100 episodes

In each episode we ask a leading historian, novelist or public figure the tantalising question, "If you could travel back through time, which year would you visit?" Once they have made their choice, then they guide us through that year in three telling scenes. We have visited Pompeii in 79AD, Jerusalem in 1187, the Tower of London in 1483, Colonial America in 1776, 10 Downing Street in 1940 and the Moon in 1969. Chosen as one of the Evening Standard's Best History Podcasts of 2020. Presented weekly by Sunday Times bestselling writer Peter Moore, award-winning historian Violet Moller and Artemis Irvine.

Travels Through Time Travels Through Time

    • History
    • 4.7 • 50 Ratings

In each episode we ask a leading historian, novelist or public figure the tantalising question, "If you could travel back through time, which year would you visit?" Once they have made their choice, then they guide us through that year in three telling scenes. We have visited Pompeii in 79AD, Jerusalem in 1187, the Tower of London in 1483, Colonial America in 1776, 10 Downing Street in 1940 and the Moon in 1969. Chosen as one of the Evening Standard's Best History Podcasts of 2020. Presented weekly by Sunday Times bestselling writer Peter Moore, award-winning historian Violet Moller and Artemis Irvine.

    Neil Oliver: Skara Brae (2,500 BC)

    Neil Oliver: Skara Brae (2,500 BC)

    Today we speak to the archeologist and broadcaster Neil Oliver, a figure familiar to millions in the UK. While Oliver's television work has taken him around the world, he retains a special connection to his Scottish homeland. One historical site, in particular, continues to enchant him: Skara Brae.


    Skara Brae on the wind scoured Orkney Islands is the best-preserved Neolithic settlement in all of western Europe. Embedded inside its stone houses and in the surviving monuments are tantalising clues to how our ancient ancestors lived and how they died.


    In this episode Oliver takes us back four and a half millennia to around 2,500BC to see Skara Brae as a dynamic, living community. He then explains the mysteries that surround its abandoment and considers the significance of the settlement to us today.


    As ever, much, much more about this episode is to be found at our website tttpodcast.com.


    Neil Oliver's new book, A History of the World in 100 Moments is available now.


    Show notes
    Scene One: A day in the life of Skara Brae


    Scene Two: The great mystery of the settlement's abandonment


    Scene Three: Where did the people go?


    Memento: A sharp stone knife


    People/Social
    Presenter: Peter Moore


    Guest: Neil Oliver


    Production: Maria Nolan


    Podcast partner: Unseen Histories


    Follow us on Twitter: @tttpodcast_


    Or on Facebook


    See where 2,500 BC fits on our Timeline 

    • 1 hr 11 min
    Michael Pye: The City at the Hub of the World (1549)

    Michael Pye: The City at the Hub of the World (1549)

    In the sixteenth-century there was nowhere quite like Antwerp. Tolerant, energetic, independent, vibrant; Antwerp sat at the heart of a busy and growing trading network. After the Portuguese moved the spice trade to Antwerp it became a fierce rival to Venice.


    It was a place that many came to call. 'the city at the hub of the world.'


    Today’s guest is the historian, columnist and broadcaster Michael Pye. For many years Pye has been investigating Antwerp’s distinctive culture and unique place in European history. In this episode he guides us back into the rowdy streets of Europe’s busiest port.


    Antwerp was, he points out, a haven for Jews and hard-line Protestants, and a playground for just about everyone else.


    As ever, much, much more about this episode is to be found at our website tttpodcast.com.


    Click here to order Michael Pye’s book from our friends at John Sandoe’s who, we are delighted to say, are supplying books for the podcast.


    Show notes
    Scene One: September, Charles V’s ceremonial entry into Antwerp with his son Philip.


    Scene Two: The King of Sweden sends Jacob Binck to Antwerp to check on the progress of a tomb he had commissioned.


    Scene Three: Italian merchant and conman Simone Turchi’s luck begins to run out as his past catches up with him, ending with his public execution.


