A History of the World in 100 Objects

Welcome to A History of the World. Below you can find all 100 episodes in the series. Although the series has ended, you can continue to listen to the episodes on this page or download them to keep on your computer or mp3 player by following the links on

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100 Solar-powered lamp and charger 22 Oct 2010
A lamp that runs off sunlight. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, looks at the final object in the series: a solar-powered lamp with a charger that can bring cheap light and power to people around the world with no access to the electric grid. Simple, cheap and clean – is this the revolutionary technology of our future? With contributions from Aloka Sarder, a mother and adult student in West Bengal, and Nick Stern, expert on the economics of climate change.
Dátum: 2012-04-12 Idő: 15:00:00
A History of the World Special 18 May 2011
A lamp that runs off sunlight. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, looks at the final object in the series: a solar-powered lamp with a charger that can bring cheap light and power to people around the world with no access to the electric grid. Simple, cheap and clean – is this the revolutionary technology of our future? With contributions from Aloka Sarder, a mother and adult student in West Bengal, and Nick Stern, expert on the economics of climate change.
Dátum: 2011-05-19 Idő: 17:08:00
098 Throne of Weapons 20 Oct 2010
Chair made from decommissioned guns. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, explores the impact of weapons on the modern world by examining a sculptured throne made from decommissioned guns. The weapons are remnants of the Mozambique civil war - a conflict that claimed almost one million lives. With contributions by the artist, Kester, and former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan.
Dátum: 2010-10-22 Idő: 10:00:00
097 Hockney's In the Dull Village 19 Oct 2010
Print by the British artist David Hockney. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, explores the sexual revolution of the 1960s through a print by David Hockney which shows two men in bed together. The work was one of a series created as the British government was planning to decriminalise sex between male partners over the age of 21. Including contributions by the artist himself and Shami Chakrabarti, director of the human rights group Liberty.
Dátum: 2010-10-21 Idő: 10:00:00
096 Russian revolutionary plate 18 Oct 2010
Decorated plate from St Petersburg. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, explores the Russian Revolution by looking at a plate painted with propaganda for the new Communist state. The plate was made at the Imperial Porcelain Factory, St Petersburg, in 1901 but was decorated 20 years later in the same factory, which had become the State Porcelain Factory in the newly-named city of Petrograd. With contributions by Mikhail Piotrovsky and Eric Hobsbawn.
Dátum: 2010-10-20 Idő: 10:00:00
095 Suffragette-defaced penny 15 Oct 2010
A defaced coin from 1903. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, explores the rise of mass political engagement in Britain and the emergence of the suffragettes by examining a penny coin, on which the image of Edward VII has been defaced with the words Votes for women. With contributions from Helena Kennedy QC and the artist Felicity Powell.
Dátum: 2010-10-19 Idő: 10:00:00
094 Sudanese slit drum 14 Oct 2010
A wooden drum from central Africa. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, examines a buffalo-shaped drum from Sudan which was played in a court orchestra and used to transmit messages or summon warriors to war. The drum was captured by the British and Egyptian army at the Battle of Omdurman, near Khartoum, in 1898 and presented to Queen Victoria by Lord Kitchener.
Dátum: 2010-10-18 Idő: 10:00:00
093 Hokusai's The Great Wave 13 Oct 2010
Hokusai woodblock print. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, examines The Great Wave by Hokusai, one of the defining images of the power of the sea. He discovers its production initiated a wider awareness of Japanese art and became emblematic of the opening up of the country in the second half of the 19th century. With contributions by Donald Keene and Christine Guth.
Dátum: 2010-10-15 Idő: 10:00:00
092 Early Victorian Tea Set 12 Oct 2010
Wedgwood pottery tea set. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, looks at the history of Britains relationship with tea by examining an early Victorian stoneware set made by the Staffordshire pottery firm of Wedgwood. He discovers how mass-produced pottery and porcelain popularised the beverage. With contributions by Celina Fox and Monique Simmonds.
Dátum: 2010-10-14 Idő: 10:00:00
091 Ship's chronometer from HMS Beagle 11 Oct 2010
A 19th century chronometer. Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, looks at an instrument that first helped Europeans to navigate with precision around the world - a marine chronometer. In particular the chronometer that accompanied Charles Darwin on his historic voyage around the world on board HMS Beagle. With contributions by geographer Nigel Thrift and geneticist Steve Jones.
Dátum: 2010-10-13 Idő: 10:00:00