Ancient Voices is a unique look back in time at some of history's most enduring mysteries, artifacts and the fascinating cultures that spawned them. It re-creates the inner world of the Egyptians, Britons, the first Americans and the authors of the Dead Sea Scrolls. From Stonehenge in Britain to Amarna in Egypt to a lost metropolis in the American Midwest. Now, renowned experts and breakthrough techniques reveal history's most sought-after secrets. See lost worlds brought to life again through state-of-the-art virtual reality reconstructions, stunning location filming and evocative reenactments. And get closer than ever before to the extraordinary human minds behind the myths, mysteries and monuments.
Tracking the First Americans
Dated from a distant epoch 12,000 years ago, the skull of a human female, dubbed "Luzia," is discovered in Brazil. But Luzia and other similar remains uncovered belong to none of the races known to have set foot in the Americas at that time. Who, then, was Luzia? What astonishing journey might she and her kind undertaken to forge one of the hemisphere's first human 40footholds?
Egypt's Lost City
A century ago, the remote desert wastelands of the Amarna plain began to yield tantalizing clues to an extraordinary and enigmatic chapter in Egyptian history. Temples destroyed or defaced, a radical pharaoh and his dream city violently and deliberately forgotten. But why? Now, unlock the mystery behind this once-mighty vanished city and the revolutionary ruler, Akhenaten, and his legendary wife, Nefertiti, that ruled there. And discover why Egyptian pharaohs, including Akhenaten's own son, Tutankhamun, would go to such lengths to erase all evidence of this amazing desert experiment.
Cahokia: America's Lost City
The once-mighty city of Cahokia now lies beneath the superhighways and sprawling neighborhoods of modern St. Louis. Larger than medieval London during its heydey a thousand years ago, with huge construction projects, remarkable engineering, enormous ceremonial mounds and miles of "suburbs," stunningly sophisticated works of art...and startling rites of sacrificial barbarism, Cahokia was an astonishing achievement of civilization in any time.
Seeking Noah's Flood
According to both the Bible and the Koran, a mighty flood once submerged the ancient world beneath a planet-wide deluge of mythic proportions. But what if the myth flows from reality? Now, renowned experts and their breakthrough discoveries offer a glimpse of the scientific truth behind the story of Noah's Flood.
In Pursuit of the Holy Grail
It's the most precious object in Christendom. Charged with divine power. Visible only to the pure of mind and body. Rumored at times to be a platter, a stone or most recently, a chalice, it's said to have held the blood of the dying Christ. And since medieval times, the Holy Grail has held a powerful fascination for those in pursuit of it-from rank charlatans to religious visionaries. Investigate tantalizing evidence of the Grail's survival into modern times, and see how eerily similar Grail stories persisting across cultures continue to inspire the search for the mystic power-source of this most sacred of vessels.
Traders of the Dead Sea Scrolls
Archaeologists, smugglers, scholars, nomads - all are locked in a race to track down fragments of one of history's most controversial discoveries - the Dead Sea Scrolls. In 1947, a young Bedouin shepherd stumbled upon cryptic writings that had lain hidden for nearly 2,000 years. As eager scholars deciphered the documents, an astonishing truth came to light. The Scrolls could hold the key to both Judaism and the very birth of Christianity. But only a few have ever been found. Join the quest to find and save the remaining Scrolls. Meet the resourceful traders and tribes people who may be the best hope for locating the priceless relics...or the greatest threat to their survival. Witness a high-tech reconstruction of a "lost" scroll.
The Secret of Stonehenge
On a windswept English plain, the colossal ediface of Stonehenge looms as one of the ancient world's most remarkable structures - and one of history's most inscrutable riddles. Who were the Ice Age barbarians that laid out the site's first wooden posts more than 10,000 years ago? What "primitive" technology could have created the henge's increasingly massive stone structures? And most baffling of all, why was Stonehenge built at all?
Riddle of Nubia's Tombs
Concealed for millennia beneath the burial mounds of a once-mighty but misunderstood African empire, the skeletons of hundreds of royal servants line the interior of their king's grave. But was this a voluntary mass suicide-or mass murder? Once Egypt's rival in power and glory, the Nubian Empire remained shrouded in mystery until the 1920s. Even so, archaeologists and explorers have only recently begun to credit such sophistication and splendor to its black populace. But why did such a civilized culture resort to such a violent and bizarre way of burying their dead? And what are its surprising links to modern-day suicides cults like Jonestown and Heaven's Gate?
The Mystery of the Taj Mahal
As intricate as it is enormous, the Taj Mahal is renowned as the most spectacular building on earth. Built more than 300 years ago by the mighty Emperor Shah Jahan to memorize his beloved Queen, it has stood for centuries as the ultimate monument to love. But new evidence now reveals a different side of the Taj Mahal - and the extraordinary and contradictory person who created it.
Aztecs Inside the Hidden Kingdom
Beneath the sprawl of modern-day Mexico City lie the once-glorious remains of the Aztec Capital of Tenochtitlan. From this teeming 15th-century hub, the Aztecs ruled a realm of fabulous architecture, advanced science and intricate artwork. But they are best known for their reliance on human sacrifice and violent conquest to control their world. Why, then, did a civilization capable of such beauty and accomplishment harbor such violence at its very heart? Join leading researchers on a journey from the magnificent past of North America's greatest empire to its poignant remnants today.
The Search for El Dorado
The New World at the dawn of the 16th century, where one tale fired the imagination of the newly arrived conquistadors like no other. The story of a kingdom of solid gold: El Dorado. Now trek into modern-day Colombia in the fevered footsteps of seekers from the earliest Spaniards to the treasure hunters of this century.