Good morning, we are exploring Mummy Forensics and looking at a mummy missing the body. The run time for this episode is 46:17 and is called the Missing Body.
In Ancient Egypt, the Pharaoh could punish crimes in grisly and painful ways. The harshest punishment of all could rob you of your place in the afterlife. Is this mummy that was beheaded? Or was he punished in another way? Who was the mummy? What happened to this mummy’s body? The Mummy forensics team will have a challenge on their hands. Have they bitten off more than they could chew?
The mummified head is in a museum in England. Nobody knows how it lost its body. There are so many questions about this mummified head. The only thing that is known about the mummy is that it was male. Joann carefully examines the mummy’s head and notices his features. There are thousands of ways this mummy could have died. The mummy forensics team will have to utilize all their skills to learn more about the mummy. Joann breaks the news to the team that all they have is the head.
The photos prompted a lot of questions from the team. Was he beheaded with an axe? The neck shows a variety of injuries. Scott will go into the archives to learn how the mummy head came to the country. Joann cautions the team that there will be only so much they will learn about the head. With that said, the team goes off to learn what they can about the mummy head. Buckley gets to work on a chemical analysis of the head. It is the first time that the head will be subjected to chemical analysis.
Duncan works on a laser scan of the mummy that way the team can examine the mummy’s head without damaging the head. Joann and Jill work to learn the identify the mummy. The mummy may have come from the old period. The Old Period is when Ancient Egypt rose to prominence. The mummy was donated in 1877 and was found in Egypt at the site of Sakkara. This was the graveyard for Memphis and where Egypt’s elite was buried. The mummy had a high level of mummification done to it, perhaps he attended to the royal family during his life. The hair, eyelids, and ears were remarkably preserved which hints at the quality of the mummification. Joann re-dates the mummy and hits that it came from the New Kingdom Period. This would be 1000 years after the Old Period.
However, when the chemical analysis results come back, the mummy gets re-dated. The New Kingdom period is excluded and pushes the mummy’s date to the Late Period. This is 2000 years later than the museum’s record. He lived in Memphis and possibly could have seen the decline of Egypt. Other results hint that he had high status and perhaps would have been noble. He was wearing the wig and the work that was done to make and maintain a wig shows that the man had wealth. Slowly a picture of the mummy’s life is emerging.
However, the cause of death may be a challenge. Gill researches death in Ancient Egypt and finds a picture of a person being beheaded in Ancient Egypt during the late period. Was the mummy beheaded? Joann consults as a Radiologist to learn the answer. He points out that it was not a clean cut, as if the head had been snapped off. The head is x-rayed to learn more about what happened to the mummy. There is a hole in the mummy’s head, perhaps this was the cause of death for the mummy. Duncan the Joann head to a museum to find a murder weapon. What will this trip to the museum reveal? How did this mummy die? What will the x-rays reveal about the mummy’s head? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out.
I enjoyed that this bodiless mummy proved to be a challenge for the mummy forensics team. However, the team rose to the challenge and managed to answer quite a few questions regarding the mummy. It is an excellent episode to show to a history and science classroom because of the application of the scientific method.
Good morning, we are now going to explore Rome’s greatest monument: The Colosseum. The run time for this documentary is 1:28:18 and is called Colosseum: The Whole Story.
The Colosseum was Rome’s greatest monument. However, it is now under threat. A team of restorationists and historians come together to save the Colosseum. It was where heroes were made and then broken. Many came to witness the drama that took place within its wall. Beneath and grime, secrets are being revealed. What can this restoration tell us about the Colosseum? What will the restored Colosseum look like?
Rome was the center of the greatest empire in the world and the Colosseum was the center of Rome. 2000 years after it was built, the Colosseum is going to undergo repairs. However, the Colosseum’s repair and restoration are not without controversy because it is a partnership between public and private organizations. Restorers carefully strip away the grime and reveal the colors underneath. Centuries of pollution and grime are taking their toll on the ancient monument.
