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Experts Find Remains of England's King Richard III

Society & Culture  (tags: England, King Richard III, Plantagenet, Grey Friars excavation, Leicester, War of the Roses, Battle of Bosworth Field )

- 1958 days ago -
University of Leicester researchers say tests on a battle-scarred skeleton unearthed last year prove "beyond reasonable doubt" that it is the king, who died at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485, and whose remains have been missing for centuries.

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Lynn Squance (235)
Monday February 4, 2013, 7:30 am
I am a fan of history and to find something like this is phenomenal. British history is full of royal intrigue and uncovering more information about the last of the Plantagenets is great. I even like the fact that there is a Canadian connection --- the 17th great grand nephew of Richard's older sister is Canadian.

P A (117)
Monday February 4, 2013, 7:38 am
"DNA from the skeleton matched a sample taken from a distant living relative of Richard's sister. Geneticist Turi King said Michael Ibsen, a Canadian carpenter living in London, shares with the skeleton a rare strain of mitochondrial DNA. She said combined with the archaeological evidence, that left little doubt the skeleton belonged to Richard."

Yahey!!! Now we can maybe start rehabilitating Richard - Shakespeare was an utterly brilliant dramatist but he wanted to curry favour with the Tudor regime and didn't care about traducing someone else's reputation in the process!

The only person who desperately needed the Princes in the Tower murdered was Henry VII - whose 'claim' on the throne was multiply illegitimate and who needed to legitimise his reign by marrying the boys' eldest sister, Elizabeth, - and that would only work if the two boys were dead.

It is very complex with an awful lot deleted by the winners (Tudors and Stuarts) but for an easy way into the subject read Josephine Tey's 'The Daughter of Time'. Richard's death was heroically brave - he died in the battle attacking single handedly the whole of the usurper Henry's bodyguards trying to get single combat with Henry. Henry hid behind his men - and eventually Richard was hacked down by force of numbers. Henry then made his first act as the new king (by force of arms) to be to attaint (accuse of treachery) everyone who had taken arms against him! These people were legitimately bearing arms, called to arms by their annointed king, they were honourable and not treasonous! That showed the how the Tudor dynasty would start and carry on.

(According to Tey the murderer of the boys [allegedly under Richard III] - was, under Henry, unaccountably not tried and killed, but promoted and given a lot of money and a high position. Odd that[!] Cui bono!! ).

Teresa W (782)
Monday February 4, 2013, 8:04 am
noted, thank you

Arlene Mary Baladi (40)
Monday February 4, 2013, 11:26 am
Noted...thank you for posting!

Joanne D (38)
Monday February 4, 2013, 12:12 pm
Pat A, I will never believe that Richard was responsible for the boys' deaths. I go along with the people around Bosworth, who entered into their annals after the battle "This day was our good King Richard most piteously slain and murdered, to the great heaviness of this city." I'm not sure whether that was enough to bring them under the attainder, but Henry couldn't have been pleased with it.

. (0)
Monday February 4, 2013, 1:37 pm
If find is actually the skull Of Richardiii, it's truly remarkable.

John B (185)
Monday February 4, 2013, 2:48 pm
Thanks Lynn for the link to the article and to Pat A. for her wonderful informative comment and I heartily agree that Richard had nothing to do with the boys murder. Read and noted.

Jane Mckenzie (20)
Monday February 4, 2013, 2:59 pm

Animae C (514)
Monday February 4, 2013, 5:02 pm
OMG! This is just FANTASTIC!
i'v been a fan for many years, read just about everything available on him & never belived Shakespear's tale!
At last after 500 years HRH gets a proper funeral, oh what i would give to be in Leicester next year for it!
Thanx Carrie for forwarding this wonderful news.

Suzanne L (99)
Monday February 4, 2013, 6:16 pm
TY for posting There was an item on the news showing a photograph of his skeleton. He had a very pronounced curvature of the spine and it is a wonder he was able to ride far less fight in battle. The curvature would definitely been a hindrance to using a sword or other weaponry of the period. He probably lived in a good deal of pain most of the time. Perhaps at some point some medical anthropologists or medical specialists can give a view to what his life was like living with this degree of scoliosis in those times.

James Howie (168)
Monday February 4, 2013, 9:25 pm
I added this to my treasure hunting & archeaology page on FB yesterday, its great news an amazing find and I cant help but wonder what else may still be in the area, the last monarch to die in battle, great stuff.

Barbara Tomlinson (431)
Monday February 4, 2013, 11:43 pm
Shakespeare was not a historian, nor was he a researcher into moldy documents. He relied on SOURCES, mostly Holinshed, a popular history writer of the day. {For instance, Shakespeare combined TWO stories of Scottish History in Holinshed, to write "Macbeth".} For his Richard III, he had no other source than the biased writings of "Saintly" Thomas More, who vilified the King for his own purposes.

