Episode guide

History's Greatest Hoaxes

Series 1

History's Greatest Hoaxes

  • Alien Autopsy

    Ray Santilli's fake footage of a Roswell-era alien autopsy convinced many people in the 1990s that it was real. Hear how this hoax took hold and was ultimately exposed.

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  • The Loch Ness Monster

    Ancient plesiosaur, natural phenomena or hoax? Find out as the grainy image taken in 1934 of what appears to be a huge creature in Loch Ness is scrutinised.

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  • Hitler's Diaries

    The apparent discovery of Hitler's diaries in 1983 caused a sensation - but they were in fact the work of forger Konrad Kujau. This sophisticated hoax is revisited.

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  • War of the Worlds

    Hear how Orson Welles' infamous radio adaptation of the HG Wells classic convinced millions of Americans that Earth really was being invaded by aliens from Mars.

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  • Papillon: Fact or Fiction

    Hear how a best-selling book written by Henri Charrierre, which told of his life on a penal colony island in French Guiana, was exposed as mostly fiction.

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  • Piltdown Man

    The discovery of a skull and jawbone in 1912 fooled many people into thinking the 'missing link' between ape and man had been found. Hear how this devious hoax unfolded.

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