek author Herodotus, who was born 2,500 years ago and is regarded as the first historian. Meanwhile, we catch-up with Dr Jon Wilson to discuss some of the big questions around the Raj
America in World War One and a naval tragedy

1:14:32 | Apr 6th, 2017

On the centenary of America’s entry into the First World War, historian Adam IP Smith explores the impact of this momentous decision on both the conflict and the history of the United States. Meanwhile, we speak to archaeologist Graham Scott about th...Show More
Women in popular history

51:38 | Mar 30th, 2017

We gathered a panel of historians – Janina Ramirez, Anna Whitelock, Joann Fletcher and Fern Riddell – to consider the the challenges and opportunities for women in TV, book publishing and other forms of public history

44:20 | Mar 23rd, 2017

Military historian Lloyd Clark challenges a number of myths about the 1940 German invasion of France, in a lecture he delivered at our World War Two day in Bristol’s M Shed last month
Utopias in history and an environmental disaster

43:35 | Mar 16th, 2017

Writer and thinker Rutger Bregman discusses his new book Utopia for Realists, exploring examples of how to create a better society. Meanwhile, we speak to BBC radio producer Julian May about the aftermath of the Torrey Canyon disaster, when a huge oi...Show More
Postwar occupations and Raleigh bicycles

41:54 | Mar 9th, 2017

Professor Susan L Carruthers tells the story of American forces who occupied Germany, Japan and other defeated powers after World War Two. Meanwhile, we are joined by TV producer Steve Humphries to chat about his upcoming BBC Four documentary Pedalli...Show More
The Reformation

42:35 | Mar 2nd, 2017

As we approach the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, Professor Eamon Duffy joins us to discuss some of the big questions about the religious upheavals that altered the course of English and European history.
A revolutionary engineer and Victoria’s Indian confidant

45:55 | Feb 23rd, 2017

Journalist and author Julian Glover describes the life and remarkable career of Georgian engineer Thomas Telford, the subject of his new biography. Meanwhile, we meet up with the writer Shrabani Basu to discuss the relationship of Queen Victoria with...Show More
The roots of modern rage

43:28 | Feb 16th, 2017

Author and journalist Pankaj Mishra and historian Tom Holland discuss Mishra’s new book, Age of Anger, which explores the origins of the resentments that are fuelling radical politics around the world
The impact of war and a zoological institution

48:09 | Feb 9th, 2017

Professor Peter Clarke shares some insights from his new book The Locomotive of War, which considers how conflicts have shaped modern history. Meanwhile, Isobel Charman reveals some fascinating stories from the early years of London Zoo in the 19th c...Show More
The Russian revolution and myths of ancient Egypt

47:14 | Feb 2nd, 2017

Robert Service explores the downfall of tsar Nicholas II while John Romer discusses popular misconceptions about life in ancient Egypt
The history of puzzles and the extraordinary life of Lady Anne Barnard

45:43 | Jan 26th, 2017

Alex Bellos explores 2,000 years of puzzles, while Stephen Taylor introduces an unconventional Georgian aristocrat
The Battle of Britain

53:19 | Jan 19th, 2017

In a talk from our 2015 History Weekend at Malmesbury, historian James Holland describes how the Luftwaffe and RAF fought to control the skies over Britain in 1940. He explains how Britain came out on top in one of the pivotal clashes of World War Tw...Show More
A history of Istanbul

42:13 | Jan 12th, 2017

Historian Bettany Hughes talks to Peter Frankopan about her new book exploring Istanbul's diverse history, from its earliest days through to the upheavals of the 21st century
The big questions of the Holocaust

53:28 | Jan 5th, 2017

Historian, author and broadcaster Laurence Rees joins us to discuss his upcoming book The Holocaust: A New History and consider some of the key debates in the history of the Nazi genocide of the Jews
The birth of Eurasia

51:02 | Dec 29th, 2016

In a talk from our 2016 History Weekend event in Winchester, the renowned archaeologist Barry Cunliffe discusses the subject of his recent book By Steppe, Desert, and Ocean
2016 Christmas history quiz

