We use cookies to improve your experience of our website. Cookies perform functions like recognising you each time you visit and delivering advertising messages that are relevant to you. Read more here

A Timewatch Guide

S2-E2 The Crusades: A Timewatch Guide

S2-E2 The Crusades: A Timewatch Guide

not currently available
Add this to your watchlist to find out when it is available via broadcast or catch-up.


Five days after 9/11, George W Bush called his “war on terrorism” a crusade. But can such a clear connection be drawn between the 21st-century jihad and the 200-year-long Crusades, which began in 1095? Thomas Asbridge, who made his own series about the Crusades a few years ago, now pulls together footage from older BBC series to show how our interpretation of the events of 900 years ago has inevitably been coloured by our own experiences.

For JK Galbraith in the 70s, memories of Vietnam reinforced his belief that the Crusades were little more than colonialist expansion, while 20 years later, Terry Jones was keen to share the Muslim side of the story. We get David Attenborough and Simon Sebag Montefiore’s take. And the actual truth? That’s still to be agreed on…


Dr Thomas Asbridge looks at how TV's telling of the Crusades has changed over the past 60 years. Using footage from Crusade documentaries, he reveals how modern political and social change have influenced its interpretation, and asks whether this 1,000-year-old story really does cast a shadow over the modern world.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Dr Thomas Asbridge
Contributor Professor Konrad Hirschler
Contributor Dr Peter Frankopan
Contributor Dr Fozia Bora
Director Edward Hart
Editor John Carlin
Executive Producer Ailsa Orr
Producer Edward Hart
see more


Have Your Say What did you think of The Crusades: A Timewatch Guide?

view all comments (0)