What We Got Wrong About The Dark Ages | King Arthur's Britain | Timeline

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What We Got Wrong About The Dark Ages | King Arthur's Britain | Timeline 5
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Francis Pryor examines the relics of the Dark Ages to build a fuller picture of this much-maligned era. Popular belief has always held that the departure of the Romans led to barbarism in Britain, but archaeological finds have shed light on a cultured, literate society that embraced the growing Romanised Christian religion and embarked on a profitable trading relationship with the Byzantine Empire.

Sheep-farming archaeologist, Francis Pryor, presents a brand new historical series which explores Britain A.D, the British national character and the ultimate British icon King Arthur.

Finding new and previously unexplained evidence, Francis Pryor overturns the idea that Britain reverted to a state of anarchy and disorder after the Romans left in 410 AD. Instead of doom and gloom Francis discovers a continuous culture that assimilated influences from as far a field as the Middle East and Constantinople. Through scrutinising the myth of King Arthur to find out what was really going on when the Romans left, Francis is confronted by evidence that confounds traditional views of the 'Dark Ages'. There was also no invasion of bloodthirsty Anglo Saxons, rampaging across the countryside. With new archaeological evidence Francis discovers a far more interesting story.


Content licensed from Digital Rights Group (DRG).

Produced by Diverse Productions.


💬 Comments on the video
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I’m a volunteer Tour Guide in the city of York, one of my favourite old buildings is St Leonard’s Hospital. Founded in 936, although the current ruined building dates back just to the 1100s. It had 255 beds and 70 staff. Surprisingly modern with high ceilings to circulate the air and so reduce infection. Patients were kept clean, warm and well fed. All treated equally. Paid for through local taxation. York was also a place of education. St Peter’s School still exists after being founded in 627. The street pattern and street names were established during the 70 year Danish period starting in 866. We still have a section of the original Roman Wall built in 107. The first Bishop of York dates to 314 shortly after emperor Constantine was declared emperor whilst visiting the city. Although Christianity was abandoned after the Romans left it was reestablished in the early 600s when the first Minster Church was built. So for the people of York, the so called ‘Dark Ages’ are not dark at all and simply mark the conversion of our city from the Iron Age spiritual site of the Brigantines to the place we all love today.

Author — John Willetts

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Did you know that the round table was designed by Sir Cumference?

Author — Richard Severn

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Of course people still farmed and built buildings. They don't give the people much credit if they think 8 generations lived under Roman rule and didn't become a little "Romanized". They didn't revert to Cro magnon man huddled around fires.

Author — vin russo

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We will always “-get it wrong about the Dark Ages.” Why? “Because that’s history- not what happened, but what people believe MUST have happened.” - Alistair Cooke

Author — rico567

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i'm sure that in the countryside the farmers would probably not given a dam. They would continue doing what they did BEFORE Rome and continued after Rome.

Author — John Colley

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Well I guess now we found out how they got coconuts in Britain.

Author — Peter Hessedal

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so many strident intrusive ads this is unwatchable - like much of youtube now.

Author — Andrew Holster

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2020 we are about to be sent back to the dark ages

Author — Incredible Hulk

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The Celts travelled to Britain by sea, traded by sea during the bronze age, through the iron age and certainly during the Roman occupation... Why would they stop when the Romans left?


During the Bronze Age Britain would have been one of the richest countries around due to tins rarity and the vast deposits in Cornwall.

Author — Tooty Nooty

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We all know what went wrong with the Dark Ages: Y1K!

Author — Tom Perkins

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The Comet of 562 AD did a lot of damage, especially to Wales.

Author — Old Man from Scene Twenty Four

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Such a magical production. Full of facts, yes, but also full of hope in the human imagination and spirit. Wow is all I can say. Thank you.

Author — jumpinjakeflash1

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I've always seen it as "dark" as in no communication. Its not that nothing happened, it's that our written record disappeared

Author — Alex Wyman

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To be perfectly honest though, the devolution from brick and mortar construction to wood and thatch, and the abandonment of monetary trade doesn't exactly herald a cultural advance, more like the opposite.

Author — Margie Lazou

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Its almost like people believed that when Rome left people forgot they were house trained... "You people are completely uncivilized and rude.... We out!..." Everybody gathers at the center of town, "now what?"
"Let's take off all our clothes, sharpen sticks, and run around pooping and poking each other."
"Sounds legit..."

Author — melissa jackson

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The main difference between paying taxes to a central authority that calls itself a 'government', and a local so-called 'protection racket', is mainly one of scale, but also differences of law, regulations and established authority and tradition. But they are not totally different classes of things.

Author — David Hussell

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"From taxation to protection racket, is not that large a jump..." - Ace, love Francis and his bonkers mates... they cant help but drip truth into unwilling

Author — Cheeseatingjunlista

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Congratulations on presenting some common sense to the English imperialist narrative. No, history isn't just about conquering armies.

Author — Charley Clarke

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i think people forget that during the Roman Empire and well into the Dark Ages, the people of Britain would have considered themselves Roman.

Author — UCLAJediKnight

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There were two big volcano's around 535 big ones. It was cold a good 10 years.

Author — Lloyd Baldwin