25:30 | Dec 22nd, 2016

Join the BBC History Magazine team for the return of our annual Christmas history quiz. The quizmaster is QI writer Justin Pollard
Corner shops and Russian ballet

53:27 | Dec 15th, 2016

Babita Sharma talks about her new BBC Four documentary 'Booze, Beans and Bhajis: The Story of the Corner Shop', while Simon Morrison explores the colourful history of the Bolshoi Ballet.
Historians in parliament

34:37 | Dec 8th, 2016

Historian-politicians Tristram Hunt, Chris Skidmore, Kwasi Kwarteng and Peter Hennessy explain how their two professions relate to each other.
The attack on Pearl Harbor and physics through the ages

42:43 | Dec 1st, 2016

Nicholas Best reflects on the events and aftermath of the 1941 Japanese raid, while Carlo Rovelli discusses his new book 'Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity'.
Arts and Crafts and unusual inventors

51:33 | Nov 24th, 2016

Rosalind Ormiston discusses an important 19th-century artistic movement, while David Bramwell introduces some of history’s most talented eccentrics.
Soviet science and feeding Britain at war

59:10 | Nov 17th, 2016

Simon Ings, author of Stalin and the Scientists, describes how the Bolshevik leaders intervened in scientific research in the USSR. Meanwhile, food writer William Sitwell tells the story of a man who battled to bring supplies into Britain during the ...Show More
The wartime SAS and Hitler’s drug addiction

1:06:57 | Nov 10th, 2016

Author and broadcaster Ben Macintyre details the extraordinary activities of the Special Air Service in the fight against the Axis, based on research for his new authorised history. Meanwhile, we speak to the German writer Norman Ohler whose sensatio...Show More
Black British history and Charles I’s children

1:09:46 | Nov 3rd, 2016

Historian and broadcaster David Olusoga explores Britain’s often forgotten links with the people of Africa. Meanwhile, historical author Linda Porter, describes the fates of a group of royal children whose father was executed in 1649
Reporting from war zones

54:02 | Oct 27th, 2016

John Simpson, the BBC’s World Affairs Editor, reflects on his 50 years of reporting from conflicts all over the globe. Plus, he considers how life for the foreign correspondent has changed throughout history
The Aberfan disaster and women who made history

39:49 | Oct 24th, 2016

As we approach the 50th anniversary of the Aberfan disaster, historian and producer Steve Humphries talks about how the Welsh village has coped with the tragedy. Meanwhile, we are joined by Woman’s Hour presenter Jenni Murray to discuss some of the f...Show More
The Norman Conquest

56:44 | Oct 13th, 2016

As we approach the 950th anniversary of the battle of Hastings, medieval historian Marc Morris tells the story of William the Conqueror’s dramatic victory of 1066 and explores its profound legacy for England
Lenin and the Russian revolutions

53:27 | Oct 6th, 2016

Catherine Merridale recounts the future Soviet leader’s famous 1917 train journey across Europe to Petrograd, where the took command of the Bolsheviks. Meanwhile, we speak to Helen Rappaport about some of the foreign nationals then living in Petrogra...Show More
Historical television and the battle of Flodden

1:00:06 | Sep 29th, 2016

Tony Robinson discusses his new autobiography, No Cunning Plan, and the impact of shows such as Time Team and Blackadder. Meanwhile, Dr Katie Stevenson explores the 1513 battle of Flodden and its consequences for Scotland. Why did England emerge vict...Show More
Women in politics and Robinson Crusoe

50:05 | Sep 22nd, 2016

Julie V Gottlieb charts the progression from the Suffragettes to Theresa May and Hillary Clinton, while Andrew Lambert tells the story of a Pacific island connected to the famous Daniel Defoe novel
Cold War summits

1:02:05 | Sep 15th, 2016

Historians David Reynolds and Kristina Spohr discuss their new book about the postwar meetings between international leaders that aimed to control the nuclear arms race
Poldark and historical TV drama

