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45 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars English rather than Brtish but superb
I already have David Dimbleby's "A Picture of Britain" (which I've watched several times) and "How we built Britain", so I was expecting a lot from this new series "Seven Ages of Britain". I was not disappointed.

True, it is about England rather than Britain but I won't complain about that when I see the polished and personable presenter visiting Italy,...
Published on 18 April 2010 by Brian Barratt

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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars so very disappointing
I absolutely love our history & really was looking forward to this series, in the past Mr. Dimbleby has done some superb work,but oh what a shame. I feel he left out so many interesting parts of our history & centred on so many parts of our history that you can find anywhere that he missed the boat. He has a beautiful voice & a hunger to tell a story he does this so well,...
Published on 31 Mar 2010 by Ap Nj Dorrall


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45 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars English rather than Brtish but superb, 18 April 2010
By 
Brian Barratt (Melbourne, Australia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
I already have David Dimbleby's "A Picture of Britain" (which I've watched several times) and "How we built Britain", so I was expecting a lot from this new series "Seven Ages of Britain". I was not disappointed.

True, it is about England rather than Britain but I won't complain about that when I see the polished and personable presenter visiting Italy, Germany, Turkey, India and America, sometimes looking for artefacts which are part of British history but which finished up in different countries.

True, Mr Dimbleby is not a professional historian, as one rather nit-picking reviewer told his readers in a London newspaper. But, as someone else has pointed out in these customer reviews, he ranks alongside Sir David Attenborough for his knowledge, skill and manner. We can be thankful beyond measure that the BBC didn't emulate National Geographic and use some unknown "celebrity" in a voice-over commentary dripping with hyperbole.

David Dimbleby has a relaxed natural sense of humour and a ready smile, particularly when something momentarily goes wrong. He has fun when he dances with the elderly but still lively Gilbert and George, and when his face is thrown into muddy water by... no, I shan't explain, but let you have the pleasure of seeing it when it happens.

The episodes might be somewhat arbitrary but I reckon they work very well:

1. "Age of Conquest" AD 43 - 1066
From the Roman Invasion to the Norman Conquest.

2 "Age of Worship" 1170 - 1400
The art of the Church, the Knights of the Garter, and other artworks made during the Age of Worship.

3 "Age of Power" 1509 - 1609
Secrets of some of the most powerful British monarchs, from Henry VIII to the Virgin Queen Elizabeth I.

4 "Age of Revolution" 1603 - 1708
How art in the 17th century reflected the extremist and revolutionary politics of the age.

5 "Age of Money" 1700 - 1805
Art in the age of commerce, the creation of a new `middle' class and the rise of consumerism

6 "Age of Empire" 1770 - 1911
Art and the British Empire, from the earliest colonies in North America to the acquisition of India.

7 "Age of Ambition" 1914 - Now
Art of the modern age, from the paintings of the first World War to the contemporary art of today.

Along the way, we see all sorts of things we've never seen before. Not in a TV programme, anyway. And we learn a few odd snippets of information, e.g., the value of a red haired boy's urine for one group in bygone society.

When it comes to personal tastes and preferences, I was delighted to see the inclusion of Paul Nash, an artist whose work I first discovered in the 1950s. I was less than delighted to see someone's huge heaps of concrete worms and another chap shooting lumps of wax at a wall. This is Art? Hmmm. On the other hand, although I don't really "like" the work of Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth, David Dimbleby's descriptions and explanations of the context are well worth seeing/hearing.

The remarkable Mr Dimbleby is now 71. It saddens me to think that he might not make any more series such as this, but who knows? He's a lovely chap.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best tv for a long time, 28 Mar 2010
By 
J. O'connor "JJ" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
David Dimbleby's passion and personality is the icing on the cake for a beautiful, informative, riveting series looking at choice morsels of British art through the ages. The editing of such a vast subject into seven distinct chapters of our history must have been a huge job, and the finished product, succinct, beautifully filmed (the camera dances in such beautiful sync with David, leading us like excited children into the artworks, causing the camera itself to become a piece of the art it so wonderfully presents), with a gorgeous soundtrack, and finished with the presenters witty, vibrant narration, is my television highlight of the year.

WATCH IT!!!
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67 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More of the same Dave but crumbs the series is not over yet !!, 8 Feb 2010
By 
Mr. P. J. R. LEWIS (Llandudno N Wales) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
This is one BBc series that i am quite amazed is already available for purchase on DVD.

I am writing this on Monday 8th February a day after only the second episode was aired.

So far it has been one of the most impressive programmes on Britains past history that i have seen in many a year.

Mr Dimbleby has the perfect manner for presentation with an enthusiasm that is almost on par with the great David Attenborough.

The second episode on Heraldic Chivalry and the early middle ages was supream and the manuscripts and illuminated Bibles he showed were superb.

I thought his attempt on stained glass restoration was most interesting and his involvement of members of the public however it was camera staged brought something new and entertaining to this quality series.

I had heard of Pilgrim Tokens bought by Chaucers friends on their pilgrimage to Cantubury in his famous tails but seeing them there in the cloisters of Cantubury after an apsense of 700 years brought great meaning to the whole programme.

The crown worn by the Queen to King Richard 11 held in a very secure strongroom in Germany of all places was stunning.

The longsword handled and owned by King Edward 3rd and used in hand to hand combat was one of the highlites of episode two.

I can go on and on about this series but Sunday evenings at 9pm BBc1 are now a thing of excitement and expectation.

More of the same Dave.

I cannot write anything about the rest of the series because nobody in the Uk has yet seen it but this is one DVD that is a must purchase and i realise they want to maximise it's selling impact but the series is so good

A small update to my review is now called for.