However, there is a three-year, twenty-five-million-Euro restoration project going on. Its goal is to restore and repair the Colosseum for future generations. It takes time and care to remove the grime. Restoration artists and scientists are learning new things about the Colosseum as the dirt is removed. Cinza Conti is overseeing the project and it is a huge task. The Colosseum will be washed and repaired.
The controversy with this project comes with its private funders. Diego Della Valle is the man who is helping fund the restoration. He owns a luxury shoe brand. He had a dream as a young boy to see it restored. He was inspired by a school field trip to see the Colosseum restored. He is happy to lend a hand to help restore it. Many people across Italy are looking to donate to help contribute to restoring other monuments other than the Colosseum. Critics cite that if there are private donations, the donors may use the images of the monument as part of their company advertising. Diego Della Valle wants to give back to his country and would not dream of using the Colosseum in advertising for his company.
The next section sights other Colosseum-like structures that have been restored and are used by the public for events. The Colosseum-like structure in Verona is one such example of being restored and the public using it for events. The restoration of these amphitheaters looks at how the Colosseum was built. Even the underground areas of these restored amphitheaters show where the gladiators and animals stayed before they fought their battles. The first step was to clean the Colosseum carefully and slowly. After the layers of grime are removed, archeologists can take a look at what the Colosseum would have looked like in Roman times.
The Colosseum was home to the gladiators and their battles. Not every gladiator battle leads to death. Gladiators needed to be kept alive to fight another day. Some referees managed the games and the public wanted to keep their favorites alive.
Rome was the last city to get a Colosseum. It was the project of ambitious emperors who wanted to give the populace the games. Rome had expanded rapidly under previous emperors. The city’s growth was chaotic until the great fire under Nero. Nero was able to implement town planning. Nero built a grand palace in the heart of the city. When he was deposed, the space in the city’s heart was torn down to wipe Nero’s influence away and it was the place where the Colosseum would be built. Emperor Vespasian when he became Emperor found Rome’s coffers empty and started taxing the public toilets.
The next section of this documentary talks about the materials that were used to build the Colosseum. A type of limestone was used and Cinza Conti talks about the limestone. The limestone is extremely hard and polishes up like marble, even though it holds water. What else will historians and restorationists learn about the Colosseum? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out more.
Wow, wow, wow, this is an in-depth look at the Colosseum. It was very well done and it was interesting to see the process of restoring the Colosseum. This would be a good documentary to show for both a history class and a STEM class.
Did the Ancient Egyptians live in Pompeii? That is a surprising question and the answers are even more surprising. This documentary Egyptian secret at Pompeii explores that possibility. The run time for this documentary is 40:25. Curtis Ryan Woodside produced and did the research for this documentary.
Pompeii was an ancient city that was covered by Mount Vesuvius. It is a picture of what life was like in Ancient Rome. It was the most popular city in the Roman Empire. Its fame was known far and wide. How could Pompeii be influenced by Ancient Egyptians? Where can you find the Egyptian influence in Pompeii? This documentary explores the origins of Pompeii and how the Ancient Egyptians influenced the city.
Pompeii before it was covered by Mount Vesuvius, had experienced small tremors over the years. The earthquakes led them to become even more devoted to their gods. This was a hint as to what was to come. The Pompeii people were repairing the latest damage from earthquakes when Mount Vesuvius erupted again. Where are Pompeii’s origins?
Pompeii was founded by the people from Italy’s region of Campania. They settled in Pompeii due to its location of the river, the mountains, and the ocean. It was settled in the 7th Century BC. However, there was evidence that the first settlements happened during the 9th Century BC. This would have been 3,000 years before initially thought. Archeologist Cleopatra Lawrence participated in a dig and discovered a piece of pottery. This piece of pottery had a rare symbol on it and shines a light as to who founded Pompeii. This pottery hinted that there were the locals that founded Pompeii.
The Greeks eventually stopped in the same area and created a city. Pompeii would eventually be a stopover for trading in the Mediterranean. The Greeks moved to southern Italy and established Naples. Greeks from Naples would move across the bay and Pompeii would grow from that initial small settlement. The Etruscans would eventually move to Pompeii and would also stamp their influence on Pompeii. Eventually, the Romans would move to Pompeii. At the start of this settlement, Pompeii would not be ruled by the Romans and would remain independent until they stamped their authority on Pompeii.
