Eight Days That Made Rome
Eight Days That Made Rome is a docu-drama that leaves behind the conventional chronologies of Rome’s thousand-year history and brings razor-sharp focus to eight days that created, tested and defined its greatness.
Part 1: Eight Days that Made Rome Part 7: Theatre of Death
Bettany Hughes explores the day in 80AD when the Colosseum opened its gates for the first time. For new emperor Titus, the spectacular games and events were an opportunity to win over the people and secure his place on the imperial throne, but why did the Romans – cultured and civilised in so many ways – enjoy witnessing such brutality and bloodletting? Bettany travels across the Roman world in a bid to find answers.
Part 2: Eight Days that Made Rome Part 8: The Rebirth of Rome
In the final part of the series Bettany Hughes recalls the time that marked Rome’s symbolic break with its 1,000-year pagan past – the day in 337AD that Emperor Constantine the Great was baptised a Christian. It was a moment of profound significance not just for the empire, but for the history of the world and one of its major religions. Constantine was one of the last great Roman emperors to rule over a united empire, giving it a new capital – Constantinople, today known as Istanbul – a city which would one day eclipse Rome as the greatest city on Earth.