Middle Ages Progress (02:46)
Andrew Marr will investigate how the European Renaissance developed from knowledge and influences from Chinese and Muslim cultures.
Founding Russia (04:25)
After the fall of Rome, Europe shrunk and became vulnerable to attack. Learn how Viking Prince Oleg conquered Slavs in Kiev in the 10th century—recorded in the Russian Primary Chronicle.
Establishing Russian Christianity (03:05)
Oleg united Slavs and developed Dnieper River trade from Kiev to Constantinople. Learn how Vladimir the Great chose Greek Orthodoxy for the city's official religion and built the first church.
Islamic Golden Age (03:45)
In 827 AD, Baghdad scholar Al-Juarismi measured the earth's circumference and mapped the Islamic Empire. His mathematical discoveries are still being used—including algorithms.
Muslim Spain (01:54)
In the 9th century, Cordoba was the second largest city after Baghdad. Learn its architectural and academic features; knowledge and ideas were transferred from Islam to Christianity.
Nomadic Lifestyle (01:15)
Learn how nomads are an exception to the story of human civilization.
Genghis Khan (06:42)
Learn how Temujin united Mongolian tribes to build his empire, conquering China and Central Asia. Starting at Bukhara, he took over the Islamic Empire; 16 million men share his genes today.
Silk Road (01:14)
Genghis Khan's conquest of the Islamic Empire allowed Europe to flourish under the Pax Mongolica and reopened the East-West trade route.
Marco Polo (07:00)
In the 13th century, Venice became a trading center between Europe and Asia. Learn about Polo's journey along the Silk Road to Xanadu; his stories were later circulated throughout Europe.
Black Plague (01:23)
Soon after Marco Polo's death, the disease spread from Asia throughout Europe—destabilizing society and prolonging tensions between Christianity and Islam.
Mali Empire (04:56)
Trade flourished between Venice and Cairo. In 1324, King Musa passed through Cairo. He gave away gold and Europe soon began importing the resource, facilitated by the Islamic trading network.
Siege of Constantinople (02:48)
In 1453, tensions between Europe and the Ottoman Empire erupted when Mehmet II attacked the Christian trading center. Learn about its defense walls and Roman cultural identity.
End of the Crusades (06:42)
Learn Ottoman battle tactics during the Siege of Constantinople and the Hagia Sofia's last stand; trade resumed soon after the city's conversion to Istanbul and Islam.
Italian Renaissance (01:38)
Competing city-states revived classical learning as well as developing new culture and technology, aided by trade wealth.
Milan Innovations (03:22)
In 1495, Leonardo da Vinci produced inventions for his patron the Duke of Sforza—a member of the new merchant political class. Learn how art and science were combined during the Renaissance.
"The Last Supper" (05:02)
Sforza commissioned da Vinci to paint the Biblical scene in the Santa Maria Monastery. Learn how he used Milan street models and Islamic perspective to humanize the disciples.
Credits: Into the Light: History of the World (00:29)
Credits: Into the Light: History of the World
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