Pompeii was the city to live in and was home to almost 20,000 people. It was a place where many cultures came together. You could find Roman Villas, Greek Amphitheaters, and Egyptian-inspired temples. Rome and eventually the Roman world would be influenced by Pharoah Ptolemy VI. Pompeii would have been aware of Egypt for decades. Curtis along with a tour guide Alex Falanga tour a villa that shows the Ancient Egyptian influence in Pompeii. He views a room in this villa that shows Egyptian symbolism. The Egyptian gods are portrayed in Greek robes and Osiris has a full beard. Additionally, there was a cobra and images of temple items found on this wall. The people worshiped many different Egyptian gods and goddesses. Isis was a favorite of the people of Pompeii.
Curtis continues to find little signs of the Egyptian influence on Pompeii. There were paintings and statues found throughout Pompeii. Scenes from the temple of Isis are now on display in a museum in Naples. Pompeii was a mix of cultures and was accepting of those cultures and religions. When did the Egyptian influence arrive in Pompeii? Who were the people who brought the influence in? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out more.
This is a very well-done documentary about the Egyptians at Pompeii. I was not sure what to expect when it comes to independently produced documentaries, so was pleasantly surprised at how well this was produced. Curtis has a very soothing voice too which made the documentary easy to follow and listen to. The discussion on the origins of Pompeii was interesting and nice to see new information presented. Additionally, I enjoyed that Curtis talked about the impact of Greece on Southern Italy. This would be a good documentary to add to your list of documentaries to show to a high school history class. The information is well presented and Curtis puts forth a good argument for the Ancient Egyptian influence on Pompeii.
Good morning, we are going to be exploring Mummy Forensics with Joann Fletcher. This time her team is looking at a mummy from South America who may have been the victim of a crime. This episode is called the Pierced Skull. The run time for this documentary is 46:55.
Egyptians were not the only ones who mummified their dead. There are many examples of mummies found in South America. Joann Fletcher goes to a museum in Northwest England to learn more about her new case: a mummy with a pierced skull. This mummy was from Peru and may have been linked to one of the early cultures of South America. Where did this mummy come from? Why did it have a pierced skull? What will the Mummy Forensics team learn about this mummy?
Joann Fletcher catches up with Mike Townsend who is the keeper of the history at the museum. Joann’s eye is immediately drawn to the elongated skull and it was gifted to the museum in 1913. The man who gifted the mummy as a result of working in South America. Townsend points out the hole in the mummy’s head. Fletcher gets good news; she can take the mummy back to the University of York. This will provide the team with unprecedented access to a mummy.
Once the mummy is in York, the team sets to work immediately. The mummy is nicknamed “Cloud Man.” The museum believes that the mummy belongs to the Chachapoya people. The Chachapoya were warrior people and were famous for burying their dead high up in the mountains. The mummy forensics team will try to learn whether or not the mummy was naturally preserved. In South America, mummies were either preserved in hot dry sand or dry cold air. Today’s technology enables the team to see if embalming was used.
Gill Scott will need to learn more about the Chachapoya people. Joann sums up the Chachapoya culture for Gill. The Chachapoya were suppressed by the Incas, who admired their culture. Joann comments that they were also tall, however, the remains hint that the person was shorter. Stephen wants to learn why the skin was so pale. The mummy is also bound with a large number of ropes. The hole in the head will also be carefully examined.
Joann then presents Gill with the journal of the man who donated the mummy to the museum. The journal may provide clues about the mummy as to where the mummy came from. Duncan works on getting a virtual model of the mummy done. Since the mummy was found in a fetal position, scanning and creating a virtual model will be able to allow the team to stretch out the mummy. Will the scans reveal Cloud Man’s place of origin? The results of the scan and stretch surprised both Joann and Duncan. Where did this mummy come from? Was he a Chachapoya person?
