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A History of Ancient Britain - Series 1 [DVD]

Neil Oliver    Exempt   DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
Price: £6.10 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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A History of Ancient Britain - Series 1 [DVD] + A History of Ancient Britain: Celtic Britain [DVD] + Vikings [DVD]
Price For All Three: £19.10

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Product details

  • Actors: Neil Oliver
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: 2entertain
  • DVD Release Date: 7 Mar 2011
  • Run Time: 234 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004E0ZT3K
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,710 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

In this fascinating series, TV historian and archaeologist Neil Oliver (Coast, A History of Scotland) travels the British Isles to tell the story of the very beginnings of our land and its people.

The series traces the development of Britain, from the glacial wasteland of 12,000 BC, through the glories of the Stone Age to the magnificence of international Bronze Age society – following the growth of farming and trade; the establishment of homes and hamlets and the sophisticated spiritual life of the country, including the incredible creation of the monument at Stonehenge.

In an engrossing series, Neil Oliver travels the length and breadth of the British Isles to explore some of its greatest wonders, discover the significance of renowned and lesser-known monuments and reveal how modern science is solving many ancient mysteries.

Contains Four Episodes:

  • AGE OF ICE 09/02/2011
  • AGE OF ANCESTORS 16/02/2011
  • AGE OF COSMOLOGY 23/02/2011
  • AGE OF BRONZE 02/03/2011


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Neil Oliver's Ancient Britain 21 Mar 2011
Format:DVD
In four episodes, Neil Oliver summarises thousands of years of human colonisation of Britain and takes us on a sweeping geological and archaeological journey. With excellent computer animations, visits to spectacular sites, fabulous vistas, original artefacts and interviews with specialists, Oliver entertains and informs. He maintains interest and momentum even though there is so little known about this period of history with no identified individuals, no known events or dates, and the lives and beliefs of the people having been extrapolated from a limited number of artefacts and sites.
As well as the fabulous sites such as Carnac, New Grange and Stonehenge (to name just some of the the best known), Oliver himself is a star of the series, with his full screen facial close ups to add gravitas to his words; his wry humour and his trademark flicking behind his ears of his shoulder length hair. However, his excitement and obvious interest in the people, places and objects is infectious and at times moving.
There were a few worrying moments when Oliver joined "new agers" for the summer solstice at Stonehenge but almost immediately he took this event to a more serious level. Apart from some exaggeration e.g. "this was the greatest natural disaster the earth has ever known", referring to a 10 metre tsunami off the east coast of Scotland, Oliver generally maintains a serious historical narrative.
This is an entertaining and informative series.
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56 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Series 21 Feb 2011
Format:DVD
This is another excellent BBC History series this time exploring the ancient History of Britain from prehistoric times to the Roman Invasion of 43 B.C. Neil Oliver is excellent in presenting this series and his enthusiasm really rubs off. It's amazing to me how advanced Humans were thousands of years ago and the organization and manpower needed to construct places such as Stonehenge.

An interesting series and I would highly recommend this to lovers of history and archaeology.
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103 of 106 people found the following review helpful
By Rowena Hoseason HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
This four-part series looks at the ancient history of Britain and is presented by action-man archaeologist Neil Oliver, familiar from Coast and other factual TV series. Each episode is an hour long and features an entertaining mixture of sweeping photography, ancient relics, cave paintings, mysterious stone monuments, expert opinions and informative interpretation. It's a lazy form of learning; visually striking and often wildly windswept...

Oliver is a dashing presenter, at home with very old archaeology and obviously enthralled by some of the really rare bones and bits which are showcased in this series. He zigzags across the UK as the series unfolds, telling its story from around 100,000 years ago when pre-humans inhabited the land through the whole of the Stone Age to be beginning of the Bronze Age in around 1500BC. There will be a second series to pick up the story through the Iron Age and to the coming of the Romans - but don't expect to see that until 2012!
The first episode is the weakest of these four; inevitably because so little evidence exists from the Palaeolithic era. Even so, Oliver does his best to make the information exciting and he largely succeeds (although maybe there's a little too much emphasis on the abseiling and similar activities). The animated graphic which shows how Britain was originally part of the European landmass during the last full Ice Age is wonderful; it's amazing to watch bits of a continent disappearing under water and the familiar shape of our island appear. The footprints preserved in the mud in south Wales are spooky, too; they date back 8000 years. The evidence for a mighty tsunami in 6000BC was interesting, too; especially as it swept away the last land link between Britain and Europe. After that we were on our own!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Changed My Life 12 July 2013
Format:DVD
When I say this documentary series changed my life I am not kidding. I first watched this series knowing very little about history and flicking through the television channels. Simply put, it inspired me to learn and I am now well educated on the subjects of prehistory through to the Middle Ages, all because of this documentary. I've spent the last 2 years solidly reading and researching. I can't say why this documentary inspired me, but it did.

Definitely buy his accompanying book, and if you want a more complicated and in-depth study of this period afterwards buy Francis Pyror's 'Britain BC' and Barry Cunliffe's 'Britain Begins'. Concerning prehistory, the trick is to start off simply with documentaries and work your way up to professional archaeologists's books. If you start too advanced it'll soon wear you down with the bulk of information.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Neil Oliver's TV career continues to excel with this great archaeology series which focuses on a much neglected period of British history, namely the stone age & the bronze age. This is a great introduction to the subject and Mr Oliver (with great enthusiasm) interprets the archaeological evidence to piece together the early settlement of the british isles and the early development of british society. If you enjoy programmes such as Time Team, then this is the series for you.

5 out of 5.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing DVD 13 Oct 2011
Format:DVD
This has been the most amazing DVD. My children have been captivated. We have had a delight in ancient history awakened. It made us want to go and visit the places that we saw.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent. Arrived quickly
Excellent. Arrived quickly. Very satisfied.
Published 2 days ago by E. Ronald
3.0 out of 5 stars This doesn't actually have the full season on it as ...
This doesn't actually have the full season on it as listed, please edit and state that it covers up to the start of the iron age :-)
Published 17 days ago by raife preston
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
not watched the film yet
Published 26 days ago by eric mcpherson
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Oliver
Excellent and informative! This is Oliver's best DVD and is based on his excellent book. Much better than his Coast appearances which are too much Oliver and not enough coast!
Published 1 month ago by Peter Herring
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
this was very interesting, i learnt a lot about our country
Published 1 month ago by josie paige
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
An interesting DVD for anyone who wants to learn more about our past.
Published 1 month ago by DGNB
4.0 out of 5 stars i love history series and this one is a good one
i love history series and this one is a good one,i have really enjoyed it,i would recomend it to anyone who likes history
Published 2 months ago by anthony isado
5.0 out of 5 stars BBC - Neil Oliver - History. Whats not to like?
BBC - Neil Oliver - History. Whats not to like. Good presentations and a style that is easy to follow. Usual high quality BBC productions. Read more
Published 2 months ago by SherburnInElmet
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
love neil oliver...love this dvd..
Published 3 months ago by ruth
5.0 out of 5 stars informative and entertaining
I enjoy much of Neil Oliver's work and this was no exception. It was an enthusiastic picture of prehistoric Britain with enough detail to keep you interested and intrigued but... Read more
Published 5 months ago by mrs judith cole
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