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The series has now ended but you can still enjoy a wealth of information on the site, from the interactive timeline to historical narratives and profiles.





Below are all the relevant This Sceptred Isle: Empire episodes relating to Central & South America and the United States of America. This series includes details of the first failed English Colony at Roanoke and the American War of Independence. Please note that later historical episodes involving this region will be covered in series three of Empire. Therefore, corresponding episode pages will be available when this series is broadcast.

16th Century

17th Century

18th Century

Have Your Say

We are interested to read your comments about the historical events relating to the British Empire which took place in the Americas. Please complete the comment form below to add to our comments board.

Comments will be included at the producer's discretion, and may be edited for length and content before publication. Your email address and phone number will not be published on the site or disclosed to a third party. All personal information supplied is held securely by the BBC and in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998.

Eddie D'Sa
We are early in the series and let us hope that the BBC will move away from narrow patriotism and propaganda and onto a more inclusive vision. The empire has gone and it is time to hear not just the story of the victors but also of the victims. In Episode 6, the series writers have been bold enough to acknowledge that ‘Hawkins was the first established English slave trader… that he was supported by the Queen… (He) kidnapped villagers… would cross the Atlantic and sell his cargo…” You may or may not know that Hawkins unashamedly adopted as his crest the figure of a slave bound heavily at the torso by rope.

I live in California, a part of the US that was once a Spanish colony. In school, however, we're taught about our English heritage, which always struck me as funny since I'm a Chinese American. In any case, the English/British colonial experience is always emphasized. There's little taught about the Spanish, French, Swedish, Russian, and Dutch colonies in what became the US. Don't even get me started on Native Americans...they're not mentioned much at all.

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