Stephen will do a chemical analysis of the mummy. This analysis will establish where it came from, what he ate, and how it was preserved. He will also take other samples to send in for carbon fourteen dating. Stephen believes the mummy was preserved with something additional because of the pale skin. Joann talks with another expert: Don Brothwell and he will see if any internal organs remain in the mummy. Don and Stephen work together to gather more samples from the mummy.
Gill meets with an expert to talk about the journal and the mummy. Nic Saunders talks about the cranium and how the cranium would have been created after birth. They turn to the journal that was kept about the discovery of the mummy. Nic goes through the journals carefully and then drops a bombshell on the investigation. What was this bombshell? How does this throw off the investigation? Who is this mummy? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out more!
Mummy Forensics continues to deliver excellent episodes to show in science class. It is a good application of the scientific method when it comes to history. It was fun to see how one thing can throw off an investigation and it shows that you cannot make any assumptions when it comes to investigations. This would be one for the sub to show in the classroom.
Good morning, we are going to explore the ruins of Angkor Wat in this blog today. This was a French-produced documentary by Frederic Wilner. The documentary is called Angkor Rediscovered and it has a run time of 53:01.
Over 150 years ago, the ruins of Angkor Wat were discovered. There have been few answers about Angkor Wat in the decades following their discovery. How was it built? Who built it? Why was it built? How did it reach its size? What was the temples’ real purpose? Where was the heart of the city? Why was it abandoned? There have been many theories over the years. Today with technology and new archeological digs on the site, there may be new answers about Angkor Wat.
The episode begins with the abandonment of Angkor Wat. Forrest covered the area, hiding the city beneath a canopy of green. Today it is difficult to understand the city’s scope and why it occupied such a large territory. The civilization that had built it had vanished. Today, a helicopter armed with lidar will take to the skies to peer beneath the canopy to map out the city. The lidar will be able to create a map of what the city looked like and the outlines of old buildings.
The lidar reveals a multitude of palaces and other wooden structures that have since disappeared. It also discovers that the city was supported by three reservoirs. Angkor Wat was made up of successive towns built around temples. Each successive king built a temple in Angkor Wat, signaling the beginning of his reign. Why were these temples built? Why did each king feel the need to build a new temple? The answer may be found in a city miles away from Angkor Wat.
When the king died, this city was abandoned and left in the jungle. The city was called Koh Ker. Today, archeologists study the ruins and can reconstruct the site. A large pyramid was built on the site. To reach this pyramid, one would have had to pass through three smaller chapels. The pyramid was home to the symbol of Shiva. There were a lot of statues on the site. However, despite this Koh Ker was abandoned after the king died. The site was intact for years until it was pillaged by traffickers. The ruins of the site now leave archeologists with a puzzle.
It will take time to reconstruct and restore the statues at this site. Fragments and pedestals have to be moved piece by piece. It was the French that rediscovered Angkor Wat. The archeologist who discovered the site carefully drew out what he saw and these drawings help present-day archeologists with what the site looked like. While the statutes are being moved to be scanned, the archeologists look at the methods that were used to take the apart. Many of the statues were taken apart with dynamite, while others were chiseled into pieces. Once these pieces are scanned, archeologists will be able to virtually reconstruct the statues. About 10,000 pieces were recovered from the site, some pieces are recognizable others are not. It is hoped that one day the statues will be put together again. Mathematicians put together the fragments of the Shiva statue virtually. The statue was the most impressive found in the Koh Ker site and would have been surrounded by four smaller statues.
What can this Koh Ker site tell us about Angkor Wat? Why was Angkor Wat built? What made its people abandon it? Will the mystery of Angkor Wat be solved? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out.
The section on Heidelberg University and their part in putting the statues back together virtually were interesting because of the application of math in archelogy. I guess your math teachers were right about still using math in the real world. I knew the scientific method had applications in history but I never would have thought math had the same applications. I was also impressed with the French archeologist’s foresight in drawing what he discovered when he discovered Angkor Wat and the surrounding area. The computer graphics of the restored statues were very well done as well. However, since it really did not focus on the history of Angkor Wat, I would skip showing this documentary to a history classroom. This could have applications for a STEM class.