However, nobody really HAS explained the bones of two young boys found in the last century under a staircase in the Tower of London. They are the right ages to be the two young princes - who were WARDS of their Uncle Richard, during which time the two heirs to the throne just "disappeared" and were never seen again! Their disappearance was necessary for Richard to assume the throne as next in line...
Richard however was a fairly decent King, made some Parliamentary reforms that were important...
I read Josephine Tey's "A Daughter in Time", am still not convinced of Richard's innocence in the matter...
However, people and especially Kings are a mixture of good & bad, and Richard was as "progressive" I guess you could say, as a king of that period gets, being all for Parliamentary rule...!

Barbara Tomlinson (431)
Monday February 4, 2013, 11:57 pm
"His brief reign saw liberal reforms, including the introduction of the right to bail and the lifting of restrictions on books and printing presses."
Glad to hear that Richard was a good exponent of "liberal" values like Care2 readers!
I also remember reading that he made some good reforms to Parliament, can't remember what they were exactly.

No, really, it gives me CHILLS to think that I am right now looking at the REAL SKULL of King Richard III, both the historical Monarch and the King of "Legend"!!!
{Nice set of teeth he has! Well, he died young... and not much sugar to be had then... }
It gives me CHILLS each time I look at it again!

Past Member (0)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 12:11 am
Yeah, great story, isn't it? And, contrary to all knowledge, he really did have a hunchback!

Barbara DeFratis (23)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 12:57 pm
William Shakespeare lived before there was any concept of freedom of the press, he wrote the politically correct history of the day--in short, he told the story as the power which were wanted to hear in order to stay out of the tower or dungeon.

roxy H (350)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 2:01 pm
this is really cool and they have done a now they have a face...real cool...:)))) love this

roxy H (350)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 2:06 pm
here lynn :) the face of the king huggers!

Elizabeth M (65)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 2:31 pm
This is really something for Britain to celebrate in finding the remains of Richard 111, of all places under a council parking lot, and hundreds of years later.I can imagine the great celebration when they finally will be able to give his remains a proper burial. Very happy to know that there is a Canadian connection.
Thanks Carrie for passing this my way, and Lynn for posting.

Lydia Weissmuller Price (181)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 2:45 pm
Ok, we have the remains of a man who lived and died centuries ago. Regardless of who he really is, he was someone's son, perhaps a brother, husband or father. I'm not sure that we can ever positively identify him, but I do believe that we should re-bury him and allow him a little human dignity. I wouldn't want anyone digging up my loved ones and studying or displaying them. We need to stop viewing the remains of once-living beings as specimens or history and see them for the pitiful creature they once were. Someone with hopes and dreams the same as you and I who struggled with the same hardships we all do and whose life probably ended in pain. Rather than ooh and aah over them, it should be an occasion to confront our own mortality and seek a life of love and kindness. The charitable acts we do today will echo 'til the end of time.

Lynn Squance (235)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 7:33 pm
Thanks for the link Roxy! A pretty good looking young fellow! Now if I was only 400 years older, give or take . . . sigh . . .

Winnie A (179)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 7:40 pm
OMG and wow.

Lynn Squance (235)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 7:49 pm
@ Barbara DeFratis --- You are so right. Shakespeare lived at the time of Elizabeth I, the Virgin Queen. She reinstituted her father's Church of England which fell by the way when Catholic Queen Mary ascended the throne. Before Mary, Lady Jane Grey was queen for a very short time and she practised as Henry VIII had. Elizabeth I had Queen Mary killed and I believe that Lady Jane Grey was killed by Mary. Shakespeare, as so many other didn't find out until too late, would have been either hanged or lost his head had he fallen out of favour with the queen. In 1601 the Earl of Essex, Robert Devereaux, a favourite of Elizabeth I and her second cousin, led an abortive coup d'tat against the government and was executed for treason. by decapitation.

Goes to show that being family was not necessarily a saving grace.

pam w (139)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 8:01 pm
I LOVE IT! The ability to verify his identity through DNA from a living descendant is just fascinating!

reft h (66)
Tuesday February 5, 2013, 11:28 pm
fascinating story

Svetlana B (20)
Wednesday February 6, 2013, 5:49 am
Thanks, noted,great news

Sarah G (109)
Wednesday February 6, 2013, 12:51 pm
Fascinating. It is unfortunate that the victors always get to write the "officlal" version of history.

Rana Sinha (50)
Sunday February 17, 2013, 8:09 am
This is very interesting. I began thinking why should long dead kings be rehabilitated?
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