    Memento: A baboon


    People/Social
    Presenter: Violet Moller


    Guest: Michael Pye


    Production: Maria Nolan


    Podcast partner: Unseen Histories


    Follow us on Twitter: @tttpodcast_


    Or on Facebook


    See where 1549 fits on our Timeline 

    • 48 min
    Susan Denham Wade: The Gutenberg Press (1454)

    Susan Denham Wade: The Gutenberg Press (1454)

    Today’s exhilarating episode takes us on a trip to the fifteenth-century, to see one of the greatest of all technological inventions at the moment of its creation: the Gutenberg Press.


    Until the mid-fifteenth century European society had had a predominantly oral culture. The books that did exist were expensive manuscripts, produced by scribes in scriptoriums, each of them taking weeks or months to complete.


    At the Frankfurt Trade Fair in 1454 something appeared that would change this. Among the English wool and French wine, one tradesman was selling a new kind of regularly printed manuscript, produced by a mysterious machine in the nearby town of Mainz.


    The flutter of interest these pages generated was more than warranted. In fact, fair-goers were the first people to get a glimpse of Johannes Gutenberg’s magnificent Bible.


    This was a book that would catalyse the shift from script to print, changing the world as it went.


    Guiding us through this enchanting historical story is the author Susan Denham Wade. The author of A History of Seeing in Eleven Inventions, Denham Wade explains the brilliance of Gutenberg’s invention and why it appeared at the time it did.


    This episode of Travels Through Time is supported by The History Press. To read a beautifully illustrated, exclusive extract from A History of Seeing, head over to the newly launched Unseen Histories.


    As ever, much, much more about this episode is to be found at our own website tttpodcast.com.


    Show notes
    Scene One: Mainz, Spring 1454. A middle-aged man delivers a parcel to an office in the Church of St Martin, wrapped in cloth. Inside are 200 printed indulgences. The man making the delivery is Johann Gutenberg.


    Scene Two: Summer 1454.  A workshop near a riverbank in Mainz, Germany.  Gutenberg’s printing presses are working frantically on producing the monumental Bible project.


    Scene Three: October 1454. Frankfurt’s famous trade fair. The Italian cardinal Piccolomini – future Pope Pius II, but at this point Bishop of Siena – catches a first glimpse of Gutenberg’s Bible. He is amazed at the beauty, accuracy and clarity.


    Memento: A handful of original Gutenberg type.


    People/Social


    Presenter: Peter Moore


    Guest: Susan Denham Wade


    Production: Maria Nolan


    Podcast partner: Unseen Histories


    Follow us on Twitter: @tttpodcast_


    Or on Facebook


    See where 1454 fits on our Timeline 

    • 1 hr 1 min
    Bernard Cornwell: The Battle of Waterloo (1815)

    Bernard Cornwell: The Battle of Waterloo (1815)

    One of the world’s great historical novelists takes us back to one of the most dramatic and consequential moments in European history. Bernard Cornwell is our guide to the Battle of Waterloo.


    Waterloo. That single word is enough to conjure up images of Napoleon with his great bicorn hat and the daring emperor’s nemesis, the Duke of Wellington. Over the course of twelve or so hours on a Sunday at the start of summer, these two commanders met on a battle in modern-day Belgium, to settle the future of Europe.


    For a battle so vast is size and significance, it still has some elusive elements. Historians cannot agree on when it started. The movement of the troops is still subject to debate. Wellington, who might have been best qualified to answer these riddles, preferred not to speak of Waterloo. His famously laconic verdict was simply that it was ‘the nearest-run thing you ever saw in your life.’


    Few people are as qualified to analyse this tangled history as Bernard Cornwall. For forty years he has been writing about this period of history through his ‘Sharpe’ series of books.


    As Cornwall publishes his first new Sharpe novel for fifteen years, we take the opportunity to ask him about the battle that was central to all. Over a brilliantly analytical hour, he walks us through the battlefield, in three telling scenes.


