Horrible Histories. Image shows from L to R: Gemma Whelan, Ryan Sampson, Tom Stourton
Horrible Histories

Horrible Histories

  • TV sketch show
  • CBBC / BBC One
  • 2009 - 2022
  • 125 episodes (9 series)

Hit sketch show based on surprising facts from world history, inspired by the hit children's book series. Stars Jim Howick, Simon Farnaby, Ben Willbond, Mathew Baynton, Martha Howe-Douglas and more.

Episode menu

Series 2, Episode 11

Barmy Roman emperor Caligula fails to invade Britain so collects seashells instead, King Henry VIII plays tennis while Anne Boleyn is executed, and some naughty Saxon monks throw a funky party.

Further details

Horrible Histories. Laurence Rickard. Copyright: Lion Television / Citrus Television

Roman Emperor Caligula faces a problem just as he's about to invade England - he's forgotten to tell the troops of his plans, so no one has turned up. Instead, the Emperor is waging a war on the sea and is making all of his men collect sea shells. Meanwhile, a Roman soldier is revealing all about life in the army, advising "just don't try and leave; they throw deserters off a cliff".

Meanwhile, some fiery Scots reveal how the plague got into Scotland in the measly Middle Ages, as well as a few very strange Scottish customs - including throwing herring fat at a wall to see if a man is honest. If it falls straight down, he's an honest man.

Awful Egyptians appear on cookery show Ready, Steady, Feast and reveal some sizzling secrets - including that the builders of the Pyramids were paid in garlic and radishes - and some funky monks tell all in a toe-tapping song and dance routine.

Broadcast details

Tuesday 13th July 2010
30 minutes


Show past repeats

Date Time Channel
Friday 10th September 2010 4:30pm BBC1
Tuesday 14th December 2010 3:05pm BBC1
Friday 7th January 2011 4:30pm BBC1
Monday 30th May 2011 3:35pm CBBC
Monday 26th September 2011 7:45am CBBC
Wednesday 28th September 2011 6:20pm CBBC
Tuesday 31st January 2012 6:15pm CBBC
Friday 6th April 2012 10:00am CBBC
Monday 16th April 2012 11:50am CBBC
Thursday 18th October 2012 3:05pm BBC1
Sunday 7th April 2013 2:05pm CBBC
Tuesday 23rd April 2013 5:00pm CBBC
Wednesday 14th August 2013 10:30am CBBC
Thursday 3rd October 2013 7:45am CBBC
Thursday 12th May 2016 7:00pm CBBC
Wednesday 31st August 2016 7:00pm CBBC
Friday 14th April 2017 7:00pm CBBC
Sunday 18th June 2017 10:00am CBBC
Sunday 14th January 2018 8:30am CBBC
Sunday 14th January 2018 8:30pm CBBC
Friday 25th May 2018 7:00pm CBBC
Monday 4th June 2018 9:30am CBBC
Monday 4th June 2018 7:00pm CBBC
Saturday 11th August 2018 8:30pm CBBC
Friday 25th January 2019 7:05pm CBBC
Tuesday 21st May 2019 7:05pm CBBC
Monday 15th July 2019 7:00pm CBBC
Wednesday 25th September 2019 7:00pm CBBC
Thursday 26th May 2022 10:40am CBBC

Cast & crew

Jim Howick Various
Simon Farnaby Various
Ben Willbond Various
Mathew Baynton Various
Martha Howe-Douglas Various
Laurence Rickard Various
Jon Culshaw Various (Voice)
Jess Robinson Various (Voice)
Alice Lowe Ensemble Actor
Lawry Lewin Ensemble Actor
Dominique Moore Ensemble Actor
John Eccleston Rattus Rattus
Writing team
Colin Swash Writer
Jon Holmes Writer
Dave Cohen Writer
Ben Ward Writer
Greg Jenner Writer
Laurence Rickard Writer
Gerard Foster Writer
Giles Pilbrow Writer
Caroline Norris Writer
Production team
Steve Connelly Director
Dominic Brigstocke Director
Caroline Norris Series Producer
Giles Pilbrow Producer
Richard Bradley Executive Producer
Alison Gregory Executive Producer
Nigel Williams Editor
Mike Holliday Editor
Will Peverett Editor
Miranda Jones Production Designer
Richie Webb Composer

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