The 8 Best Documentaries About Matilda

Dec 22, 2023 | Best Of, History

Matilda is a fascinating figure in history – and documentaries about her life have only added to our understanding of who she was and what she accomplished. From award-winning films to innovative takes on the legendary woman, these are unquestionably the best documentaries about Matilda that you won’t want to miss out on. Get ready to explore the depths of this extraordinary woman’s life with these insightful documentaries! From her formation of a powerful political base in 11th century Europe to her rise as one of the most powerful women in history, Matilda was an unstoppable force.


1. BBC – She Wolves – Matilda and Eleanor – British Documentary Part 1

This British documentary gives viewers the opportunity to learn about two incredible women and their lives during a turbulent period – Matilda and Eleanor. It delves into their remarkable stories as it follows them from childhood to adulthood, with narration of historical events that shaped both of their personal lives and England itself. The filmmakers use powerful visuals, interviews, archival footage, music and drama to bring the audience closer into their lives and experiences. This documentary provides an extraordinary journey that will captivate viewers of all ages, giving them a glimpse into one of the most tumultuous periods in England’s history.


2. Is This Earthwork Actually Empress Matilda’s Castle From The Anarchy? | Time Team

As the sun sets over the tranquil waters of the River Thames, a hidden relic lies slumbering below. Could this be the last vestige of a powerful castle from an ancient era? Time Team investigate this mysterious field just outside Oxfordshire to uncover what is left of a stronghold from one of England’s most turbulent periods. The team begins their excavation, unearthing buried ramparts and a thick stone wall. Could this be the castle of Empress Matilda, built during the Anarchy? With every shovelful of soil they move closer to unraveling the mystery beneath them.


3. Did The FIRST English Queen LOSE Her Crown? – Part 1/3 – Empress Matilda History Documentary

Learn the surprising story of Empress Matilda, the first English Queen who never got to wear her crown. From a powerful and ambitious family, she was destined to be a leader. But what happened that kept her from being crowned? This three-part series goes back in time and delves into how her crowning ceremony was thwarted by usurpers. Find out how Empress Matilda was forced into the shadows of history and ultimately denied her rightful place as Queen. We’ll look at the people who sought to diminish her power, as well as those who wanted her to take her rightful throne.

4. King Stephen and The Anarchy, English Medieval King and Civil War, Matilda

Uncover one of the most chaotic and turbulent times in medieval history – The Anarchy. Let’s explore how a tragedy at sea triggered a succession crisis which eventually led to the English crown being seized, resulting in civil war that spanned over a decade and a half. We’ll take an up-close look at the primary figures, main battlegrounds and important places associated with this saga and ultimately analyze how an accord was achieved leading to the reconstruction of the country after such a lengthy conflict. Join me as we take a journey back in time to understand The Anarchy in all its complexity.

5. Did The FIRST English Queen LOSE Her Crown? – Part 3/3 – Empress Matilda History Documentary

Did Empress Matilda’s Crown Vanish? – Part 3/3 – History of the Contested English ThroneEmpress Matilda was quite close to becoming England’s first crowned queen. But why then did her crown ultimately vanish? This documentary series explores the story of how her claim to the throne was contested and usurped, leaving an enduring legacy that still resonates today. Explore the history of a tumultuous period in England’s past, and how Empress Matilda was ultimately pushed into the shadows of history. Learn why her crown never truly materialized despite her valiant efforts to ascend to power and take the English throne for herself. A must-see documentary for anyone interested in England’s royal history!

6. She Wolves – Englands Early Queens: Matilda and Eleanor – British Documentary

She Wolves – Englands Early Queens: Matilda and Eleanor is an excellent British documentary that tells the story of two of England’s most powerful female rulers. The film dives into how these women made their mark on history, while at the same time exploring their personal struggles and challenges in reigning over a changing world. Using dramatic reenactments and interviews with leading historians, She Wolves offers a vivid and entertaining look at the power of Mathilda and Eleanor. Through their political acumen and insight into how to navigate an ever shifting landscape, these two women managed to bring about great change in England and beyond. She Wolves is an essential watch for any student of history, or anyone who wishes to gain further insight into this captivating period of English rule.

7. EMPRESS MATILDA: the woman who should have been queen | The almost Queen of England. History Calling

EMPRESS MATILDA – The Woman Who Almost Conquered England The story of Empress Matilda, daughter of Henry I and the almost Queen of England, is one that has captivated people for centuries. Her life was full of drama and intrigue and her claim to the throne sparked a civil war in England known as ‘The Anarchy.’ From being married off to the Holy Roman Emperor at just 12 years old, to her dramatic escape from London dressed all in white, Matilda’s story is one of ambition and resilience. But why did she never actually become Queen?

8. The Tragedy of Caroline Matilda: The Scandalous Life of a Princess

Caroline Matilda was a true British royalty, born in 1751 as the youngest daughter of King George II and Queen Caroline of Ansbach. Her upbringing was every bit luxurious; she received an education that encompassed multiple languages and distinguished her from many other royal women of her time. Her story, however, took a tragic turn when she married Christian VII – King of Denmark – in 1766. Though the royal union was meant to bring peace and prosperity for both the British and Danish courts, it instead ended in one of history’s most scandalous love affairs.

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David B