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Alfred the Great

Michael Portillo revisits the great moments of history and looks at the reputation of King Alfred the Great - bold English hero or Anglo Saxon spin-doctor?

Michael Portillo presents an edition of The Things We Forgot to Remember which looks at the reputation of King Alfred the Great: bold English hero or Anglo Saxon spin-doctor?

Alfred the Great sits at the root of English history. The man who burnt the cakes, the man who held the line against the marauding Vikings and the man who, more than almost any other monarch in our history, defined the national identity. He was a bulldog before the bulldog had been bred. But Michael Portillo explores the reality of Alfred's reign in Wessex. To what extent was he a great saviour? Have we forgotten to remember that the most important thing about his reign was that he sponsored the reporting of it in the form of the Anglo Saxon Chronicles? Michael travels to Winchester to get try and disentangle the Anglo-Saxon spin.

Producer: Tom Alban

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28 minutes

Last on

Tue 18 Sep 2012 16:00