The first day of the Battle of the Somme became immortalised in British history as the worst day of the war, in which a staggering 57,000 men became casualties, most of them in the first few hours of the attack. Find out how the meticulous planning went so badly wrong.
Follow the sequence of tragic events that dragged Europe into war in the summer of 1914, leading to six months of disastrous offensives and massive casualties on all sides. We track events from France to East Prussia, Africa and the Pacific to reveal the war's truly global scale.
In the second part of our blow-by-blow account of World War One, follow the dramatic and bloody events of 1915, as Zeppelins are unleashed against England, and the Allies make a string of futile assaults along the Western Front. On the Eastern Front, the Russians begin a retreat, while in the Balkans Bulgaria enters the war and Serbia is overrun.
The third part of our history of World War One covers the giant battles of 1916, including the infamous Battle of Verdun, the Somme Offensive, and Russia's Brusilov Offensive. In the Middle East, the British and French sign the notorious Sykes-Picot Agreement, while in the Balkans, Romania joins the Allies, but soon finds itself fighting for survival.
In the final part of our history of World War One, Germany's Spring Offensive comes close to success on the Western Front, but as American troops arrive in Europe in force, the tide turns and German troops are soon in retreat. One by one, the Central Powers topple, and surrender, paving the way for a peace conference at Versailles.
In 1815, eight miles south of Brussels, two of history's greatest generals met in battle for the first and only time: Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of the French, and the Duke of Wellington. The result was an epic and brutal struggle that shaped the course of European history.
The first episode in a three-part history of Russia traces the origins of modern Russia and Ukraine among Slavic tribes, Viking raiders, and the medieval kingdom of Kievan Rus. Mongol hordes brought death and destruction, but under the first Tsars, a strong Russian state slowly emerged.
Part 2 covers Russian history from 1612 to 1762, and takes the story on from Russia's 'Time of Troubles' to the first Romanovs, who imposed serfdom on the peasants, fought back against the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, and oversaw religious reforms that split the Orthodox Church. Peter the Great then modernised the Russian state, defeated Sweden in the Great Northern War, and built a new capital at St.Petersburg.
Part 3 chronicles the reign of Catherine the Great, one of Russian history's most celebrated figures. Under her reign Russia greatly expanded its territory and witnessed a cultural golden age, but the French Revolution persuaded her to abandon attempts at liberal reform. After the brutal murder of Catherine's son Emperor Paul, Alexander I defeated Napoleon in one of Russia's greatest military victories.
Part 4 begins with the Decembrist Revolt - a coup launched by a secret society of army officers, that nearly dethroned the new emperor, Nicholas I. But he survived, and during his reign Russia continued to expand south at the expense of Persia and the Ottoman Empire. But defeat in the Crimean War encouraged his son, Alexander II, to embark on a bold programme of reforms...
Find out how Edward Thatch (or Edward Teach), better known as Blackbeard, became the most dreaded real-life pirate of the Caribbean.
Part 1. A detailed timeline of America's presidents from George Washington to Grover Cleveland. The presidents' rankings are based on a 2010 survey by the Siena Research Institute.
Part 2. A detailed timeline of America's presidents from Benjamin Harrison to Barack Obama. The presidents' rankings are based on a 2010 survey by the Siena Research Institute.