Having an interest in history, particularly of medieval & Early English/British eras, I found this recent announcement and news item particularly noteworthy.
Our royalty spanning over a thousand years has produced some interesting and colourful characters. One such monarch is King Richard III 1452-1485 (his reign as King 1483-1485).
He was vilified as a cruel King, Shakespeare portrayed Richard III as a hunchbacked tyrant and murderer of rivals but modern historians argue that the king was the victim of Tudor propaganda. He lived in violent uncertain times.
King Richard III – Revealed
His brief reign from 1483 saw liberal reforms, including the introduction of the right to bail and the lifting of restrictions on books and printing presses.
Now Richard III is revealed at last after the remains of a near complete skeleton, excavated in September 2012, by archeologists from underneath a social services car park in Leicester.
The car park was built on part of the remains of Greyfriars Church. Researchers said they had concluded “beyond reasonable doubt” that the skeleton, which showed evidence of an abnormal lateral curvature of the spine, was the monarch King Richard III.
The skeleton, with severe trauma to the skull, was unearthed on the first day of a three-week dig at the site of what is believed to have been the choir of the church.
Historical records show the long-lost church was the burial site of the monarch, following his brutal death at the battle of Bosworth Field in 1485.
The remains were found at depth of 68 cm and in good condition, with the feet missing, The hands were crossed over the front of the pelvis. No remnants of a coffin or shroud were found.
The king’s remains will now be reinterred at Leicester Cathedral, the nearest consecrated ground, in keeping with archaeological practice.
After the discovery, a row between Leicester and York developed, which claims King Richard III should be buried in York according to his own wishes.
Kersten England, chief executive of City of York Council, said: “His self-identification with the north and York is reflected in his plans for a chantry of 100 priests in York Minster where he wished to be buried.
“That the burial site of this Yorkist king was determined by where he died from battle wounds makes the importance of adhering to his own wishes for his final resting place most important.
“City of York Council and all its political leaders are united in the belief that York is the most fitting burial place for Richard III, one of the city’s most famous and cherished sons.”
City of York Council will now write a letter to the Ministry of Justice stating its case.
Now the face of King Richard III has been unveiled to the world. Facial reconstruction of the monarch has been released by the Richard III Society after it was confirmed
The image is based on a CT scan taken by experts at the University of Leicester, who discovered the king’s skeleton during the archaeological dig.
The facial reconstruction was unveiled at The Society of Antiquaries at Burlington House in Piccadilly, London.
DNA samples from Michael Ibsen – a Canadian-born furniture maker who is a direct descendant of Richard’s sister, Anne of York – provided further proof.
Richard III was the last Plantagenet and Yorkist monarch later defeated by Henry Tudor, who became Henry VII, father of the famous King Henry VIII.