This 4 part program recounts the dramatic story of the rise and fall of an empire, an empire that at its prime spawned incredible inventions that sparked the dawn of our modern world. The story of the genius of this astonishing civilizations told by traveling back in time to witness China's inventions and how they were used.
Pt. 1. The Chinese developed intricate crossbows far ahead of their time, fleets of paddle boats, curving iron plows, wheelbarrows, folding umbrellas, conveyor belts, restaurants, golf, chess, kites, hot air balloons, and parachutes.
Pt.2. Impressive achievements included a device for indicating the direction and force of an earthquake, odometers, the compass, gimbals, intricate differential gears, double action piston bellows, continuous flamethrowers, and rudders, bulkheads, and fore and aft sails to enable a ship to sail against the wind.
Pt.3. After experiments with sundials, water and candle clocks, the Chinese developed the worlds first accurate clock involving an escapement device. Their mathematicians calculated pi; their astronomers recognized the egg yolk shape of the earth and developed an accurate system for measuring the movement of the stars.
Pt.4. Chinese inventions and discoveries include gunpowder, bombs, shrapnel, underground and sea mines, aerial bombs and muskets (fire lances), rockets, cannon, immunization, paper, printing with movable type, modem books and bookstores, civil service exams and playing cards.