King Richard III, the last of the Plantagenets, ruled England from 1483 until he was defeated at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, the next-to-last major battle in what would later be called The Wars of the Roses. If you're watching "Game of Thrones" on HBO, the Wars of the Roses were Lancasters instead of Lannisters and Yorks rather than Starks - the show has more dragons and less sex than the real thing. Richard III was a York and if you think that show has a lot of characters and craziness, try to follow the actual Wars of the Roses.
They were not all that nice to each other then and his body was 'despoiled' - read into that what you will - though he may have had it coming, since he was implicated in the murders of Edward V, Henry VI and Prince Richard. Claims of sorcery against the queen and a bunch of beheadings got him his crown.
He died fighting the army of Henry Tudor (who became Henry VII, the first monarch of the House of Tudor) and after the battle, his body was carried to Leicester and buried without ceremony in the church of the Franciscan Friary, called Greyfriars.
That much is known. What is lost to antiquity is where the church was. Henry VIII dissolved the monasteries during the English Reformation in 1538 and it was said Richard III's bones were thrown into the River Soar. But archaeologists have not given up hope and they want to look under...a government parking lot.
Richard III. Popular among no one in England except archaeologists. Credit and link: Braintree and Witham Times
It isn't just academic archaeologists. Amateurs (hey, Sherlock Holmes was an amateur) have done some interesting work trying to pin down the location of Richard III's burial too. But that means first finding the monastery. Ground-penetrating radar to narrow the dig sites for their two-week expedition will help, they believe.
Richard Buckley, co-director of the archaeology service at the University of Leicester, told the (unidentified reporter) Press Association, "Although in many ways finding the remains of the king is a long shot, it is a challenge we shall undertake enthusiastically. There is certainly potential for the discovery of burials within the area, based on previous discoveries and the postulated position of the church."
If they find any remains, they will undergo DNA analysis to confirm that they are those of Richard III. Then the revisionist history can begin. Historians love to write papers debunking other historians and proponents of Richard III contend he was not as awful as the Tudors made him sound.
Still, even if he was only 50% as bad as history paints him, it's kind of a shame he didn't last until the end of the Wars of the Roses so he could have been drowned in a barrel of wine too.
- PHYSICAL SCIENCES
- EARTH SCIENCES
- LIFE SCIENCES
- SOCIAL SCIENCES
Subscribe to the newsletter
Stay in touch with the scientific world!
Know Science And Want To Write?
- Wait, Let's Not Rush To Be Multiplanetary Or Interstellar - A Comment On Elon Musk's Vision
- Bizarre Forelimb Evolution In Ancient Drepanosaurus Fossil
- Ground Squirrels Use The Sun To Hide Food
- Paleo: In A Clinical Trial, Bread Made With Ancient Grains Could Benefit Heart Health
- Study Explains Mechanisms Behind Glioblastoma Influence On The Immune System
- A Book By Guido Tonelli
- 42 Million Years: Central Asia Is Used To Westerly Winds By Now
- "Fantastic article! One thought on the Kardashev scale though, it ignores energy efficiency. It..."
- "So, Irish-catholic ghettos in Belfast in 60ies through 80ies would be a perfect historical example..."
- "Why to fear of nibiru when we know that we all have to die someday Live Big not Long..."
- "Nice piece of information about nibiru i am starting to feel feared..."
- "Right, good thoughts :). On replicators, yes if a species can make robust self replicating spaceships..."
- San Francisco Soda Tax: A Feel-Good Policy Based on Junk Science
- Watson and Crick did not discover DNA
- Is Parenting Kids of Human and Canine Persuasion the Same? Yes!
- Diabetes: MiniMed 670G Hybrid Closed-Loop Insulin System Is A Waypoint To An Artificial Pancreas
- Celebrate Oktoberfest with Beer Chemistry
- Littlest Consumers Doing Well, Nutrition-wise
- 51 U.S. House Members Urges DEA To Delay "Hasty" Ban On Natural Herbal Supplement Kratom
- Women are a quarter of the 1 percent
- Wetlands and agriculture, not fossil fuels, behind the global rise in methane
- Mass immigration is correlated to higher levels of crime, but not causal
- How would you like a kitchen surface that cleans itself?