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Airs Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019 at 10 p.m. on KPBS TV + Sunday, Feb. 24 at 10 p.m. on KPBS 2

Valentin Postlmayr (Nero) at Domus Aurea.

Credit: Photographer: Helmut Wimmer © Interspot Film GmbH

Above: Valentin Postlmayr (Nero) at Domus Aurea.

The Roman emperor Nero is considered one of history’s greatest criminals.

His name has become synonymous with evil, as historic accounts have accused him of killing his stepbrother, his wife and his mother, as well persecuting Christians and instigating the devastating Great Fire of Rome.

This is the judgement that is passed in history from one generation to the next, but are these accounts of Nero’s reign accurate?

The Nero Files: Preview

Take a closer look at the life and legend of Nero, the infamous Roman emperor, as a forensic profiler attempts to find out what history may have gotten wrong about his alleged tyranny.

New scientific discoveries and a closer examination of the ancient texts written about Nero cast a different light on the Roman emperor and the accusations levelled against him.

Did Nero Try To Murder His Own Mother?

Records of Nero's reign portray him as a monster who orchestrated an assassination attempt on his mother. But was it even possible?

SECRETS OF THE DEAD "The Nero Files" follows internationally renowned criminal psychologist Thomas Müller and a team of scientists and historians as they investigate the new evidence in order to discover the truth about the controversial emperor.

Did Nero Poison Britannicus for the Throne?

See how modern science may disprove the widely-accepted story of how Nero poisoned his step brother Brittanicus to eliminate a potential adversary.


Episodes are available for viewing on demand for a limited time after each broadcast. Extend your viewing window with KPBS Passport, video streaming for members ($60 yearly) using your computer, smartphone, tablet, Roku, AppleTV, Amazon Fire or Chromecast. Learn how to activate your benefit now.


SECRETS OF THE DEAD is on Facebook, Tumblr, and you can follow @SecretsPBS on Twitter. #SecretsDeadPBS


A production of Interspot Film in association with THIRTEEN PRODUCTIONS LLC’s for WNET. Directed by Klaus T. Steindl. Stephanie Carter is executive producer for SECRETS OF THE DEAD.


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