180 lessons, in both video and audio format.

You can enlarge the text in the video by double-clicking on it.


This 10th-grade course follows the history of the Western world, beginning with the Hebrews and continuing through classical Greece and Rome, the rise and spread of Christianity, the role of the Germanic peoples, the cathedrals and universities of the High Middle Ages, and concluding with the Renaissance and the Age of Discovery.

So much of what you need to know in order to be an educated person is crammed into this one course. We’ll discuss some of the great ideas that have been discussed and debated since the beginning of Western thought. Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, and Aquinas will no longer just be names to you. You’ll know about the philosophy, literature, architecture, and art of the ancient world, the Christian Middle Ages, and the Renaissance.

And of course we’ll be tracing the history of Western liberty – political and economic – as well.

Adults, too, will appreciate this course. You can listen to the course’s 25-minute lessons during your commute, and fill in any gaps you may have in your own knowledge, not to mention having something interesting to discuss with the students in your family at the end of the day.

The vast bulk of the lessons also include recommended reading assignments, and a suggested writing assignment is included with each week’s material.

Here are the 180 lesson topics:

1. Introduction and Overview
2. Hebrew History I
3. Hebrew History II
4. Hebrew History III
5. Week 1 Review

6. Hebrew Religion and the Hebrew Contribution
7. Minoan Crete
8. Mycenaean Greece
9. Homer, The Iliad
10. Week 2 Review

11. Homer and Hesiod
12. Classical Greece: Overview
13. Pre-Socratics, I
14. Pre-Socratics, II
15. Week 3 Review

16. Socrates
17. Plato: Introduction and Overview
18. Plato’s Worldview
19. Plato and The Republic
20. Week 4 Review

21. Aristotle: The Philosopher
22. Aristotle’s Ethics
23. Aristotle’s Politics
24. Classical Greece: The Polis, Sparta
25. Week 5 Review

26. Classical Greece: The Polis, Athens
27. The Persian Wars
28. The Peloponnesian War
29. Herodotus and Thucydides
30. Week 6 Review

31. Greek Drama, I
32. Greek Drama, II
33. Classical Greece: Art
34. Greek Religion
35. Week 7 Review

36. Greece and Western Liberty
37. Alexander the Great
38. The Hellenistic World
39. Hellenistic Philosophy
40. Week 8 Review

41. Rome: Beginnings and Foundations
42. Struggle of the Orders
43. Expansion of Rome
44. Toward the Empire, I
45. Week 9 Review

46. Toward the Empire, II
47. Toward the Empire, III
48. The Augustan Settlement
49. Latin Literature: The Golden Age
50. Week 10 Review

51. The Silver Age of Latin Literature
52. Rome After Augustus
53. Second-Century Rome
54. Roman Art
55. Week 11 Review

56. Christianity: The Background
57. The Birth of Christianity, Part I
58. The Birth of Christianity, Part II
59. Early Christian Sources I: The New Testament
60. Week 12 Review

61. The Spread of Christianity
62. From the Underground Church to the Edict of Milan
63. Early Christian Texts II: Didache, Shepherd of Hermas, Apostolic Fathers, Apologists
64. The Development of Christianity I
65. Week 13 Review

66. The Development of Christianity II
67. Monasticism, Part I
68. Monasticism, Part II
69. The Church and Classical Culture I
70. Week 14 Review

71. The Church and Classical Culture II
72. Rome: Third-Century Crisis
73. Diocletian and Constantine
74. Rome and the Barbarians, Part I
75. Week 15 Review

76. Rome and the Barbarians, Part II
77. Rome: Significance
78. St. Augustine I
79. St. Augustine II
80. Week 16 Review

81. The Church and the Barbarians
82. Merovingians and Carolingians
83. The Papal-Frankish Alliance
84. Charlemagne
85. Week 17 Review

86. The Carolingian Renaissance
87. Christianity in England and Ireland
88. Christianity in Germany
89. Midterm Review
90. Week 18 Review

91. Islam
92. Byzantium I
93. Byzantium II
94. After Charlemagne
95. Week 19 Review

96. Ninth- and Tenth-Century Invasions
97. Feudalism and Manorialism
98. Medieval Art
99. England: William the Conqueror
100. Week 20 Review

101. The Gregorian Reform, Part I
102. The Gregorian Reform, Part II
103. The Church-State Struggle and Western Liberty
104. Christendom
105. Week 21 Review

106. The Great Schism
107. France: Capetians to Louis IX
108. The Medieval Church: Sacraments and Liturgy
109. The Medieval Church: Popular Piety
110. Week 22 Review

111. Crusades: Background
112. The First Crusade
113. Later Crusades
114. The End of the Crusades
115. Week 23 Review

116. The Albigensian Crusade
117. The Mendicant Orders
118. England: Magna Carta
119. France: Philip the Fair
120. Week 24 Review

121. The Renaissance of the Twelfth Century
122. The Rise of Universities
123. Scholastic Philosophy
124. Thomas Aquinas: Biography and Overview
125. Week 25 Review

126. Thomas Aquinas and the Quinque Viae
127. Thomas Aquinas and the Divine Attributes
128. Just War Theory
129. Later Scholasticism
130. Week 26 Review

131. The Cathedrals
132. The Rise of Towns
133. Economy in the High Middle Ages
134. The Medieval Contribution to Western Prosperity
135. Week 27 Review

136. The Holy Roman Empire I
137. The Holy Roman Empire II
138. Medieval Literature
139. Dante and the Divine Comedy
140. Week 28 Review

141. Philip IV vs. Boniface VIII
142. Marsilius of Padua and the Attack on Papal Power
143. The Avignon Papacy
144. Fourteenth-Century Crisis
145. Week 29 Review

146. England in the Fourteenth Century
147. France in the Fourteenth Century
148. The Hundred Years’ War
149. The Great Western Schism
150. Week 30 Review

151. The Fall of Byzantium
152. The Renaissance: Ideas
153. Petrarch and the Renaissance
154. Renaissance Humanism I
155. Week 31 Review

156. Renaissance Humanism II
157. Machiavelli
158. Renaissance Art I
159. Renaissance Art II
160. Week 32 Review

161. Renaissance Art III
162. Renaissance Art IV
163. The Northern Renaissance
164. The Renaissance Popes
165. Week 33 Review

166. Renaissance Italy: The Key Political Units, Part I
167. Renaissance Italy: The Key Political Units, Part II
168. Fifteenth-Century France
169. Fifteenth-Century England
170. Week 34 Review

171. The Holy Roman Empire to the Fifteenth Century
172. The Church on the Eve of Reform
173. Centralization in Spain
174. The Age of Discovery, Part I
175. Week 35 Review

176. The Age of Discovery, Part II
177. The Age of Discovery, Part III
178. Concluding Remarks
179. Preview of Western Civilization II
180. Week 36 Review

180 lessons, in both video and audio format.