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New Discovery

New Discovery: Gone Medieval

A podcast that tackles a much misunderstood period with class

11:00 AM GMT on February 22, 2024

    Gone Medieval is History Hit’s offering on what is, for my money, the most fascinating period in human history. From the 5th to the 15th centuries Gone Medieval covers the wars, intrigue and dynasties - as well as the lives of ordinary people - from the millennium often known as the dark ages. It covers ground both familiar and obscure with recent episodes featuring discussion on King Arthur’s sex life and how everyday people built medieval Japan, as well as a miniseries on 1066 featuring profiles of the three main players and an episode on the battle itself.

    The podcast makes neat work of an issue that often plagues the history charts - historians. Unlike Tides of History (another favourite of mine), where guests often feel picked more for their expertise than their listenability, Gone Medieval’s interviewees are almost always erudite and engaging, making thousand year events feel present and urgent. Not to mention the work of Dr Eleanor Janega and Matt Lewis, who are just as comfortable leading a guest through their field of expertise as they are telling the story themselves.

    Gone Medieval is pitched very well. It respects the intelligence of its audience and never dumbs anything down. Yet, by taking a generalist approach to around a thousand years of global history, the show recognises most of its topics are going to be new-ish to most of its listeners, and adjusts accordingly. All this leads to a podcast that’s extremely easy to recommend. If you know your crusades from your conclaves, this is one for you.

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