56:07 | Sep 8th, 2016

As the smash-hit series Poldark returns to our screens, its historical advisor, Hannah Greig and Horrible Histories historian Greg Jenner join us to discuss the growing popularity of historical fiction on TV. The pair also consider the big question o...Show More
The end of the First World War and the Duke of Wellington

54:04 | Sep 1st, 2016

Professor Robert Gerwarth discusses his new book The Vanquished, which shows how Europe continued to be beset by violence long after 1918. Meanwhile, Dr Huw Davies pays a visit to Apsley House, the magnificent London residence of the hero of Waterloo
The Suez crisis and the north of England

59:24 | Aug 18th, 2016

Historian and author Alex von Tunzelmann reflects on the dramatic events that took place in the middle east and Hungary 60 years ago. Meanwhile, we speak to broadcaster Melvyn Bragg about his new BBC Radio 4 series that charts the fascinating history...Show More
The 1920s: Roaring or tame?

59:22 | Aug 11th, 2016

Historian, author and broadcaster Kate Williams explores the key developments of the early interwar period, in this talk that was delivered at our 2015 History Weekend event in Malmesbury
The Cold War and the history of philosophy

56:38 | Aug 4th, 2016

Dr Rory Cormac guides us around York Cold War Bunker, which was designed to monitor the fallout of a nuclear attack. Meanwhile, we speak to historian and broadcaster Bettany Hughes about some of the enduring ideas from Ancient Greece
Jacobites and the Ancient World

59:01 | Jul 29th, 2016

Jacqueline Riding describes the events of the 1745 rebellion, while Michael Scott explains how ancient cultures across the globe managed to interact with each other
Two King Edwards

1:05:26 | Jul 21st, 2016

Richard Davenport-Hines and Piers Brendon, authors of new biographies of Edward VII and Edward VIII, discuss the two kings’ contrasting lives and reigns and their impact on the British monarchy
Paris’s women at war and the Housewives’ League

56:15 | Jul 14th, 2016

Anne Sebba talks to us about her new book, Les Parisiennes, which explores how women of Paris fared under Nazi occupation. Meanwhile, we catch up with Jo Fidgen, presenter of a BBC Radio 4 documentary about housewives in postwar Britain
Britain’s Second World War and the Country House

52:52 | Jul 7th, 2016

Dr Daniel Todman talks to us about his new book: Britain's War: Into Battle, 1937-1941. Meanwhile, we are joined by historian Adrian Tinniswood to discuss the changing nature of English country houses during the interwar years
Battle of the Somme special

51:26 | Jun 30th, 2016

As we approach the centenary of the 1916 clash, we speak to Hugh Sebag-Montefiore, author of Somme: Into the Breach. Meanwhile, Jonathan Ruffle of gbfilms.com joins us to talk about his ongoing BBC Radio 4 series Tommies and how he plans to tackle th...Show More
The Radium Girls and the cotton revolution

52:16 | Jun 23rd, 2016

Kate Moore describes the tragic story of a group of women who were exposed to radium in 20th-century America, while Terry Wyke visits a key site from Britain’s textile heritage
Wolfson History Prizes: Nazi camps and St Augustine

1:09:10 | Jun 16th, 2016

Robin Lane Fox and Nikolaus Wachsmann talk about their award-winning books: Augustine: Conversions and Confessions and KL: A History of the Nazi Concentration Camps
Operation Barbarossa

48:56 | Jun 9th, 2016

As we near the 75th anniversary of Nazi Germany’s assault on the Soviet Union, Antony Beevor explores this pivotal moment in the Second World War
Tudor monarchs and a Medieval civil war

1:05:56 | Jun 2nd, 2016

Tracy Borman reveals the secret lives of Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, Mary Tudor et al, while Nicholas Vincent describes the events of Simon de Montfort’s rebellion
Writing history in the 21st century

