Day one - England 343 for 7
Joe Root, taking advantage of being dropped on 0, dominated the opening day of the series with a counterattacking hundred which lifted England from 43 for 3. He and Gary Ballance added 143 for the fourth wicket, then Ben Stokes added a brisk fifty, although Australia kept chipping away to keep the contest reasonably even.
Key moment Facing his second ball, having already come close to being lbw, Root edged a very full delivery from Mitchell Starc but Brad Haddin, diving one-handed to his right, could not hold on.
Day two - England 430, Australia 264 for 5
England's lower order, led by Moeen Ali's 77, pushed England's total to a healthy 430 but Australia started strongly in reply to reach 129 for 1 before Moeen played his part with the ball by removing Steven Smith and later Michael Clarke. Australia's top order kept wasting starts and the late removal of Adam Voges tipped the balance in England's favour
Key moment It was clear from the outset that Australia wanted to attack Moeen and the mindset cost them dearly. It started when Smith, having eased to 33, came down the pitch and lobbed a leading edge to Alastair Cook at short mid-on after Moeen fired the ball down the leg side.
Day three - Australia 308, England 289
England's attack secured a vital 122-run lead as they hustled through Australia either side of the second new ball. Shane Watson fell early, lbw to Stuart Broad, and James Anderson had the ball on a string against Haddin. England then batted aggressively for the rest of the day, led by 60s from Root and Ian Bell, although Australia were able to dismiss them by the close.
Key moment England had stuttered to 22 for 2 in their second innings and could have squandered their advantage. However, Bell and Adam Lyth responded with a five-over period which brought 49 runs and from there it was never in doubt that England would set a demanding total
Day four - Australia 242
An all-round bowling display with the wickets shared between Broad, Moeen, Root and Mark Wood secured England a comprehensive victory. Either side of lunch Australia lost 5 for 25, with Broad resuming his dominance over Clarke before the spinners went through the lower order.
Key moment Shortly before lunch English tension was starting to grow as David Warner moved to a half-century. It appeared Australia would reach the break just one down when Cook recalled Moeen, who had earlier been flayed by Warner, for the final over of the session and he responded by trapping him lbw. The victory charge was on.
Day one - Australia 337 for 1
A day of complete batting dominance from Australia - save for one crazy shot from Warner - as Chris Rogers and Smith made the most of a docile pitch and an England attack that had lost a little zest from Cardiff. Rogers closed already on a career best, while Smith corrected a Lord's record that previously read 1, 12, 2 and 1.
Key moment Australia were handsomely placed on 167 for 1 when Smith edged Stokes low to Bell at second slip and the chance was spurned. Opportunities were few and far between and England did not get another until the game had drifted away
Day two - Australia 566 for 8 dec, England 85 for 4
There had been an inevitable procession of Australia towards a huge total as Smith converted his score into a maiden Test double hundred although Clarke's struggles continued. The contest really resumed in earnest when Australia declared, and in the blink of an eye England were in disarray at 30 for 4 as Australia's quicks proved far more dangerous.
Key moment England had become used to being three for not many, but often Root had come to the rescue. Not this time. Facing a fired up Mitchell Johnson, he tried to force off the back foot and only edged through to the keeper. This time Peter Nevill, on debut in place of Haddin who had withdrawn for personal reasons, grabbed the chance.
Day three - England 312, Australia 108 for 0
England fought hard with the bat, but such was the hole they were in it was always a battle against the tide. Stokes and Cook both fell short of hundreds while the lower order could not drag England beyond the follow-on, although it was not enforced. Early in Australia's free-wheeling second innings Warner was dropped by Lyth as England became increasingly ragged.
Key moment England were 15 minutes away from batting through the morning session without loss when Stokes, who had confidently reached 87, dragged on a delivery from Mitchell Marsh. The timing of the dismissal knocked the stuffing out of any fight back.
Day four - Australia 254 for 2 dec, England 103
It was a demolition job by Australia as England folded in 37 overs after being set an impossible 509 for victory. Johnson was at his searing best and Broad's 25 was the top score in an horrendous innings which was summed up when Stokes failed to ground his bat. There was, however, a worrying moment for Australia earlier in the day when Rogers was forced to retire hurt after suffering a dizzy spell following a blow to the helmet on the second day.