Every episode of this remarkable series has been of the highest quality.

After episode 1+2 one would have thought it would have been extreamly difficult to improve on content and viewer interest.

David must have had a team of very talented researchers gathering information on such a long period in Britains history.

The recent edition highliting William Penn and Pensylvania and the empires in the East especially India were magnificent in their detail and analysis.

This has been a series of incredible diversity and interest, and one we must thank Mr Dimbley for making it.

Trully magnificent and impossible to find any fault throughout it's broadcast, which today is a rarity indeed.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars SEVEN AGES OF ENGLAND - not Britain!, 6 Oct 2010
By 
Karl Thorsson (Reykjavk, Iceland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
Brilliantly executed, fascinating mostly, enlightening and entertaining. The last chapter became a bit tedious and painful to watch because more emphasis is placed on art than on history. Ultimately, the title of this series should be SEVEN AGES OF ENGLAND, as no attention is devoted to the non-English parts of Britain.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Magnificent Triumph, 21 Mar 2010
By 
This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
By turn, epic in scope, fascinating, beautiful, moving -- even a little provocative... A splendid presentation by the delightful and charming Mr David Dimbleby. An experience and learning to be savored many times over. Thank you David!
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top notch television, 1 Mar 2010
By 
Mr. A. Whiteside "tonyjackie3" (uk) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
As I write this, there are still a couple of episodes left to go in this excellent series. If they are up to the standard of the previous episodes, which I'm sure they will be, then five stars is richly deserved.

In basic terms, this is a guide through the history of Britain and it has a very good host in David Dimbleby. He is enthusiastic without being over the top and presents in an engaging and educational manner. Seven Ages Of Britain [DVD] is a programme where you can really learn plenty about the place that you live and what has impressed me the most is the overall style of the series. It is beautifully filmed and the views inside St Paul's Cathedral just made me want to go there and visit. Another standout are the works of art that are shown and these are again talked about in an extremely interesting way. Many treasures are also seen and one example was the longsword used by King Edward 3rd which was a rare chance to see such an item.

This is high quality television with a host that suits the series totally. I do feel that it is a series that could be watched over and over again as it is so good to look at. Highly recommended.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars so very disappointing, 31 Mar 2010
By 
Ap Nj Dorrall "nicky0512" (plymouth,devon) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
I absolutely love our history & really was looking forward to this series, in the past Mr. Dimbleby has done some superb work,but oh what a shame. I feel he left out so many interesting parts of our history & centred on so many parts of our history that you can find anywhere that he missed the boat. He has a beautiful voice & a hunger to tell a story he does this so well, but left me disappointed. And what is with all the art in the last couple of episodes, i thought he'd already done a series that incorporated art. I would have liked more about the kings & queens that aren't so well known but who gave much to our history, and in the final installment, with WWI1 to the present day, couldn't we have had more about may be the north south divide or the history of coal mining perhaps. Our country used to be so diverse, this is part of our historical age.The final installment was so engrossed about art, i felt that we were watching only what he liked & forgot about us viewers. I hope he doesn't give up on these wonderful series i know he can make, but i hope it's a bit better & informative.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars When it's good it's outstanding...but..., 25 Mar 2010
By 
J. L. Edwards "Jon731" (Cardiff) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
David Dimbleby is likeable and authoratitive, and he's got enthusiasm to burn on the subject. But the subject is the problem. When it is good, you get to see history to amaze you : incredibly ornate crowns, majestic tombs, and such wonders as artefacts in astonishing condition from the Mary Rose. I'd give it 7 stars when it is like that. But then the focus on art takes up almost all of Episode 7 (The Age of Ambition) (I may be wrong, but there seemed to be more time on modern art than World War I and World War II). Modern art may be worth a mention in the series (even if all modern art is rubbish-controversial, but also true), but an hour of it?! And during certain earlier episodes you do wonder if the series has become, "The Seven Ages of Art in Britain". I'm sorry, but what normal person in Britain has any real connection with modern art? And the start with modern art to episode 7 may be intended to start discussion, but I don't want to see rubbish. So I don't see that the focus on art in episode 7 was at all justified. I'd give that part 2.5 stars. so overall, 4.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Series, 26 Jun 2010
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This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
This DVD follows well in the footsteps of David's previous DVDs. The story of the Seven Ages of Britain is very well written and told in a style unique to Dimbleby. The production and photograph is first class as it is with his other documentaries, "A Picture of Britain" and "How we Built Britain" - they are both educational and entertaining - in short they are superb.

This documentary is not so much about the history of Britain as the conflicts, confidence, culture, art and creativity that defined the ages You will see images and relics in this series that that you won't have seen before. I especially like the way he immerses himself in the stories he is telling, from describing the oldest bible in the world, wielding King Edward's heavy sword, to describing the intricate detail contained in the Day of Judgement paintings high in the vaults of a cathedral.

One of the best artefacts of the middle ages has to be the gold grown of Richard II's wife that has survived and is held in Germany - his intricate and detailed description is personal as it is riveting. Nothing is presented in a perfunctory manner - each 'exhibit' is there to capture the essence of his theory of the Seven ages of Britain.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Britain!, 22 July 2013
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This review is from: Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] (DVD)
I watched the series on TV and I bought the DVD for my father who lives in South Africa. It's a well produced DVD presented by David Dimbleby and I can highly recommend watching the DVD. It's historical, it's interesting and I couldn't wait to watch the next series, but how lovely to have all the episodes on one DVD!
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Seven Ages of Britain [DVD]
Seven Ages of Britain [DVD] by David Dimbleby (DVD - 2010)
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