For more than 500 years, Rome was the most powerful and advanced civilization the world had ever known, ruled by visionaries and tyrants whose accomplishments ranged from awe-inspiring to deplorable. One characteristic linked them all--ambition--and the thirst for power that all Roman emperors shared fueled an unprecedented mastery of engineering and labor. This documentary special chronicles the spectacular and sordid history of the Roman Empire from the rise of Julius Caesar in 55 BC to its eventual fall around 537 AD, detailing the remarkable engineering feats that set Rome apart from the rest of the ancient world. Featuring extensive state-of-the-art CGI animation, and exclusive never-before-seen footage shot on a diving expedition in the water channels underneath the Colosseum.
7.00 p.m. |HISTC| ROME | the Stolen Eagles
52 B.C. Eager to return to Rome after eight long years of war, Gaius Julius Caesar ends his campaign with a resounding victory in Gaul – and news of a shattering personal loss at home. When his army’s gold standard is stolen, Caesar’s cousin and commander Mark Antony enlists two soldiers, Centurion Lucius Vorenus and Legionnaire Titus Pullo, to track it down. Despite their differences, the two make a formidable duo, and elevate themselves by retrieving more than just the missing standard. In Rome, Caesar’s old friend Pompey Magnus is counseled by Cato, Cicero, Scipio and other old-guard members of the Senate, who worry that Caesar’s popularity among the masses will rattle the patrician status quo, along with their wealth and power. Pompey too has experienced a personal loss, which Caesar’s niece, Atia, looks to assuage through an offering of her daughter, Octavia. Careful to play both sides of an escalating power struggle, Atia sends Caesar a grand token of her esteem, hand-delivered after a perilous journey by her precocious 11-year-old son, Octavian.
HINT = History International
HISTC = History Television (Canada)