57:40 | May 26th, 2016

Four leading historians discuss the big developments in book publishing since the launch of BBC History Magazine back in May 2000
The battle of Jutland and 1950s domestic dangers

54:26 | May 19th, 2016

Admiral Lord West describes a crucial First World War naval clash, while Suzannah Lipscomb tells us about her new BBC documentary: Hidden Killers of the Post-war Home
A Victorian murder and a ship that made history

56:05 | May 12th, 2016

Kate Summerscale, author of The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, tells us about her new book, which investigates another shocking 19th-century crime. Meanwhile, Andrew Lambert guides us around the famous clipper Cutty Sark, a ship that raced around the worl...Show More
Sykes-Picot and a 17th-century polymath

55:37 | May 5th, 2016

On the centenary of the Sykes-Picot agreement, historian Catriona Pennell reflects on this secret 1916 Anglo-French agreement to divide up the Middle East. Meanwhile, we talk to Joe Moshenska, author of A Stain in the Blood, which describes the amazi...Show More
The history of consumerism and Chinese philosophy

51:14 | Apr 28th, 2016

Frank Trentmann explores how our patterns of consumption have changed over the centuries, while Christine Gross-Loh discusses the legacy of ancient Chinese thinkers
Shakespeare’s world and cricket in South Africa

52:44 | Apr 21st, 2016

Edward Wilson-Lee looks at how the playwright’s work became celebrated on a global scale, while Dean Allen recounts the story of a pioneering British cricket enthusiast who popularised the sport in 19th-century South Africa
Student life and working class culture

48:38 | Apr 14th, 2016

Our own Ellie Cawthorne talks about her new BBC Radio 4 series that focuses on 900 years of higher education. Meanwhile, author and broadcaster Stuart Maconie discusses his documentary about the decline of working class representation in the arts and...Show More
Charles II and an Atlantic experiment

40:00 | Apr 7th, 2016

Historian Clare Jackson talks about her new biography of the 17th-century king, which is part of the Penguin Monarchs series. Meanwhile, BBC radio presenter Peter Gibbs tells us the story of how Ascension Island’s plant life was transformed 150 years...Show More
The Dissolution and a forgotten colony

53:00 | Mar 31st, 2016

Dr Adam Morton visits Fountains Abbey in Yorkshire to explore the events of Henry VIII’s assault on the monasteries. Meanwhile, historian and author Matthew Parker tells the story of Willoughbyland, a forgotten English colony in South America
Democracy and an age of genius

1:08:43 | Mar 24th, 2016

Classicist Paul Cartledge heads back to Ancient Greece to explore the roots of mass participation in politics. Meanwhile, we speak to philosopher AC Grayling about his new book The Age of Genius: The Seventeenth Century and the Birth of the Modern Mi...Show More
The Easter Rising and a Victorian heyday

1:03:46 | Mar 17th, 2016

Heather Jones explores the dramatic rebellion of 1916, while Ben Wilson explains why the 1850s was such a transformative decade
Muslims and Jews in the 16th century

57:54 | Mar 10th, 2016

Historian Jerry Brotton describes how Elizabethan England formed an important relationship with the Islamic world. He then goes on to tell the story of Venice’s Jewish ghetto, which was created 500 years ago
The Holy Roman Empire and Capability Brown

52:23 | Mar 3rd, 2016

Professor Peter Wilson discusses his new book The Holy Roman Empire: A Thousand Years of Europe's History. Meanwhile, garden historian Sarah Rutherford pays a visit to the grounds of Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire where she explores the work of the g...Show More
Middle East history special

53:57 | Feb 25th, 2016

Kanishk Tharoor and Maryam Maruf, the presenter and producer of the new radio series Museum of Lost Objects, highlight some of the antiquities that have been destroyed during recent conflicts in Iraq and Syria. Meanwhile, we’re joined by historian To...Show More
Verdun and the Renaissance

