Illuminations: The Private Lives of Medieval Kings (DVD)
with Janina Ramirez
As seen on BBC.
In this popular three part series, Art Historian Dr Janina Ramirez tells the story of the Medieval monarchy as revealed through stunning illuminated manuscripts from the British Library's Royal Manuscripts collection.Embellished with gold, painted in jewel-like colour these manuscripts took months, even years, to produce and were priceless beyond compare. Few people have ever seen them, other than the kings who owned them. As vibrant today as when they were first penned, they are miraculous survivors of a lost world.By using her unique expert knowledge to decode these manuscripts, Dr Ramirez offers us a unique insight into the lives of long-dead kings. From the rueful footnote detailing Edward II's demise - 'I am called the tumbledown king and all the world mocks me' - to Henry VIII's scribbled love notes to Anne Boleyn in the margins of his Bible, we see a succession of kings battling to shape an unruly nation and sometimes fighting for their lives.It's an epic story which spans 800 years, beginning with the unification of England under the Anglo-Saxons continuing with the 100 Years War with France, and ending with the brutal magnificence of Henry VIII.