Ancient Rome: The Rise and Fall of an Empire
Ancient Rome: The Rise and Fall of an Empire is a BBC One docudrama series, with each episode looking at a different key turning point in the history of the Roman Empire.
Factually accurate and based on extensive historical research, it reveals how the greed, lust and ambition of men like Caesar, Nero and Constantine shaped the Roman Empire.
It describes how Rome destroyed Carthage, was conquered by Caesar, how it suppressed the Jewish revolt, and converted to Christianity.
CGI is mixed with compelling drama and spectacular live-action battles to tell the definitive television story of how the Empire was formed, how it achieved maximum power, and why it eventually failed.
Caesar. At the close of the Gallic Wars, Caesar finds his army encircled by a massive force of Gauls but wins a decisive victory with a brilliant counterattack at the Battle of Alesia. An inspiring speech to his troops promising to rescue Rome from its corrupt rulers and restore it to its people raises opposition from Senators Cato and Marcellus.
Nero. Nero witnesses the Great Fire of Rome from his villa in Antium and hurries back to the capital to try to control the fire and save lives. Seneca tells him to rule like the gods and he vows to build an inspirational city of marble and stone on the ruins.
Rebellion. The First Jewish-Roman War begins when the Jews rise up against their corrupt governor, drive the Romans out of Judea and defeat a counter-attack at the Battle of Beth Horon. The future Emperor Titus is sent to recall his father Vespasian from exile in Greece to lead the legions against the rebels in Galilee.
Revolution. Tiberius Gracchus first makes a mark on history winning the golden crown from General Scipio Aemilianus by being first over the wall at the victorious Battle of Carthage. Back in Rome, now the capital of the world, he finds the growing gap between rich and poor threatening the foundations of the republic.
Constantine. In Rome the tyrannical Maxentius consults the old gods Jupiter, Apollo and Mars to be told that, the enemy of Rome will be defeated, while outside the city Lactantius tries to convince Constantine to convert to the one true faith of Christianity.
The Fall of Rome. The Roman Empire is under barbarian assault from Huns and Vandals and Emperor Honorius’s chief advisor Flavius Stilicho has negotiated a treaty with the Goth leaders Alaric and Athaulf but the Emperor has him executed for conspiracy.
Watch the full documentary now (playlist – 5 hours)