Good morning, this time we are going to explore the mystery of a 9,000-year-old village that is hidden under the sea. It is called the Mystery of Atlit-Yam. The run time for this documentary is 48:54.
In 1984, off Israel’s Mediterranean coast, Ehud Galili discovered a settlement that has been hidden under the sea for centuries. The seas were the highways of the ancient world. The seas covered this settlement. As underwater digging went on, the biggest and best-preserved prehistoric site was discovered. There were numerous houses, temples, altars, and tombs discovered. This film documents the story of this settlement.
The episode starts with the exploration on land and then switches to the excavations underwater. An unusual mound of stone was discovered at this site. Ehud Galili made the discovery and was shocked at what he found. He talks about his dives and talks about the discovery he made. He talks about the desire to learn about the artifacts he found. Much of his life has been spent making discoveries and recoveries on the sea. The coast here is exposed and the storms carve up the area, shaping and exposing the new areas.
It was after one such storm that Galili made his discovery. There was a strange rock formation at the bottom of the sea. Who could have built that strange rock formation? Who could have had the means? Roman? Arabs? Phoenicians? A few years earlier he had helped retrieve a bronze battering ram from a warship. There was a trading post nearby which provided them with enough space to land their boats. The site was found so far from shore. The Knights Templar could have built it, however, could they have built it so far out in the sea?
However, during the first digs, they discovered that the site dated back to the stone age. This site, submerged underwater is the most ancient ever found. Perhaps this stone mound was a burial place? Evidence disprove this theory, however, there were burials found on the site. The first finds were the tip of the iceberg. Over the years, more and more of the village was discovered. The layer of sand is always on the move and the site is constantly changing.
Underwater archelogy is a challenge and it takes preparation and a lot of equipment to dig. People from all over the world come to the site to work on the site. One group studied continental shelf. For the major part of prehistory, parts of the continental shelf were above water. However, when the ice melted these sites were plunged into the sea. The finds here have helped expand the idea of underwater archeology. Galili’s teams have moved a lot of sand to discover new finds. They have to work slowly to make their discoveries.
Atlit-Yam is an archeologist’s dream (cue thoughts of Time Team). A well was discovered and the well was twice as old as the pyramids. It was the only example of its construction discovered so far. It has been stuffed with carved objects and animal bones. There was an area dedicated to flint making and over 8000 artifacts were identified. These ranged from flint flakes to tools. I bet Phil Harding would have a field day on the site. Galili shows off the finds from the flint-making area. Clay’s waterproofing ability is helping archeologists.
Additional to the flints, fish, fishing nets, and fishing equipment have been found on site. The skeletons also hint at long hours in the boat. There was flax fiber found at the site and this could be used in rope making. Animal bones were also found including mice, sheep, goats, and other domesticated animals. What else could be discovered about the site? What could the finds tell us about the Stone Age? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out more.
This was a pretty slow-moving documentary that had an old-school feel to it. The narration of the series could have been better because it was rather stilted at times. This documentary would have been better with a better narrator, such as Sir Tony Robinson. Despite the narration, I found this documentary interesting and it provide some good information on what was going on in the Stone Age. This would be a documentary to add to your potential list for showing in the classroom.
Good morning, there is another good group of documentaries getting posted lately. I have looked into pacing guides for the history curriculum during the school year just to give me a timeline on when things are taught. Boy, I feel like things have changed from when I was taking history classes in middle school and high school. However, the guides I have found are a big help and as I prepare for 2024 blogs, I will have to keep these guides in mind to help teachers plan for the school year. This documentary is called the Scribes of Ancient Egypt. The run time for this documentary is 52:09.
Who created the art of Ancient Egypt? This story explores the craftspeople and the scribes who created ancient Egypt art. For almost 3,000 years the Egyptian civilization endured. It was centered on the Nile. Over the decades more and more discoveries have been made about the Egyptian civilization. Every discovery shows people who loved art and were interested in creating art. Where did these artists and craftspeople get their inspiration for their art?