    *




    Click here to order Bernard Cornwell’s book from John Sandoe’s who, we are delighted to say, are supplying books for the podcast.


    Show Notes


    Scene One: Sunday June 18th, 11.10 am.  Napoleon orders his grand battery to start firing


    Scene Two: Sunday June 18th, 8.00 pm. Napoleon sends the Imperial Guard to save the battle.


    Scene Three: Sunday June 18th, 10.00 pm.  Wellington weeps over the casualties.


    Memento: A heavy cavalry sword, carried in an attack at Waterloo


    People/Social
    Presenter: Peter Moore


    Guest: Bernard Cornwell


    Production: Maria Nolan


    Podcast partner: Colorgraph


    Follow us on Twitter: @tttpodcast_


    Or on Facebook


    See where 1815 fits on our Timeline 

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Stephen Greenblatt: The Death of Christopher Marlowe (1593)

    Stephen Greenblatt: The Death of Christopher Marlowe (1593)

    Welcome to Season Five! In this first episode we sit down with one of the world’s finest historians. Stephen Greenblatt takes us back to the late sixteenth century to witness the death of the Elizabethan playwright Christopher Marlowe.


    In 1593 Marlowe was the toast of London. Thousands flocked to the theatres that lined the River Thames to see his hit plays, The Jew of Malta, Dr Faustus and Tamberlaine. Then, one spring afternoon, Marlowe was killed in an altercation at the home of Dame Eleanor Bull house in Deptford.


    The facts of what happened that day have been contested ever since. Today Marlowe’s death is considered one of the great mysteries in literary history. In this episode of Travels Through Time, Greenblatt takes us back to a time of religious fervour, spies and suspicion, to weigh the evidence.


    As ever, much, much more about this episode is to be found at our website tttpodcast.com.


    Show notes
    Scene One: 30 May 1593. Marlowe meets three others at a house belonging to Eleanor Bull in Deptford, a busy port to the east of the city of London.


    Scene Two: 5 May 1593. A placard is found pinned to a church used by Dutch immigrants threatening them with death if they did not leave the country and signed ‘Tamburlaine’.


    Scene Three: New Year 1593/4. The Earl of Essex accuses the Queen’s personal physician, Rodrigo Lopez, of plotting to poison her, resulting in his trial and death.


    Memento: The political climate of 1593 as a warning today.


    People/Social
    Presenter: Violet Moller


    Guest: Professor Stephen Greenblatt


    Production: Maria Nolan


    Podcast partner: Colorgraph


    Follow us on Twitter: @tttpodcast_


    Or on Facebook


    See where 1593 fits on our Timeline 

    • 51 min
    Season Five Trailer!

    Season Five Trailer!

    Hello to one and all! Almost two months has whizzed by since we rounded off our fourth season with Maximilien Robespierre’s execution in Revolutionary Paris. In that time we’ve had a good rest, spent lots of time reading and now we’re back to start all over again.


    Our new season of recordings will begin this coming Tuesday with a fascinating conversation between Violet Moller and one of the world’s greatest living scholars: the Pulitzer Prize winning historian Professor Stephen Greenblatt.


    Thereafter we’ll be off to the Battle of Waterloo, to Sicily and Australia, Ancient Egypt and Modern London, and many other places besides.


    New episodes will be released on Tuesdays and to get the first news of them make sure you subscribe to our feeds on Apple Podcasts (UK, US, AU), Spotify, YouTube or wherever else you get your podcasts.


    We hope you enjoy this little trailer. See you soon!

    • 47 sec

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
50 Ratings

50 Ratings

swadeathone ,

Wonderful

A great format for a deep dive into a moment in history

Harry g c ,

Brilliant podcast

An excellent and insightful show

Sharon MacLean ,

Wonderful podcast

Professional and insightful podcast with hosts interviewing some of the most expert historians around to illuminate our communal history in the most vivid way

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