Neil MacGregor on mysterious faces from a harem in an ancient city north of Baghdad.
Inside The Palace: Secrets At Court (700 - 950 AD)
Harem wall painting fragments
Neil MacGregor examines an engraved crystal and royal intrigue at the heart of Europe.
Statue of Tara
Neil MacGregor looks at a beguiling statue of the Buddhist deity Tara.
Chinese Tang tomb figures
Neil MacGregor examines a collection of tomb figures from Tang dynasty China.
Pilgrims, Raiders and Traders (900 - 1300 AD)
Vale of York Hoard
Neil MacGregor explores a great Viking silver hoard discovered in North Yorkshire.
Hedwig glass beaker
Neil MacGregor with a glass vessel linked with a saintly miracle worker.
Japanese bronze mirror
Neil MacGregor tells the story of a bronze mirror found in a sacred pond in Japan.
Borobudur Buddha head
Neil MacGregor examines a stone head of the Buddha from Borobudur on the island of Java.
Kilwa pot sherds
Neil MacGregor sifts through broken pot fragments from an African beach.
Status Symbols (1200 - 1400 AD)
Neil MacGregor examines a board game found in the Outer Hebrides.
Neil MacGregor examines an extraordinary astronomical instrument.
Neil MacGregor examines a magnificent brass head from the African city of Ife.
The David Vases
Neil MacGregor examines a pair of porcelain vases from Yuan dynasty China.
Taino Ritual Seat
Neil MacGregor tells the story of a ritual seat from a lost Caribbean culture.
Meeting The Gods (1200 - 1400 AD)
Holy Thorn Reliquary
Neil MacGregor examines a reliquary made for a thorn from Christ's crown of thorns.
Icon of the Triumph of Orthodoxy
Neil MacGregor tells the story of a 14th-century icon from the Byzantine Empire.
Shiva and Parvati Sculpture
Neil MacGregor examines a stone sculpture of the Hindu deity Shiva and his consort Parvati
Statue of Huastec Goddess
Neil MacGregor examines a sculpture of a goddess made by the Huastec people of Mexico.
Hoa Hakananai'a Easter Island Statue
Neil MacGregor discusses one of the extraordinary giant figures from Easter Island.
The Threshold of the Modern World (1375-1550 AD)
Tughra of Suleiman the Magnificent
Neil MacGregor with the personal monogram of Suleyman the Magnificent.
Neil MacGregor with a 14th century bank note - from Ming Dynasty China.
Inca Gold Llama
Neil MacGregor with a model of a llama - the animal behind the Inca Empire.
Jade Dragon Cup
Neil MacGregor with a jade cup that belonged a great leader of the Timurid Empire.
Neil MacGregor discusses Durer's Rhinoceros.
The First Global Economy (1450 - 1600 AD)
The mechanical galleon
Neil Macgregor with a clockwork galleon designed for a grand dinner table.
Benin plaque - the Oba with Europeans
Neil MacGregor with some of the best examples of African art, the great plaques of Benin.
Neil MacGregor with one of the stars of the British Museum - an Aztec serpent.
Neil MacGregor with porcelain white elephants from Japan.
Pieces of eight
Neil MacGregor with the first truly global money - silver pieces of eight.
Tolerance and Intolerance (1550 - 1700 AD)
The Shi'a religious parade standard
Neil Macgregor with a powerful symbol from Shia Iran.
Miniature of a Mughal prince
Neil MacGregor with a miniature painting from Mughal India.
Shadow Puppet of Bima
Neil MacGregor explores religion and politics in South East Asia - through a shadow puppet
Mexican codex map
Neil MacGregor explores the Spanish religious conquest of Mexico with a map.
Reformation centenary broadsheet
Neil MacGregor with a souvenir of the 100th anniversary of the Protestant reformation.
Exploration, Exploitation and Enlightenment (1680 - 1820 AD)
Neil MacGregor with an African drum taken to America during the slave trade.
Hawaiian feather helmet
Neil MacGregor with a feathered helmet given to Captain Cook by Pacific Islanders.
North American buckskin map
Neil MacGregor with a buckskin map from North America.
Australian bark shield
Neil MacGregor with an aboriginal bark shield brought from Australia by Captain Cook.
Neil MacGregor with an object from the 18th century Chinese Enlightenment - a jade ring.
Mass Production, Mass Persuasion (1780 - 1914 AD)
Ship's chronometer from HMS Beagle
Neil MacGregor with the chronometer that accompanied Darwin to South America.
Early Victorian tea set
Neil MacGregor tells the story of the global trade in tea - with a Victorian tea set.
Hokusai's The Great Wave
Neil MacGregor with a familiar image - Hokusai's The Great Wave.
Sudanese slit drum
Neil MacGregor with a wooden drum from Sudan that Kitchener presented to Queen Victoria.
Neil MacGregor with a penny coin defaced by suffragettes with the words "Votes for women".
The World of Our Making (1914 - 2010 AD)
Russian revolutionary plate
Neil MacGregor nears the end of his world history - with a Russian revolutionary plate.
Hockney's In the Dull Village
Neil MacGregor considers the state of human rights - with a David Hockney print.
Throne of Weapons
Neil MacGregor with an African throne - made from decommissioned guns.
Neil MacGregor with a credit card - one that is compliant with Sharia law.
Solar-powered lamp and charger
Neil MacGregor's last object in his world history - a solar-powered lamp and charger.
A celebration of the first moon landing and the Welsh people who played vital roles.
The Moon mission that almost ended in tragedy after an explosion on board the spaceship.
Frederick Douglass (Summer Repeat)
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the life and ideas of Frederick Douglass, born to slavery
Christian Carlisle takes an in depth look at the rich musical heritage of the region.
The Beagle 2 mission to Mars
A failed attempt to search for signs of life on Mars