Ardal O’Hanlon: Tomb Raider 2 August 2022: Tuesday on BBC Four
The story of an epic 1930s quest to find the origins of the earliest Irish men and women on the island of Ireland using archaeology. Ardal goes back to world-famous archaeological sites to see how Ireland had some of the most important finds in Europe at the time.
Further beneath the surface, Ardal discovers how both in Northern Ireland and what was then called the Irish Free State, archaeology was being used as an important tool for nation-building, as both states forged new identities in the wake of Partition. He unravels a forgotten time period, when a team of Americans from Harvard University, a Nazi archaeologist from Austria and a Welsh geography professor based in Belfast dug up ancient sites across the country.
Their pioneering work laid the foundation for modern archaeology in Ireland, north and south, and yet is largely a forgotten story. Through Ardal’s journey, the film rediscovers this strange 1930s tale but also ends up answering some of Ardal’s deepest questions about the Celts, and ultimately, what it means to be Irish.
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About the Show
This show is broadcast on BBC Four, also known as the British Broadcasting Corporation.