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About The Show

How did antiquity’s dreaded devices, the Wickerman and the Brazen Bull, function; and what was the technology driving the Coliseum’s most notorious machines?

Episodes

Episode 1

Ancient Machines

How did antiquity's dreaded devices, the Wickerman and the Brazen Bull, function; and what was the technology driving the Coliseum's most notorious machines?

Episode 2

Going Medieval

Why did medieval religious campaigns against heresy promote pitiless execution methods like the notorious rack, the grim thumb biter, and the hideous head crusher?

Episode 3

Modern Devices

How was beheading mechanised during the French Revolution; why did people think garrotting was a merciful punishment; and what made the firing squad unreliable?

Episode 4

Roman Machines

This series deconstructs the machines invented to cause destruction. Find out how they work and why the most devious devices are often the pinnacle of design.

Episode 5

Witches and Heretics

Supposed witches and heretics had a hard time proving their innocence, especially when subjected to the disembowelment crank or the Aragon wheel of death.