A History of the World in 100 Objects - Old World, New Powers (1100 - 300 BC) - Lachish Reliefs

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Neil MacGregor's history of the world told through objects from the British Museum arrives at the Palace of Sennacherib in Northern Iran. Throughout this week, Neil MacGregor explains the key power struggles taking place across the globe around 3,000 years ago, as ambitious new forces were building sophisticated new societies. It seems that war has been one of the constant themes of our shared human history and, in this programme, Neil tells the story of the Assyrian king Sennacherib and his bloody siege of Lachish in Judah in 701 BC. The siege is described unsparingly in giant stone carvings that were placed around the King's palace and that show, perhaps for the first time, the terrible consequences of war on civilian populations. The Assyrian war machine was to create the largest empire that the world had ever seen and used the terror tactic of mass deportations. Statesman Paddy Ashdown and the historian Antony Beevor reflect on these powerful images of war.