51:37 | Feb 18th, 2016

Professor David Reynolds describes the Battle of Verdun, which pitched French and German forces against each other in one of the bloodiest episodes of the First World War. Meanwhile, art critic and broadcaster Waldemar Januszczak talks to us about hi...Show More
Benjamin Franklin in London

56:58 | Feb 11th, 2016

George Goodwin discusses the American Founding Father’s years in the British capital, on location at Benjamin Franklin House
The battle over Henry VIII’s will

55:49 | Feb 4th, 2016

Tudor expert Dr Suzannah Lipscomb talks to fellow historian Dan Jones about a remarkable 16th-century document. The king's will had great ramifications for 16th-century England and is still hotly debated today
The Romanovs and King Arthur

55:01 | Jan 28th, 2016

Historian and author Simon Sebag Montefiore talks to us about his new book that chronicles the remarkable Russian ruling dynasty. Meanwhile, archaeologist Miles Russell pays a visit to Tintagel Castle in Cornwall, which has long been associated with ...Show More
A global view of history

44:50 | Jan 21st, 2016

In a talk from our 2015 History Weekend event at Malmesbury, historian Michael Scott argues that we need to bring the histories of China, Greece, India and Rome together to adopt a less segmented approach to the ancient world
Postwar Germany and medieval CSI

52:47 | Jan 14th, 2016

Dr Lara Feigel talks to us about her new book, The Bitter Taste of Victory: In the Ruins of the Reich, which shows how the Allies used culture to try to rebuild Germany after 1945. Meanwhile, we are joined by historian Elizabeth New to discuss a proj...Show More
The amazing history of Egypt

53:19 | Jan 7th, 2016

In a lecture from our 2015 History Weekend event, Professor Joann Fletcher, presenter of the BBC series Immortal Egypt, explores the story of this remarkable civilisation, from the pyramids to Cleopatra
Victorian bakers and the Leningrad symphony

40:49 | Dec 31st, 2015

Historian and TV presenter Alex Langlands explains how bread making in the 19th century differed from today. Meanwhile, music expert Tom Service tells the remarkable story of Dimitri Shostakovich’s 7th symphony, which was composed and performed durin...Show More
2015 Christmas history quiz

22:48 | Dec 24th, 2015

Test your trivia knowledge with our podcast pub quiz. The questions have been devised by QI’s Justin Pollard
Britain’s railways and the Titanic

50:38 | Dec 17th, 2015

Simon Bradley, author of The Railways: Nation, Network and People talks to us about a British transport revolution. Meanwhile, we pay a visit to Titanic Belfast in the company of Aidan McMichael, an expert on the world’s most famous ocean liner
A history of red hair and amazing animals

44:17 | Dec 10th, 2015

Jacky Colliss Harvey charts the fascinating history of red-headedness from ancient times until the present day. Meanwhile, Stephen Moss talks about his new book Natural Histories, which accompanies a recent BBC Radio 4 series, describing extraordinar...Show More
The Battle of the Atlantic and the history of Spain

57:42 | Dec 3rd, 2015

Jonathan Dimbleby describes the pivotal World War Two naval clash, while Marion Milne talks about a new BBC Four series on Spain through the ages
Shakespeare in 1606 and Olympic swimmers

48:53 | Nov 26th, 2015

Professor James Shapiro talks to us about his new book 1606: William Shakespeare and the Year of Lear, a follow-up to his acclaimed 1599. Meanwhile the author Julie Checkoway tells the story of a remarkable group of Japanese-American swimmers who sou...Show More
The Peasants’ Revolt and a Cold War spy

52:37 | Nov 19th, 2015

Author and broadcaster Melvyn Bragg introduces his latest historical novel, Now is the Time, which centres on the 14th-cenury uprising. Meanwhile, we talk to Andrew Lownie about his new biography of a key member of the Cambridge Spy Ring, Guy Burgess...Show More
Ancient Rome special

