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Smithsonian Channel will offer fascinating new perspectives on some of the world's most remarkable and mysterious religious locations in the new five-episode series "SACRED SITES", premiering on Monday, September 12 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Based on new scientific breakthroughs and compelling archaeological and historical research, the series includes episodes on: the ancient cities of Petra and Hegra; the secrets of the Knights of the Templar; the oracles of Ancient Greece; the magnificent tombs and temples of ancient Egypt; and the ruined great houses of Chaco Canyon in New Mexico. Each episode explores fundamental questions about these sites and the people who constructed them. Was the fabulous rock-cut city of Petra once ruled by a lost matriarchy? Were prophecies at ancient Greek oracles triggered by tectonic turmoil and electromagnetic fields? Did the Knights Templar secretly belong to an obscure cult that worshipped John the Baptist? SACRED SITES will provide extraordinary insight into the people of these ancient cities, their practices and struggles, and how this is all reflected in their shrines and temples.

Monday 8:00 PM et/pt on Smithsonian CHANNEL
1 Season, 11 Episodes
September 12, 2016
Documentary & Biography, Drama, History
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Sacred Sites Full Episode Guide

  • A series of massive standing stones in Germany's Teutoburg Forest formed the center of an ancient Germanic religion

  • New discoveries reveal a hidden power structure in Egypt

  • In between the years 3600 and 2300 BC, an extraordinary civilization developed on the small Mediterranean islands of Malta. For almost 1,500 years, the sacred sites built by the temple people of ancient Malta were the pinnacle of Western Civilization. Around 2300 BC, their civilization collapsed and the islands were abandoned

  • Every year, thousands of pilgrims travel the ancient pilgrimage route to Spain's Santiago de Compostela. The sacred journey ends with a visit to the shrine that is believed to hold the bones of Saint James the Great

  • In the tropical forests of Guatemala and Mexico stand some of the most captivating sacred sites of ancient Mayan civilization. Scientists long believed these magnificent temples and pyramids were built to watch the sky, but new discoveries in the last decade reveal sacred caves and tunnels hidden beneath the pyramids. Using cutting-edge science, archaeologists identify the location the Maya revered as the most sacred temple of all

  • Most experts believe King Arthur was simply a mythical figure. But exciting new evidence from Britain's ancient sacred sites suggests that the myths are founded in fact.

  • See if external forces doomed the people of Chaco Canyon or if they were the authors of their own misfortune.

  • Of all the ancient civilizations, Egypt has left the greatest legacy. Its monuments all evoke one indisputable truth: Early Egyptians were obsessed with death and the afterlife. On papyrus rolls and tomb walls, they recorded spells to help the deceased pass all the tests and creatures they would encounter in the underworld. These recordings were known as the Book of the Dead. But what if this book is hiding something deeper about these ancient Egyptian beliefs? The answers could lie within one unique artifact.

  • Earthquake lights. Hallucinogenic gases. Magnetic fields. New scientific research has revealed that these and other tectonic phenomena happened at virtually every site in ancient Greece where oracles delivered their prophecies to pilgrims and nobles. Could it be that the landscape itself contributed to making these places sacred?

  • Fans of "The Da Vinci Code" know the Knights Templar as a secret society, but the story of their tumultuous two centuries in power is more shocking and scandalous than any Hollywood movie. Follow our team of experts as they go to Jerusalems Temple Mount, the most bitterly contested sacred site in the world. With the help of DNA tests and a remarkable discovery in the Vatican archives, we reveal the truth about the knights rise into the worlds most powerful military religious order to their spectacular and sudden fall from grace.

  • Enter the remains of Petra and Hegra, cities whose old inscriptions and new discoveries suggest were once ruled by women.

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Sacred Sites is available to watch and stream on Smithsonian CHANNEL. You can also buy, rent Sacred Sites on demand at Amazon Prime, Amazon, Vudu, FuboTV, The Roku Channel, FandangoNow, Google Play, iTunes online.