The Best Historical Fiction TV Shows

7.3k votes 1.7k voters 120k views 47 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Shows near the top must be only the best Historical Fiction TV series.

This is a list of the best historical fiction shows on television, ranked from best to worst. Whether dramas, comedies, or action shows, TV series set in real history have rich source material and great stories to tell. This list of the greatest historical fiction shows also includes pictures from the shows when available. Popular historical fiction TV shows have been a staple of television for years, because we love to learn about our ancestors via a compelling narrative rather than dumb books, so there's often debate about which are the top history shows of all time. Never heard one of these debates? Then you live under a rock. Don't let your favorite historical fiction television programs in history get to the bottom of the list- be sure to vote them up so they have the chance to reach the top spot. The list of historical fiction television shows below includes information like the program's cast, creator and premiere date when available.

List shows include Vikings, The Tudors, Deadwood, and many other history TV shows. Just because every detail in the series isn't textbook-level accurate doesn't mean the show isn't realistic. These are the best historical fiction series of all time!

This list answers the questions, "What is the best historical fiction show of all time?" and "What are the greatest historical fiction shows?"
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  1. 1
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    most listed & added by MichaelCavanaugh
    Kevin McKidd, Ray Stevenson, Polly Walker

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  2. 2
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    Travis Fimmel, Clive Standen, Gustaf Skarsgård

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  3. 3
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    added by JenShivel
    Hugh Bonneville, Phyllis Logan, Elizabeth McGovern

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  4. 4
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    Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Henry Cavill, Anthony Brophy

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  5. 5
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    Jeremy Irons, François Arnaud, Holliday Grainger

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  6. 6
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Timothy Olyphant, Ian McShane, Molly Parker

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  7. 7
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    added by Joan H Jenkin
    Anson Mount, Colm Meaney, Robin McLeavy

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  8. 8
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    added by AnnieRobison
    Adelaide Kane, Megan Follows, Torrance Coombs

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  9. 9
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    - 49

    added by TimothyJHunte
    Jessica Parker Kennedy, Toby Stephens, Hannah New

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  10. 10
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    - 24

    ranked low on reranks & added by alsrsr-sultan
    Gerard Kearns, Alec Newman, Madeleine Power

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  11. 11
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    added by RazvanPop
    Paul Giamatti, Laura Linney, John Dossett

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  12. 12
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    Ian McShane, Matthew Macfadyen, Eddie Redmayne

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  13. 13
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    - 42

    added by crystallandi
    Eric McIntire, Daniel Spink, Matthew Felker

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  14. 14
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    Brett Tucker, Craig Parker, Viva Bianca

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  15. 15
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    added by Sharon López
    Benedict Wong, Olivia Cheng, Joan Chen

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  16. 16
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    - 15

    added by Sharon López

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  17. 17
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    - 22

    added by aj-hudson
    Mark Rylance, Damian Lewis, Claire Foy

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  18. 18
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    - 28

    often listed & added by Greer Baudreau
    Gordon Jackson, David Langton, Jean Marsh

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  19. 19
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    added by Greer Baudreau
    Derek Jacobi, John Hurt, Siân Phillips

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  20. 20
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    - 21


    David Bradley, Oliver Maltman

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  21. 21
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    - 25

    ranked low on reranks & added by Greer Baudreau
    Colin Firth, Lucy Davis, Alison Steadman

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  22. 22
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    Joseph Fiennes, Jamie Campbell Bower, Tamsin Egerton

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  23. 23
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    - 40

    added by Greer Baudreau
    LeVar Burton, Olivia Cole, Robert Reed

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  24. 24
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    added by elza-elizabete-leice
    Tom Burke, Luke Pasqualino, Santiago Cabrera

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  25. 25
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    - 26

    added by TimothyWalley
    Orson Welles, Richard Chamberlain, Toshiro Mifune

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  26. 26
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    added by TimothyWalley
    Fred Astaire, Peter Arne, David Buck

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  27. 27
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    added by TimothyWalley

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  28. 28
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    - 77

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Katie Holmes, Tom Wilkinson, Greg Kinnear

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  29. 29
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    - 2

    new! & added by Meghan Lucey Freeman
    George Blagden, Stuart Bowman, Evan Williams

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  30. 30
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    - 67

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Meryl Streep, Ian Holm, Michael Moriarty

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  31. 31
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    - 19

    added by Sharon López
    Joanna Vanderham, Emun Elliott, Stephen Wight

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  32. 32
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    ranked low on reranks
    Leonard Nimoy, Anne Bancroft, Burt Lancaster

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  33. 33
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    added by Sharon López
    Wagner Moura, Boyd Holbrook, Pedro Pascal

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  34. 34
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    Anthony Hopkins, Alan Dobie, Morag Hood

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  35. 36
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    Mark Ryder, Isolda Dychauk, Diarmuid Noyes

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  36. 37
    + 48
    - 62


    John Malkovich, Gérard Depardieu, Asia Argento

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  37. 38
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    - 57

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Robert McQueeney, William Reynolds, Robert Ridgely

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  38. 39
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    added by Greer Baudreau
    David Carradine, Keye Luke, Radames Pera

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  39. 40
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    No image


    John Leyton, Don Francks and Marino Masé

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  40. 41
    + 5
    - 17

    added by Toscolani
    Alexander Skarsgård, James Ransone, Lee Tergesen

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  41. 42
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    - 27

    added by Greer Baudreau
    Jeremy Irons, Laurence Olivier, John Gielgud

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  42. 43
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    Ron Harper, Cesare Danova, Brendon Boone

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  43. 44
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  44. 45
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    No image


    The Cleopatras Michelle Newell, Graham Crowden, Helen Sparks

  45. 46
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    - 43
    Christmas and the Civil War is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Historical Fiction TV Shows


    Christmas and the Civil War

  46. 47
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    - 41


    Paul McGann, Bill Fellows, Matthew Marsh

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48 +

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