The first stop in discovering the Egyptian Scribes are the graves of Ancient Egyptians. The funerary chapels hint at the love of art. Drawings cover the walls of the funerary chapels and the tombs. The art was created according to specific rites and rules. The tomb of an official is explored. He was a priest and chief butcher in the palace. The images in the tomb show active scenes from his life. Images had to have text with them because it allowed the image to live. Importantly, images allowed the deceased to exist and would allow him to survive in the afterlife.
The ancient Egyptians were observers of nature. Artists carefully crafted the animals and plants around them. You can tell species apart in their drawings. Art was performative. One example brought up during this section was the depiction of vipers. Vipers are deadly and can cause great harm. Drawing vipers make them real. In Egyptian art, vipers were always depicted with a knife in the head to prevent the image from doing serious damage in the afterlife.
Egyptians had conventions when it came to art and these conventions never changed over the years. For example, Egyptians always drew faces in profile. The face in the profile was always more expressive in profile and the frontal eye was prominent in the face. Art had to be readable. Art had to be unambiguous. Egyptian images were static because they wanted to aim for continuity.
A second tomb is explored, and this tomb is a little different. Instead of being left offerings in the funerary temple, offerings were painted on the tomb wall. These offerings were to feed the deceased in the afterlife. The mummies had papyrus with chapters of the book of the dead in their wrapping. The Book of Dead would accompany the deceased in the afterlife to help guide their way.
Writing and Drawing were taught together. Scribes were skilled in both. They could carefully lay out a text and stretch out words to fit a document. Some professional designers decorated the tombs as well and they learned to write as well. Designers not only painted the tombs but they were expected to write the dedications. However, they did not know the grammar rules that the scribes did. There were different types of scribes. Scribes worked for the government and helped the government collect taxes. Some scribes wrote wisdom texts and these were texts that governed society as a whole. Scribes who knew how to write were the elite and the designers were just below them.
Another tomb is looked at and this was the tomb of the cupbearer to the Pharoah. The tomb was unfinished. This tomb shows how different scribes did their work. Some drew first and then painted. One set up a grid showing the person to be painted. There were no fixed rules according to the person working on the tomb. What else can we learn about the scribes of Ancient Egypt? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out.
On the heels of the Mummy Forensics episode where the ancient Egyptians tried to prevent one person’s entrance into the afterlife, this film provides additional context to Egyptian art. This documentary is very old school, it is a straight-up informative documentary. It was well done and well put together. This would be more appropriate for an art class because of the emphasis on art.
Good morning, I am going to look into another episode of Mummy Forensics. This episode is called the Sealed Mummy. The run time for this documentary is 46:33.
Joann Fletcher and her team will examine a mummy that died under mysterious circumstances. This mummy is part of the collection at Segedunum Museum and the mummy’s coffin is beautifully preserved. However, the body inside remains a mystery. The casket was top of the range, hinting that the mummy inside would be from a higher class. The challenge for the team will be to examine the mummy without opening the coffin. Who was this mummy? Why was this mummy sealed into this coffin? The Mummy Forensics Team will have challenges on their hands learning about this mummy.
Joann takes off to the museum to learn more about the coffin and the mummy inside the coffin. The coffin is of high craftsmanship and would have taken weeks to complete. The mummy came to England over 100 years ago and was sent to Newcastle. The mummy inside was female. It is here that Geoff Woodward, who is the curator of the museum gives Joann the bad news: they cannot open the mummy. The directors are afraid of damaging the coffin. There are no cracks that the team can use to get inside, meaning that the mummy is completely sealed.
Joann will take photographs and get back to the team. They will have to be creative when it comes to examining the mummy. This investigation will be a massive challenge because they are not allowed to open the coffin. The experts are among the best in their fields, however, this task may be impossible for them. However, the coffin has been CT scanned and these scans show a 3D model of the lady. These scans will be a tool for the team.