Key moment Batting more than five sessions was always likely to be beyond England, but one man who had the mental capacity was Cook. However, the effects of a draining match showed when he flapped at a wide ball from Johnson and edged behind.
Day one - Australia 136, England 133 for 3
England needed a swift response and they got one. Clarke batted first on what proved a lively surface and, not for the first time, Australian technique against the swinging ball was exposed. Anderson did the bulk of the damage in a post-lunch burst of 5 for 33 in 8.4 overs after starting the day by pinning Warner lbw. Bell, who had been promoted to No. 3, then struck an aggressive fifty to keep England in control
Key moment Two years after his last Test appearance - and 18 months after being sent home from Australia - Steven Finn was back as a replacement for Wood. He could hardly have wished for a better start as he found Smith's outside edge in his first over and the produced a wonderful delivery to bowl Clarke.
Day two - England 281, Australia 168 for 7
The day began dramatically as Johnson produced a fearsome over to bounce out Jonny Bairstow and Stokes, but England were settled by Root and then a priceless 87-run eighth-wicket stand between Moeen and Broad which earned a lead of 145. From 62 for 1, Australia then crashed to 153 for 7 against Finn and a two-day finish loomed before they limped to the close.
Key moment Finn's first over had gone for 14 as Warner and Smith attacked, but a change of ends brought handsome rewards as he lured Smith into an errant pull then claimed Clarke and Voges with consecutive deliveries. There was no way back for Australia.
Day three - Australia 265, England 124 for 2
Nevill and Starc showed fight for Australia as the lead was extended into three figures, but a target of 121 needed miracles to defend. Cook fell early to a beauty from Starc, but when Clarke shelled Bell at second slip Australian heads slumped for the final time.
Key moment It can be tricky chasing small totals and England did not want to get caught in a prodding-around-mode. Bell responded to Cook's early dismissal by taking three boundaries in four balls off Starc and England were away.
Day one - Australia 60, England 274 for 4
Rarely in cricket history, let alone the Ashes, has there been an opening day of such dominance. Having been sent in on a green-tinged surface under cloudy skies Australia were humbled inside 19 overs for 60. Broad took the scarcely believable figures of 8 for 15 in an unchanged spell that went down in Ashes folklore. Root then skipped to his second hundred of the series - adding 173 with Bairstow - amid heady scenes.
Key moment When a captain inserts the opposition the pressure is squarely on his bowling attack. The new ball can't be wasted. Broad ensured it wasn't. With his third delivery he squared up Rogers for his 300th Test wicket. In the absence of Anderson it settled Broad's nerves and from then on he was unstoppable
Day two - England 391 for 9 dec, Australia 241 for 7
England merrily flung the bat during the morning before Cook highlighted his evolution as a captain with a pre-lunch declaration. It was not all plain sailing after that as Rogers and Warner posted a hundred stand, riding their luck amid two dropped catches and a wicket off a no-ball. However, in a crazy 20 minutes before tea Australia's lingering small hopes were shattered as Stokes claimed three wickets and Smith drove absent-mindedly to point. Stokes, with an outstanding display of swing, almost finished the game in two days as he completed a five-wicket haul.
Key moment England were getting a little frustrated through a mixture of missed chances and Australian aggression when Stokes found Rogers' outside edge which Root grabbed the chance acrobatically at third slip.
Day three - Australia 253
Thirty-nine minutes, 10.2 overs. That is all it took for England to take the final three wickets to reclaim the Ashes - 599 days since they were conceded. Stokes claimed his sixth wicket and Wood took the final two.
Key moment The ball was quick from Wood - touching 90mph - it was on a length outside off stump, in the teasing channel that had troubled so many Australian batsman. Nathan Lyon was in two minds, made a late decision to try and leave and deflected it into leg stump. Lyon slumped to his knees. England's party could start.

Andrew McGlashan is a deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo