Amsterdam, London and New York have each contributed to the birth and development of the “world-city." Revisit 400 years of ruthless competition for supremacy over global trade marked by growing urbanization and the rise of architecture and discover the story of the great minds and spirit which contributed in shaping each of these cities in what they are today.
Magnificent Three: Cities That Shaped History
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01: A Golden Century (1585–1656)
Starting in 1585 as the small city of Amsterdam, gradually became the first world city in human history. Watch the story of Amsterdam's ascension and growing dominance on world trade, and the spectacular innovations that made it possible. Across the Channel, London wasn't the challenger that it will soon become - but the City is growing and finds its destiny: commerce and finance.
02: Clashes (1650–1800)
As Amsterdam is at its peak and becomes the third largest city in Europe, London gradually takes the lead, and a third player enters world history: New Amsterdam, once a Dutch city, is eventually conquered by England and becomes New York.
03: Metropolis (1800–1880)
Watch how New York, just two decades after the war of independence, makes its way through and becomes the great challenger of London. During the 19th century, both cities will experience industrial revolution, modernity and the enormous challenge of migrations and mass poverty.
04: Global Cities (1880–2017)
London and New York turn to gigantism and open the way to the city of tomorrow. New York invents the skyscraper and the skyline, new concepts that will revolutionize urbanism and shape the cities around the world. London, the heart of the British Empire and the wealthiest city on earth, faces pollution, with its deadly consequences, and cannot overcome its huge poverty problem.