Sorry, this episode is not currently available

Lost Kings of the Desert

First transmitted in 1979, Professor Colin Renfrew examines the forgotten city of Hatra. The programme examines how this stone metropolis retained its buildings, unlike the mud-bricked city of Nineveh, which is now just a large mound or 'tell'. Renfrew visits the reconstructed gates and figures of winged bull-men that are all that is left of Nineveh, before illustrating the extraordinary society that existed at Hatra, which was influenced by the Romans yet remained independent.

Release date:

50 minutes

Last on

Fri 19 Jul 1991 10:10
BBC Two except East, South East, Yorkshire

Did You Know?

Now known as al-Hadr, the 'forgotten city' of Hatra has been a Unesco World Heritage Site since 1985. In 2008, a Unesco mission visited and found some evidence of damage that had been done during the Second Gulf War. This was the same year that a team from the British Museum also visited archaeological sites in southern Iraq to assess damage with Iraqi colleagues.


Archive programmes available on iPlayer reflect the broadcast standards and attitudes of their time, which may not accord to some current BBC editorial guidelines. We aim to select programmes which can be shown in their entirety but in some cases edits are required. In these cases, edits are kept to a minimum and are made only for technical reasons.


Role Contributor
PresenterProfessor Colin Renfrew
NarratorRene Cutforth
ParticipantDr Majid Al Shams
ProducerRobin Bootle
Costume SupervisorBruce Norman

Featured in...

Chronicle: Archaeology on Television Collection

Archaelogy Collection

This programme is online as part of the Chronicle: Archaeology on Television Collection.