55:56 | Nov 12th, 2015

Classical historian and broadcaster Mary Beard talks to us about her new one-volume history of Rome entitled SPQR. Meanwhile, we speak to the bestselling historical novelist Robert Harris about his latest fictional portrait of the Roman statesman Cic...Show More
The end of the Cold War and British culture

59:00 | Nov 5th, 2015

Professor Robert Service describes how the leaders of the United States and Soviet Union – Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev – brought about a dramatic change in east-west relations. Meanwhile, historian Dominic Sandbrook talks to us about his new ...Show More
World War Two spies and an extraordinary naturalist

1:00:05 | Oct 29th, 2015

Bestselling military historian Sir Max Hastings joins us to discuss his new book The Secret War. Meanwhile, we speak to historian and author Andrea Wulf about Alexander von Humboldt who made great strides in natural sciences in the 18th and 19th cent...Show More
The Last Kingdom and Agincourt

53:17 | Oct 28th, 2015

Bernard Cornwell talks about his books that inspired the new TV drama The Last Kingdom, while Anne Curry discusses Agincourt ahead of the 600th anniversary
A year in medieval England

1:02:07 | Oct 15th, 2015

Cambridge historian and BBC Making History presenter Helen Castor interviews medieval historian Dan Jones about his new book, Realm Divided, which explores what it was like to live during the tumultuous year of 1215
The Brontës and a revolutionary artist

57:01 | Oct 8th, 2015

Charlotte Brontë’s latest biographer, Claire Harman, visits the home of three remarkable literary sisters. Meanwhile, broadcaster and historian Loyd Grossman introduces the Georgian painter Benjamin West who shook the art world with his depiction of ...Show More
New views on the Holocaust and 1980s Britain

1:01:22 | Oct 1st, 2015

Yale historian Timothy Snyder discusses Black Earth, his bold new study of the Nazi genocide of the Jews. Meanwhile, we speak to Andy Beckett whose latest book charts the early years of the Thatcher revolution in the UK.
Celts special

48:47 | Sep 24th, 2015

As the British Museum’s major new exhibition, Celts: Art and Identity, opens, curator Julia Farley guides us around some of the most important and intriguing objects on show.
The Somme and the Jacobites

47:52 | Sep 18th, 2015

Historian Andrew Roberts talks to us about his new book on the opening day of one of World War One’s bloodiest battles. Meanwhile, Professor Christopher Whatley discusses the events of the Jacobite revolt, 300 years after the 1715 uprising
Roman emperors and women through the ages

50:25 | Sep 10th, 2015

Tom Holland speaks to us about his new book on the first five Roman emperors: Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius and Nero. Meanwhile, we’re joined by historical author Amanda Foreman to discuss her new BBC TV series The Ascent of Woman.
North Sea oil and the Blitz

1:03:25 | Sep 3rd, 2015

BBC Radio 4 presenter James Naughtie talks to us about his new series that charts the history of Britain’s oil boom, which began 40 years ago. Meanwhile, historian and author Joshua Levine reveals how the Nazi bombing raids in World War Two impacted ...Show More
Killing Mussolini

46:44 | Aug 27th, 2015

In a lecture from our 2014 History Weekend, historian Roderick Bailey describes the attempts of Britain’s SOE to assassinate the Italian Fascist leader during World War Two.  To find out more about our 2015 History Weekend events in York and Malmesb...Show More
Ancient cities and the Norman conquest

55:48 | Aug 20th, 2015

Classical historian Andrew Wallace-Hadrill explains how the great cities of Athens and Rome functioned in the ancient world. Meanwhile, medieval expert David Bates pays a visit to Norwich Castle, a key site for understanding how the Normans consolida...Show More
Crusade logistics and the battle over the slave trade

1:03:57 | Aug 13th, 2015

Oxford historian Christopher Tyerman talks to us about his new book How to Plan a Crusade. Meanwhile, we pay a visit to the University of Cambridge where Ryan Cronin introduces some remarkable documents relating to British slave ownership. 
The Pacific War and First World War black soldiers

