What to Watch
What to Watch - China
Maritime Silk Road Reborn
National Geographic Channel, Friday 1 Feb 2019, 8pm, Episode 1 of 3
Historian Sam Willis retraces the routes of medieval China’s treasure ships from the East China Sea to the Malacca Straits, and how they still influence modern shipping.
China from Above
National Geographic Channel, Friday 1 Feb 2019, 10pm, Series 2, Episode 1 of 2
An aerial exploration of China’s coastal and Eastern provinces, revealing the lives of both people in the world’s most populous cities, and rural life along its great coastline.
Secrets of the Terracotta Warriors – Secret History: Secrets of the Terracotta Army
More4, Saturday 2 Feb 2019, 8pm
The unearthing of China’s Terracotta Army in 1974 captured the imagination of the world, but that first dig only revealed a fraction of this extraordinary collection of ceramic sculptures. Since then, scientists have resumed work on the site, and their research has turned up a series of fresh discoveries about the warriors and the people who made them more than 2,000 years ago. With access to pioneering research conducted by UCL and the Terracotta Army Museum, this documentary reveals more secrets.
China’s Forgotten Emperor
More4, Saturday 2 Feb 2019, 9pm
Documentary about Wu Zetian, the only woman to become emperor of China. Wu Zetian ruled China in the last years of the seventh century, and has always had a reputation as a brutal tyrant. However, recent archaeological finds have shed new light on her reign, revealing a gifted politician who shaped her country into a military, economic and cultural superpower. The programme examines tombs, palaces and treasures from her dynasty that highlight her skills as a leader and also the violence of her regime.
A Slow Odyssey: The Great Wall of China
BBC Four, Sunday 3 Feb 2019, 8pm
An aerial journey along the world’s longest structure, travelling 2500 kilometres along the 2300-year-old wall from the Yellow Sea in the east, near Beijing, to the Gobi Desert in the West. The programme showcases 20 locations along the way, including the Jaiyuguan Fortress – once the gateway into China of the ancient Silk Road trading-route.
The Greatest Tomb on Earth: Secrets of Ancient China
BBC Four, Sunday 3 Feb 2019, 9:30pm
Dan Snow, Alice Roberts and Albert Lin explore the final resting place of China’s first emperor, a site 200 times larger than Egypt’s Valley of the Kings and home to the famous Terracotta Warriors. Making use of both the latest forensic technology and ancient texts, they delve into this historic site’s secrets and uncover evidence that casts a new light on the founding of the nation.
Blowing Up History – Secrets of the Forbidden City
Discovery Channel, Monday 4 Feb 2019, 8pm, Series 3, Episode 11
Archaeologists examine what lies beneath China’s Forbidden City, and explore the dark secrets that have been buried for nearly 600 years.
Inspired by the above?
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