The Lady Mummy investigation begins with a team meeting. With the bad news out of the way, the team begins analyzing the CT scans. The team will have to rely on technology to bring the woman back to life. Jill Scott works on doing some research on the mummy and looks at the acquisition records. She discovered that the coffin was opened up by her feet. She discovered that damage was done to the coffin during this first opening and so this is the reason why the mummy must remain sealed now. Jill learns where the mummy came from and what dynasty the mummy came from. The mummy came from Thebes and would have witnessed the politics of Egypt. This mummy would have been under the rule of the priests in the temples of Thebes.
The next step in this investigation is creating an image of the mummy. What did the mummy look like? She would have had a striking and beautiful face. Creating this face is a major achievement for the mummy team. The image shows that she had an overbite which would have indicated that she had high status. This overbite was a feature of Egyptian royalty. Even with the scans, the team was able to recreate the mummy’s face.
Joann looks at the hieroglyphics on the coffins. The hieroglyphics would have had to display the person’s name accurately to ensure the deceased’s entrance into the heavens. An expert in hieroglyphics notices something different with the hieroglyphics on the coffin. He seems to believe that she had been given the wrong name by the museum. Both Joann and the expert concluded that the name was deliberately obscured to prevent her from having an afterlife. This error throws the case wide open. Who would want to deny this lady a place in the afterlife? Who would really know and understand that an error was made?
Who was this mummy? How did this mummy die? Will they be able to discover why this mummy was handled so strangely? How will the team conduct this investigation without opening the coffin? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out.
On top of being good for a science class and a history class, are clips that can be used for STEM classes. Clips involving the recreation of the mummy would be a good demonstration of technology for those classes. This is also a good demonstration of the scientific method when you have limited information.
This is a reminder that in June I will be blogging three days a week for the summer. The summer schedule will run from June to August. In June and July, I will try to find more reality-based history or something fun, and then in August, I will start up with my recommendations for the school year. Then in September, I will be back blogging five days a week. The final documentary of the school year is called the Egtved Girl and the run time for this documentary is 52:45.
The Egtved Girl is a preserved Bronze-Age woman that was found in Denmark. She was buried with a child. She was a young lady and went on a journey. She is a brave young woman going out on the journey on her own. Her death will solve a mystery. What caused her to leave home? What did she experience on her journey? Did she have to rely on other people’s hospitality? Whom did she meet on her way? What does her death tell us about the Bronze Age Society?
She was found in Egtved Denmark in 1912. A farmer is working in his field when he discovered a coffin. The find is a stroke of luck for the Danish National Museum. Archeologists excavate the grave and take its treasures back to the museum. Even today the finds are spectacular. The wood coffin contains clothing in good condition. The grave goods were high quality and building the coffin would have been a challenge. Why did the people put the effort into her burial? She was buried with a yarrow plant. This hinted that she was buried in summer. Why was she buried with a yarrow plant? The yarrow is also a medicinal plant, so perhaps she was a healer.
The documentary transitions to South Bohemia. Archeologists are opening up a burial mound. Digging up burial mounds is highly unusual in South Bohemia. However, there is a motorway is going to go through the area and so the site needs to be examined. In Bohemia, what was used in burial mounds did not preserve well.
Danish scientists start examining the Egtved girl. They look at the ornaments she was buried with. She was buried like a Scandinavian. She was dressed in a skirt and that was a rare find. The archeologists continue to examine the clothing and there was wool found on the girl. The wool came from far away. The clothing was Nordic in design, but the material to make the clothing did not come from a Scandinavian country. Did this girl come from outside of Denmark?
Her teeth are examined carefully and it was determined that she was a young woman. What do the teeth reveal about the young woman? Her DNA was examined, however, testing failed. One of the scientists examining the girl concluded that she was not from Denmark. The announcement that she was not from Denmark caused a stir. How did this girl make her way to Denmark? Why did she make her way to Denmark?