54:01 | Aug 6th, 2015

Historian Francis Pike challenges some commonly-held assumptions about World War Two in Asia, as we reach the 70th anniversary of the attack on Hiroshima. Meanwhile, Stephen Bourne, author of Black Poppies, talks about the participation of black Brit...Show More
Ancient thinkers and the history of madness

54:45 | Jul 30th, 2015

Historian and broadcaster Bettany Hughes discusses three of history’s greatest philosophers: Socrates, Confucius and the Buddha, who all feature in her new BBC Four TV series. Meanwhile, Professor Andrew Scull talks to us about his recent book: Madne...Show More
Witch trials and feuding queens

1:06:58 | Jul 23rd, 2015

Historian Robert Poole visits Lancaster Castle, scene of the dramatic 1612 trials of the Pendle witches. Meanwhile, we’re joined by Nancy Goldstone whose latest book delves into the turbulent relationship of Catherine de Medici and Marguerite de Valo...Show More
Anglo-Saxon saints and British slave-owners

1:07:21 | Jul 16th, 2015

Oxford historian Janina Ramirez picks out some of the most remarkable saints from the early medieval period. Meanwhile, historian and broadcaster David Olusoga talks to us about his new BBC Two series Britain’s Forgotten Slave Owners. Plus, this epis...Show More
Regency scandal and the history of canals

39:44 | Jul 9th, 2015

Historical author Geraldine Roberts talks about a disastrous Georgian marriage that filled the newspapers of the day. Meanwhile, Professor Emma Griffin visits a historic canal to explain how these waterways helped to fuel the Industrial Revolution in...Show More
India at war and mining accidents

58:26 | Jul 2nd, 2015

Historian Yasmin Khan talks about her new book, The Raj at War, which explores the impact of World War Two on the people of India, many of whom fought in the conflict. Meanwhile, we speak to Daniel Blackie about a project that is examining the fate o...Show More
Terror in Elizabethan England

1:07:52 | Jun 25th, 2015

In a lecture from our 2014 History Weekend in Malmesbury, Tudor historian Jessie Childs describes how Catholics were suppressed during the reign of the Virgin Queen. This week’s episode also includes an audio version of July’s anniversaries, written ...Show More
Waterloo 200 special

54:47 | Jun 18th, 2015

As we reach the bicentenary of the battle of Waterloo, expert historians Julian Humphrys and Tim Blanning reveal how Napoleon was finally defeated, and offer their thoughts on the legacy of the events of 1815. Plus, we broadcast a bonus audio version...Show More
The real King John and the BBC in World War Two

1:17:30 | Jun 11th, 2015

As we reach the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, historians Stephen Church and Marc Morris offer their views on the controversial king who sealed the charter. Meanwhile, we are joined by the renowned broadcaster Jonathan Dimbleby to talk about his u...Show More
Queen Victoria at home and a new Civil War museum

51:29 | Jun 4th, 2015

Jane Ridley, biographer of Queen Victoria, guides us around Osborne on the Isle of Wight where the queen and Prince Albert used to reside. Meanwhile, Charlotte Hodgman gets an early preview of the new National Civil War Centre in Newark, where she di...Show More
The Battle of the Bulge and children of the Holocaust

55:00 | May 28th, 2015

Military historian Antony Beevor offers a fresh interpretation of the 1944 Ardennes offensive that represented Hitler’s final attempt to turn the tide of the war. Meanwhile, journalist Wendy Holden tells the remarkable tale of three young women who g...Show More
The history of India and a terrible explosion

55:10 | May 21st, 2015

Professor Sunil Khilnani joins us to talk about his new BBC Radio 4 series Incarnations, which tells the story of India through the lives of its most remarkable figures. Meanwhile, we speak to Brian Dillon about an accident in a munitions factory tha...Show More
Wolfson History Prize 2015 special

1:03:48 | May 14th, 2015

The winners of this year's Wolfson History Prize, Richard Vinen and Alexander Watson, join Rob Attar for a discussion about their books on the First World War and national service.