Series 1 Episode 1
First Broadcast: 9PM Sat 26 December 2009

Dan Brown's latest blockbuster, The Lost Symbol, once again has dashing Professor Robert Langdon on a frantic quest to solve impossible riddles, trying to save the life of the leading Freemason in Washington DC. But in the course of the chase the extraordinary history of those masters of ritual and secrecy, the Masons, come firmly into the spotlight.

Brown is as keen as ever for readers to know that 'all the organisations in this novel exist; all the, rituals, science artwork and monuments in this book are real'. In this sequel to 2005's programme The Real Da Vinci Code, Tony Robinson sets off to find the truth behind these claims and the novel's plot.

On his journey Tony must grapple with a world of impenetrable symbols and untangle the Freemasons' strange involvement in the creation of the USA. He criss-crosses the Atlantic as he digs deeper and deeper to answer key questions thrown up by this complex novel.

Did the Freemasons create the United States of America for their own secret purposes? Did they encode strange symbols into the streets and structures of the nation's capital? What could they have learnt from 17th century alchemists like Isaac Newton? Can Tony use the power of his mind to move objects? And are the Masons really still powerful today?

In this roller coaster of a film, Tony's hopes for hidden truths are constantly raised and dashed as he investigates the Masonic influence on past and present, and delves into the truth of their rituals and secrets.

And while the science and the monuments may be real Tony asks if they are quite what Brown claims.

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Decoded: Dan Brown's Lost Symbol on Channel4.com

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Tony Robinson sets out to find the truth behind Dan Brown's blockbuster, The Lost Symbol