The Stone Age was the age when things started to change. Social structures started to be established. Crafts started developing. People farmed and grew cereals. They discovered bronze and started gathering wealth. Trading becomes important. Egtved leaves her homeland and says goodbye to her parents for the last time. Where was she going? Whom would she encounter along the way? It was shocking to discover that she was found so far away from her homeland. Did she leave her homeland to marry someone? Who was the child? The remains of the child were burned, however, there are some fragments remaining. The child was between five years old and six years old.
Who was the woman? What else could the grave goods tell us about this young woman? How did she get to Denmark? Why was she buried with such care and prominence? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out more about the Egtved girl!
This documentary was pretty cool to watch. It really went to show that our ancestors traveled more than you thought they would have. The information was presented really well and had a good flow as well. This would be a documentary that I would include in a lesson plan.
Good morning, we are going to finish our series on Alexander the Great. At sixteen he was co-regent to his father. The last episode left off with King Philip’s murder. Alexander seized the Macedonian throne. He campaigned against King Darius of Persia. The run time for this episode is 43:51.
Alexander the Great along with 37,000 soldiers, crossed the straights into Turkey in spring. He has a mission: he was going to liberate the Greek Colonies in Turkey. His first destination was Troy. Here he would have his weapons blessed at the grave of Achilles. He was going to avenge the Greeks and conqueror Persia itself. With the blessings of the gods, Alexander the Great was going on a holy war. The Persians tried to stop them, however, they failed.
The Persians had underestimated Alexander the Great. Alexander’s men were facing professional soldiers, not Darius’s imperial soldiers. Alexander the Great employed clever tactics and promised the cities that surrendered without a fight a constitution modeled on the Athenian Constitution. Additionally, he promised that they would no longer have to pay tribute to King Darius. Alexander the Great was looking to avenge the conquest of Athens and wanted to conquer Persia itself. King Darius would have to step up and lead his troops into battle.
Alexander continued to lead his troops. The Greek colonies welcomed Alexander as a liberator. He would eventually have large parts of Turkey under control. Alexander wintered in Gordian and discovered the chariot of King Gordias. Legend has it that he was chosen as King because he was riding on a cart. It was here that Alexander the Great encountered the Gordian Knot and the legend has it that whoever untied the knot would rule the Persian Empire. Alexander managed to untie the knot with his sword.
Alexander the Great wanted to knock Darius off the throne. They passed each other on the Syrian plain. It was here Darius and Alexander would clash in battle. King Darius believed that it would be an easy victory, relying on his superior numbers. However, Alexander the Great had cavalry and this would decide the battle in favor of Alexander the Great. The Persians had the upper hand in some of the battles, however, King Darius’ life was soon in danger. He had to flee for his life. Alexander the Great was successful because he operated unpredictably.
The War was not over, Darius fled into the desert. The Macedonians continued to move south and liberated many people. The Egyptians welcomed Alexander the Great with open arms. He admired the Egyptian culture and when he took control of Egypt he made sacrifices to the gods and consulted the oracle. His image was carved in Egypt and showed him as the son of Ammon-Re. Eventually, he would establish Alexandria. He would establish ten cities that bore his name, but Alexandria, Egypt would be the most important city.
However, he still wanted to do one thing: conquer Persia. Eventually, his army crossed the Euphrates. He was not interested in peace with Darius. Eventually, Alexander’s troops crossed the Tigris River. Darius and Alexander would meet again, this time on the plains of Gaugamela. Here, Alexander the Great would have seen the biggest army he had ever seen. Over 100,000 Persian soldiers were sent to the battle.
Even with the battle on the plains of Gaugamela turned decisively for Alexander the Great. King Darius had fled from the battle scene, closing the final chapter on his rein. Other cities opened their gates to Alexander the Great and his troops. He was impressed when he marched into Babylon. What would happen when he marched into Persia? Would revenge be enough? Would he capture King Darius? Tune into the rest of this episode to find out more.
All in all, this was a very good two-part documentary about Alexander the Great. It is seriously nice to see a lot of updated documentaries, especially when they use actors to play the parts of historical people. The recreations we well done and the historians were fantastic. This would be one series to add to your documentary list. This second episode did have an instance of violence toward the end, but other than that it was well-done documentary.
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